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Li4.3AlS3.3Cl0.7: A Sulfide-Chloride Lithium Ion Conductor with a Highly Disordered Structure
preprintsubmitted on 20.04.2021, 16:33 and posted on 21.04.2021, 09:26 by Jacinthe Gamon, Matthew Dyer, Benjamin Duff, Andrij Vasylenko, Luke Daniels, Michael W. Gaultois, Frederic Blanc, John Bleddyn Claridge, Matthew Rosseinsky
Mixed anion materials and anion doping are very promising strategies to improve solid-state electrolyte properties by enabling an optimized balance between good electrochemical stability and high ionic conductivity. In this work, we present the discovery of a novel lithium aluminum sulfide-chloride phase. The structure is strongly affected by the presence of chloride anions on the sulfur site, as this stabilizes a higher symmetry phase presenting a large degree of cationic site disorder, as well as disordered octahedral lithium vacancies, in comparison with Li-Al-S ternaries. The effect of disorder on the lithium conductivity properties was assessed by a combined experimental-theoretical approach. In particular, the conductivity is increased by a factor 103 compared to the pure sulfide phases. Although it remains moderate (10−6 S·cm-1), Ab Initio Molecular Dynamics and Maximum Entropy (applied to neutron diffraction data) methods show that disorder leads to a 3D diffusion pathway, where Li atoms move thanks to a concerted mechanism. An understanding of the structure-property relationships is developed to determine the limiting factor governing lithium ion conductivity. This analysis, added to the strong step forward obtained in the determination of the dimensionality of diffusion paves the way for accessing even higher conductivity in materials comprising an hcp anion arrangement.