Nanodiamonds suppress the growth of lithium dendrites

Xin Bing Cheng, Meng Qiang Zhao, Chi Chen, Amanda Pentecost, Kathleen Maleski, Tyler Mathis, Xue Qiang Zhang, Qiang Zhang, Jianjun Jiang, Yury Gogotsi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

281 Scopus citations


Lithium metal has been regarded as the future anode material for high-energy-density rechargeable batteries due to its favorable combination of negative electrochemical potential and high theoretical capacity. However, uncontrolled lithium deposition during lithium plating/stripping results in low Coulombic efficiency and severe safety hazards. Herein, we report that nanodiamonds work as an electrolyte additive to co-deposit with lithium ions and produce dendrite-free lithium deposits. First-principles calculations indicate that lithium prefers to adsorb onto nanodiamond surfaces with a low diffusion energy barrier, leading to uniformly deposited lithium arrays. The uniform lithium deposition morphology renders enhanced electrochemical cycling performance. The nanodiamond-modified electrolyte can lead to a stable cycling of lithium | lithium symmetrical cells up to 150 and 200 h at 2.0 and 1.0 mA cm-2, respectively. The nanodiamond co-deposition can significantly alter the lithium plating behavior, affording a promising route to suppress lithium dendrite growth in lithium metal-based batteries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number336
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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