Neutron diffraction study of the monoclinic to tetragonal structural transition in LaNbO4 and its relation to proton mobility
Journal article, 2012

The fergusonite-scheelite structural transition of LaNbO4 was characterized by high-intensity variable temperature neutron powder diffraction in an effort to link structural changes to proton transport in the low temperature monoclinic and high temperature tetragonal polymorphs. The pronounced decrease in enthalpy of proton mobility with increasing temperature in monoclinic LaNbO4, identified by Field et al. [1], was found to coincide with the decrease in a key inter-tetrahedral oxygen separation. At temperatures above the transition, this oxygen to oxygen distance remains constant, behavior that is consistent with the invariant nature of the calculated enthalpy of mobility for the tetragonal phase. This oxygen separation is therefore proposed as the key structural parameter determining the success rate of proton transfer and ultimately the proton diffusion in LaNbO4. Infrared measurements performed on acceptor-doped LaNbO4 show an absorption in the region 2500 to 3700 cm(-1) attributed to the O-H stretching motion influenced by hydrogen bonding.


rare-earth orthoniobate

Neutron diffraction

Fuel cell electrolytes


Proton conductors




Structural phase transition

domain boundary



M. Huse

University of Oslo

A. W. B. Skilbred

University of Oslo

Maths Karlsson

Chalmers, Applied Physics, Condensed Matter Physics

Sten Eriksson

Chalmers, Chemical and Biological Engineering, Environmental Inorganic Chemistry

T. Norby

University of Oslo

R. Haugsrud

University of Oslo

Christopher Knee

University of Gothenburg

Journal of Solid State Chemistry

0022-4596 (ISSN) 1095-726X (eISSN)

Vol. 187 27-34

Subject Categories

Chemical Sciences



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5/8/2018 6