Effect of Zwitterionic Additives on Solvation and Transport of Sodium and Potassium Cations in (Ethylene Oxide)10: A Molecular Dynamics Simulation Study

Manh Tien Nguyen, Yuhua Duan, Qing Shao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Sodium- (Na+) and potassium- (K+) ion batteries are cost-effective alternatives to lithium-ion (Li+) batteries due to the abundant sodium and potassium resources. Solid polymer electrolytes (SPEs) are essential for safer and more efficient Na+ and K+ batteries because they often exhibit low ionic conductivity at room temperature. While zwitterionic (ZW) materials enhance Li+ battery conductivity, their potential for Na+ and K+ transport in batteries remains unexplored. In this study, we investigated the effect of three ZW molecules (ChoPO4, i.e., 2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine, ImSO3, i.e., sulfobetaine ethylimidazole, and ImCO2, i.e., carboxybetaine ethylimidazole) on the dissociation of Na+ and K+ coordination with ethylene oxide (EO) chains in EO-based electrolytes through molecular dynamics simulations. Our results showed that ChoPO4 possessed the highest cation–EO10 dissociation ability, while ImSO3 exhibited the lowest. Such dissociation ability correlated with the cation–ZW molecule coordination strength: ChoPO4 and ImSO3 showed the strongest and the weakest coordination with cations. However, the cation–ZW molecule coordination could slow the cationic diffusion. The competition of these effects resulted in accelerating or decelerating cationic diffusion. Our simulated results showed that ImCO2 enhanced Na+ diffusion by 20%, while ChoPO4 and ImSO3 led to a 10% reduction. For K+, ChoPO4 reduced its diffusion by 40%, while ImCO2 and ImSO3 caused a similar decrease of 15%. These findings suggest that the ZW structure and the cationic size play an important role in the ionic dissociation effect of ZW materials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number219
JournalNanomaterials
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 by the authors.

Keywords

  • ionic solvation
  • molecular dynamics
  • potassium-ion batteries
  • sodium-ion batteries
  • zwitterion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • General Materials Science

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