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We introduce a novel composite holey gold support that prevents cryo-crinkling and reduces beam-induced motion of soft specimens, building on the previously introduced all-gold support. The composite holey gold support for high-resolution cryogenic electron microscopy of soft crystalline membranes was fabricated in two steps. In the first step, a holey gold film was transferred on top of a molybdenum grid. In the second step, a continuous thin carbon film was transferred onto the holey gold film. This support (Au/Mo grid) was used to image crystalline synthetic polymer membranes. The low thermal expansion of Mo is not only expected to avoid cryo-crinkling of the membrane when the grids are cooled to cryogenic temperatures, but it may also act to reduce whatever crinkling existed even before cooling. The Au/Mo grid exhibits excellent performance with specimens tilted to 45°. This is demonstrated by quantifying beam-induced motion and differences in local defocus values. In addition, images of specimens on the Au/Mo grids that are tilted at 45° show high-resolution information of the crystalline membranes that, after lattice-unbending, extends beyond 1.5 Å in the direction perpendicular to the tilt axis.
Solid inorganic and polymeric electrolytes have the potential to enable rechargeable batteries with higher energy densities, compared to current lithium-ion technology, which uses liquid electrolyte. Inorganic materials such as ceramics and glasses conduct lithium ions well, but they are brittle, which makes incorporation into a battery difficult. Polymers have the flexibility for facile use in a battery, but their transport properties tend to be inferior to inorganics. Thus, there is growing interest in composite electrolytes with inorganic and organic phases in intimate contact. This article begins with a discussion of ion transport in single-phase electrolytes. A dimensionless number (the Newman number) is presented for quantifying the efficacy of electrolytes. An effective medium framework for predicting transport properties of composite electrolytes containing only one conducting phase is then presented. The opportunities and challenges presented by composite electrolytes containing two conducting phases are addressed. Finally, the importance and status of reaction kinetics at the interfaces between solid electrolytes and electrodes are covered, using a lithium-metal electrode as an example.