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Ionic Conductivity of Na3Al2P3O12 Glass ElectrolytesRole of Charge Compensators

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journal contribution
posted on 2021-08-09, 15:09 authored by Shweta R. Keshri, Sudheer Ganisetti, Rajesh Kumar, Anuraag Gaddam, Kavya Illath, Thalasseril G. Ajithkumar, Sathravada Balaji, K. Annapurna, Narendar Nasani, N.M. Anoop Krishnan, Amarnath R. Allu
In glasses, a sodium ion (Na+) is a significant mobile cation that takes up a dual role, that is, as a charge compensator and also as a network modifier. As a network modifier, Na+ cations modify the structural distributions and create nonbridging oxygens. As a charge compensator, Na+ cations provide imbalanced charge for oxygen that is linked between two network-forming tetrahedra. However, the factors controlling the mobility of Na+ ions in glasses, which in turn affects the ionic conductivity, remain unclear. In the current work, using high-fidelity experiments and atomistic simulations, we demonstrate that the ionic conductivity of the Na3Al2P3O12 (Si0) glass material is dependent not only on the concentration of Na+ charge carriers but also on the number of charge-compensated oxygens within its first coordination sphere. To investigate, we chose a series of glasses formulated by the substitution of Si for P in Si0 glass based on the hypothesis that Si substitution in the presence of Na+ cations increases the number of Si–O–Al bonds, which enhances the role of Na as a charge compensator. The structural and conductivity properties of bulk glass materials are evaluated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, magic angle spinning-nuclear magnetic resonance, Raman spectroscopy, and impedance spectroscopy. We observe that the increasing number of charge-imbalanced bridging oxygens (BOs) with the substitution of Si for P in Si0 glass enhances the ionic conductivity by an order of magnitudefrom 3.7 × 10–8 S.cm–1 to 3.3 × 10–7 S.cm–1 at 100 °C. By rigorously quantifying the channel regions in the glass structure, using MD simulations, we demonstrate that the enhanced ionic conductivity can be attributed to the increased connectivity of Na-rich channels because of the increased charge-compensated BOs around the Na atoms. Overall, this study provides new insights for designing next-generation glass-based electrolytes with superior ionic conductivity for Na-ion batteries.