American Chemical Society
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Atomic-Scale Probing of the Dynamics of Sodium Transport and Intercalation-Induced Phase Transformations in MoS2

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journal contribution
posted on 2015-11-24, 00:00 authored by Peng Gao, Liping Wang, Yuyang Zhang, Yuan Huang, Kaihui Liu
For alkali-metal-ion batteries, probing the dynamic processes of ion transport in electrodes is critical to gain insights into understanding how the electrode functions and thus how we can improve it. Here, by using in situ high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, we probe the dynamics of Na transport in MoS2 nanostructures in real-time and compare the intercalation kinetics with previous lithium insertion. We find that Na intercalation follows the two-phase reaction mechanism, that is, trigonal prismatic 2H-MoS2 → octahedral 1T-NaMoS2, and the phase boundary is ∼2 nm thick. The velocity of the phase boundary at <10 nm/s is 1 order smaller than that of lithium diffusion, suggesting sluggish kinetics for sodium intercalation. The newly formed 1T-NaMoS2 contains a high density of defects and series superstructure domains with typical sizes of ∼3–5 nm. Our results provide valuable insights into finding suitable Na electrode materials and understanding the properties of transition metal dichalcogenide MoS2.