Comprehensive Insights into Nucleation, Autocatalytic Growth, and Stripping Efficiency for Lithium Plating in Full Cells

Harry Charalambous, Olaf Borkiewicz, Andrew Colclasure, Zhenzhen Yang, Alison Dunlop, Stephen Trask, Andrew Jansen, Ira Bloom, Uta Ruett, Kamila Wiaderek, Yang Ren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus Citations


Synchrotron high-energy X-ray diffraction is used to enable nondestructive detection and quantification of heterogeneous lithium plating in working batteries. In this study a LiNi0.5Mn0.3Co0.2O2/graphite pouch cell was operated under 6C fast-charge rate for greater than 1200 cycles. The magnitude and spatial distribution of lithium plating, lithium stripping, and the effect of metallic lithium deposition on lithium intercalation into graphite were quantified. Fully intercalated graphite (LiC6) was detected after discharge with a lateral distribution closely correlated with lithium plating, which can be used as a higher-sensitivity indicator for lithium plating. Over an extended cycle life, the overall metallic lithium concentration followed a sigmoidal curve indicating two-stage continuous nucleation and autocatalytic growth. The lithium stripping efficiency underwent an exponential decay as a function of cycle life as the buildup of metallic lithium hindered the efficient dissolution back into the electrolyte. The findings provide direct insights into the characteristics of lithium plating and stripping under realistic fast-charge conditions.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)3725-3733
Number of pages9
JournalACS Energy Letters
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5700-80377


  • fast charging
  • li-ion battery
  • lithium plating/stripping
  • reversibility
  • XRD


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