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Li4Ti5O12 Nanoparticles Embedded in a Mesoporous Carbon Matrix as a Superior Anode Material for High Rate Lithium Ion Batteries

Authors

  • Laifa Shen,

    1. College of Material Science and Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing, 210016, PR China
    2. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
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  • Xiaogang Zhang,

    Corresponding author
    1. College of Material Science and Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing, 210016, PR China
    • College of Material Science and Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing, 210016, PR China
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  • Evan Uchaker,

    1. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
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  • Changzhou Yuan,

    1. College of Material Science and Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing, 210016, PR China
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  • Guozhong Cao

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
    • Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.
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Abstract

A mesoporous Li4Ti5O12/C nanocomposite is synthesized by a nanocasting technique using the porous carbon material CMK-3 as a hard template. Modified CMK-3 template is impregnated with Li4Ti5O12 precursor, followed by heat treatment at 750 °C for 6 h under N2. Li4Ti5O12 nanocrystals of up to several tens of nanometers are successfully synthesized in micrometer-sized porous carbon foam to form a highly conductive network, as confirmed by field emission scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, and nitrogen sorption isotherms. The composite is then evaluated as an anode material for lithium ion batteries. It exhibits greatly improved electrochemical performance compared with bulk Li4Ti5O12, and shows an excellent rate capability (73.4 mA h g−1 at 80 C) with significantly enhanced cycling performance (only 5.6% capacity loss after 1000 cycles at a high rate of 20 C). The greatly enhanced lithium storage properties of the mesoporous Li4Ti5O12/C nanocomposite may be attributed to the interpenetrating conductive carbon network, ordered mesoporous structure, and the small Li4Ti5O12 nanocrystallites that increase the ionic and electronic conduction throughout the electrode.

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