Utilising Both Conversion & Alloying reactions for High Lithium Storage Capacities

16 Sep 2013 Engineering Product Development Lithium-Ion Battery Capacity

PhD Student
Huang Zhixiang, Engineering Product Development
Yang Hui Ying, Assistant Professor, Engineering Product Development

High-energy and power-dense lithium-ion batteries are necessary to propel the development of portable electronics. The current generation of lithium-ion batteries is limited by the low capacity of the graphite anode (~372 mAh/g).
A Tin-based anode (SnX2, X = O, S) is a potential high-capacity anode alternative to graphite. But this tin-based anode suffers from three problems:

  1. Poor electronic conductivity.
  2. Large volume changes during operation resulting in shortened batter lifetime.
  3. Lithium loss due to Li2X formation in the first discharge.

(1) and (2) can be overcome through nanostructuring and compositing with conductive carbonaceous materials such as graphene, carbon nanotubes and amorphous carbon. (3) has not yet been satisfactorily addressed.
This research project aims to overcome all three obstacles simultaneously by developing a transition metal catalyst for tin-based graphene nanocomposites. The introduction of the catalyst greatly improves capacity of the anode materials (e.g. SnO2: 782 mAh/g to 1493 mAh/g).

Read more here.