Lignin/Si Hybrid Carbon Nanofibers towards Highly Efficient Sustainable Li-ion Anode Materials

Mario Culebras,1,4

Gearoid A. Collins,2

Anne Beaucamp,1

Hugh Geaney2 

Maurice N. Collins1,3*Email

1Stokes Laboratories & School of Engineering, Bernal Institute, University of Limerick, Ireland.
2Bernal Institute & Chemical Sciences Department, University of Limerick, Ireland.
3Advanced Materials and Bioengineering Research (AMBER) Centre, Ireland.
4Institute of Material Science of the University of Valencia, Spain

 

Abstract

As fossil fuel resources dwindle and new regulations for a cleaner and safer environment come on stream, there is growing interest in developing new sustainable feedstocks for future applications. Lignocellulosic biomass is the feedstock of choice but remains underutilised and is mostly considered as waste. Therefore, the present study shows the preparation of lignin derived carbon nanofibre (CNFs)/Si hybrid nanostructures to be used as high-performance anodes for Li ion batteries. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) shows the evolution of the morphology after each processing step, (electrospinning, stabilization and carbonization) and as a function of the Si content. The electrochemical analysis of the electrodes produced shows promising capacity values. The addition of Si elevated the achievable specific capacity of CNF, with 5,10 and 15 % of Si reaching respective capacity values of and 274, 439, 602 and 921 mAh g-1. Thus, these results show the enormous potential of lignocelluose waste materials as high performance energy storage materials.

Lignin/Si Hybrid Carbon Nanofibers towards Highly Efficient Sustainable Li-ion Anode Materials