Silicon is an attractive material for anodes in energy storage devices, owing to ten times the theoretical capacity of its state-of-the-art carbonaceous counterpart. Silicon anodes can be used in traditional Li-ion batteries, and in more recent Li-O2 and Li-S batteries. The three main challenges associated with silicon anodes are: (i) structural degradation and instability of the solid-electrolytle interphase caused by the large volume change during the cycling, (ii) the occurrence of side reactions with the electrolyte, and (iii) the low volumetric capacity when the material size is reduced to nanoscales. This PhD project is to design and synthesize novel silicon based nanostructures in order to overcome the main challenges for applications in batteries.
During the PhD the student will undertake a placement at one of the funder’s research establishments in China, therefore applicants must be fluent in Mandarin.
This PhD is funded by Changzhou Tonghui Solar Electricty Ltd. The studentship is funded for 3 years and comprises of home/EU fees, an annual stipend of £14,296.
i) N. Liu, Z. Lu, J. Zhao, M. T. McDowell, H.-W. Lee, W. Zhao, Y. Cui, Nat. Nanotechnol. 2014, 9, 187.
ii) L. Wang, L. Chen, B. Yan, C. Wang, F. Zhu, X. Jiang, Y. Chao, G. Yang, J. Mater. Chem. A 2014, 2, 8334.
iii) M. Armand, J. M. Tarascon, Nature 2008, 451, 652.
iv) A. S. Arico, P. Bruce, B. Scrosati, J.-M. Tarascon, W. van Schalkwijk, Nat Mater 2005, 4, 366.
v) G. BrucePeter, A. FreunbergerStefan, J. HardwickLaurence, M. TarasconJean, Nat Mater 2012, 11, 172.