Chemical Composition Analysis of NMC Cathode

    Application Note BATT0004

    Wavelength Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy (WDXRF) enables non-destructive and precise elemental analysis from major components to trace impurities down to ppm levels. The use of Standardless Fundamental Parameters (FP) analysis enables simple and quick quantification without requiring sample-specific calibration curves. The results from WDXRF studies of Ni/Co/Al (NCA) and Ni/Co/Mn (NMC) molar ratios for the Lithium cathode materials NCA and NMC (shown below) are comparable with ICP-MS analysis. Trace amounts of Fe in NMC cathode can be clearly detected using WDXRF with Rigaku's ZSX Primus IV spectrometer.

    WDXRF standardless FP analysis method enables simple and quick elemental quantification from major components to trace impurities down to 10 ppm.

    Sample: NCA (0.80/0.15/0.05)

      Al Co Ni
    XRF 0.042 0.156 0.803
    ICP 0.05 0.15 0.80


    Sample: NMC (0.85/0.10/0.05)

      Mn Co Ni
    XRF 0.056 0.098 0.846
    ICP 0.05 0.10 0.85


    Sample: NMC (0.50/0.20/0.30)

      Mn Co Ni
    XRF 0.309 0.201 0.490
    ICP 0.30 0.20 0.50

    Standardless FP analysis results for cathode material samples. The results are shown in molar ratios as x values in LiMxO2. The ICP analysis values are also shown.

    WDXRF spectra of NCA and NMC cathode materials

    nmc cathode impurity2-1

    Fe impurities in NMC cathode samples, which are difficult to detect with energy dispersive XRF (EDXRF) due to peak overlapping with Mn Kβ line, can be analyzed using wavelength dispersive XRF (WDXRF).

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