Spectroscopic Signature of Oxidized Oxygen States in Peroxides.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jpclett.8b02757
Recent debates on the oxygen redox behaviors in battery electrodes have triggered a pressing demand for the reliable detection and understanding of nondivalent oxygen states beyond conventional absorption spectroscopy. Here, enabled by high-efficiency mapping of resonant inelastic X-ray scattering (mRIXS) coupled with first-principles calculations, we report distinct mRIXS features of the oxygen states in Li2O, Li2CO3, and especially, Li2O2, which are successfully reproduced and interpreted theoretically. mRIXS signals are dominated by valence-band decays in Li2O and Li2CO3. However, the oxidized oxygen in Li2O2 leads to partially unoccupied O-2p states that yield a specific intraband excitonic feature in mRIXS. Such a feature displays a specific emission energy in mRIXS, which disentangles the oxidized oxygen states from the dominating transition-metal/oxygen hybridization features in absorption spectroscopy, thus providing critical hints for both detecting and understanding the oxygen redox reactions in transition-metal oxide based battery materials.