Argonne Team Develops New Cathode Coating

May 16, 2019 | Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have developed a new cathode coating using an oxidative chemical vapor deposition technique. The results were published online earlier this week in Nature Energy. The oxidative chemical vapor deposition technique builds a protective conductive polymer (poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)) skin on layered oxide cathode materials. The ultraconformal poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) skin facilitates the transport of lithium ions and electrons, significantly suppresses the undesired layered to spinel/rock-salt phase transformation and the associated oxygen loss, mitigates intergranular and intragranular mechanical cracking, and effectively stabilizes the cathode–electrolyte interface, the authors write in the paper. “Building a protective skin at both secondary and primary particle levels of layered oxides offers a promising design strategy for Ni-rich cathodes towards high-energy, long-life and safe lithium-ion batteries.”