Date recorded: April 22 2020

The cathode in a lithium-ion battery undergoes unique electrochemical reactions as lithium enters and leaves the atomic structure of the intercalated lithium compound. The intricacies of this reaction are one source of degradation and, therefore, an opportunity to improve performance. X-ray diffraction and scattering is well-suited to study these atomic phase changes, as well as a tool to understand and optimize the pathways that lithium uses to move through the cathode. However, studying battery materials requires special considerations that are different than the routine powder diffraction measurement.

This webinar will review the information that X-ray diffraction and scattering provides and discuss special considerations for experimental design such as selecting an X-ray tube, measurement geometry, and sample holder. We will then show examples of how these considerations are applied to cathode material analysis, including Rietveld refinement to quantify phase mixtures and atomic structure, pair distribution function analysis to examine local structural defects, and phase analysis of thick (10mm) commercial pouch cells, and in operando XRD analysis of LFP based batteries to track phase changes during discharge and charging.


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