MESA+ University of Twente
Inorganic Materials Science Group


Title: Controlled fabrication of electrode/electrolyte nanocomposites through self-assembly for enhanced interfacial properties for lithium diffusion, for 3D solid-state batteries.

Currently, lithium-ion batteries are the most popular rechargeable batteries. However, most commercial rechargeable lithium-ion batteries deliver energy densities of only 10-15% of their theoretical values1,2. Limitations are the slow electrode process kinetics, low ionic diffusion and low electronic conductivity, especially at the electrode-electrolyte interfaces. Gaining control over the interface is a grand challenge and is believed to be even more important than designing new electrode and electrolyte materials3.


Figure 1. Ragone Plot of Solid-State Battery designs, 2D planar and 3D nanocomposite

This research is to realize self-assembled 3D solid-state batteries with improved energy densities through controlled electrode-electrolyte interface engineering. Enhanced interfacial properties for lithium diffusion can be achieved through studying and exploiting the nano-architecting of 3D electrode-electrolyte structures to control the individual crystal structures in the nanocomposites.


Figure 2. Self-assembled nanocomposite of a perovskite (BiFeO3) and spinel (CoFe2O4). Adapted from:4,5

The realization of such electrode-electrolyte nanocomposites, through self-assembly from two immiscible oxide materials, will provide a simple and low cost fabrication process. This will enable the direct transfer from small lab-scale devices to large industry-scale battery applications.

1 F. Cheng, J. Liang, Z. Tao, and J. Chen, Adv. Mater. 23, 1695-1715 ( 2011), DOI: 10.1002/adma.201003587

2 J.F.M. Oudenhoven, R.J. Vullers, and R. van Schaijk, Int. J. Energy Res. 36, 1139 (2012), DOI: 10.1002/er.2949

3 J.-M. Tarascon, and M. Armand, Nature 414, 359 (2001), DOI: 10.1038/35104644

4 H. Zheng, et. al., Adv. Mater. 18, 2747 – 2752 (2006), DOI: 10.1002/adma.200601215

5 H. Zheng, et. al. Nano Lett. 6, 1401 – 1407 (2006), DOI: 10.1021/nl060401y

PhD: Ron Hendriks

Supervisor: Mark Huijben