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Sample records for promising thermoelectric material

  1. Revisiting AgCrSe2 as a promising thermoelectric material.

    Wu, Di; Huang, Sizhao; Feng, Dan; Li, Bing; Chen, Yuexing; Zhang, Jian; He, Jiaqing

    2016-08-24

    We revisited and investigated a layer-structured thermoelectric material AgCrSe2, which has an extremely low thermal conductivity. After using both differential scanning calorimetry and a comparative laser flash method, we realized that the specific heat of this material, the main contributor to the reported low thermal conductivity, is unlikely to be way below the Dulong-Petit limit as revealed in the literature. Besides, our in situ X-ray diffraction pattern up to 873 K indicated the instability of AgCrSe2 over 723 K, where it begins to decompose into Cr2Se3 and Ag2Se. This unexpected decomposition phenomenon resulted in the gradual increment of specific heat and thermal diffusivity, hence the deterioration of the overall thermoelectric performance. We deliberately introduced Ag and Cr vacancies into the lattice for carrier concentration optimization and could achieve an optimal figure of merit of ZT ∼ 0.5 at 723 K in the nominal composition Ag0.96CrSe2 in the direction perpendicular to the sintering press. Our findings suggest that more thorough investigations are necessary to ensure that AgCrSe2 is a promising thermoelectric material.

  2. Computational Identification of Promising Thermoelectric Materials Among Known Quasi-2D Binary Compounds

    Gorai, Prashun; Toberer, Eric S.; Stevanovic, Vladan

    2016-07-28

    Quasi low-dimensional structures are abundant among known thermoelectric materials, primarily because of their low lattice thermal conductivities. In this work, we have computationally assessed the potential of 427 known binary quasi-2D structures in 272 different chemistries for thermoelectric performance. To assess the thermoelectric performance, we employ an improved version of our previously developed descriptor for thermoelectric performance [Yan et al., Energy Environ. Sci., 2015, 8, 983]. The improvement is in the explicit treatment of van der Waals interactions in quasi-2D materials, which leads to significantly better predictions of their crystal structures and lattice thermal conductivities. The improved methodology correctly identifies known binary quasi-2D thermoelectric materials such as Sb2Te3, Bi2Te3, SnSe, SnS, InSe, and In2Se3. As a result, we propose candidate quasi-2D binary materials, a number of which have not been previously considered for thermoelectric applications.

  3. Strained and rolled up silicon: Electronic structure calculations of a promising thermoelectric material

    Hinsche, Nicki; Yavorski, Bogdan; Zahn, Peter; Mertig, Ingrid [Martin-Luther-Universitaet, Institut fuer Physik, Halle/S. (Germany)

    2010-07-01

    Starting from bulk silicon, we studied the valley splitting due to symmetry breaking that occurs in rolled-up Si. Valley splitting in Si was studied recently because of tetragonal distortion and quantum well effects in heterostructures. The new aspect in nowadays experimentally accessible rolled-up Si tubes is that symmetry breaking occurs in all spatial directions. As a result, splitting of the six-fold degenerate conduction-band minimum is expected to be lifted. This has a strong influence on the transport properties as well. In detail, the anisotropy of the effective masses of charge carriers contributing to the conductivity in different directions are studied in dependence on the applied strain. The electronic structure is calculated self consistently within the framework of density functional theory. The transport properties of the promising thermoelectric material are studied in the diffusive limit of transport applying the Boltzmann theory in relaxation time approximation.

  4. Anisotropic thermoelectric properties of layered compounds in SnX2 (X = S, Se): a promising thermoelectric material.

    Sun, Bao-Zhen; Ma, Zuju; He, Chao; Wu, Kechen

    2015-11-28

    Thermoelectrics interconvert heat to electricity and are of great interest in waste heat recovery, solid-state cooling and so on. Here we assessed the potential of SnS2 and SnSe2 as thermoelectric materials at the temperature gradient from 300 to 800 K. Reflecting the crystal structure, the transport coefficients are highly anisotropic between a and c directions, in particular for the electrical conductivity. The preferred direction for both materials is the a direction in TE application. Most strikingly, when 800 K is reached, SnS2 can show a peak power factor (PF) of 15.50 μW cm(-1) K(-2) along the a direction, while a relatively low value (11.72 μW cm(-1) K(-2)) is obtained in the same direction of SnSe2. These values are comparable to those observed in thermoelectrics such as SnSe and SnS. At 300 K, the minimum lattice thermal conductivity (κmin) along the a direction is estimated to be about 0.67 and 0.55 W m(-1) K(-1) for SnS2 and SnSe2, respectively, even lower than the measured lattice thermal conductivity of Bi2Te3 (1.28 W m(-1) K(-1) at 300 K). The reasonable PF and κmin suggest that both SnS2 and SnSe2 are potential thermoelectric materials. Indeed, the estimated peak ZT can approach 0.88 for SnSe2 and a higher value of 0.96 for SnS2 along the a direction at a carrier concentration of 1.94 × 10(19) (SnSe2) vs. 2.87 × 10(19) cm(-3) (SnS2). The best ZT values in SnX2 (X = S, Se) are comparable to that in Bi2Te3 (0.8), a typical thermoelectric material. We hope that this theoretical investigation will provide useful information for further experimental and theoretical studies on optimizing the thermoelectric properties of SnX2 materials.

