Tracking Lithium Ions via Widefield Fluorescence Microscopy for Battery Diagnostics

Direct tracking of lithium ions with time and spatial resolution can provide an important diagnostic tool for understanding mechanisms in lithium ion batteries. A fluorescent indicator of lithium ions, 2-(2-hydroxyphenyl)­naphthoxazole, was synthesized and used for real-time tracking of lithium ions via widefield fluorescence microscopy. The fluorophore can be excited with visible light and was shown to enable quantitative determination of the lithium ion diffusion constant in a microfluidic model system for a plasticized polymer electrolyte lithium battery. The use of widefield fluorescence microscopy for in situ tracking of lithium ions in batteries is discussed.