Masters Theses


Nihal Acharya

Keywords and Phrases

Electrodeposition; Lithium Metal Batteries; Microstructure evolution; Phase Field Modeling


"One of the main weaknesses in long term performance of conventional lithium batteries is the growth of lithium microstructures on the electrode surface due to an electrochemical process, which can eventually lead to failure of these batteries. Suppressing this microstructure growth is a key in developing new generations of lithium metal batteries (LMBs). In this study, a two-dimensional (2D) phase field model is constructed to understand and determine the parameters controlling formation and evolution of microstructures in LMBs. A Ginzburg-Landau free energy functional, which is a function of concentration of Li+ and applied voltage, and a system consisting of a pure lithium metal electrode and an electrolyte made of lithium hexafluorophosphate in a binary organic solvent of 1:1 ratio of ethylene carbonate and dimethyl carbonate. The evolution equations consist of a Cahn-Hilliard fourth-order partial differential equation (PDE) for evolution of Li+ concentration in the domain, and a Laplace's equation for charge conservation. Using COMSOL, the growth thickness and growth rate from the anode surface are simulated by applying different boundary conditions of concentration and different potentials. The proposed model is compared to existing electrodeposition models and results show that the Laplace's equation can be used in different forms proposed in literature. Assuming this battery to be a strongly anisotropic system, the Cahn-Hilliard equation is modified to include anisotropy and the simulations reveal a strong directional growth from the anode surface. The results of the developed model suggested that this phase field model is capable of quantitatively predicting the formation and growth of microstructures in LMBs and may be used to improve their life time in the future. This model can also be applied to study electrodeposition process in other material systems"--Abstract, page iii.


Asle Zaeem, Mohsen

Committee Member(s)

Moats, Michael S.
Zhou, Caizhi


Materials Science and Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering


United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration


NASA-EPSCoR funded this research effort


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Spring 2016


xii, 108 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 102-107).


© 2016 Nihal Acharya, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Lithium cells
Phase transformations (Statistical physics)

Thesis Number

T 10861

Electronic OCLC #