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China researchers discover that Li-ion battery cycling can control magnetization

Researchers at Tsinghua University, with colleagues from the University of Science and Technology Beijing, have discovered that the multi-reversible magnetization of ferromagnetic material can be controlled via the lithiation/delithiation reaction in a Li-ion battery by varying the discharge–charge potential at room temperature. This phenomenon couples magnetism and electrochemistry, and enables precise quantitative magnetization manipulation using an electrochemical method. An open-access paper on their discovery is published in the ACS journal Nano Letters.

In their paper, they reported achieving reversible manipulation of magnetism over 3 orders of magnitude by controlling the lithiation/delithiation of a nanoscale α-Fe2O3-based electrode.

The process was completed rapidly under room-temperature conditions.

Our results indicate that in addition to energy storage LIBs, which have been under continuous development for several decades, provide exciting opportunities for the multireversible magnetization of magnetic fields.

Our work reveals that magnetic properties are linked to the voltage control of LIBs. The concept of tuning physical properties using battery cycling clearly has strong potential because hundreds of active materials have already been developed as LIB electrodes.

—Zhang et al.


  • Qingyun Zhang, Xi Luo, Luning Wang, Lifang Zhang, Bilal Khalid, Jianghong Gong, and Hui Wu (2015) “Lithium-Ion Battery Cycling for Magnetism Control” Nano Letters doi: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.5b04276


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