Published December 5, 2022 | Version v1
Journal article Open

Fast Li-ion Storage and Dynamics in TiO2 Nanoparticle Clusters Probed by Smart Scanning Electrochemical Cell Microscopy

  • 1. Analytical Chemistry—Center for Electrochemical Sciences (CES), Faculty of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruhr University Bochum Universitätsstr. 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany
  • 2. Department of Chemistry, University of Warwick Coventry CV47AL, UK
  • 3. Department of Chemistry; University of Burgos Pza. Misael Bañuelos s/n, 09001 Burgos, Spain


Anatase TiO2 is a promising material for Li-ion (Li+) batteries with fast charging capability. However, Li+ (de)intercalation dynamics in TiO2 remain elusive and reported diffusivities span many orders of magnitude. Here, we develop a smart protocol for scanning electrochemical cell microscopy (SECCM) with in situ optical microscopy (OM) to enable the high-throughput charge/discharge analysis of single TiO2 nanoparticle clusters. Directly probing active nanoparticles revealed that TiO2 with a size of ≈50 nm can store over 30 % of the theoretical capacity at an extremely fast charge/discharge rate of ≈100 C. This finding of fast Li+ storage in TiO2 particles strengthens its potential for fast-charging batteries. More generally, smart SECCM-OM should find wide applications for high-throughput electrochemical screening of nanostructured materials.


This projecthas received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie MSCA-ITN SENTINEL [812398], MSCA-IF NANODENDRITE [101026563] and NanoBat project [861962].The SECCM-glovebox set-up was funded by the Faraday Institution (FIRG013).We thank Dr. David Walker for helping with XRD measurements,and the use of the XRD ResearchTechnology Platform at the Universityof Warwick.We also thank Dr Mark Crouch from the Departmentof Engineering, Universityof Warwick, for the fabrication of the gold-coated coverslips. Open Access funding enabled and organized by Projekt DEAL.



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NANODENDRITE – Nanoscale dendrite formation and mitigation in high-energy density metal anodes 101026563
European Commission
SENTINEL – Single-Entity NanoElectrochemistry 812398
European Commission
NanoBat – GHz nanoscale electrical and dielectric measurements of the solid-electrolyte interface and applications in the battery manufacturing line 861962
European Commission