Recycling bacteria for the synthesis of LiMPO4 (M = Fe, Mn) nanostructures for high-power lithium batteries
Ng, Wun Jern
Date of Issue2014
School of Materials Science and Engineering
Nanyang Environment and Water Research Institute
In this work, a novel waste-to-resource strategy to convert waste bacteria into a useful class of cathode materials, lithium metal phosphate (LiMPO4; M = Fe, Mn), is presented. Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria used for removing phosphorus contamination from wastewater are harvested and used as precursors for the synthesis of LiMPO4. After annealing, LiFePO4 and LiMnPO4 nanoparticles with dimensions around 20 nm are obtained. These particles are found to be enveloped in a carbon layer with a thickness around 3–5 nm, generated through the decomposition of the organic matter from the bacterial cell cytoplasm. The battery performance for the LiFePO4 is evaluated. A high discharge capacity of 140 mAh g−1 at 0.1 C with a flat plateau located at around 3.5 V is obtained. In addition, the synthesized particles display excellent stability and rate capabilities. Even under a high C rate of 10 C, a stable discharge capacity of 75.4 mAh g−1 can still be achieved.
© 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.