Recent theoretical approaches to the understanding of superionic conductivity in polycrystalline, glassy and polymeric materials are briefly reviewed. Phase transitions to the superionic conducting state in the AgI family are apparently triggered by cluster formation and strong mobile ion interaction within the clusters. Anomalous conductivity and related physical properties are explained in the cluster induced distortion model. Ionic composites such as AgX : Al2O3 (𝑋 = Cl, Br and I) involve conducting and non-conducting phases and the all-important interface between the two whose space charge enhances the conductivity and also trigger phase transitions to exotic polymorphic phases, for which the mechanisms are yet to be explored. Ion hopping dynamics controls the conductivity of superionic glasses. Mode coupling and jump relaxation theories account for the non-Debye relaxation observed in a.c. conductivity of these glasses. The theory of conductivity in polymer electrolytes-still in its infancy-involves their complex structure and glass transition behaviour. Preparative and thermal history, composition and crystallinity control ionic conductivity. New approaches to the synthesis of optimal polymer electrolytes such as rubbery electrolytes, crystalline polymers and nanocomposites must be considered before achieving a comprehensive theoretical understanding.
Volume 44, 2021
Continuous Article Publishing mode
Prof. Subi Jacob George — Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur, Bengaluru
Chemical Sciences 2020
Prof. Surajit Dhara — School of Physics, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad
Physical Sciences 2020
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