  5. Lead Telluride Doped with Au as a Very Promising Material for Thermoelectric Applications

    Pantelija M. Nikolic

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available PbTe single crystals doped with monovalent Au or Cu were grown using the Bridgman method. Far infrared reflectivity spectra were measured at room temperature for all samples and plasma minima were registered. These experimental spectra were numerically analyzed and optical parameters were calculated. All the samples of PbTe doped with Au or Cu were of the “n” type. The properties of these compositions were analyzed and compared with PbTe containing other dopants. The samples of PbTe doped with only 3.3 at% Au were the best among the PbTe + Au samples having the lowest plasma frequency and the highest mobility of free carriers-electrons, while PbTe doped with Cu was the opposite. Samples with the lowest Cu concentration of 0.23 at% Cu had the best properties. Thermal diffusivity and electronic transport properties of the same PbTe doped samples were also investigated using a photoacoustic (PA method with the transmission detection configuration. The results obtained with the far infrared and photoacoustic characterization of PbTe doped samples were compared and discussed. Both methods confirmed that when PbTe was doped with 3.3 at% Au, thermoelectric and electrical properties of this doped semiconductor were both significantly improved, so Au as a dopant in PbTe could be used as a new high quality thermoelectric material.

  6. Thermoelectric materials and devices

    Park, Yeonjoon (Inventor); Choi, Sang H. (Inventor); King, Glen C. (Inventor); Elliott, James R. (Inventor); Talcott, Noel A. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    New thermoelectric materials comprise highly [111]-oriented twinned group IV alloys on the basal plane of trigonal substrates, which exhibit a high thermoelectric figure of merit and good material performance, and devices made with these materials.

  7. Thermoelectric materials having porosity

    Heremans, Joseph P.; Jaworski, Christopher M.; Jovovic, Vladimir; Harris, Fred

    2014-08-05

    A thermoelectric material and a method of making a thermoelectric material are provided. In certain embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises at least 10 volume percent porosity. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material has a zT greater than about 1.2 at a temperature of about 375 K. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a topological thermoelectric material. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a general composition of (Bi.sub.1-xSb.sub.x).sub.u(Te.sub.1-ySe.sub.y).sub.w, wherein 0.ltoreq.x.ltoreq.1, 0.ltoreq.y.ltoreq.1, 1.8.ltoreq.u.ltoreq.2.2, 2.8.ltoreq.w.ltoreq.3.2. In further embodiments, the thermoelectric material includes a compound having at least one group IV element and at least one group VI element. In certain embodiments, the method includes providing a powder comprising a thermoelectric composition, pressing the powder, and sintering the powder to form the thermoelectric material.

  8. Promising thermoelectric properties of phosphorenes

    Sevik, Cem; Sevinçli, Hâldun

    2016-09-01

    Electronic, phononic, and thermoelectric transport properties of single layer black- and blue-phosphorene structures are investigated with first-principles based ballistic electron and phonon transport calculations employing hybrid functionals. The maximum values of room temperature thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT corresponding to armchair and zigzag directions of black-phosphorene, ∼0.5 and ∼0.25, are calculated as rather smaller than those obtained with first-principles based semiclassical Boltzmann transport theory calculations. On the other hand, the maximum value of room temperature ZT of blue-phosphorene is predicted to be substantially high and remarkable values as high as 2.5 are obtained for elevated temperatures. Besides the fact that these figures are obtained at the ballistic limit, our findings mark the strong possibility of high thermoelectric performance of blue-phosphorene in new generation thermoelectric applications.

  9. Modelling of thermoelectric materials

    Bjerg, Lasse

    In order to discover new good thermoelectric materials, there are essentially two ways. One way is to go to the laboratory, synthesise a new material, and measure the thermoelectric properties. The amount of compounds, which can be investigated this way is limited because the process is time...... consuming. Another approach is to model the thermoelectric properties of a material on a computer. Several crystal structures can be investigated this way without use of much man power. I have chosen the latter approach. Using density functional theory I am able to calculate the band structure of a material....... This band structure I can then use to calculate the thermoelectric properties of the material. With these results I have investigated several materials and found the optimum theoretical doping concentration. If materials with these doping concentrations be synthesised, considerably better thermoelectric...

  10. Nanostructured materials for thermoelectric applications.

    Bux, Sabah K; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Kaner, Richard B

    2010-11-28

    Recent studies indicate that nanostructuring can be an effective method for increasing the dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) in materials. Most of the enhancement in ZT can be attributed to large reductions in the lattice thermal conductivity due to increased phonon scattering at interfaces. Although significant gains have been reported, much higher ZTs in practical, cost-effective and environmentally benign materials are needed in order for thermoelectrics to become effective for large-scale, wide-spread power and thermal management applications. This review discusses the various synthetic techniques that can be used in the production of bulk scale nanostructured materials. The advantages and disadvantages of each synthetic method are evaluated along with guidelines and goals presented for an ideal thermoelectric material. With proper optimization, some of these techniques hold promise for producing high efficiency devices.

