Rechargeable Na batteries have been considered as promising alternatives to Li-ion batteries especially for grid-scale electrical energy storage applications because, relative to Li, Na is cheaper, more abundant, and more uniformly distributed around the world. However, the dissolution of Mn ions from Mn-containing cathodes and the growth of Na dendrites are two critical issues that deteriorate the lifetime of Na batteries. Therefore, it is highly needed to develop a composite polymer electrolyte which can (i) suppress the dissolution of Mn ions from the NaxMnO2 cathode; and (ii) delay the growth of the dendrites on the Na anode. In this project, the student will develop a novel composite polymer electrolyte, which can improve the cycle life of Na batteries by stabilizing both cathode and the metallic anode. The student will engineer new battery prototypes and evaluate the battery properties.
 R. J. Clément, P. G. Bruce, and C. P. Grey, Journal of The Electrochemical Society, vol. 162, pp. A2589-A2604, 2015
 H. Gao, S. Xin, L. Xue, and J. B. Goodenough, Chem, vol. 4, pp. 833-844, 2018
The applicant will: 1. Fabricate electrolytes. 2. Assemble the batteries 3. Test the performance of the batteries 3. Conduct a series of electrochemical performance.
1. Make battery prototypes 2. Synthesis battery materials 3. Grasp the basic ability to evaluate battery properties 4. Develop communication skills of presentation.