We report a facile synthesis of octahydroxytetraazapentacene (OHTAP) and the application of this redox-active material as a cathode for lithium- and potassium-ion batteries. While testing in lithium half-cells, OHTAP was used in the form of lithium salt and delivered the specific discharge capacity of >400 mAh g−1 and the energy density of ~700 Wh kg−1, which are impressive values achieved for organic electrode materials and can also be favorably compared with the characteristics of the current commercial benchmark cathodes based on LiFePO4 (~155 mAh g−1 and 543 Wh kg−1). The potassium half-cells fabricated using pristine OHTAP depending on the electrode deposition technique showed specific capacities of 120–220 mAh g−1, which are among the record values reported so far for this type of batteries. Quantum chemical DFT modelling provided insights in the mechanistic aspects of metallation of OHTAP and revealed that lithium- and potassium-ion storage might involve both the hydroquinone-quione chemistry as well as the redox transformations of pyrazine rings.
- High-capacity organic cathode material
- Lithium- and potassium-ion batteries
- Organic carbonyl compound
- Quantum chemical DFT modelling