Feasibility of Lithium Storage on Graphene and Its Derivatives
J. Phys. Chem. Lett., 4 (10), pp 1737–1742
Nanomaterials are anticipated to be promising storage media, owing to their high surface-to-mass ratio. The high hydrogen capacity achieved by using graphene has reinforced this opinion and motivated investigations of the possibility to use it to store another important energy carrier – lithium (Li). While the first-principles computations show that the Li capacity of pristine graphene, limited by Li clustering and phase separation, is lower than that offered by Li intercalation in graphite, we explore the feasibility of modifying graphene for better Li storage. It is found that certain structural defects in graphene can bind Li stably, yet a more efficacious approach is through substitution doping with boron (B). In particular, the layered C3B compound stands out as a promising Li storage medium. The monolayer C3B has a capacity of 714 mAh/g (as Li1.25C3B), and the capacity of stacked C3B is 857 mAh/g (as Li1.5C3B), which is about twice as large as graphite's 372 mAh/g (as LiC6). Our results help clarify the mechanism of Li storage in low-dimensional materials, and shed light on the rational design of nanoarchitectures for energy storage.