Critical Roles of Mechanical Properties of Solid Electrolyte Interphase for Potassium Metal Anodes

Yao Gao, Zhen Hou, Rui Zhou, Danni Wang, Xuyun Guo, Ye Zhu, Biao Zhang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


The mechanical properties of the solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) have attracted increasing attention, but their importance in guiding electrolyte design remains ambiguous. Here it is revealed that, despite a decrease in ionic conductivity for both electrolyte and SEI, exceptional cycling performance of K-metal batteries is achieved in a low concentration carbonate electrolyte by optimizing the mechanical stability of the SEI. The SEI formed in the studied carbonate electrolytes is predominantly organic. Its inorganic content increases with increasing electrolyte concentration and corresponds to an increase in Young's modulus (E) and ionic conductivity of SEI and a decrease in elastic strain limit (εY). The maximum elastic deformation energy combines effects of E and εY, achieving a maximum in 0.5 m electrolyte. Finite element simulations indicate that SEI with low either E or εY inevitably triggers dendrite growth. These findings foreshadow an increased focus on the mechanical properties of the SEI, where low concentrations of carbonate electrolytes display merit.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2112399
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 25 Apr 2022


  • atomic force microscopy
  • deformation energy
  • dendrite growth
  • electric field
  • low concentration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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