ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGY

Review of silicon anode materials for lithium-ion batteries: the pursuit of commercialization of micro-silicon


On October 7, 2022, Professor Hu Xianluo’s team from Huazhong University of Science and Technology published a speech in Nano Research Energy“The Pursuit of Commercial Silicon-Based Microparticle Anodes for Advanced Lithium-Ion Batteries: A Review”of the review, summarizedSilicon anode for lithium-ion batteriesLatest research progress.

Due to its excellent theoretical capacity, silicon-based anodes are considered to be one of the most promising next-generation lithium-ion battery anode materials. However, silicon will produce a huge volume expansion (~300%) when alloying with lithium, and this volume change will induce the accumulation of internal stress of the electrode, resulting in the pulverization of the active particles, the destruction of the electrode structure, and the rapid decay of the capacity. At the same time, the huge volume effect of silicon anode will also cause interface instability, resulting in the continuous growth of solid electrolyte interface (SEI), reducing coulombic efficiency, and further aggravating performance attenuation. A large number of research results show that nanotechnology is expected to solve the problems of cycle stability faced by silicon anodes, but from the perspective of practical application, nanoscale silicon anodes have low volumetric energy density and high production cost, which limits their practical application. Recognizing that nanoscale silicon anodes that are attractive at the laboratory level are unlikely to be replicated commercially or in practice, a great deal of research has been devoted to micron-scale silicon anodes because it is generally capable of achieving higher coulombic efficiency while having higher tapped density and relatively lower production costs. In the past decade, micron-scale silicon-based materials have made some progress in the application of lithium-ion batteries. Considering the urgency of developing high-energy density batteries and the application prospect of micron-sized silicon-based materials, it is very valuable to comprehensively summarize the relevant research progress of micron-sized silicon anodes. At present, silicon-based anodes based on industrialized micron-sized silicon-based materials (micron-sized silicon particles (SiMP), micron-sized silicon oxide particles (SiOxMP), silicon-based alloys and other industrial bulk materials) have not been systematically summarized. Since these materials have been produced on a large scale, it is of great significance to summarize the relevant research to realize the large-scale commercial application of high energy density silicon-based lithium-ion batteries.

Based on this, the team of Professor Hu Xianluo of Huazhong University of Science and Technology systematically summarized the development of silicon anodes prepared by SiMP or commercial silicon-based materials from the perspectives of simplicity, scalability, safety and sustainability (Figure 1). Firstly, the authors clarify the challenges of micron-sized silicon anodes, and comprehensively introduce the relevant strategies and synthesis methods for micro-silicon electrode structure design to maintain the structural integrity of the electrode, inhibit volume expansion, improve ion/electronic conductivity, and reduce costs. In addition, the related applications of binders, electrolytes/solid electrolytes in micro-silicon anodes are discussed. Finally, the development and design of micron silicon-based full cells are comprehensively summarized, and the direction and prospect of commercial application are prospected.

Figure 1: The development history and commercial application strategy of silicon anode.

Related Paper Information:

Q. Liu, Y. Hu, X. Yu, et al. The Pursuit of Commercial Silicon-Based Microparticle Anodes for Advanced Lithium-Ion Batteries: A Review. Nano Research Energy. 2022, 1: e9120037. https://doi.org/10.26599/NRE.2022.9120037.

https://doi.org/10.26599/NRE.2022.9120037

A sister journal to Nano Research, Nano Research Energy (ISSN: 2791-0091; e-ISSN: 2790-8119; Official Website: https://www.sciopen.com/journal/2790-8119) was launched in March 2022 and is co-edited by Professor Qu Liangti of Tsinghua University and Professor Chunyi Zhi of City University of Hong Kong. Nano Research Energy is an international, multidisciplinary, all-English open access journal, focusing on the cutting-edge research and application of nanomaterials and nanoscience and technology in new energy-related fields, benchmarking against international top energy journals, and is committed to publishing high-level original research and review papers2022 China Science and Technology Journal Excellence Action Plan – High Starting Point New Journal Project。 APC fees are waived before 2023, and teachers are welcome to submit their papers. For submission, please contact: NanoResearchEnergy@tup.tsinghua.edu.cn.

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