Reliable sulfur cathodes hold the key to realizing high-performance lithium-sulfur (Li-S) batteries, yet the electrochemical inefficiency and instability arising from the poor conductivity of sulfur and lithium sulfide together with polysulfide diffusion present challenges. We present here a new three-dimensional graphene aerogel embedded with in situ grown SnS2 nano-dots (SnS2-ND@G) as an efficient sulfur host. First, benefiting from a highly conductive, hierarchically porous, and mechanically self-supported architecture, the SnS2-ND@G aerogel enables the cathode to hold high sulfur content (75 wt%) and loading (up to 10 mg cm-2). Both values exceed most of the reported metal-compound-related cathode work (<60 wt% sulfur content and <3 mg cm-2 sulfur loading) in the literature. Second, this work takes advantage of a facile one-pot self-assembly fabrication, effectively guaranteeing a homogeneous deposition of SnS2 nano-dots in the graphene aerogel with a small amount of SnS2 (16 wt%). It greatly overcomes the shortcomings of physical incorporation methods to make metal-compound/carbon substrates reported in previous studies. More importantly, by rationally combining the physical entrapment from graphene and chemical adsorptivity from SnS2 nano-dots towards polysulfides, the SnS2-ND@G aerogel demonstrates remarkably improved polysulfide-trapping capability and electrochemical stability. As a result, a high peak capacity of 1234 mA h g-1, a high reversible capacity of 1016 mA h g-1 after 300 cycles, exceptional rate capability (C/10-3C rates), and impressive areal capacity (up to 11 mA h cm-2) are achieved. This work provides a viable path to integrate a conductive graphene network and nano-sized SnS2 as a promising cathode substrate for developing advanced Li-S batteries.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Materials Science(all)