  11. Porous Thermoelectric Materials

    Hiroshi Julian Goldsmid

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric materials are sometimes prepared using a sintering process in which the achievement of a high density is often one of the objectives. However, it has recently been shown that the introduction of a highly porous material is desirable in synthetic transverse thermoelements. Porosity may also be an advantage in conventional longitudinal thermoelectric modules in which a high thermal flux density creates problems, but heat transfer within the pores can degrade the thermoelectric figure of merit. The amount of this degradation is calculated and it is shown that it can be small enough to be acceptable in practical devices.

  12. Boron Carbides As Thermo-electric Materials

    Wood, Charles

    1988-01-01

    Report reviews recent theoretical and experimental research on thermoelectric materials. Recent work with narrow-band semiconductors demonstrated possibility of relatively high thermoelectric energy-conversion efficiencies in materials withstanding high temperatures needed to attain such efficiencies. Among promising semiconductors are boron-rich borides, especially boron carbides.

  13. Thermodynamics of Thermoelectric Materials

    Doak, Jeff W.

    One challenge facing society is the responsible use of our energy resources. Increasing the efficiency of energy generation provides one path to solving this challenge. One commonality among most current energy generation methods is that waste heat is generated during the generation process. Thermoelectrics can provide a solution to increasing the efficiency of power generation and automotive systems by converting waste heat directly to electricity. The current barrier to implementation of thermoelectric systems is the low efficiencies of underlying thermoelectric materials. The efficiency of a thermoelectric material depends on the electronic and thermal transport properties of the material; a good thermoelectric material should be an electronic conductor and a thermal insulator, traits which generally oppose one another. The thermal properties of a thermoelectric material can be improved by forming nanoscale precipitates with the material which scatter phonons, reducing the thermal conductivity. The electronic properties of a thermoelectric material can be improved by doping the material to increase the electronic conductivity or by alloying the material to favorably alter its band structure. The ability of these chemical modifications to affect the thermoelectric efficiency of material are ultimately governed by the chemical thermodynamics of the system. PbTe is a prototypical thermoelectric material: Alloying PbTe with PbS (or other materials) creates nanostructures which scatter phonons and reduce the lattice thermal conductivity. Doping PbTe with Na increases the hole concentration, increasing the electronic conductivity. In this work, we investigate the thermodynamics of PbTe and similar systems using first principles to understand the underlying mechanisms controlling the formation of nanostructures and the amount of doping allowed in these systems. In this work we: 1) investigate the thermodynamics of pseudo-binary alloys of IV--VI systems to identify the

  14. Advanced Thermoelectric Materials for Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators

    Caillat, Thierry; Hunag, C.-K.; Cheng, S.; Chi, S. C.; Gogna, P.; Paik, J.; Ravi, V.; Firdosy, S.; Ewell, R.

    2008-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the progress and processes involved in creating new and advanced thermoelectric materials to be used in the design of new radioiootope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). In a program with Department of Energy, NASA is working to develop the next generation of RTGs, that will provide significant benefits for deep space missions that NASA will perform. These RTG's are planned to be capable of delivering up to 17% system efficiency and over 12 W/kg specific power. The thermoelectric materials being developed are an important step in this process.

  15. Size effect in thermoelectric materials

    Mao, Jun; Liu, Zihang; Ren, Zhifeng

    2016-12-01

    Thermoelectric applications have attracted increasing interest recently due to its capability of converting waste heat into electricity without hazardous emissions. Materials with enhanced thermoelectric performance have been reported in recent two decades. The revival of research for thermoelectric materials began in early 1990s when the size effect is considered. Low-dimensional materials with exceptionally high thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) have been presented, which broke the limit of ZT around unity. The idea of size effect in thermoelectric materials even inspired the later nanostructuring and band engineering strategies, which effectively enhanced the thermoelectric performance of bulk materials. In this overview, the size effect in low-dimensional thermoelectric materials is reviewed. We first discuss the quantum confinement effect on carriers, including the enhancement of electronic density of states, semimetal to semiconductor transition and carrier pocket engineering. Then, the effect of assumptions on theoretical calculations is presented. Finally, the effect of phonon confinement and interface scattering on lattice thermal conductivity is discussed.

  16. Recent advances on thermoelectric materials

    Jin-cheng ZHENG

    2008-01-01

    By converting waste heat into electricity through the thermoelectric power of solids without producing greenhouse gas emissions,thermoelectric generators could be an important part of the solution to today's energy challenge.There has been a resurgence in the search for new materials for advanced thermoelectric energy conversion applications. In this paper,we will review recent efforts on improving thermoelectric efficiency. Particularly,several novel proof-of-principle approaches such as phonon disorder in phonon-glasselectron crystals,low dimensionality in nanostructured materials and charge-spin-orbital degeneracy in strongly correlated systems on thermoelectric performance will be discussed.

