Fabrication and Electrochemical Performance of Structured Mesoscale Open Shell V2O5 Networks.
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Crystalline vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) has attracted significant interest as a potential cathode material for energy storage applications due to its high theoretical capacity. Unfortunately, the material suffers from low conductivity as well as slow lithium ion diffusion, both of which affect how fast the electrode can be charged/discharged and how many times it can be cycled. Colloidal crystal templating (CCT) provides a simple approach to create well-organized 3-D nanostructures of materials, resulting in a significant increase in surface area that can lead to marked improvements in electrochemical performance. Here, a single layer of open shell V2O5 architectures ca. 1 m in height with ca. 100 nm wall thickness was fabricated using CCT, and the electrochemical properties of these assemblies were evaluated. A decrease in polarization effects, resulting from the higher surface area mesostructured features, was found to produce significantly enhanced electrochemical performance. The discharge capacity of an unpatterned thin film of V2O5 (8.1 Ah/cm2) was found to increase to 10.2 Ah/cm2 when the material was patterned by CCT, affording enhanced charge storage capabilities as well as a decrease in the irreversible degradation during charge-discharge cycling. This work demonstrates the importance of creating mesoscale electrode surfaces for improving the performance of energy storage devices and provides fundamental understanding of the means to improve device performance.