Using Real-Time Electron Microscopy To Explore the Effects of Transition-Metal Composition on the Local Thermal Stability in Charged LixNiyMnzCo1-y-zO2 Cathode Materials
- Using Real-Time Electron Microscopy To Explore the Effects of Transition-Metal Composition on the Local Thermal Stability in Charged LixNiyMnzCo1-y-zO2 Cathode Materials
- 황수연; 김승민; 박성민; 김세영; 조병원; 정경윤; 이정용; Eric A. Stach; 장원영
- thermal stability; electron microscopy; cathode; transition metal
- Issue Date
- Chemistry of materials
- VOL 27, 3927-3935
- In this work, we use in situ transmission electron microscopy (TEM) to investigate the thermal decomposition that occurs at the surface of charged LixNiyMnzCo1−y−zO2 (NMC) cathode materials of different composition (with y, z= 0.8, 0.1, and 0.6, 0.2, and 0.4,and 0.3), after they have been charged to their practical upper limit voltage (4.3 V). By heating these materials inside the TEM, we are able to directly characterize near surface changes in both their electronic structure (using electron energy loss spectroscopy) and crystal structure and morphology (using electron diffraction and brightfield imaging). The most Ni-rich material (y, z = 0.8, 0.1) is found to be thermally unstable at significantly lower temperatures than the other compositionsthis is manifested by changes in both the electronic structure and the onset of phase transitions at temperatures as low as 100 °C. Electron energy loss spectroscopy indicates that (i) the thermally induced reduction of Ni ions drives these changes, and (ii) this is exacerbated by the presence of an additional redox reaction that occurs at 4.2 V in the y, z = 0.8, 0.1 material. Exploration of individual particles shows that there are substantial variations in the onset temperatures and overall extent of these changes. Of the compositions studied, the composition of y, z = 0.6, 0.2 has the optimal combination of high energy density and reasonable thermal stability. The observations herein demonstrate that real-time electron microscopy provide direct insight into the changes that occur in cathode materials with temperature, allowing optimization of different alloy concentrations to maximize overall performance.
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