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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Electrochemical Reaction Mechanism of the MoS2 Electrode in a Lithium-Ion Cell Revealed by in Situ and Operando X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy.

  • Author(s): Zhang, Liang
  • Sun, Dan
  • Kang, Jun
  • Feng, Jun
  • Bechtel, Hans A
  • Wang, Lin-Wang
  • Cairns, Elton J
  • Guo, Jinghua
  • et al.

As a typical transition metal dichalcogenide, MoS2 offers numerous advantages for nanoelectronics and electrochemical energy storage due to its unique layered structure and tunable electronic properties. When used as the anode in lithium-ion cells, MoS2 undergoes intercalation and conversion reactions in sequence upon lithiation, and the reversibility of the conversion reaction is an important but still controversial topic. Here, we clarify unambiguously that the conversion reaction of MoS2 is not reversible, and the formed Li2S is converted to sulfur in the first charge process. Li2S/sulfur becomes the main redox couple in the subsequent cycles and the main contributor to the reversible capacity. In addition, due to the insulating nature of both Li2S and sulfur, a strong relaxation effect is observed during the cycling process. This study clearly reveals the electrochemical lithiation-delithiation mechanism of MoS2, which can facilitate further developments of high-performance MoS2-based electrodes.

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