Sulfur-doped ordered mesoporous carbons: A stability-improving sulfur host for lithium-sulfur battery cathodes
Journal article, 2016
We report on sulfur-functionalized ordered mesoporous carbons aimed for lithium-sulfur battery electrode applications with improved charge capacity retention. The carbons were obtained by a hard-template strategy using a mixture of furfuryl alcohol and furfuryl mercaptan. For the application as electrode material in lithium-sulfur batteries, the carbons were additionally loaded with sulfur following a traditional melt-diffusion approach. It was found that the sulfur interacts stronger with the sulfur-functionalized carbon matrix than with the non-functionalized material. Electrodes showed very high capacity in the second discharge-charge cycle amounting to approximately 1500, 1200 and 1400 mAh/g (sulfur) for carbon materials with no, medium and high degrees of sulfur functionalization, respectively. More importantly, the sulfur-functionalization of the carbon was found to increase the capacity retention after 50 discharge-charge cycles by 8 and 5% for the carbons with medium and high degrees of sulfur-functionalization, respectively, compared to carbon with no sulfur-functionalization. We attribute this significant improvement to the presence of covalently bound sulfur groups at the internal surface of the functionalized carbon providing efficient anchoring sites for catenation to the sulfur loaded into the pores of the carbons and provide experimental support for this in the form of results from cyclic voltammetry and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.
Mesoporous sulfur-functionalized carbon