3 years ago

Synthesis and electrochemical performance of micro-mesoporous carbon-sulfur composite cathode for Li–S batteries

Meng Cheng, Benhe Zhong, Jianshu Li, Wei Xiang, Yanan Liu, Yanxiao Chen, Zhenguo Wu, Xiaodong Guo

Abstract

Even though significant improvement has been made in the Li–S battery technology, the poor cycling and rate performance have always limited the further growth. Thus, the development of cost-effective and high performing electrodes is considered to be an important technology for the practical aspect. It is quite logical that the porous electrode systems can improve the electrochemical performance of a given battery system. Here, this study benchmarks a new class of electrodes based on double (micro and meso)porous carbon spheres (MMPCs) prepared by a facile soft template method followed by wet chemical etching. The particle size analysis, performed by scanning electron microscopy, shows that the templating agents, such as sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide(CTAB), have a distinct effect on the size distribution of carbon particles. Different electrochemical characterizations have been carried out to understand the effect of SDS and CTAB on the electrochemical performance of carbon-sulfur nanocomposite electrode. BET analysis shows that the pore size distribution of the carbon spheres prepared by only the soft template method (MPCs) is mainly in the micropore range, which limits the storage and the dispersive capacity. However, the etched samples (MMPCs) showed better electrochemical performance, such as high initial discharge capacity of 921 mAh g−1(sulfur loading ∼77.2%) with 82.7% capacity retention at the end of 150 cycles at 200 mA g−1 and an impressive rate capability of 1086 mAh g−1 at a current density of 100 mA g−1.This improved performance could be attributed to the double porous structure of MMPCs. Such a feasible and facile architecture provides a good strategy to prepare other different materials that require better material dispersion and electrode/electrolyte interactions.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11581-017-2125-7

DOI: 10.1007/s11581-017-2125-7

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