Highly Porous Silicon Embedded in a Ceramic Matrix: A Stable High- Capacity Electrode for Li-Ion Batteries

D Vrankovic and M Graczyk-Zajac and C Kalcher and J Rohrer and M Becker and C Stabler and G Trykowski and K Albe and R Riedel, ACS NANO, 11, 11409-11416 (2017).

DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.7b06031

We demonstrate a cost-effective synthesis route that provides Si-based anode,materials with capacities between 2000 and 3000 mAh.g(Si)(-1) (400 and 600 mAh.g(composite)(-1)), Coulombic efficiencies above 99.5%, and almost 100% capacity retention over more than 100 cycles. The Si-based composite is prepared from highly porous silicon (obtained by reduction of silica) by encapsulation in an organic carbon and polymer-derived silicon oxycarbide (C/SiOC) matrix. Molecular dynamics simulations show that the highly porous silicon morphology delivers free volume for the accommodation of strain leading to no macroscopic changes during initial Li-Si alloying. In addition, a carbon layer provides an electrical contact, whereas the SiOC matrix significantly diminishes the interface between the electrolyte and the electrode material and thus suppresses the formation of a solid-electrolyte interphase on Si. Electrochemical tests of the micrometer-sized, glass-fiber-derived silicon demonstrate the up-scaling potential of the presented approach.

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