MEMS Seminar: Using Atomic Scale Characterization to Understand Lithiation of Battery Electrodes and Battery Failure Mechanisms
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Fitzpatrick Center Schiciano Auditorium Side A
Professor Eric Stach
Lithium ion batteries find ubiquitous use in mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops, and are being increasingly considered for use in both transportation and Smart Grid applications. In all of these applications, there is a demand for higher capacity, faster charging rate and improved safety. In this presentation, I will overview how we use transmission electron microscopy to understand two critical process that occur in the cathode end of a lithium ion battery, all via atomic-scale characterization. In the first portion of the talk, I will describe how we can use real time microscopy to watch the lithiation of several different metal oxide materials, and show how this can help understand both the mechanism by which lithium transports into the material, as well as how these mechanisms relate to e.g. rate capacity and capacity fading. In the second half of the talk, I will talk about the process by which layered oxide materials (such as those used in the Tesla) experience strong oxygen loss during phase transitions, which we implicate in the catastrophic failures seen in those materials. Finally, I will take at least a couple of minutes to talk about my own personal pathway from an undergraduate degree in M.E.M.S at Duke, to a career that has included being a research scientist, an entrepreneur as well as a professor in materials science and engineering. Lunch will be served at 11:30 am.