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Characterization of the dynamics in the protonic conductor CsH₂PO₄ by ¹⁷O solid-state NMR spectroscopy and first-principles calculations: correlating phosphate and protonic motion.

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Griffin, John M 
Blanc, Frédéric 
Haile, Sossina M 
Grey, Clare P 


(17)O NMR spectroscopy combined with first-principles calculations was employed to understand the local structure and dynamics of the phosphate ions and protons in the paraelectric phase of the proton conductor CsH2PO4. For the room-temperature structure, the results confirm that one proton (H1) is localized in an asymmetric H-bond (between O1 donor and O2 acceptor oxygen atoms), whereas the H2 proton undergoes rapid exchange between two sites in a hydrogen bond with a symmetric double potential well at a rate ≥10(7) Hz. Variable-temperature (17)O NMR spectra recorded from 22 to 214 °C were interpreted by considering different models for the rotation of the phosphate anions. At least two distinct rate constants for rotations about four pseudo C3 axes of the phosphate ion were required in order to achieve good agreement with the experimental data. An activation energy of 0.21 ± 0.06 eV was observed for rotation about the P-O1 axis, with a higher activation energy of 0.50 ± 0.07 eV being obtained for rotation about the P-O2, P-O3(d), and P-O3(a) axes, with the superscripts denoting, respectively, dynamic donor and acceptor oxygen atoms of the H-bond. The higher activation energy of the second process is most likely associated with the cost of breaking an O1-H1 bond. The activation energy of this process is slightly lower than that obtained from the (1)H exchange process (0.70 ± 0.07 eV) (Kim, G.; Blanc, F.; Hu, Y.-Y.; Grey, C. P. J. Phys. Chem. C 2013, 117, 6504-6515) associated with the translational motion of the protons. The relationship between proton jumps and phosphate rotation was analyzed in detail by considering uncorrelated motion, motion of individual PO4 ions and the four connected/H-bonded protons, and concerted motions of adjacent phosphate units, mediated by proton hops. We conclude that, while phosphate rotations aid proton motion, not all phosphate rotations result in proton jumps.



0306 Physical Chemistry (incl. Structural)

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J Am Chem Soc

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American Chemical Society (ACS)
European Commission (275212)
C.P.G. and G.K. thank the European Research Council for an Advanced Fellowship. F.B. thanks the EU Marie Curie actions FP7 for an International Incoming fellowship (grant no 275212) for financial support. J.M.G. also thanks the European Research Council for funding. G.K. thanks Dr. Song-Yul Oh (Toyota Central R&D Labs. Inc., Japan) for valuable discussion about the synthesis of 17O-enriched CDP. This work made use of the facilities of HECToR, the UK's national high-performance computing service, which is provided by UoE HPCx Ltd at the University of Edinburgh, Cray Inc and NAG Ltd, and funded by the Office of Science and Technology through EPSRC's High End Computing Programme. The UK 850 MHz solid-state NMR Facility used in this research was funded by EPSRC and BBSRC, as well as the University of Warwick including via part funding through Birmingham Science City Advanced Materials Projects 1 and 2 supported by Advantage West Midlands (AWM) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).