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Lithium Insertion in Polymer-Derived Silicon Oxycarbide Ceramics

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Data for the electrolytic insertion of lithium into polymer-derived silicon oxycarbide ceramics are analyzed in terms of a nanodomain model for these ceramics. The model is constructed from three molecular building blocks: graphene, silicon dioxide tetrahedra, and mixed bond tetrahedra. In mixed bonds, the silicon atom is shared by both oxygen and carbon. The composition regime being considered is bordered by a triangle formed by C, SiO2, and SiC. Mostly, the nonstoichiometric compositions containing “free” carbon are considered. The data fit a phenomenological description where silicon-based mixed bond tetrahedra sequester an equivalent of ∼50 000 mAh/g-atom, while “free carbon” can sequester ∼5000 mAh/g-atom, for the reversible portion of the lithium insertion. The compositions lying close to the SiC–C, and SiC–SiO2 tie lines, however, deviate measurably from this general picture.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, Colorado 80309–0427

Publication date: 2010-04-01

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