Discerning Roles of Interfacial Model and Solid Electrolyte Interphase Layer for Stabilizing Antimony Anode in Lithium-Ion Batteries

Qujiang Sun, Zhen Cao, Zheng Ma, Junli Zhang, Wandi Wahyudi, Tao Cai, Haoran Cheng, Qian Li, Hun Kim, Erqing Xie, Luigi Cavallo, Yang-Kook Sun, Jun Ming

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Electrolyte solvation chemistry has attracted great attention since the recent discovery of its effect on the performances of metal-ion batteries. However, it is challenging to discern its decisive influence from the well-known effect of the solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) layer. This issue becomes more complex upon introducing additives into the electrolyte, as the key role of additives in forming the SEI layer or changing the electrolyte solvation structure also become hard to be discerned. Herein, we design a new dimethyl ether-based electrolyte, and then we unravel the effects of solvation chemistry and the SEI on determining electrode performances, such as the antimony (Sb) anode as a promising example for lithium-ion batteries (LIBs). We find that both the unique solvation structure-derived interfacial model and the SEI are necessary to stabilize the Sb anode. The influences of electrolyte components, particularly the lithium difluoro(oxalato)borate additive, were elucidated for the first time by the dynamic molecular behaviors ranging from solvation structure, interfacial model, to microstructure of the SEI. Finally, extremely high performance of the Sb anode with the capacity of 668 mAh g–1, high-rate performance over 5 A g–1, and long cycle life over 100 cycles are obtained, which is superior to that previously reported. This work provides a comprehensive guideline for designing electrolytes via a synergetic approach of solvation structure and the SEI aspects.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2233-2243
Number of pages11
JournalACS Materials Letters
StatePublished - Oct 17 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-10-20
Acknowledgements: The authors greatly thank the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 22122904) for funding support. This work is also supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 21978281, 11974150, 22109155) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (No. lzujbky-2021-pd10). The authors also thank the Bureau of International Cooperation Chinese Academy of Sciences, CAS-NST Joint Research Projects (No. 121522KYSB20200047), and the Scientific and Technological Developing Project of Jilin Province (No. YDZJ202101ZYTS022). The computational work was done on the KAUST supercomputer. This work was also supported by Hanyang University.


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