  17. Methods of synthesizing thermoelectric materials

    Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Shuo; Liu, Wei-Shu; Wang, Hengzhi; Wang, Hui; Yu, Bo; Chen, Gang

    2016-04-05

    Methods for synthesis of thermoelectric materials are disclosed. In some embodiments, a method of fabricating a thermoelectric material includes generating a plurality of nanoparticles from a starting material comprising one or more chalcogens and one or more transition metals; and consolidating the nanoparticles under elevated pressure and temperature, wherein the nanoparticles are heated and cooled at a controlled rate.

  18. Synthetic thermoelectric materials comprising phononic crystals

    El-Kady, Ihab F; Olsson, Roy H; Hopkins, Patrick; Reinke, Charles; Kim, Bongsang

    2013-08-13

    Synthetic thermoelectric materials comprising phononic crystals can simultaneously have a large Seebeck coefficient, high electrical conductivity, and low thermal conductivity. Such synthetic thermoelectric materials can enable improved thermoelectric devices, such as thermoelectric generators and coolers, with improved performance. Such synthetic thermoelectric materials and devices can be fabricated using techniques that are compatible with standard microelectronics.

  19. High Temperature Integrated Thermoelectric Ststem and Materials

    Mike S. H. Chu

    2011-06-06

    . Two composition systems, specifically 1.0 SrO - 0.8 x 1.03 TiO2 - 0.2 x 1.03 NbO2.5 and 0.97 TiO2 - 0.03 NbO2.5, have been identified as good base line compositions for n-type thermoelectric compositions in future module design. Tests of these materials at an outside company were promising using that company's processing and material expertise. There was no unique p-type thermoelectric compositions identified in phase I work other than several current cobaltite materials. Ca3Co4O9 will be the primary p-type material for the future module design until alternative materials are developed. BaTiO3 and rare earth titanate based dielectric compositions show both p-type and n-type behavior even though their electrical conductivities were very low. Further research and development of these materials for thermoelectric applications is planned in the future. A preliminary modeling and optimization of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) that uses the n-type 1.0 SrO - 1.03 x 0.8 TiO2 - 1.03 x 0.2 NbO2.5 was performed. Future work will combine development of ceramic powders and manufacturing expertise at TAM, development of SPS at TAM or a partner organization, and thermoelectric material/module testing, modeling, optimization, production at several partner organizations.

  20. Band engineering of thermoelectric materials.

    Pei, Yanzhong; Wang, Heng; Snyder, G J

    2012-12-01

    Lead chalcogenides have long been used for space-based and thermoelectric remote power generation applications, but recent discoveries have revealed a much greater potential for these materials. This renaissance of interest combined with the need for increased energy efficiency has led to active consideration of thermoelectrics for practical waste heat recovery systems-such as the conversion of car exhaust heat into electricity. The simple high symmetry NaCl-type cubic structure, leads to several properties desirable for thermoelectricity, such as high valley degeneracy for high electrical conductivity and phonon anharmonicity for low thermal conductivity. The rich capabilities for both band structure and microstructure engineering enable a variety of approaches for achieving high thermoelectric performance in lead chalcogenides. This Review focuses on manipulation of the electronic and atomic structural features which makes up the thermoelectric quality factor. While these strategies are well demonstrated in lead chalcogenides, the principles used are equally applicable to most good thermoelectric materials that could enable improvement of thermoelectric devices from niche applications into the mainstream of energy technologies.

  1. Monolayer MoS2 Nanoribbons as a Promising Material for Both n-type and p-type Legs in Thermoelectric Generators

    Arab, A.; Davydov, A. V.; Papaconstantopoulos, D. A.; Li, Q.

    2016-10-01

    First-principles calculations have been performed to study the thermoelectric properties of monolayer MoS2 armchair nanoribbons (ACNRs). The electronic behavior of nanoribbons is dominated by the presence of edge states that are dependent on the number of zigzag chains across the nanoribbon. In addition, it is found that the phonon thermal conductance of monolayer MoS2 ACNRs is smaller than monolayer films due to phonon edge scattering. This effect is more pronounced in narrower nanoribbons, which leads to a higher ZT value compared to a monolayer MoS2 sheet. The effects of sulfur vacancy and edge roughness on the thermoelectric properties of MoS2 ACNRs have also been studied. We found that edge roughness decreased ZT values compared to those of perfect nanoribbons, as its impact on electrical conductance is more severe than on phonon thermal conductance. Sulfur vacancy, however, improved ZT in some subbands. It is shown that ZT values as high as 4 for electron-doped and 3 for hole-doped nanoribbons can be achieved at T = 500 K. The ability to achieve high ZT values for both p-type and n-type nanoribbons makes monolayer MoS2 ACNR a promising candidate for future solid-state thermoelectric generators.

  2. Thermoelectrical Characterization of Organic Materials

    2009-01-01

    Organic semiconductors are prime candidates for thermoelectric applications, because one can maximize the dimensionless figure of merit ZT (by maximizing the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity) while simultaneously minimizing the thermal conductivity. In this work, we explore a few materials and try to find their thermoelectric characteristics. For the n-leg of the thermogenerator, we studied a modified fullerene (PCBM) which is doped with TDAE vapor. For the p-leg, we studied PE...

