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Nano Research

Article Title

Ordered SnO nanoparticles in MWCNT as a functional host material for high-rate lithium-sulfur battery cathode

Keywords

hybrid nanomaterial, multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT), ordered tin monoxide, cathode, high loading, lithium-sulfur battery

Abstract

ABSTRACT Lithium-sulfur battery has become one of the most promising candidates for next generation batteries, and it is still restricted due to the low sulfur conductivity, large volume expansion and severe polysulfide shuttling. Herein, we present a novel hybrid electrode with a ternary nanomaterial based on sulfur-impregnated multiwalled carbon nanotubes filled with ordered tin-monoxide nanoparticles (MWCNT-SnO/S). Using a dry plasma reduction method, a mechanically robust material is prepared as a cathode host material for lithium-sulfur batteries. The MWCNT-SnO/S electrode exhibits high conductivity, good ability to capture polysulfides, and small volume change during a repeated charge–discharge process. In situ transmission electron microscopy and ultraviolet–visible absorption results indicate that the MWCNT-SnO host efficiently suppresses volume expansion during lithiation and reduces polysulfide dissolution into the electrolyte. Furthermore, the ordered SnO nanoparticles in the MWCNTs facilitate fast ion/electron transfer during the redox reactions by acting as connective links between the walls of the MWCNTs. The MWCNT-SnO/S cathode with a high sulfur content of 70 wt.% exhibits an initial discharge capacity of 1,682.4 mAh·g–1 at 167.5 mA·g–1 (0.1 C rate) and retains a capacity of 530.1 mAh·g–1 at 0.5 C after 1,000 cycles with nearly 100% Coulombic efficiency. Furthermore, the electrode exhibits the high capacity even at a high current rate of 20 C.

Graphical Abstract

Publisher

Tsinghua University Press

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