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Polyethylene Oxide Film Coating Enhances Lithium Cycling Efficiency of an Anode-free Lithium Metal Battery


Practical implementation of an anode-free lithium metal battery with promising high capacity is hampered by dendrite formation and low Coulombic efficiency. Most notably, these challenges stem from non-uniform lithium plating and unstable SEI layer formation on the bare copper electrode. Here, we revealed a homogeneous lithium deposition and effective dendrite suppression with polyethylene oxide (PEO) film coated copper electrode in 1M LiTFSI, DME/DOL (v/v 1/1) and 2 wt% LiNO3 electrolyte. More importantly, the PEO film coating reinforces a thin and robust SEI layer film formation via hosting lithium and regulating the inevitable reaction of lithium with electrolyte. The modified electrode showed stable cycling of lithium with an average Coulombic efficiency of ~100% over 200 cycles and low voltage hysteresis (~30 mV) at a current density of 0.5 mA cm-2. Moreover, we have proved the anode-free battery experimentally by integrating it with the LiFePO4 cathode into a full cell configuration (Cu@PEO/LiFePO4). The new cell demonstrated stable cycling with average Coulombic efficiency of 98.6% and 30% capacity retention at 200th cycle with a 0.2 C rate. These impressive enhanced cycle life and capacity retention results from the synergy of PEO film coating, high electrode-electrolyte interface compatibility, stable polar oligomer formation from the reduction of 1, 3-dioxolane and generation of SEI stabilizing nitrite and nitride upon lithium nitrate reduction. Our result opens up a new route to realize the anode-free batteries by modifying the copper anode with PEO polymer to achieve ever demanding yet safe interfacial chemistry and controlled dendrite formation.

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Publication details

The article was received on 05 Dec 2017, accepted on 27 Feb 2018 and first published on 28 Feb 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NR09058G
Citation: Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Polyethylene Oxide Film Coating Enhances Lithium Cycling Efficiency of an Anode-free Lithium Metal Battery

    A. A. Assegie, J. Cheng, L. Kuo, W. Su and B. J. Hwang, Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C7NR09058G

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