Reduced Graphene Oxide/Tin-Antimony Nanocomposites as Anode Materials for Advanced Sodium-Ion Batteries.ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 2015; 7(44):24895-901AA
Reduced graphene oxides loaded with tin-antimony alloy (RGO-SnSb) nanocomposites were synthesized through a hydrothermal reaction and the subsequent thermal reduction treatments. Transmission electron microscope images confirm that SnSb nanoparticles with an average size of about 20-30 nm are uniformly dispersed on the RGO surfaces. When they were used as anodes for rechargeable sodium (Na)-ion batteries, these as-synthesized RGO-SnSb nanocomposite anodes delivered a high initial reversible capacity of 407 mAh g(-1), stable cyclic retention for more than 80 cycles and excellent cycle stability at ultra high charge/discharge rates up to 30C. The significantly improved performance of the synthesized RGO-SnSb nanocomposites as Na-ion battery anodes can be attributed to the synergetic effects of RGO-based flexible framework and the nanoscale dimension of the SnSb alloy particles (<30 nm). Nanosized intermetallic SnSb compounds can exhibit improved structural stability and conductivity during charge and discharge reactions compared to the corresponding individuals (Sn and Sb particles). In the meantime, RGO sheets can tightly anchor SnSb alloy particles on the surfaces, which can not only effectively suppress the agglomeration of SnSb particles but also maintain excellent electronic conduction. Furthermore, the mechanical flexibility of the RGO phase can accommodate the volume expansion and contraction of SnSb particles during the prolonged cycling, therefore, improve the electrode integrity mechanically and electronically. All of these contribute to the electrochemical performance improvements of the RGO-SnSb nanocomposite-based electrodes in rechargeable Na-ion batteries.