Research Article


2020, 13(6): 1558–1563


Scalable synthesis of nanoporous silicon microparticles for highly cyclable lithium-ion batteries

Jiangyan Wang1, William Huang1, Yong Seok Kim1,3, You Kyeong Jeong1, Sang Cheol Kim1, Jeffrey Heo1, Hiang Kwee Lee1, Bofei Liu1, Jaehou Nah3, and Yi Cui1,2 (*)

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1 Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA
2 Stanford Institute for Materials and Energy Sciences, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, 2575 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, California 94025, USA
3 R&D center, Samsung SDI, 130, Samsung-ro, Yeongtong-gu, Suwon-si, Gyeonggi-do 16678, Republic of Korea

Keywords: silicon anode, nanoporous microparticle, yield, lithium-ion battery, Coulombic efficiency
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  • Abstract
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Nanoporous silicon is a promising anode material for high energy density batteries due to its high cycling stability and high tap density compared to other nanostructured anode materials. However, the high cost of synthesis and low yield of nanoporous silicon limit its practical application. Here, we develop a scalable, low-cost top-down process of controlled oxidation of Mg2Si in the air, followed by HCl removal of MgO to generate nanoporous silicon without the use of HF. By controlling the synthesis conditions, the oxygen content, grain size and yield of the porous silicon are simultaneously optimized from commercial standpoints. In situ environmental transmission electron microscopy reveals the reaction mechanism; the Mg2Si microparticle reacts with O2 to form MgO and Si, while preventing SiO2 formation. Owing to the low oxygen content and microscale secondary structure, the nanoporous silicon delivers a higher initial reversible capacity and initial Coulombic efficiency compared to commercial Si nanoparticles (3,033 mAh/g vs. 2,418 mAh/g, 84.3% vs. 73.1%). Synthesis is highly scalable, and a yield of 90.4% is achieved for the porous Si nanostructure with the capability to make an excess of 10 g per batch. Our synthetic nanoporous silicon is promising for practical applications in next generation lithium-ion batteries.
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Scalable synthesis of nanoporous silicon microparticles for highly cyclable lithium-ion batteries. Nano Res. 2020, 13(6): 1558–1563

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