Among the candidates to replace Li-ion batteries, Li–S cells are an attractive option as their energy density is about five times higher (~2,600 Wh kg−1). The success of Li–S cells depends in large part on the utilization of metallic Li as anode material. Metallic lithium, however, is prone to grow parasitic dendrites and is highly reactive to several electrolytes; moreover, Li–S cells with metallic Li are also susceptible to polysulfides dissolution. Here, we show that ~10-nm-thick two-dimensional (2D) MoS2 can act as a protective layer for Li-metal anodes, greatly improving the performances of Li–S batteries. In particular, we observe stable Li electrodeposition and the suppression of dendrite nucleation sites. The deposition and dissolution process of a symmetric MoS2-coated Li-metal cell operates at a current density of 10 mA cm−2 with low voltage hysteresis and a threefold improvement in cycle life compared with using bare Li-metal. In a Li–S full-cell configuration, using the MoS2-coated Li as anode and a 3D carbon nanotube–sulfur cathode, we obtain a specific energy density of ~589 Wh kg−1 and a Coulombic efficiency of ~98% for over 1,200 cycles at 0.5 C. Our approach could lead to the realization of high energy density and safe Li-metal-based batteries.
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The authors thank J. Tour for discussions. We also thank KIST Jeonbuk (Korea Institute of Science and Technology at Jeonbuk) for providing the facility to carry out HRTEM and B. Gwalani for helping out with additional EDX analysis. W.C. acknowledges partial financial support from SEED fund at University of North Texas. K.C. acknowledges a part of financial support by the International Energy Joint R & D Program (No. 20168510011350) of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), the Ministry of Knowledge Economy and the National Research Foundation of Creative Materials Discovery Program (2015M3D1A1068062).
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
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Cha, E., Patel, M.D., Park, J. et al. 2D MoS2 as an efficient protective layer for lithium metal anodes in high-performance Li–S batteries. Nature Nanotech 13, 337–344 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41565-018-0061-y
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