Jump to main content
Jump to site search

Issue 1, 2016
Previous Article Next Article

A zero dimensional model of lithium–sulfur batteries during charge and discharge

Author affiliations

Abstract

Lithium–sulfur cells present an attractive alternative to Li-ion batteries due to their large energy density, safety, and possible low cost. Their successful commercialisation is dependent on improving their performance, but also on acquiring sufficient understanding of the underlying mechanisms to allow for the development of predictive models for operational cells. To address the latter, we present a zero dimensional model that predicts many of the features observed in the behaviour of a lithium–sulfur cell during charge and discharge. The model accounts for two electrochemical reactions via the Nernst formulation, power limitations through Butler–Volmer kinetics, and precipitation/dissolution of one species, including nucleation. It is shown that the flat shape of the low voltage plateau typical of the lithium–sulfur cell discharge is caused by precipitation. During charge, it is predicted that the dissolution can act as a bottleneck, because for large enough currents the amount that dissolves becomes limited. This results in reduced charge capacity and an earlier onset of the high plateau reaction, such that the two voltage plateaus merge. By including these effects, the model improves on the existing zero dimensional models, while requiring considerably fewer input parameters and computational resources than one dimensional models. The model also predicts that, due to precipitation, the customary way of experimentally obtaining the open circuit voltage from a low rate discharge might not be suitable for lithium–sulfur. This model can provide the basis for mechanistic studies, identification of dominant effects in a real cell, predictions of operational behaviour under realistic loads, and control algorithms for applications.

Graphical abstract: A zero dimensional model of lithium–sulfur batteries during charge and discharge

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 25 Sep 2015, accepted on 12 Nov 2015 and first published on 12 Nov 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5CP05755H
Author version
available:
Download author version (PDF)
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2016,18, 584-593
  • Open access: Creative Commons BY license
  •   Request permissions

    A zero dimensional model of lithium–sulfur batteries during charge and discharge

    M. Marinescu, T. Zhang and G. J. Offer, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2016, 18, 584
    DOI: 10.1039/C5CP05755H

    This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported Licence. Material from this article can be used in other publications provided that the correct acknowledgement is given with the reproduced material.

    Reproduced material should be attributed as follows:

    • For reproduction of material from NJC:
      [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) on behalf of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the RSC.
    • For reproduction of material from PCCP:
      [Original citation] - Published by the PCCP Owner Societies.
    • For reproduction of material from PPS:
      [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) on behalf of the European Society for Photobiology, the European Photochemistry Association, and RSC.
    • For reproduction of material from all other RSC journals:
      [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry.

    Information about reproducing material from RSC articles with different licences is available on our Permission Requests page.

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements