Hierarchically porous graphene as a lithium-air battery electrode

Jie Xiao, Donghai Mei, Xiaolin Li, Wu Xu, Deyu Wang, Gordon L. Graff, Wendy D. Bennett, Zimin Nie, Laxmikant V. Saraf, Ilhan A. Aksay, Jun Liu, Ji Guang Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

917 Scopus citations


The lithium-air battery is one of the most promising technologies among various electrochemical energy storage systems. We demonstrate that a novel air electrode consisting of an unusual hierarchical arrangement of functionalized graphene sheets (with no catalyst) delivers an exceptionally high capacity of 15000 mAh/g in lithium-O2 batteries which is the highest value ever reported in this field. This excellent performance is attributed to the unique bimodal porous structure of the electrode which consists of microporous channels facilitating rapid O2 diffusion while the highly connected nanoscale pores provide a high density of reactive sites for Li-O2 reactions. Further, we show that the defects and functional groups on graphene favor the formation of isolated nanosized Li2O2 particles and help prevent air blocking in the air electrode. The hierarchically ordered porous structure in bulk graphene enables its practical applications by promoting accessibility to most graphene sheets in this structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5071-5078
Number of pages8
JournalNano Letters
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 9 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • General Materials Science


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