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Issue 18, 2016
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Lithium-ion conductivity in Li6Y(BO3)3: a thermally and electrochemically robust solid electrolyte

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Abstract

The development of new frameworks for solid electrolytes exhibiting fast Li-ion diffusion is critical for enabling new energy storage technologies. Here, we present a combined experimental and computational investigation into the ionic conductivity of Li6Y(BO3)3, a new class of solid electrolytes with a pseudo-layered structure. Temperature-dependent impedance spectroscopy shows the pristine material exhibits an ionic conductivity of 2.2 × 10−3 S cm−1 around 400 °C, despite the fact that density functional theory calculations point to multiple remarkably low-energy diffusion pathways. Our calculations indicate small energy barriers for lithium interstitials to diffuse along one-dimensional channels oriented in the c-direction, and also for lithium vacancies diffusing within ac planes. This coexistence of diffusion mechanisms indicates that Li6Y(BO3)3 is an extremely versatile host for exploring and understanding mechanisms for lithium-ion conductivity. We also find no evidence for reactivity with moisture in the atmosphere and that the material appears electrochemically stable when in direct contact with metallic lithium. This robust stability, alongside ionic conductivity that can be manipulated through appropriate aliovalent substitution, make Li6Y(BO3)3 an exceptionally promising new class of solid electrolyte.

Graphical abstract: Lithium-ion conductivity in Li6Y(BO3)3: a thermally and electrochemically robust solid electrolyte

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
20 Nov 2015
Accepted
31 Jan 2016
First published
08 Feb 2016

This article is Open Access

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2016,4, 6972-6979
Article type
Paper
Author version available

Lithium-ion conductivity in Li6Y(BO3)3: a thermally and electrochemically robust solid electrolyte

B. Lopez-Bermudez, W. G. Zeier, S. Zhou, A. J. Lehner, J. Hu, D. O. Scanlon, B. J. Morgan and B. C. Melot, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2016, 4, 6972
DOI: 10.1039/C5TA09436D

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