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Probing Local Electrochemistry via Mechanical Cyclic Voltammetry Curves...

by Wan-yu Tsai, Ruocun Wang, Shelby Boyd, Veronica Augustyn, Nina Wisinger
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Nano Energy
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Understanding the mechanical response of an electrode during electrochemical cycling and its correlation to the device electrochemical performance is crucial to improving the performance of insertion-type energy storage devices, electrochemical actuators, water purification, ion separation and neuromorphic computing applications. In this work, we visualized the electro-chemo-mechanical coupling behaviors during charge storage of anhydrous and hydrated WO3 electrodes via in situ atomic force microscopy (AFM) and developed the concept of mechanical cyclic voltammetry (mCV) curves. The relationship between electrochemical current and strain was investigated with simplified models and the results revealed that the proton insertion/deinsertion process could be described through potential-dependent electro-chemo-mechanical coupling coefficients which might indicate changes in insertion processes during electrode cycling. The mCV mapping results highlight the local heterogeneity and show that the charging processes varied across the electrode. These local variations could be further correlated to local morphology, crystal orientations or chemical compositions with proper electrode designs.