Design principles for high transition metal capacity in disordered rocksalt Li-ion cathodes
The discovery of facile Li transport in disordered, Li-excess rocksalt materials has opened a vast new chemical space for the development of high energy density, low cost Li-ion cathodes. We develop a strategy for obtaining optimized compositions within this class of materials, exhibiting high capacity and energy density as well as good reversibility, by using a combination of low-valence transition metal redox and a high-valence redox active charge compensator, as well as fluorine substitution for oxygen. Furthermore, we identify a new constraint on high-performance compositions by demonstrating the necessity of excess Li capacity as a means of counteracting high-voltage tetrahedral Li formation, Li-binding by fluorine and the associated irreversibility. Specifically, we demonstrate that 10–12% of Li capacity is lost due to tetrahedral Li formation, and 0.4–0.8 Li per F dopant is made inaccessible at moderate voltages due to Li–F binding. We demonstrate the success of this strategy by realizing a series of high-performance disordered oxyfluoride cathode materials based on Mn2+/4+ and V4+/5+ redox.