  3. High Efficiency Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    Kochergin, Vladimir (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    Growth of thermoelectric materials in the form of quantum well super-lattices on three-dimensionally structured substrates provide the means to achieve high conversion efficiency of the thermoelectric module combined with inexpensiveness of fabrication and compatibility with large scale production. Thermoelectric devices utilizing thermoelectric materials in the form of quantum well semiconductor super-lattices grown on three-dimensionally structured substrates provide improved thermoelectric characteristics that can be used for power generation, cooling and other applications..

  4. Development of Thermoelectric Power Generation and Peltier Cooling Properties of Materials for Thermoelectric Cryocooling Devices

    2015-05-12

    Distribution Unlimited Final Report: Development of Thermoelectric Power Generation and Peltier Cooling Properties of Materials for Thermoelectric...Thermoelectric Power Generation and Peltier Cooling Properties of Materials for Thermoelectric Cryocooling Devices Report Title The research

  5. High Performance Bulk Thermoelectric Materials

    Ren, Zhifeng [Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA (United States)

    2013-03-31

    Over 13 plus years, we have carried out research on electron pairing symmetry of superconductors, growth and their field emission property studies on carbon nanotubes and semiconducting nanowires, high performance thermoelectric materials and other interesting materials. As a result of the research, we have published 104 papers, have educated six undergraduate students, twenty graduate students, nine postdocs, nine visitors, and one technician.

  6. Material parameters for thermoelectric performance

    M N Tripathi; C M Bhandari

    2005-09-01

    The thermoelectric performance of a thermoelement is ideally defined in terms of the so-called figure-of-merit = 2 / , where , and refer respectively to the Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity and thermal conductivity of the thermoelement material. However, there are other parameters which are fairly good indicators of a material's thermoelectric `worth'. A simple yet useful performance indicator is possible with only two parameters-energy gap and lattice thermal conductivity. This indicator can outline all potentially useful thermoelectric materials. Thermal conductivity in place of lattice thermal conductivity can provide some additional information about the temperature range of operation. Yet another performance indicator may be based on the slope of vs. ln plots. plotted against ln shows a linear relationship in a simplified model, but shows a variation with temperature and carrier concentration. Assuming that such a relationship is true for a narrow range of temperature and carrier concentration, one can calculate the slope of vs. ln plots against temperature and carrier concentrations. A comparison between the variation of and slope suggests that such plots may be useful to identify potential thermoelectric materials.

  7. p × n -Transverse Thermoelectrics: Single leg thermoelectrics with scalable integration and cryogenic promise

    Grayson, M.

    Under the p × n -type transverse thermoelectric paradigm electrons dominate conduction in one direction and holes dominate perpendicularly, allowing electrical current to drive transverse heat flow. Bulk anisotropic crystals, superlattices, and nanowire arrays have all been previously proposed as viable p × n materials. This talk will describe the general philosophy behind p × n -type transverse thermoelectrics as well as the tensor equations that define their anisotropic Seebeck effect. The advantages of single-leg thermoelectric devices - available only to transverse thermoelectrics - are detailed. Various device geometries are discussed which take advantage of the single-leg nature, in particular to provide advantages for cryogenic thermoelectric cooling and integrated thermal management. Supported by AFOSR FA9550-15-1-0377.

  8. Magnéli oxides as promising n-type thermoelectrics

    Gregor Kieslich

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The discovery of a large thermopower in cobalt oxides in 1997 lead to a surge of interest in oxides for thermoelectric application. Whereas conversion efficiencies of p-type oxides can compete with non-oxide materials, n-type oxides show significantly lower thermoelectric performances. In this context so-called Magnéli oxides have recently gained attention as promising n-type thermoelectrics. A combination of crystallographic shear and intrinsic disorder lead to relatively low thermal conductivities and metallic-like electrical conductivities in Magnéli oxides. Current peak-zT values of 0.3 around 1100 K for titanium and tungsten Magnéli oxides are encouraging for future research. Here, we put Magnéli oxides into context of n-type oxide thermoelectrics and give a perspective where future research can bring us.

  9. Mg2(Si,Sn)-based thermoelectric materials and devices

    Gao, Peng

    Thermoelectric effects are phenomena found in materials that can achieve direct conversion between heat flow and electricity. One important application of thermoelectric effects is thermoelectric generators, which can generate electricity when a temperature gradient is applied. Thermoelectric generators make use of various sources of heat and it is considered a promising solution for waste heat recovery. The conversion efficiency of thermoelectric generators depends on the materials used in the devices. Significant improvement in the performance of thermoelectric materials has been made in the past few decades. However, most of the good thermoelectric materials being investigated have limitations, such as the high materials cost, high materials density and toxicity of the constituent elements. The Mg2(Si,Sn)-based materials studied in this work are promising candidates for thermoelectric generators in the mid-temperature range and have drawn increasing research interest in recent years because these materials are high performance thermoelectrics that are low cost, low-density and non-toxic. In this work, systematic studies were performed on the Mg2(Si,Sn) thermoelectric materials. Thermal phase stability was studied for different compositions of Mg2Si1-xSnx and Mg2Si0.4Sn 0.6 was used as base material for further optimization. Both n-type and p-type samples were obtained by doping the materials with different elements. Peak ZT ˜ 1.5 for the n-type and ZT ˜ 0.7 for the p-type materials were obtained, both of which are among the best reported results so far. Experimental work was also done to study the techniques to develop the Mg2Si 0.4Sn0.6 materials into working devices. Different electrode materials were tested in bonding experiment for this compound, and copper was found to be the best electrode material for Mg2Si 0.4Sn0.6. Preliminary work was done to demonstrate the possibility of fabricating a Mg2Si0.4Sn0.6-based thermoelectric generator and the result is

