There is a great deal of current interest in the development of nonpolluting advanced energy batteries with superior performance to the commercially available batteries. The reasons behind driving this are basically originating from the consistent concerns on fast consumption of fossil fuels, global warming, environmental pollution, and ever-increasing number of vehicles, which become thus a great incentive to develop alternative approaches for vehicular propulsion. However, the critical components of advanced battery systems are the materials science aspects that implement novel unique materials science concepts, e.g., innovative electrodes and electrolyte, and advanced methodologies to describe the major different features that control the behavior of advanced electrochemical storage systems. Graphene and 2D materials with unprecedented properties will offer novel chances to create new-type advanced energy batteries with great potential to challenge the state-of-the-art performance limits of traditional devices and beyond.
High-Energy Lithium Secondary Batteries: Lithium-ion battery is a primary secondary battery with high energy density used in the market. However, further updating its energy density is currently becoming an urgent requirement especially raised in the high energy-oriented applications of electrical vehicles. The as-designed graphene and related 2D energy materials will provide many excited opportunities to construct high-capacity cathode (e.g., LiFePO4, LiMn2O4, LiCoO2, LiNiMnCoO2) and anode materials of lithium-ion batteries (e.g., Li4Ti5O12, Si) with high energy densities and enhanced cycling stability through the exact designs of micro-nano structures, the strategies of surface coating, controlled synthesis of these novel materials and assembly of full devices, particularly, graphene-based batteries. To achieve high-energy applications, the future development of other lithium metal secondary batteries with high energy densities such as lithium-sulfur battery and lithium-air battery based on as-designed 2D materials are also becoming very promising yet emergency.
New-Type Batteries: Present lithium-ion batteries show drawbacks of limited lithium resources, low theoretical capacities, and relatively high costs. To overcome these obstacles and meet different future energy-related applications, new-type safe advanced batteries, like sodium ion batteries, sodium-sulfur batteries, metal (e.g., Zn, Mg, Al)-air batteries, all-solid-state batteries, 3D batteries, lead acid batteries, are becoming one of the most promising development directions in these cutting-edge research field of graphene and 2D materials. A particular emphasis is placed on the recent trends of new 2D materials, concepts, and techniques into battery research and development, including novel materials of metal hydrides, lithium-carbon alloys, intermetallic alloys and lithium-transition metal oxides; polymeric components in both electrolytes and electrodes, liquid electrodes, both crystalline and amorphous solid electrolytes, organic solvent electrolytes, protective solid electrolyte interfaces in organic systems, new fabrication methods, new cell shapes and sizes, and more safety and shorter charging time.
Fundamental Understanding: These devices will be studied with advanced In-Situ, Ex-Situ and operando characterization technologies for analyzing the electrode micro-structures particularly under realistic reaction conditions and understanding the fundamental charge storage and electron transport mechanism.
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