High-energy cathode material for long-life and safe lithium batteries

Yang Kook Sun, Seung Taek Myung, Byung Chun Park, Jai Prakash, Ilias Belharouak, Khalil Amine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

851 Citations (Scopus)


Layered lithium nickel-rich oxides, Li[Ni1-x)M( x)]O2 (M = metal), have attracted significant interest as the cathode material for rechargeable lithium batteries owing to their high capacity, excellent rate capability and low cost1-7. However, their low thermal-abuse tolerance and poor cycle life, especially at elevated temperature, prohibit their use in practical batteries4-6. Here, we report on a concentration-gradient cathode material for rechargeable lithium batteries based on a layered lithium nickel cobalt manganese oxide. In this material, each particle has a central bulk that is rich in Ni and a Mn-rich outer layer with decreasing Ni concentration and increasing Mn and Co concentrations as the surface is approached. The former provides high capacity, whereas the latter improves the thermal stability. A half cell using our concentration-gradient cathode material achieved a high capacity of 209mAhg 1 and retained 96 of this capacity after 50 charge-discharge cycles under an aggressive test profile (55 °C between 3.0 and 4.4V). Our concentration-gradient material also showed superior performance in thermal-abuse tests compared with the bulk composition Li[Ni 0.8Co0.1Mn0.1]O2 used as reference. These results suggest that our cathode material could enable production of batteries that meet the demanding performance and safety requirements of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-324
Number of pages5
JournalNature Materials
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

Cite this

Sun, Y. K., Myung, S. T., Park, B. C., Prakash, J., Belharouak, I., & Amine, K. (2009). High-energy cathode material for long-life and safe lithium batteries. Nature Materials, 8(4), 320-324. https://doi.org/10.1038/nmat2418