Abstract: Sodium-based rechargeable batteries are very promising energy storage and conversion systems owing to their wide availability and the low cost of Na resources, which is beneficial to large-scale electric energy storage applications in future. In the context of attempting to achieve high-energy densities and low cost, multi-electron reaction materials for both cathodes and anodes are attracting significant attention due to high specific capacities involved. Here, we present a brief review on recently reported multi-electron reaction materials for sodium-based batteries. We mostly concentrate on true multi-electron reactions that involve individually valence changes greater than one per redox center, but in addition include materials in the discussion, which undergo multi-electron processes per formula unit. The theoretical gravimetric and volumetric (expanded state) capacities are studied for a broad range of examples. Then, the practically achievable volumetric energy density and specific energy of Na cells with hard carbon, sodium (Na), and phosphorus (P) anodes are compared. For this purpose, various data are recalculated and referred to the same basis cell. The results show the potential superiority of the cells using multi-electron reaction materials and provide an intuitive understanding of the practically achievable energy densities in future Na-based rechargeable batteries. However, these multi-electron reaction materials are facing several key challenges, which are preventing their high-performance in current cells. In order to overcome them, general strategies from particle design to electrolyte modification are reviewed and several examples in both cathode and anode materials using such strategies are studied. Finally, future trends and perspectives for achieving promising Na-based batteries with better performance are discussed.

Read full text on ScienceDirect

DOI: 10.1016/j.mattod.2018.03.004