Experimental and Theoretical Characteristic of Single Atom Co-N-C Catalyst for Li-O2 Batteries

Gaoyang Li1,#

Congcong Dang1, #

Yue Hou2

Feng Dang1, Email

Yuqi Fan3, Email

Zhanhu Guo4

  1. Key Laboratory for Liquid-Solid Structural Evolution and Processing of Materials (Ministry of Education), Shandong University, 17923 Jingshi Road, Jinan 250061, China
  2. School of Chemical Engineering, Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering and Australian Centre for Nano Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales 2052, Australia
  3. Institute of Environment and Ecology, Shandong Normal University, Jinan, 250014, China
  4. Integrated Composites Laboratory (ICL), Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA.

#These authors contributed to this work equally.

Abstract

Single atom Co-N-C can be used as low-cost cathode catalyst for Li-O2 batteries (LOBs) with abundant highly active sites and high efficient atom utilization. In the present work, hierarchical porous single atom Co-N-C catalyst was prepared through acid etching from a Co/Co-N-C intermediate, featuring efficient slack of volume expansion, easy mass transmission via interconnected carbon-framework, and sufficient surface area to accommodate discharge products. The single atom Co-N-C catalyst exhibited a superior catalytic capacity for LOBs with a large specific capacity of 14075 mAh g-1 anda long cycle life of 340 cycles. The oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) /oxygen evolution reaction (OER) mechanisms of discharge products of the single atom Co-N-C catalyst were identified by using density functional theory (DFT) calculations, showing avenues for improving the future design of single atom catalysts.

Experimental and Theoretical Characteristic of Single Atom Co-N-C Catalyst for Li-O2 Batteries