Surface chemistry and morphology of the solid electrolyte interphase on silicon nanowire lithium-ion battery anodes

Candace K. Chan, Riccardo Ruffo, Seung Sae Hong, Yi Cui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

566 Scopus citations


Silicon nanowires (SiNWs) have the potential to perform as anodes for lithium-ion batteries with a much higher energy density than graphite. However, there has been little work in understanding the surface chemistry of the solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) formed on silicon due to the reduction of the electrolyte. Given that a good, passivating SEI layer plays such a crucial role in graphite anodes, we have characterized the surface composition and morphology of the SEI formed on the SiNWs using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). We have found that the SEI is composed of reduction products similar to that found on graphite electrodes, with Li2CO3 as an important component. Combined with electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, the results were used to determine the optimal cycling parameters for good cycling. The role of the native SiO2 as well as the effect of the surface area of the SiNWs on reactivity with the electrolyte were also addressed. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1132-1140
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Power Sources
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: The work is supported by the Global Climate and Energy Project at Stanford, Office of Naval Research, and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. C.K.C. acknowledges support from a National Science Foundation graduate fellowship and Stanford Graduate Fellowship.
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


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