Ultrathin dendrimer-graphene oxide composite film for stable cycling lithium-sulfur batteries

Wen Liu, Jianbing Jiang, Ke R. Yang, Yingying Mi, Piranavan Kumaravadivel, Yiren Zhong, Qi Fan, Zhe Weng, Zishan Wu, Judy J. Cha, Henghui Zhou, Victor S. Batista, Gary W. Brudvig, Hailiang Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


Lithium-sulfur batteries (Li-S batteries) have attracted intense interest because of their high specific capacity and low cost, although they are still hindered by severe capacity loss upon cycling caused by the soluble lithium polysulfide intermediates. Although many structure innovations at the material and device levels have been explored for the ultimate goal of realizing long cycle life of Li-S batteries, it remains a major challenge to achieve stable cycling while avoiding energy and power density compromises caused by the introduction of significant dead weight/volume and increased electrochemical resistance. Here we introduce an ultrathin composite film consisting of naphthalimide-functionalized poly(amidoamine) dendrimers and graphene oxide nanosheets as a cycling stabilizer. Combining the dendrimer structure that can confine polysulfide intermediates chemically and physically together with the graphene oxide that renders the film robust and thin (<1% of the thickness of the active sulfur layer), the composite film is designed to enable stable cycling of sulfur cathodes without compromising the energy and power densities. Our sulfur electrodes coated with the composite film exhibit very good cycling stability, together with high sulfur content, large areal capacity, and improved power rate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3578-3583
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - Apr 4 2017


  • Dendrimer
  • Graphene oxide
  • Lithium-sulfur battery
  • Long cycle
  • Ultrathin composite film

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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