Lithium Plating

Lithium plating is the deposition of metallic lithium on the surface of the graphite anode. This is one of the most significant degradation mechanisms:

  • reduces charge rate capability
  • consumes reversible lithium, thus reducing cell capacity
  • reduces anode porosity and hence reduces charge and discharge rate
  • lithium dendrite formation can lead to an internal short circuit and thermal runaway

Lu et al [1] show relaxation processes at different state-of-charge (SOC), wherein thermodynamically unstable graphite particles undergo a drastic intra-particle lithium redistribution and inter-particle lithium exchange at intermediate SOCs, whereas the electrode equilibrates much slower at low and high SOCs.


  1. Lu, X., Lagnoni, M., Bertei, A. et al. Multiscale dynamics of charging and plating in graphite electrodes coupling operando microscopy and phase-field modellingNat Commun 14, 5127 (2023).