Surface Properties of Battery Materials Elucidated Using Scanning Electrochemical Microscopy: The Case of Type I Silicon Clathrate

Tarnev, T. and Wilde, P. and Dopilka, A. and Schuhmann, W. and Chan, C.K. and Ventosa, E.

Volume: 7 Pages: 665-671
DOI: 10.1002/celc.201901688
Published: 2020

Silicon clathrates have attracted interest as potential anodes for lithium-ion batteries with unique framework structures. However, very little is known about the surface reactivity and solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) properties of clathrates. In this study, operando scanning electrochemical microscopy (SECM) is used to investigate the effect of pre-treatment on the formation dynamics and intrinsic properties of the SEI in electrodes prepared from type I Ba8Al16Si30 silicon clathrates. Although X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis does not reveal large changes in SEI composition, it is found through SECM measurements that ball-milling combined with chemical acid/base etching of the clathrates lead to a more stable and rapidly formed SEI as compared to purely ball-milled samples, resulting in enhanced coulombic efficiency. © 2019 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

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