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Electrochemical energy storage and conversion technologies are at the forefront of modern science and engineering research efforts due to decreasing global fossil fuel supplies and increasing environmental concerns. In order to provide sustainable energy infrastructures and resources for future generations, significant improvements to the current state of these technologies is imperative.

High-performance Energy Storage and Conversion Systems 

Li-Ion Battery

We report in situ one-pot synthesis of Si/C composite, where Si nanoparticles are wrapped by graphene-like 2D carbon nanosheets. After 500 cycles at 420 mA gC1, the Si/C anode displays a gravimetric capacity of 881 mAh gC1 with 86.4% capacity being retained. More specially, a high areal capacity of 3.13 mAh cmC2 at 5.00 mg cmC2 after 100 cycles is achieved. This study demonstrates a novel route for the preparation of the Si/C composite with high material utilization and may expand the possibility of future design Si-based anode with high areal capacity for high energy LIBs.

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Li-S Battery

 We report a strategy of using foldable interpenetrated metal-organic frameworks/carbon nanotubes thin film for binder-free advanced lithiumCsulfur batteries through a facile confinement conversion. The carbon nanotubes interpenetrate through the metal-organic frameworks crystal and interweave the electrode into a stratified structure to provide both conductivity and structural integrity, while the highly porous metal-organic frameworks endow the electrode with strong sulfur confinement to achieve good cyclability. These hierarchical porous interpenetrated three-dimensional conductive networks with well confined S8 lead to high sulfur loading and utilization, as well as high volumetric energy density.

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Na-Ion Battery

We synthesized NASICON-structured Na2VTi(PO4)3 that served as not only as the cathode but also as the anode to construct a symmetric NIB in aqueous electrolyte. The resultant symmetric cell exhibits a voltage of ca. 1.2 V with an initial discharge capacity of 50 mAhgC1at a rate of 1C (1C = 62 mAgC1), corresponding to 80.3% of the theoretical maximum capacity (62 mAhgC1). The important properties required for stationary batteries to be used in large-scale electrical energy storage are long life, high safety, and low cost, which are more important than specific energy.

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Electrochemical Catalysis

We  report self\assembled hierarchical NiCo2O4 hollow microcuboids for overall water splitting including both the HER and OER reactions. The NiCo2O4 electrode shows excellent activity toward overall water splitting, with 10 mA cm−2 water\splitting current reached by applying just 1.65 V and 20 mA cm−2 by applying just 1.74 V across the two electrodes. The synthesis of NiCo2O4 microflowers confirms the importance of structural features for high\performance overall water splitting.

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