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J Am Chem Soc. 2013 Jan 23;135(3):975-8. doi: 10.1021/ja3110895. Epub 2013 Jan 14.

Anomalous high ionic conductivity of nanoporous β-Li3PS4.

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Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37830, USA.


Lithium-ion-conducting solid electrolytes hold promise for enabling high-energy battery chemistries and circumventing safety issues of conventional lithium batteries. Achieving the combination of high ionic conductivity and a broad electrochemical window in solid electrolytes is a grand challenge for the synthesis of battery materials. Herein we show an enhancement of the room-temperature lithium-ion conductivity by 3 orders of magnitude through the creation of nanostructured Li(3)PS(4). This material has a wide electrochemical window (5 V) and superior chemical stability against lithium metal. The nanoporous structure of Li(3)PS(4) reconciles two vital effects that enhance the ionic conductivity: (1) the reduction of the dimensions to a nanometer-sized framework stabilizes the high-conduction β phase that occurs at elevated temperatures, and (2) the high surface-to-bulk ratio of nanoporous β-Li(3)PS(4) promotes surface conduction. Manipulating the ionic conductivity of solid electrolytes has far-reaching implications for materials design and synthesis in a broad range of applications, including batteries, fuel cells, sensors, photovoltaic systems, and so forth.


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