Reversing the Irreversible: Thermodynamic Stabilization of LiAlH4 Nanoconfined Within a Nitrogen-Doped Carbon Host

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A general problem when designing functional nanomaterials for energy storage is the lack of control over the stability and reactivity of metastable phases. Using the high- capacity hydrogen storage candidate LiAlH4 as an exemplar, we demonstrate an alternative approach to the thermodynamic stabilization of metastable metal hydrides by coordination to nitrogen binding sites within the nanopores of N-doped CMK-3 carbon (NCMK-3). The resulting LiAlH4@NCMK-3 material releases H-2 at temperatures as low as 126 degrees C with full decomposition below 240 degrees C, bypassing the usual Li3AlH6 intermediate observed in bulk. Moreover, >80% of LiAlH4 can be regenerated under 100 MPa H-2, a feat previously thought to be impossible. Nitrogen sites are critical to these improvements, as no reversibility is observed with undoped CMK-3. Density functional theory predicts a drastically reduced Al-H bond dissociation energy and supports the observed change in the reaction pathway. The calculations also provide a rationale for the solid-state reversibility, which derives from the combined effects of nanoconfinement, Li adatom formation, and charge redistribution between the metal hydride and the host.
Publisher
AMER CHEMICAL SOC
Issue Date
2021-06
Language
English
Article Type
Article
Citation

ACS NANO, v.15, no.6, pp.10163 - 10174

ISSN
1936-0851
DOI
10.1021/acsnano.1c02079
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/286740
Appears in Collection
CBE-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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