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Vertically Aligned and Continuous Nanoscale Ceramic–Polymer Interfaces in Composite Solid Polymer Electrolytes for Enhanced Ionic Conductivity

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journal contribution
posted on 04.05.2018, 00:00 authored by Xiaokun Zhang, Jin Xie, Feifei Shi, Dingchang Lin, Yayuan Liu, Wei Liu, Allen Pei, Yongji Gong, Hongxia Wang, Kai Liu, Yong Xiang, Yi Cui
Among all solid electrolytes, composite solid polymer electrolytes, comprised of polymer matrix and ceramic fillers, garner great interest due to the enhancement of ionic conductivity and mechanical properties derived from ceramic–polymer interactions. Here, we report a composite electrolyte with densely packed, vertically aligned, and continuous nanoscale ceramic–polymer interfaces, using surface-modified anodized aluminum oxide as the ceramic scaffold and poly­(ethylene oxide) as the polymer matrix. The fast Li+ transport along the ceramic–polymer interfaces was proven experimentally for the first time, and an interfacial ionic conductivity higher than 10–3 S/cm at 0 °C was predicted. The presented composite solid electrolyte achieved an ionic conductivity as high as 5.82 × 10–4 S/cm at the electrode level. The vertically aligned interfacial structure in the composite electrolytes enables the viable application of the composite solid electrolyte with superior ionic conductivity and high hardness, allowing Li–Li cells to be cycled at a small polarization without Li dendrite penetration.