  10. Nanoscaled In$_2$O$_3$:Sn films as material for thermoelectric conversion: achievements and limitations

    G KOROTCENKOV; V BRINZARI; B K CHO

    2016-09-01

    In this paper, thermoelectric properties of nanoscaled In$_2$O$_3$:Sn films are considered. The limitations that may appear during the usage of such materials in devices developed for the market of thermoelectric generatorsand refrigerators are also analysed. It is shown that nanoscaled In$_2$O$_3$:Sn is a promising material for thermoelectric applications. It is also established that insufficient thermal stability of nanostructured materials is themain limitation of these materials application in high-temperature thermoelectric converters. Optimization of grain boundary parameters and the usage of specific surrounding atmosphere can significantly improve the efficiency of thermoelectric conversion of nanostructured materials in the region of intermediate temperatures.

  11. Organic thermoelectric materials: emerging green energy materials converting heat to electricity directly and efficiently.

    Zhang, Qian; Sun, Yimeng; Xu, Wei; Zhu, Daoben

    2014-10-29

    The abundance of solar thermal energy and the widespread demands for waste heat recovery make thermoelectric generators (TEGs) very attractive in harvesting low-cost energy resources. Meanwhile, thermoelectric refrigeration is promising for local cooling and niche applications. In this context there is currently a growing interest in developing organic thermoelectric materials which are flexible, cost-effective, eco-friendly and potentially energy-efficient. In particular, the past several years have witnessed remarkable progress in organic thermoelectric materials and devices. In this review, thermoelectric properties of conducting polymers and small molecules are summarized, with recent progresses in materials, measurements and devices highlighted. Prospects and suggestions for future research efforts are also presented. The organic thermoelectric materials are emerging candidates for green energy conversion.

  12. Mechanical Response of Thermoelectric Materials

    Wereszczak, Andrew A. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Case, Eldon D. [Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States)

    2015-05-01

    A sufficient mechanical response of thermoelectric materials (TEMats) to structural loadings is a prerequisite to the exploitation of any candidate TEMat's thermoelectric efficiency. If a TEMat is mechanically damaged or cracks from service-induced stresses, then its thermal and electrical functions can be compromised or even cease. Semiconductor TEMats tend to be quite brittle and have a high coefficient of thermal expansion; therefore, they can be quite susceptible to mechanical failure when subjected to operational thermal gradients. Because of this, sufficient mechanical response (vis-a-vis, mechanical properties) of any candidate TEMat must be achieved and sustained in the context of the service-induced stress state to which it is subjected. This report provides an overview of the mechanical responses of state-of-the-art TEMats; discusses the relevant properties that are associated with those responses and their measurement; and describes important, nonequilibrium phenomena that further complicate their use in thermoelectric devices. For reference purposes, the report also includes several appendixes that list published data on elastic properties and strengths of a variety of TEMats.

  13. Coupled improvement between thermoelectric and piezoelectric materials

    Montgomery, David; Hewitt, Corey; Dun, Chaochao; Carroll, David

    A novel coupling effect in a thermoelectric and piezoelectric meta-structure is discussed. Thermo-piezoelectric generators (TPEGs) exhibit a synergistic effect that amplifies output voltage, and has been observed to increase piezoelectric voltages over 500% of initial values a time dependent thermoelectric/pyroelectric effect. The resulting improvement in voltage has been observed in carbon nanotubes as well as inorganics such as two-dimensional Bismuth Selenide platelets and Telluride nanorods thin-film thermoelectrics. TPEGs are built by integrating insulating layers of polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) piezoelectric films between flexible thin film p-type and n-type thermoelectrics. The physical phenomena arising in the interaction between thermoelectric and piezoelectrics is discussed and a model is presented to quantify the expected coupling voltage as a function of stress, thermal gradient, and different thermoelectric materials. TPEG are ideal to capture waste heat and vibrational energy while creating larger voltages and minimizing space when compared with similar thermoelectric or piezoelectric generators.

