Molten Salt Flux Synthesis to Reduce Cation Disorder in Cathodes for Lithium Ion Batteries
Student: Edwin O. Ortiz-Quiles
University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras
Degree Level: Ph. D.
Internship Site: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
Mentor: Dr. William C. West
Abstract: Lithium ion batteries using Li2MnO3/LiMO2 (M = Mn, Co, Ni) as the cathode had been extensively studied. Under 0 ºC, batteries with this composite oxide present efficiency issues. This can be explained by a diffusion process with the lithium as consequences of the poor layer organization. LiCl salts can help improve this organization by resupplying the intercalated lithium to a molten mixture. Sensitivity studies directed to understand the effects of LiCl on the cathode material controlling variables as the synthesis time, and LiCl concentration will be accomplished. Electrochemical experiments using galvanostatic charge/discharge processes at C/5 and C/10 and impedances at different temperatures provide direct information of the diffusion and the dynamics of the batteries prepared with Li2MnO3/LiMO2. Tap density analysis will be completed to have a better understanding of the behavior of the cathode after being packed in the batteries and an AlPO4 coating. Results show an improvement in the capacity of the cathode after the LiCl flux.
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