Grafting and Solubilization of Redox-Active Organic Materials for Aqueous Redox Flow Batteries

This study concerns the development of sustainable design strategies of aqueous electrolytes for redox flow batteries using redox-active organic materials. A green spontaneous grafting reaction occurs between a redox-active organic radical and an electrochemically activated structural modifier at room temperature through a simple mixing step. Then, a physical mixing method is used to formulate a structured aqueous electrolyte and enables aqueous solubilization of the organic solute from below 0.5 to 1.5 m beyond the conventional dissolution limit. The as-obtained concentrated mixture can be readily used as catholyte for a redox flow battery. A record high discharge cell voltage (1.6 V onset output voltage) in aqueous non-hybrid flow cell is attained by using the studied electrolytes.