Nano Research

, Volume 11, Issue 8, pp 4199–4214 | Cite as

Extreme biomimetics: A carbonized 3D spongin scaffold as a novel support for nanostructured manganese oxide(IV) and its electrochemical applications

  • Tomasz Szatkowski
  • Kacper Kopczyński
  • Mykhailo Motylenko
  • Horst Borrmann
  • Beata Mania
  • Małgorzata Graś
  • Grzegorz Lota
  • Vasilii V. Bazhenov
  • David Rafaja
  • Friedrich Roth
  • Juliane Weise
  • Enrico Langer
  • Marcin Wysokowski
  • Sonia Żółtowska-Aksamitowska
  • Iaroslav Petrenko
  • Serguei L. Molodtsov
  • Jana Hubálková
  • Christos G. Aneziris
  • Yvonne Joseph
  • Allison L. Stelling
  • Hermann Ehrlich
  • Teofil Jesionowski
Research Article


Composites containing biological materials with nanostructured architecture have become of great interest in modern materials science, yielding both interesting chemical properties and inspiration for biomimetic research. Herein, we describe the preparation of a novel 3D nanostructured MnO2-based composite developed using a carbonized proteinaceous spongin template by an extreme biomimetics approach. The thermal stability of the spongin-based scaffold facilitated the formation of both carbonized material (at 650 °C with exclusion of oxygen) and manganese oxide with a defined nanoscale structure under 150 °C. Remarkably, the unique network of spongin fibers was maintained after pyrolysis and hydrothermal processing, yielding a novel porous support. The MnO2-spongin composite shows a bimodal pore distribution, with macropores originating from the spongin network and mesopores from the nanostructured oxidic coating. Interestingly, the composites also showed improved electrochemical properties compared to those of MnO2. Voltammetry cycling demonstrated the good stability of the material over more than 3,000 charging/discharging cycles. Additionally, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy revealed lower charge transfer resistance in the prepared materials. We demonstrate the potential of extreme biomimetics for developing a new generation of nanostructured materials with 3D centimeter-scale architecture for the storage and conversion of energy generated from renewable natural sources.


nanostructured composite extreme biomimetics spongin scaffold manganese oxide electrochemistry supercapacitor 


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This work was supported by the Poznan University of Technology (Poland), Research Grant No. 03/32/DSPB/ 0706/2017 to T. Szatkowski, M. Wysokowski, and T. Jesionowski; the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, Grant No. 03/31/DSBP/0337 to K. Kopczyński, M. Graś and G. Lota; and the German Research Foundation (DFG) Grant HE 394-3 as well as the BHMZ Erich- Krueger-Foundation to H. Ehrlich. M. Wysokowski is supported by the Foundation for Polish Science (FNP)- START 097.2017.

Supplementary material

12274_2018_2008_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.3 mb)
Extreme biomimetics: A carbonized 3D spongin scaffold as a novel support for nanostructured manganese oxide(IV)and its electrochemical applications


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Copyright information

© Tsinghua University Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tomasz Szatkowski
    • 1
  • Kacper Kopczyński
    • 2
  • Mykhailo Motylenko
    • 3
  • Horst Borrmann
    • 4
  • Beata Mania
    • 1
  • Małgorzata Graś
    • 2
  • Grzegorz Lota
    • 2
  • Vasilii V. Bazhenov
    • 5
    • 6
  • David Rafaja
    • 3
  • Friedrich Roth
    • 5
  • Juliane Weise
    • 5
  • Enrico Langer
    • 7
  • Marcin Wysokowski
    • 1
  • Sonia Żółtowska-Aksamitowska
    • 1
  • Iaroslav Petrenko
    • 5
  • Serguei L. Molodtsov
    • 5
    • 6
    • 8
  • Jana Hubálková
    • 9
  • Christos G. Aneziris
    • 9
  • Yvonne Joseph
    • 10
  • Allison L. Stelling
    • 11
  • Hermann Ehrlich
    • 5
  • Teofil Jesionowski
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Chemical Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Chemical TechnologyPoznan University of TechnologyPoznanPoland
  2. 2.Institute of Chemistry and Technical ElectrochemistryPoznan University of TechnologyPoznanPoland
  3. 3.Institute of Materials ScienceTU Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany
  4. 4.Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of SolidsDresdenGermany
  5. 5.Institute of Experimental PhysicsTU Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany
  6. 6.European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser Facility (XFEL) GmbHSchenefeldGermany
  7. 7.Institute of Semiconductors and Microsystems, Polymere MikrosystemeTU DresdenDresdenGermany
  8. 8.Saint-Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and OpticsITMO UniversitySt. PetersburgRussia
  9. 9.Institute of Ceramic, Glass and Constructions MaterialsTU BergakademieFreibergGermany
  10. 10.Institute of Electronics and Sensor MaterialsTU Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany
  11. 11.Department of BiochemistryDuke University Medical SchoolDurhamUSA

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