A method of making an anode includes the steps of providing fibers from a carbonaceous precursor, the carbon fibers having a glass transition temperature T.sub.g. In one aspect the carbonaceous precursor is lignin. The carbonaceous fibers are placed into a layered fiber mat. The fiber mat is fused by heating the fiber mat in the presence of oxygen to above the T.sub.g but no more than 20% above the T.sub.g to fuse fibers together at fiber to fiber contact points and without melting the bulk fiber mat to create a fused fiber mat through oxidative stabilization. The fused fiber mat is carbonized by heating the fused fiber mat to at least 650.degree. C. under an inert atmosphere to create a carbonized fused fiber mat. A battery anode formed from carbonaceous precursor fibers is also disclosed.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH
This invention was made with government support under contract No. DE-AC05-00OR22725 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in this invention.