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Nanoscale. 2013 Mar 21;5(6):2186-204. doi: 10.1039/c2nr33044j.

Lithium/sulfur batteries with high specific energy: old challenges and new opportunities.

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The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA.


In this review, we begin with a brief discussion of the operating principles and scientific/technical challenges faced by the development of lithium/sulfur cells. We then introduce some recent progress in exploring cathodes, anodes, and electrolytes for lithium/sulfur cells. In particular, several effective strategies used to enhance energy/power density, obtain good efficiencies, and prolong cycle life will be highlighted. We also discuss recent advancements in techniques for investigating electrode reactions in real time and monitoring structural/morphological changes of electrode materials under cell operating conditions to gain a better understanding of the mechanistic details of electrode processes. Finally, the opportunities and perspective for future research directions will be discussed.


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