Selenium infiltrated hierarchical hollow carbon spheres display rapid kinetics and extended cycling as lithium metal battery (LMB) cathodes

Yixian Wang, Hongchang Hao, Sooyeon Hwang, Pengcheng Liu, Yixin Xu, J. Anibal Boscoboinik, Dibakar Datta, David Mitlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lithium metal-selenium (Li-Se) batteries offer high volumetric energy but are limited in their cycling life and fast charge characteristics. Here a facile approach is demonstrated to synthesize hierarchically porous hollow carbon spheres that host Se (Se@HHCS) and allow for state-of-the-art electrochemical performance in a standard carbonate electrolyte (1 M LiPF6in 1 : 1 EC : DEC). The Se@HHCS electrodes display among the most favorable fast charge and cycling behavior reported. For example, they deliver specific capacities of 442 and 357 mA h g−1after 1500 and 2000 cycles at 5C and 10C, respectively. At 2C, Se@HHCS delivers 558 mA h g−1after 500 cycles, with cycling coulombic efficiency of 99.9%. Post-mortem microstructural analysis indicates that the structures remain intact during extended cycling. Per GITT analysis, Se@HHCS possesses significantly higher diffusion coefficients in both lithiation and delithiation processes as compared to the baseline. The superior performance of Se@HHCS is directly linked to its macroscopic and nanoscale pore structure: the hollow carbon sphere morphology as well as the remnant open nanoporosity accommodates the 69% volume expansion of the Li to Li2Se transformation, with the nanopores also providing a complementary fast ion diffusion path.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)18582-18593
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Issue number34
StatePublished - Sep 14 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science

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