Technical Brief

Analysis of Deposition Methods for Lithium-Ion Battery Anodes Using Reduced Graphene Oxide Slurries on Copper Foil

[+] Author and Article Information
James Garofalo, John Lawler

Center for Automation Technologies and Systems,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute,
Troy, NY 12180

Daniel Walczyk

Center for Automation Technologies and Systems,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute,
Troy, NY 12180
e-mail: walczd@rpi.edu

Nikhil Koratkar

Department of Mechanical,
Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute,
Troy, NY 12180

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received December 22, 2017; final manuscript received May 3, 2018; published online June 28, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Wayne Cai.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 140(9), 094501 (Jun 28, 2018) (9 pages) Paper No: MANU-17-1802; doi: 10.1115/1.4040265 History: Received December 22, 2017; Revised May 03, 2018

Graphene oxide (GO) slurries were deposited onto copper foil for use in lithium-ion battery anodes to determine the best deposition method(s) for research or high-volume manufacturing. Four deposition methods were tested: doctor blade, Mayer rod, slot die, and low volume low pressure (LVLP) spray. Analytical models that link tooling and process characteristics to mass flow rate of slurry and the resulting dry deposition height are developed and validated experimentally. While all methods successfully produced functioning batteries, a number of different qualitative and quantitative metrics from experimental results identified the best method for both situations. Observations were recorded on adhesion, deposition consistency, usability, and cleanability. Data on specific discharge capacity were recorded to show performance over the anode lifetime and at different charge/discharge rates. The data indicate that anodes produced using reduced graphene oxide (rGO) deliver a specific charge storage capacity of 50 to 400 mAh/g at charge–discharge rates of 1 C to 0.05 C. Doctor blading proved to be best for laboratory setups because of its adjustability, while the Mayer rod shows promise for high-volume manufacturing due to better performance and the use of nonadjustable, dedicated tooling. All methods, analysis, and metrics are discussed.

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Fig. 1

Diagrams of continuous roll-to roll (a) doctor blade coating, (b) slot die coating, (c) Mayer rod coating, and (d) LVLP spray nozzle

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Fig. 2

(a) Schematic of doctor blading and (b) viscosity versus shear rate of GO in water at 10 mg/ml concentration

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Fig. 3

Geometry of a Mayer rod's scalloped deposition cross section

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Fig. 4

(Left) Diagram of slot die setup and (right) circuit representation

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Fig. 6

(a) Gelon large automatic film coater and (b) micrometer adjustable film applicator for doctor blade deposition

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Fig. 7

Picture of doctor blade deposition

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Fig. 8

(a) Elcometer Automatic Film Applicator 4340 and (b) close up of weighted drive system with custom designed Mayer rod

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Fig. 9

Picture of Mayer rod deposition showing striations

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Fig. 10

(a) Slot die apparatus with reservoir and (b) custom-built two-axis CNC stage with slot die apparatus

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Fig. 11

Picture of a slot die deposition

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Fig. 12

(a) Low volume low pressure spray apparatus with reservoir and (b) LVLP spray nozzle

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Fig. 13

Picture of LVLP spray depositions showing the splatter pattern due to atomization

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Fig. 14

Life cycle percentage drop: percentage of beginning cycle discharge capacity versus cycle number for each deposition method. Shown for first 10 cycles after the formation cycle.

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Fig. 15

Average specific capacity at multiple discharge rates shown for each deposition method



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