Impact of surface coating on electrochemical and thermal behaviors of a Li-rich Li1.2Ni0.16Mn0.56Co0.08O2 cathode
Jassim Al-Hail, Sara Ahmad
Quddus, Aisha Abdul
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Lithium-rich layered oxide materials are considered as potential cathode materials for future high-performance lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) owing to their high operating voltage and relatively high specific capacity. However, perceptible issues such as poor rate performance, poor capacity retention, and voltage degradation during cycling need to be improved before the successful commercialization of the material. In this report, zirconia coated Li1.2Ni0.16Mn0.56Co0.08O2 (NMC) (where ZrO2 = 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0 wt%) materials are synthesized using a sol-gel assisted ball milling approach. A comparison of structural, morphological and electrochemical properties is examined to elucidate the promising role of ZrO2 coating on the performance of the NMC cathode. A uniform and homogeneous ZrO2 coating is observed on the surface of NMC particles as evident by TEM elemental mapping images. The ZrO2 coated NMCs exhibit significantly improved electrochemical performance at a higher C-rate as compared to pristine material. 1.5% ZrO2 coated NMC demonstrates better cycling stability (95% capacity retention) than pristine NMC (77% capacity retention) after 50 cycles. All ZrO2 coated NMC materials demonstrated improved thermal stability compared to pristine material. The difference in onset temperature of 2 wt% ZrO2 coated and pristine NMC is 20 °C. The improved electrochemical performance of ZrO2 coated NMC can be attributed to the stabilization of its surface structure due to the presence of ZrO2.