Li polysulfide electric detection / analysis by Nanopore and organic membrane design to improve Li-Sulphur battery performances

1/2 doctoral allowance, 36 months, AAP 2018-1

Team: LAMBE, Team 4 MPI

Project leader: Nathalie Jarroux


Today the lead-acid battery technology is still dominating the total market of rechargeable batteries (450 GWh), where lithium-ion batteries represents about 85 GWh [1]. However, this picture is drastically changing. Umicore forecasts an increase of the lithium-ion battery market to about 500 GWh by 2025 [2], and Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts a lithium-ion battery demand in the terawatt-hour scale by 2030 [3]. Also, for energy storage and conversion, new electrochemical devices conception in accordance with sustainable development has become essential. This new paradigm sensibly increases complexity of materials development. It should contain only non-toxic and abundant elements with an eco-friendly synthesis and a very efficient recycling process. These constraints motivated the research of new systems beyond Li-ion, as the Li-Sulphur battery with 5 times more theoretical specific energy (wh/kg) [4]. However, despite 50 years of research, this technology is still a “lab concept” principally due to the quick discharge after short using time.

This thesis project try to push it out of the lab with a disruptive approach, connected to very different fields thanks to the DIM RESPORE. More specifically, we are dealing with species detection and sequencing directly inside a battery, as never imagined before. But also with the conception of a bio sourced membrane with controlled functionalities and porosity that could help for future battery self-healing.

[1]          M.-K. Song, E. J. Cairns, and Y. Zhang, « Lithium/sulfur batteries with high specific energy: old challenges and new opportunities », Nanoscale, vol. 5, no 6, p. 2186‑2204, mars 2013.

[2]          Y. Yang, G. Zheng, and Y. Cui, « Nanostructured sulfur cathodes », Chem. Soc. Rev., vol. 42, no 7, p. 3018‑3032, mars 2013.

[3]          M. R. Busche, P. Adelhelm, H. Sommer, H. Schneider, K. Leitner, et J. Janek, « Systematical electrochemical study on the parasitic shuttle-effect in lithium-sulfur-cells at different temperatures and different rates », J. Power Sources, vol. 259, no Supplement C, p. 289‑299, août 2014.

[4]          A. Vizintin et al., « Fluorinated Reduced Graphene Oxide as an Interlayer in Li–S Batteries », Chem. Mater., vol. 27, no 20, p. 7070‑7081, oct. 2015.