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Single particle nanomechanics in operando batteries via lensless strain mapping.

  • Author(s): Ulvestad, Andrew;
  • Singer, Andrej;
  • Cho, Hyung-Man;
  • Clark, Jesse N;
  • Harder, Ross;
  • Maser, Jorg;
  • Meng, Ying Shirley;
  • Shpyrko, Oleg G
  • et al.

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We reveal three-dimensional strain evolution in situ of a single LiNi0.5Mn1.5O4 nanoparticle in a coin cell battery under operando conditions during charge/discharge cycles with coherent X-ray diffractive imaging. We report direct observation of both stripe morphologies and coherency strain at the nanoscale. Our results suggest the critical size for stripe formation is 50 nm. Surprisingly, the single nanoparticle elastic energy landscape, which we map with femtojoule precision, depends on charge versus discharge, indicating hysteresis at the single particle level. This approach opens a powerful new avenue for studying battery nanomechanics, phase transformations, and capacity fade under operando conditions at the single particle level that will enable profound insight into the nanoscale mechanisms that govern electrochemical energy storage systems.

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