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Issue 17, 2018

A robust network binder with dual functions of Cu2+ ions as ionic crosslinking and chemical binding agents for highly stable Li–S batteries

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Abstract

Binders play a crucial role in improving the electrochemical performance of batteries. The major challenges associated with the sulfur cathode in lithium-sulfur (Li–S) batteries are up to 76% volume change during cycling from sulfur (S) to lithium sulfide (Li2S) and the shuttle effect of polysulfide anions, resulting in poor cycling performance. Herein, we design a network binder through the crosslinking effect of sodium alginate (SA) and Cu2+ ions (named the SA–Cu binder), in which Cu2+ ions work not only as an ionic crosslinking agent for a robust network structure, but also as a chemical binding agent for polysulfide anions. The robust network binder buffers large volume variations during cycling, while electropositive Cu2+ ions immobilize polysulfide anions through strong chemical binding. The resulting sulfur electrode delivers a capacity of 925 mA h g−1 after 100 cycles at 0.2C, which is much higher than those of sulfur electrodes with only SA and PVDF binders. Due to the robust mechanical properties of the SA–Cu binder, a high-loading and crack-free sulfur electrode, i.e., a sulfur loading up to 8.05 mg cm−2, is also achieved and delivers a high areal capacity up to 9.5 mA h cm−2. This study paves a new way to immobilize polysulfide anions using the dual functions of Cu2+ ions as both the ionic crosslinking and chemical binding agents, which could open up a new direction for advanced binders for Li–S batteries in the near future.

Graphical abstract: A robust network binder with dual functions of Cu2+ ions as ionic crosslinking and chemical binding agents for highly stable Li–S batteries

Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
03 Feb 2018
Accepted
27 Mar 2018
First published
28 Mar 2018

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018,6, 7382-7388
Article type
Communication

A robust network binder with dual functions of Cu2+ ions as ionic crosslinking and chemical binding agents for highly stable Li–S batteries

J. Liu, M. Sun, Q. Zhang, F. Dong, P. Kaghazchi, Y. Fang, S. Zhang and Z. Lin, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, 6, 7382 DOI: 10.1039/C8TA01138A

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