Advanced Energy Materials, Volume 5, Issue 2, January 21, 2015.
Yu Wang, Wei-Hong Zhong*, Tyler Schiff,Allen Eyler , Bin Li.
School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, USA.
Storing energy within flexible and safe materials is one of the most important goals for energy storage devices. To that end, high-performance conformable electrolytes, which can transport ions quickly and safely, and can also effectively separate and bond strongly to the two electrodes, are of great importance. However, it is challenging to develop an electrolyte that can play these multiple roles simultaneously. Here, aiming to overcome this challenge, a particle-based approach to the fabrication of a high-performance, gum-like electrolyte is described. The intriguing properties of the gum-like electrolyte include high ionic conductivity, good mechanical properties, excellent adhesion properties, and, more importantly, thermal-protection capability. It is shown that these significant properties are well-controlled by the incorporation of wax particles with variable size, loading, and surface properties that can be designed through the use of an apporpriate surfactant. This provides a promising solution for high-performance electrolytes and indicates a cost-effective approach to fabricating multifunctional ion-conducting materials.
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