Sodium-ion batteries (SIBs) have attracted tremendous attention as promising low-cost energy storage devices in future grid-scale energy management applications. Bismuth is a promising anode for SIBs due to its high theoretical capacity (386 mAh g−1). Nevertheless, the huge volume variation of Bi anode during (de)sodiation processes can cause the pulverization of Bi particulates and rupture of solid electrolyte interphase (SEI), resulting in quick capacity decay. It is demonstrated that rigid carbon framework and robust SEI are two essentials for stable Bi anodes. A lignin-derived carbonlayer wrapped tightly around the bismuth nanospheres provides a stable conductive pathway, while the delicate selection of linear and cyclic ether-based electrolytes enable robust and stable SEI films. These two merits enable the long-term cycling process of the LC-Bi anode. The LC-Bi composite delivers outstanding sodium-ion storage performance with an ultra-long cycle life of 10 000 cycles at a high current density of 5 A g−1 and an excellent rate capability of 94% capacity retention at an ultrahigh current density of 100 A g−1. Herein, the underlying origins of performance improvement of Bi anode are elucidated, which provides a rational design strategy for Bi anodes in practical SIBs.
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