Non-aqueous Electrolytes and Interfacial Chemistry in Lithium-ion Batteries
Abstract: Lithium-ion battery (LIB) technology is currently the most promising candidate for power sources in applications such as portable electronics and electric vehicles. In today's state-of-the-art LIBs, non-aqueous electrolytes are the most widely used family of electrolytes. In the present thesis work, efforts are devoted to improve the conventional LiPF6-based electrolytes with additives, as well as to develop alternative lithium 2-trifluoromethyl-4,5-dicyanoimidazole (LiTDI)-based electrolytes for silicon anodes. In addition, electrode/electrolyte interfacial chemistries in such battery systems are extensively investigated.Two additives, LiTDI and fluoroethylene carbonate (FEC), are evaluated individually for conventional LiPF6-based electrolytes combined with various electrode materials. Introduction of each of the two additives leads to improved battery performance, although the underlying mechanisms are rather different. The LiTDI additive is able to scavenge moisture in the electrolyte, and as a result, enhance the chemical stability of LiPF6-based electrolytes even at extreme conditions such as storage under high moisture content and at elevated temperatures. In addition, it is demonstrated that LiTDI significantly influences the electrode/electrolyte interfaces in NMC/Li and NMC/graphite cells. On the other hand, FEC promotes electrode/electrolyte interfacial stability via formation of a stable solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) layer, which consists of FEC-derivatives such as LiF and polycarbonates in particular.Moreover, LiTDI-based electrolytes are developed as an alternative to LiPF6 electrolytes for silicon anodes. Due to severe salt and solvent degradation, silicon anodes with the LiTDI-baseline electrolyte showed rather poor electrochemical performance. However, with the SEI-forming additives of FEC and VC, the cycling performance of such battery system is greatly improved, owing to a stabilized electrode/electrolyte interface.This thesis work highlights that cooperation of appropriate electrolyte additives is an effective yet simple approach to enhance battery performance, and in addition, that the interfacial chemistries are of particular importance to deeply understand battery behavior.
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