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Optimising Li-ion battery performance

Paper published in Nature Communications

Lithium-ion batteries (LiBs) are the leading energy storage technology for portable electronics and electric vehicles (EVs), which could alleviate reliance on fossil fuels. However, major challenges in safety, energy and power density, cost and durability of LIBs remain.

NPL’s Measurement Fellow, Xuekun Lu’s work on imaging the full 3D microstructure of a LiB battery cathode using X-ray nano-computed tomography has been published in Nature Communications.

In a scientific first, this included the low-contrast carbon-binder domain, which has been a historical challenge to image but is critical to incorporate into the fundamental research of electrode design as it determines the microstructural heterogeneity and therefore the battery performance.  

Building on the results and insights has led to the development of a new approach to electrode design and characterisation, which will be a powerful tool in the development of LiBs with improved performance, lifetime and safety. 

Xuekun Lu’s project focuses on fundamental understanding of the link between microstructure and performance of Li-ion batteries, which is key to improving the driving range and fast charge capability of electric vehicles.


21 Jul 2020