Lithium metal batteries (LMBs) combined with a high-voltage nickel-rich cathode show great potential in meeting the growing need for high energy density. The lack of advanced electrolytes has been a major obstacle in the commercialization of high-voltage lithium metal batteries (LMBs), as these electrolytes need to effectively support both a stable lithium metal anode (LMA) and a high-voltage cathode (>4 V vs Li+/Li). In this work, by extending the two terminal methyl groups in DIGDME and TEGDME to n-butyl groups, we design a new weakly solvating electrolyte (2 M LIFSI+TEGDBE) that enables the stable cycling of NMC83 (LiNi0.83Co0.12Mn0.05O2) cathodes. The NMC83 cell exhibits a high and stable Coulombic efficiency (CE) of over 99%, as well as capacity retention of approximately 99.8% after 100 cycles at 0.3 C. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis (XPS) and high-resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM) images revealed that the anion species decomposed first, resulting in the formation of a cathode-electrolyte interface (CEI) film predominantly consisting of decomposition products from the anions on the positive electrode surface. This work links the functional group of solvents with the solvation structure and electrochemical performance of ether-based electrolytes, providing a distinctive sight to design advanced electrolytes for high-energy-density LMBs.

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