Watch Jordi talk about chemical imaging of batteries

Jordi recently delivered a talk on recent progress in methods X-ray microscopy to image battery reactions, as an Advanced Photon Source Colloquium. If you are interested in an overview of recent work from our group, watch the talk below:

New paper on Mg metal anodes

Sam, who recent left our group to become an Assistant Professor at Pusan National University (S. Korea), led a study of the degradation of Mg anodes when cycled at high current densities in non-aqueous TFSI-based electrolytes. The work has now been published in Langmuir, as part of the Fundamental Interfacial Science for Energy Applications special issue. Nice results, Sam! And best of luck in your new endeavors!

New paper on nanocrystal heterostructures of battery materials

A new article from our group describes a method to synthesize nanocrystals of LiCoO2 and the formation of heterostructures where aluminum substitutes cobalt selectively in outer regions of the crystals. Congratulations, Linhua!

Three new collaborative papers out

Our integrated efforts of collaboration within DOE-funded research centers led to three new papers. A paper from the JCESR team appearing in Chemistry of Materials evaluates the ability of birnessite to act as a cathode in a Zn metal battery. A second paper from JCESR, appearing in Applied Physics Letters, describes a study of the lithiation of V2O5 using in situ TEM. A third paper, this time from NECCES, appearing in Nano Letters identifies fracture between primary particles in a secondary aggregate as the leading source of degradation during the operation of Li-ion battery cathodes with layered structures. Congratulations to Sam, Mark, and Cabana group alumni Young-Sang and Tanghong for their contributions to these reports!

Perspective Article on chemical imaging of battery electrodes

Our group has published a Perspective Article in Chemistry of Materials providing a concise overview of methods of chemical imaging that have been applied to questions in batteries. The article also provides an outlook into the future directions that these methods and future advances will enable. This Perspective is part of the Up-and-Coming series at Chemistry of Materials. A hat tip to Mark and Brian for spearheading this article!

Mario wins Paaren Award

Mario Lopez, an undergraduate researcher in our group, has just been awarded a Paaren Scholarship in Chemistry. The Herbert E. Paaren Scholarships are for outstanding UIC chemistry majors, including BS Biochemistry majors pursuing a career in science. These awards are typically given to students who are among the first generation of their families to go to college. Congratulations, Mario!

All-nighters for Science

A new post on the website of Argonne National Laboratory describing the unusual working hours at a synchrotron facility features Mark and Brian discussing their operando characterization of battery materials. The secret of success is in the choice of soda…

Novel chemical imaging technique reported

Our collaboration with scientists at the Advanced Light Source continues to prove fruitful. They developed a novel technique of ptychographic chemical imaging based on phase contrast, and used LixFePO4 samples to prove the concept. The paper is available in Applied Physics Letters, and credits contributions by Young-Sang, one of our alumni.

Intercalation chemistry of fluoride perovskites

A new paper from our group appearing in Chemistry of Materials discusses the ability of perovskite-type KFeF3 to undergo redox intercalation reactions. A combination of tools revealed the possibility of reversible removal of K, followed by intercalation of Li and Na. This work was pushed forward by one of our alumni, Tanghong, with support from Mike. Well done, Tanghong and Mike!

New paper on multivalent hybrid supercapacitors

Sam spearheaded a new article in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces on the design of hybrid energy storage devices combining a multivalent metal, such as Mg or Zn, and a carbon electrode, in a multivalent electrolyte. The resulting rocking-chair supercapacitor overcomes some of the issues with energy density of conventional supercapacitors, which operate through the depletion of the electrolyte salt. Nice job, Sam!