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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Mapping polaronic states and lithiation gradients in individual V2O5 nanowires.

  • Author(s): De Jesus, Luis R
  • Horrocks, Gregory A
  • Liang, Yufeng
  • Parija, Abhishek
  • Jaye, Cherno
  • Wangoh, Linda
  • Wang, Jian
  • Fischer, Daniel A
  • Piper, Louis FJ
  • Prendergast, David
  • Banerjee, Sarbajit
  • et al.

The rapid insertion and extraction of Li ions from a cathode material is imperative for the functioning of a Li-ion battery. In many cathode materials such as LiCoO2, lithiation proceeds through solid-solution formation, whereas in other materials such as LiFePO4 lithiation/delithiation is accompanied by a phase transition between Li-rich and Li-poor phases. We demonstrate using scanning transmission X-ray microscopy (STXM) that in individual nanowires of layered V2O5, lithiation gradients observed on Li-ion intercalation arise from electron localization and local structural polarization. Electrons localized on the V2O5 framework couple to local structural distortions, giving rise to small polarons that serves as a bottleneck for further Li-ion insertion. The stabilization of this polaron impedes equilibration of charge density across the nanowire and gives rise to distinctive domains. The enhancement in charge/discharge rates for this material on nanostructuring can be attributed to circumventing challenges with charge transport from polaron formation.

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