  14. Nano-Micro Materials Enabled Thermoelectricity From Window Glasses

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2012-11-03

    With growing world population and decreasing fossil fuel reserves we need to explore and utilize variety of renewable and clean energy sources to meet the imminent challenge of energy crisis. Solar energy is considered as the leading promising alternate energy source with the pertinent challenge of off sunshine period and uneven worldwide distribution of usable sun light. Although thermoelectricity is considered as a reasonable energy harvester from wasted heat, its mass scale usage is yet to be developed. By transforming window glasses into generators of thermoelectricity, this doctoral work explores engineering aspects of using the temperature gradient between the hot outdoor heated by the sun and the relatively cold indoor of a building for mass scale energy generation. In order to utilize the two counter temperature environments simultaneously, variety of techniques, including: a) insertion of basic metals like copper and nickel wire, b) sputtering of thermoelectric films on side walls of individual glass strips to form the thickness depth of the glass on subsequent curing of the strips, and c) embedding nano-manufactured thermoelectric pillars, have been implemented for innovative integration of thermoelectric materials into window glasses. The practical demonstration of thermoelectric windows has been validated using a finite element model to predict the behavior of thermoelectric window under variety of varying conditions. MEMS based characterization platform has been fabricated for thermoelectric characterization of thin films employing van der Pauw and four probe modules. Enhancement of thermoelectric properties of the nano- manufactured pillars due to nano-structuring, achieved through mechanical alloying of micro-sized thermoelectric powders, has been explored. Modulation of thermoelectric properties of the nano-structured thermoelectric pillars by addition of sulfur to nano-powder matrix has also been investigated in detail. Using the best possible p

  15. Superlattice Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    Venkatasubramanian, Rama

    2002-03-01

    We have recently demonstrated a significant enhancement in thermoelectric figure-of-merit (ZT) at 300K, of about 2.4 in p-type Bi2Te3/Sb2Te3 superlattices, using the concept of phonon-blocking electron-transmitting superlattice structures [1]. The phonon blocking arises from a complex localization-like behavior for phonons in nano-structured superlattices and the electron transmission is facilitated by optimal choice of band-offsets in these semiconductor hetero-structures. We will also discuss the ZT 1.2 results in n-type Bi2Te3/Bi2Te3-xSex superlattices and our initial understanding on the reasons behind the less-than-dramatic performance of these materials compared to the p-type superlattices. Due to the high ZT of the material, devices potentially offer high coefficient of performance (COP) in solid-state refrigeration. The thin-film devices, resulting from rather simple microelectronic processing, allow high cooling power densities to be achieved for a variety of high-power electronic applications. We have obtained 32K and 40K sub-ambient cooling at 298K and 353K, respectively, in these superlattice micro-thermoelements with potential localized active-cooling power densities approaching 700 W/cm2. In addition to high-performance (in terms of COP) and power densities, these thin-film microdevices are also extremely fast-acting, within 10 microsec and about a factor of 23,000 better than bulk thermoelectric technology. Thus, these are of significance for preventing thermal run-away in high-power electronics. We will present results to demonstrate this concept with infrared imaging of cooling/heating with superlattice micro-devices. We will also discuss outstanding issues such as heat removal from the heat sink towards the full exploitation of this technology. In addition, we will compare the state-of-the-art with other thin-film superlattice materials and device concepts. [1] R. Venkatasubramanian, E. Siivola, T. Colpitts, and B.C. O’Quinn, Thin

  16. Electrodeposition of nanoengineered thermoelectric materials

    Xiao, Feng

    Thermoelectric (TE) energy converters are solid-state devices that can generate electricity by harvesting waste thermal energy, thereby improving the efficiency of a system. The many advantages of TE devices include solid-state operation, zero-emissions, vast scalability, no maintenance and a long operating lifetime. The efficiency of TE materials is directly related to a dimensionless figure of merit ZT. In order to compete with conventional refrigerators and power generators, ZT of 3 is required. Due to their limited energy conversion efficiencies (i.e. ZT thermoelectric devices currently have a rather limited set of applications. Classical and quantum mechanical size effects provide additional ways to enhance energy conversion efficiencies in nanostructured materials. Theoretical calculations predict that ZT of 5 can be achieved in one-dimensional nanostructures including nanowires and nanotubes. The goal of my work was to develop electrodeposition techniques to synthesis various thermoelectric nanostructures including 2-D superlatticed thin films, 1-D nanowires and nanotubes and quasi 0-D superlatticed nanowires and investigate their properties. Electrodeposition is selected because of the ability to "tailor-made" their morphology and properties. Specifically, the accomplishments of this thesis include the following: (1) Electrodeposition of PbTe thin films was systematically investigated in an acidic nitric bath. (2) Single crystalline PbTe cubes were electrodeposited on polycrystalline gold substrates. (3) Single crystalline PbTe nanowires were synthesized using a template-directed electrodeposition process. The temperature dependent electro-transport studies reveal that the conduction mechanism in the temperature range 150-220 K is different from that in the temperature range 220-300 K. (4) Bi1.8 Sb0.1Te3.1 and (Bi0.3Sb0.7) 2Te3 nanowires were electrodeposited from acidic tartaric-nitric baths and their temperature dependent electrical properties were

  17. Renewable energy in focus: In{sub 5}Se{sub 5}Br, a solid material with promising thermoelectric properties for industrial applications

    Xhaxhiu, Kledi, E-mail: kledi.xhaxhiu@unitir.edu.al [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Tirana, 1001 Tirana (Albania); Kvarnström, Carita; Damlin, Pia [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, University of Turku, Vatselankatu 2, 20014 Turku (Finland); Bente, Klaus [Institute of Mineralogy, Crystallography and Materials Science, Faculty of Chemistry and Mineralogy, University of Leipzig, Scharnhorststraße 20, 04275 Leipzig (Germany)

    2014-12-15

    coefficient and lower the thermal conductivity making In{sub 5}Se{sub 5}Br a good alternative material for industrial thermoelectric applications.

