Compaction pressure influence on material properties and sorption behaviour of LiBH4–MgH2 composite


Among different Reactive Hydride Composites (RHCs), the combination of LiBH4 and MgH2 is a promising one for hydrogen storage, providing a high reversible storage capacity. During desorption of both LiBH4 and MgH2, the formation of MgB2 lowers the overall reaction enthalpy. In this work, the material was compacted to pellets for further improvement of the volumetric hydrogen capacity. The influence of compaction pressure on the apparent density, thermal conductivity and sorption behaviour for the Li-based RHC during cycling was investigated for the first time. Although LiBH4 melts during cycling, decrepitation or disaggregation of the pellets is not observed for any of the investigated compaction pressures. However, a strong influence of the compaction pressure on the apparent hydrogen storage capacity is detected. The influence on the reaction kinetics is rather low. To provide explanations for the observed correlations, SEM analysis before and after each sorption step was performed for different compaction pressures. Thus, the low hydrogen sorption in the first cycles and the continuously improving sorption for low pressure compacted pellets with cycling may be explained by some surface observations, along with the form stability of the pellets.
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