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Open Access Publications from the University of California

High-efficiency and high-power rechargeable lithium–sulfur dioxide batteries exploiting conventional carbonate-based electrolytes


Shedding new light on conventional batteries sometimes inspires a chemistry adoptable for rechargeable batteries. Recently, the primary lithium-sulfur dioxide battery, which offers a high energy density and long shelf-life, is successfully renewed as a promising rechargeable system exhibiting small polarization and good reversibility. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that reversible operation of the lithium-sulfur dioxide battery is also possible by exploiting conventional carbonate-based electrolytes. Theoretical and experimental studies reveal that the sulfur dioxide electrochemistry is highly stable in carbonate-based electrolytes, enabling the reversible formation of lithium dithionite. The use of the carbonate-based electrolyte leads to a remarkable enhancement of power and reversibility; furthermore, the optimized lithium-sulfur dioxide battery with catalysts achieves outstanding cycle stability for over 450 cycles with 0.2 V polarization. This study highlights the potential promise of lithium-sulfur dioxide chemistry along with the viability of conventional carbonate-based electrolytes in metal-gas rechargeable systems.

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