Superior supercapacitance behavior of oxygen self-doped carbon nanospheres: a conversion of Allium cepa peel to energy storage system

  • Gomaa A. M. Ali
  • S. Supriya
  • Kwok Feng Chong
  • Essam R. Shaaban
  • H. Algarni
  • T. Maiyalagan
  • Gurumurthy HegdeEmail author
Original Article


Mesoporous carbon nanospheres are produced from biowaste, Allium cepa peels, well known as “onion” dry peels using the catalyst-free pyrolysis method. The synthesis process involves an unusable bio-precursor that is accumulated in millions of tons per year. The obtained materials show nanosphere morphology with particles size of 63–66 nm and surface area up to 2962 m2 g−1. After pyrolysis at 800, 900, and 1000 °C, the carbon nanospheres are directly applied for supercapacitance study without further activation processes. The electrochemical studies show promising results such as high electrode capacitance of 189.4 at 0.1 A g−1 in 3 M KOH. Moreover, full cell symmetrical supercapacitor is fabricated and further investigated under a wide potential window up to 1.6 V. An excellent electrochemical behavior is observed for the supercapacitor in terms of high energy density of 22.1 Wh kg−1 at a power density of 39.6 W kg−1, high cyclic stability of 78%, and high coulombic efficiency of 90% over 4500 cycles at 0.5 A g−1. These studies support carbon nanospheres obtained from Allium cepa wastes to be used as promising materials for supercapacitor application.

Graphical abstract


Supercapacitor Onion peel Agricultural waste Carbon nanospheres Specific capacitance 



Dr. Gurumurthy Hegde would like to thank the Department of Science and Technology, Nanomission Division, Government of India, for providing the project grant (file number: SR/NM/NT-1026/2017). The authors thank Mr. Sriram Ganesan and Dr. Mahaveer Kurkure, Jain University, Bengaluru, India, for providing BET data and Dr. Kavitha, BMS Institute of Technology, for providing Raman spectroscopic data. In addition, the authors would like to acknowledge the funding from the Ministry of Education Malaysia FRGS (RDU160118: FRGS/1/2016/STG07/UMP/02/3) and Universiti Malaysia Pahang (grant number RDU170357). Moreover, the authors extend their appreciation to King Khalid University, the Ministry of Education in Saudi Arabia for supporting this research through a grant (RCAMS/KKU/002-18) under research center for advanced material science.

Supplementary material

13399_2019_520_MOESM1_ESM.docx (38 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 38 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Industrial Sciences & TechnologyUniversiti Malaysia PahangKuantanMalaysia
  2. 2.Chemistry Department, Faculty of ScienceAl–Azhar UniversityAssiutEgypt
  3. 3.Centre for Nano-Materials and DisplaysB.M.S. College of EngineeringBangaloreIndia
  4. 4.Department of ChemistryB.M.S. College of EngineeringBangaloreIndia
  5. 5.Physics Department, Faculty of ScienceAl-Azhar UniversityAssiutEgypt
  6. 6.Department of Physics, Faculty of SciencesKing Khalid UniversityAbhaSaudi Arabia
  7. 7.Research Center for Advanced Materials Science (RCAMS)King Khalid UniversityAbhaSaudi Arabia
  8. 8.Department of ChemistrySRM Institute of Science and TechnologyKattankulathurIndia

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