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Scalable Synthesis and Kinetic Studies of Carbon Coated Sodium Titanate: A Promising Ultra-low Voltage Anode for Sodium Ion Battery

Abstract

The ultra-low voltage anode, Na2Ti3O7 (NTO) of high specific capacity (177 mAh/g) suffers from low intrinsic electronic conductivity, leading to poor electrochemical performance. Herein, we report the synthesis of carbon-coated Na2Ti3O7 (NTO/C) from indigenously prepared TiO2; where a low-cost organic precursor, resorcinol is used as a carbon source for the first time. Resorcinol derived carbon is beneficial in two ways: (1) increase in electronic conductivity; and (2) promote sodium ion intercalation being electrochemically active. The structural and morphological characterizations are conducted by X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infra-red spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy techniques, which confirm the formation of phase pure NTO/C with cuboid-shaped morphology. The carbon coating along with cuboid type morphology together show improved electrochemical performance due to the increase in electronic conductivity and sodium ion diffusivity. The NTO/C shows higher reversible charge capacity of 213 (± 5) mAh/g with 48% capacity retention against 178 (± 5) mAh/g with 24% capacity retention for pristine NTO after 40 cycles. Excellent rate capability is seen for NTO/C; where it shows a stable capacity of 70 (± 5) mAh/g at 2.0 C-rate. The novelty of this present work involves large scale synthesis of carbon-coated Na2Ti3O7 from indigenously prepared TiO2 and low-cost resorcinol as a source of carbon with improved electrochemical performance, which can be used as promising intercalation based anode material for sodium-ion batteries.

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Fig. 1

Source: Materials Project Open Database). b X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns of Na2Ti3O7 and Na2Ti3O7/C. c Thermo gravimetric (TG) analysis plot of Na2Ti3O7/C carried out under air atmosphere showing weight loss due to carbon oxidation. d FT-IR spectra of Na2Ti3O7 and Na2Ti3O7/C

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge the financial support from Department of Science and Technology through Technical Research Centre (TRC project: AI/1/65/ARCI/2014) and DST project: DST/TMD/MES/2K17/46, Government of India for the completion of the work. The authors also like to thank Dr. G. Padmanabham, Director, ARCI and Dr. G. Sundararajan, Distinguished Scientist, ARCI for valuable suggestions and continuous support to carry out this work.

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Correspondence to Bijoy Kumar Das.

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Kanta, P.L.M., Venkatesh, M., Yadav, S.K. et al. Scalable Synthesis and Kinetic Studies of Carbon Coated Sodium Titanate: A Promising Ultra-low Voltage Anode for Sodium Ion Battery. Trans Indian Natl. Acad. Eng. 5, 475–483 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s41403-020-00107-9

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Keywords

  • Sodium titanates
  • Carbon coating
  • Cuboid morphology
  • Electrochemical performance
  • Anode
  • Sodium-ion battery