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UMERC Special Seminar: Solid Electrolytes for Li Batteries: From Atoms to Performances
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Wednesday, August 23, 2017 Room 2110 Chemical and Nuclear Engineering Building
For More Information:
Catherine Stephens
301 405 9378

Prof. Cheng Ma, National 1000-Young-Talent Professor

School of Chemistry and Materials Science

University of Science and Technology of China



The safety concerns and insufficient energy density are the two most formidable challenges for Li-ion batteries, whereas the novel solid electrolyte is a promising solution to both of them. It not only can address the safety issues by circumventing the flammability and leakage problems of conventional liquid electrolytes, but also allows for high battery voltages that greatly surpass the limit of commercial Li-ion batteries. However, presently solid electrolytes are not ready for application: the ionic conductivity is generally low, and the knowledge on their Li transport mechanism is insufficient for a target-oriented optimization. With the capability of directly visualizing the atomic-level materials behavior, the aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) is an ideal tool for this task. Here, I will describe two of our most recent discoveries enabled by such techniques. In the first project, the direct atom-by-atom analysis on an extensively studied material, (Li,La)TiO3, disclosed the existence of “hidden” Li pathways that were not detected in previous studies. This discovery reconciled the long-standing structure-property inconsistency, and pointed out a new angle on future materials design. In the second project, our unique in-situ (S)TEM setup enabled the successful observation of the interface between cubic Li7La3Zr2O12 and Li. Highly localized changes that cannot be easily examined by other methods, e.g. an interphase thinner than 10 nm, were clearly revealed. These results suggest that the crucial phenomena for solid electrolytes frequently occurred at extremely small length scales, and thus the ultrahigh spatial resolution of (S)TEM would be essential in the future development of all-solid-state Li batteries.

This Event is For: Graduate • Faculty

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