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ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2013 Sep 25;5(18):8961-7. doi: 10.1021/am401990b. Epub 2013 Sep 12.

Solvothermal synthesis of monodisperse LiFePO4 micro hollow spheres as high performance cathode material for lithium ion batteries.

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Department of Physics and Materials Science, City University of Hong Kong , 83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong, P. R. China.


A microspherical, hollow LiFePO4 (LFP) cathode material with polycrystal structure was simply synthesized by a solvothermal method using spherical Li3PO4 as the self-sacrificed template and FeCl2·4H2O as the Fe(2+) source. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) show that the LFP micro hollow spheres have a quite uniform size of ~1 μm consisting of aggregated nanoparticles. The influences of solvent and Fe(2+) source on the phase and morphology of the final product were chiefly investigated, and a direct ion exchange reaction between spherical Li3PO4 templates and Fe(2+) ions was firstly proposed on the basis of the X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) transformation of the products. The LFP nanoparticles in the micro hollow spheres could finely coat a uniform carbon layer ~3.5 nm by a glucose solution impregnating-drying-sintering process. The electrochemical measurements show that the carbon coated LFP materials could exhibit high charge-discharge capacities of 158, 144, 125, 101, and even 72 mAh g(-1) at 0.1, 1, 5, 20, and 50 C, respectively. It could also maintain 80% of the initial discharge capacity after cycling for 2000 times at 20 C.

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