Ionic liquids and derived materials for lithium and sodium batteries
The ever-growing demand for advanced energy storage devices in portable electronics, electric vehicles and large scale power grids has triggered intensive research efforts over the past decade on lithium and sodium batteries. The key to improve their electrochemical performance and enhance the service safety lies in the development of advanced electrode, electrolyte, and auxiliary materials. Ionic liquids (ILs) are liquids consisting entirely of ions near room temperature, and are characterized by many unique properties such as ultralow volatility, high ionic conductivity, good thermal stability, low flammability, a wide electrochemical window, and tunable polarity and basicity/acidity. These properties create the possibilities of designing batteries with excellent safety, high energy/power density and long-term stability, and also provide better ways to synthesize known materials. IL-derived materials, such as poly(ionic liquids), ionogels and IL-tethered nanoparticles, retain most of the characteristics of ILs while being endowed with other favourable features, and thus they have received a great deal of attention as well. This review provides a comprehensive review of the various applications of ILs and derived materials in lithium and sodium batteries including Li/Na-ion, dual-ion, Li/Na–S and Li/Na–air (O2) batteries, with a particular emphasis on recent advances in the literature. Their unique characteristics enable them to serve as advanced resources, medium, or ingredient for almost all the components of batteries, including electrodes, liquid electrolytes, solid electrolytes, artificial solid–electrolyte interphases, and current collectors. Some thoughts on the emerging challenges and opportunities are also presented in this review for further development.