The formation and continuous growth of a solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) layer are responsible for the irreversible capacity loss of batteries in the initial and subsequent cycles, respectively. In this article, the electron tunneling barriers from Li metal through three insulating SEI components, namely Li2CO3, LiF and Li3PO4, are computed by density function theory (DFT) approaches. Based on electron tunneling theory, it is estimated that sufficient to block electron tunneling. It is also found that the band gap decreases under tension while the work function remains the same, and thus the tunneling barrier decreases under tension and increases under compression. A new parameter, η, characterizing the average distances between anions, is proposed to unify the variation of band gap with strain under different loading conditions into a single linear function of η. An analytical model based on the tunneling results is developed to connect the irreversible capacity loss, due to the Li ions consumed in forming these SEI component layers on the surface of negative electrodes. The agreement between the model predictions and experimental results suggests that only the initial irreversible capacity loss is due to the self-limiting electron tunneling property of the SEI.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering