Investigation of BorOn-Nitrogen Compounds as Possible Electrode Materials for Lithium-ion Batteries

 

Bal Mukund Dhar1,2, Kaikun Yang1, Erich Walter3, R Gregory Downing2, A Alec Talin3, Howard Wang1,2

 

Following the recent reports on the use of metallic hydrides (MgH2 etc) as anode materials for lithium ion batteries we have investigated the utility of ammonia borane (NH3BH3) and its other thermolysed dehydrogenated derivatives as possible electrode materials for lithium ion batteries. After the first insertion of lithium (discharge) at potentials around 0.5 V vs Li/Li+, the battery shows a flat charging potential around 3.0 V to 3.2 V and subsequent cycle showing a discharge potential around 2.4 V with specific capacities as high as 3700 mAh/g. The batteries cycle very well for 20-30 cycles, but with each cycle, the charging potential keeps rising from 3.0 V at 1st cycle to 4.0 V at the end of 30th cycle. Ex situ Raman spectroscopy was performed on the batteries to investigate the mechanism of operation of the battery, and it was inferred that the reason for high capacity was possibly due to the products formed as a result of organic electrolyte degradation around 3 V which is much lower than the electrolyte stability window of 4.2 V. The results suggest that these electrodes might be useful as catalyst materials in Lithium Air batteries.

 

Author Affiliations:

1. Institute of Materials Research and Dept of Mechanical Engineering, State University of New York, Binghamton, Binghamton, NY, United States.
2. Center for Neutron Research, National Institute of Standards and Technology(NIST), Gaithersburg, MD, United States. 
3. Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology(CNST), National Institute of Standards and Technology(NIST), Gaithersburg, MD, United States.