In this paper, a novel nitrogen-doped carbon paper (NCP) with both highly dense three-dimensional cellular structure and excellent bending flexibility is fabricated by pyrolyzing a melamine foam under compression. When serving as a free-standing anode for lithium-ion batteries, the NCP electrode delivers a reversible capacity up to 329.8 mA h g−1 after 200 cycles at 0.5 A g−1 (1.34 C) and 126.5 mA h g−1 after 500 cycles at 8.0 A g−1 (21.5 C). Such electrochemical performance is much higher than those of the counterparts prepared by pyrolysis without compression and can be mainly attributed to (a) the 3D highly dense interconnected carbon network with numerous junctions which can facilitate the efficient electron transfer and provide short transportation paths for lithium ions; and (b) the excellent mechanical flexibility and self-standing capability which exempt the use of binder, conductive additive and current collector. The NCP electrode implies a great promise of application in the high-performance Li-ion batteries for the flexible and wearable electronics.
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