First Author Publications
For complete list of publications: Download CV or see Google Scholar
# - equal contributions, * - corresponding author

  1. Corrosion of Lithium Metal Anodes During Calendar Aging and its Microscopic Origins
    Boyle, D. T.#, Huang, W.#, Wang, H., Li, Y., Yu, Z., Zhang, W., Bao, Z., Cui, Y.*
    Nature Energy 2021
    DOI: 10.1038/s41560-021-00787-9

    Summary: Lithium metal batteries are a next generation technology that could enable applications like electric drones and long range electric vehicles. In this work, we zoom in to understand how these batteries perform after long periods of storage - or calendar aging - when the battery is not in use. We used electrochemical and nanoscopic characterization methods like cryogenic transmission electron microscopy to discover that rechargeable Lithium anodes corrode significantly in many electrolyte chemistries. This corrosion causes continuous growth of a passivation film - the solid electrolyte interphase. Future studies of Li metal anodes will have to consider more realistic charging protocol, and engineering strategies should focus on minimizing the surface area of Li electrodes.
    This work was highlighted by SLAC at Stanford!

  2. Transient Voltammetry with Ultramicroelectrodes Reveals the Electron Transfer Kinetics of Li Metal Anodes
    Boyle, D. T., Kong, X., Pei, A., Rudnicki, P. R., Shi, F., Huang, W., Bao, Z., Qin, J.*, Cui, Y.*
    ACS Energy Lett. 2020, 5, 701-709
    DOI: 10.1021/acsenergylett.0c00031

    Summary: The electrodeposition of lithium metal is a critical process in lithium metal batteries. The molecular mechanism of the electron transfer step of this process may seem simple, but is actually quite complicated, as metal deposition involves both ion and electron transfer at the interface. This work unravels the complexity of the electron transfer mechanism using transient voltammetry with ultramicroelectrodes. We find that a Marcus-based framework of electron transfer accurately describes lithium deposition, whereas the commonly assumed Butler-Volmer model of electrode kinetics poorly described lithium deposition. Beyond providing a molecular picture of lithium (and more generally, metal) depostion, this work provides a strategy for understanding how the electron transfer kinetics affect the morphology of electrodeposited lithium.
    This work was highlighted by ACS Energy Letters!

  3. Nanostructural and Electrochemical Evolution of the Solid Electrolyte Interphase on CuO Nanowires Revealed by Cryogenic-Electron Microscopy and Impedance Spectroscopy
    Huang, W.#, Boyle, D. T.#, Li, Y., Li, Y., Pei, A., Chen, H., Cui, Y.*
    ACS Nano 2019, 13, 737-744
    DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.8b08012

    Summary: The solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) is a nanoscopic film that prevents highly reactive battery materials from corroding and ultimately determines the lifetime of lithium batteries. Historically, imaging the SEI had been extremely challenging because it is highly sensitive to air and high energy electron microscopes. At the time of publication, cryogenic transmission electron microscopy had just been developed to image the nanostructure of the SEI, but a connection between the evolution of the nanostructure and its resulting electrochemistry was missing. This work tracked the early-stage growth of the SEI and related the changes in thickness to the overall resistance of the film.

  4. Elucidation of Active Sites for the Reaction of Ethanol on TiO2/Au(111)
    Boyle, D. T., Wilke, J. A., Palomino, R. M., Lam, V. H., Schlosser, D. A., Andahazy, W. J., Stopak, C. Z., Stacchiola, D. J., Rodriguez, J. A., Baber, A. E.*
    J. Phys. Chem. C 2017, 121, 7794-7802
    DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcc.6b11764

    Summary: Designing catalysts that selectively and efficiently convert low value chemicals into high value products is central to a sustainable infrastructure. The atomic structure of the catalyst surface can strongly influence the effectiveness of different reactions, so it is particularly important to identify the active sites of these catalysts. This work identifies the distinct surface sites of Au(111) and TiO2/Au(111) and their role in the conversion of ethanol to ethylene and acetaldehyde using temperature prgrammed desorption.

Co-Authored Publications
  1. Electrode Design with Integration of High Tortuosity and Sulfur-Philicity for High-Performance Lithium-Sulfur Battery
    Chen, H., Zhou, G., Boyle, D. T., Wan, J., Wang, H., Lin, D., Mackanic, D., Zhang, Z., Kim, S. C., Lee, H. R., Wang, H., Huang, W., Ye, Y., Cui, Y.*
    Matter 2020, 2, 1605-1620
    DOI: /10.1016/j.matt.2020.04.011

  2. Resolving Nanoscopic and Mesoscopic Heterogeneity of Fluorinated Species in Battery Solid-Electrolyte Interphases by Cryogenic Electron Microscopy
    Huang, W., Wang, H., Boyle, D. T., Li, Y., Cui, Y.*
    ACS Energy Lett. 2020, 5, 1128-1135
    DOI: 10.1021/acsenergylett.0c00194

  3. Dynamic structure and chemistry of the silicon solid-electrolyte interphase visualized by cryogenic electron microscopy
    Huang, W., Wang, J., Braun, M. R., Zhang, Z., Li, Y., Boyle, D. T., McIntyre, M. C., Cui, Y.*
    Matter 2019, 1, 1232-1245
    DOI: 10.1016/j.matt.2019.09.020

  4. Evolution of the solid–electrolyte interphase on carbonaceous anodes visualized by atomic-resolution cryogenic electron microscopy
    Huang, W.#, Attia, P.#, Wang, H., Renfrew, S. E., Jin, N., Das, S., Zhang, Z., Boyle, D. T., Li, Y., Bazant, M. Z., McCloskey, B. M., Chueh, W. C.*, Cui, Y.*
    Nano Lett. 2019, 19, 5140-5148
    DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.9b01515

  5. Uniform high ionic conducting lithium sulfide protection layer for stable lithium metal anode
    Chen, H., Pei, A., Lin, D., Xie, J., Yang, A., Xu, J., Lin, K., Wang, J., Wang, H., Shi, F., Boyle, D. T., Cui, Y.*
    Adv. Energy Mater. 2019, 9, 1900858
    DOI: 10.1002/aenm.201900858

  6. Low–temperature exchange of hydrogen and deuterium between molecular ethanol and water on Au (111)
    DePonte, M. C., Wilke, J. A., Boyle, D. T., Gillum, M. Z., Schlosser, D. A., Lam, V. H., Kaleem, H., Maxwell, E. M., Baber, A. E.*
    Surface Science 2019, 680, 1-5
    DOI: 10.1016/j.susc.2018.10.001

  7. Correlating structure and function of battery interphases at atomic resolution using cryoelectron microscopy
    Li, Y.#, Huang, W.#, Li, Y.#, Pei, A., Boyle, D. T., Cui, Y.*
    Joule 2018, 2, 2167-2177
    DOI: 10.1016/j.joule.2018.08.004

  8. Lithium Metal Stripping Beneath the Solid Electrolyte Interphase
    Shi, F., Pei, A., Boyle, D. T., Xie, J., Yu, X., Zhang, X., Cui, Y.*
    PNAS 2018, 115, 8529-8534
    DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1806878115