  18. Searching for new thermoelectric materials: some examples among oxides, sulfides and selenides

    Hébert, S.; Berthebaud, D.; Daou, R.; Bréard, Y.; Pelloquin, D.; Guilmeau, E.; Gascoin, F.; Lebedev, O.; Maignan, A.

    2016-01-01

    Different families of thermoelectric materials have been investigated since the discovery of thermoelectric effects in the mid-19th century, materials mostly belonging to the family of degenerate semi-conductors. In the last 20 years, new thermoelectric materials have been investigated following different theoretical proposals, showing that nanostructuration, electronic correlations and complex crystallographic structures (low dimensional structures, large number of atoms per lattice, presence of ‘rattlers’…) could enhance the thermoelectric properties by enhancing the Seebeck coefficient and/or reducing the thermal conductivity. In this review, the different strategies used to optimize the thermoelectric properties of oxides and chalcogenides will be presented, starting with a review on thermoelectric oxides. The thermoelectric properties of sulfides and selenides will then be discussed, focusing on layered materials and low dimensional structures (TiS2 and pseudo-hollandites). Some sulfides with promising ZT values will also be presented (tetrahedrites and chalcopyrites).

  19. Searching for new thermoelectric materials: some examples among oxides, sulfides and selenides.

    Hébert, S; Berthebaud, D; Daou, R; Bréard, Y; Pelloquin, D; Guilmeau, E; Gascoin, F; Lebedev, O; Maignan, A

    2016-01-13

    Different families of thermoelectric materials have been investigated since the discovery of thermoelectric effects in the mid-19th century, materials mostly belonging to the family of degenerate semi-conductors. In the last 20 years, new thermoelectric materials have been investigated following different theoretical proposals, showing that nanostructuration, electronic correlations and complex crystallographic structures (low dimensional structures, large number of atoms per lattice, presence of 'rattlers'…) could enhance the thermoelectric properties by enhancing the Seebeck coefficient and/or reducing the thermal conductivity. In this review, the different strategies used to optimize the thermoelectric properties of oxides and chalcogenides will be presented, starting with a review on thermoelectric oxides. The thermoelectric properties of sulfides and selenides will then be discussed, focusing on layered materials and low dimensional structures (TiS2 and pseudo-hollandites). Some sulfides with promising ZT values will also be presented (tetrahedrites and chalcopyrites).

  20. Thermoelectric Property Dependence and Geometry Optimization of Peltier Current Leads Using Highly Electrically Conductive Thermoelectric Materials

    Fujii, Tomohiro; Fukuda, Shinji; Emoto, Masahiko; Osada, Koudai; Kawahara, Toshio; Hamabe, Makoto; Watanabe, Hirofumi; Ivanov, Yury; Sun, Jian; Yamaguchi, Satarou

    2011-05-01

    Thermoelectric materials are promising candidates for use in energy-saving devices in many fields. They are also useful in superconducting applications such as those using Peltier current leads (PCLs) to reduce system heat loss. In the case of PCLs, consideration must be given to Joule heating. Furthermore, the performance of PCLs is intricately dependent on their thermoelectric properties. In addition to the figure of merit Z, consideration of the electrical conductivity is also important for the design of high-performance PCLs. In this paper, we discuss the resistivity dependence of the performance of PCLs using model parameters obtained from real devices.

  1. Materials, preparation, and characterization in thermoelectrics

    Rowe, David Michael

    2012-01-01

    This book includes updated theoretical considerations which provide an insight into avenues of research most likely to result in further improvements in material performance. It details the latest techniques for the preparation of thermoelectric materials employed in energy harvesting, together with advances in the thermoelectric characterisation of nanoscale material. The book reviews the use of neutron beams to investigate phonons, whose behaviour govern the lattice thermal conductivity and includes a chapter on patents.

  2. Synthesis and characterization of Bi-Te-Se thermoelectric materials

    Tripathi, S. K., E-mail: surya.pu@ac.in [Department of Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh, 160014 (India); Centre for Nanoscience & Nanotechnology, Panjab University, Chandigarh, 160014 (India); Kumari, Ankita [Centre for Nanoscience & Nanotechnology, Panjab University, Chandigarh, 160014 (India); Ridhi, R.; Kaur, Jagdish [Department of Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh, 160014 (India)

    2015-08-28

    Bismuth Telluride (Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) and its related alloys act as a promising thermoelectric material and preferred over other thermoelectric materials due to their high stability and efficiency under ambient conditions. In the present work, we have reported economical, environment friendly and low-temperature aqueous chemical method for the synthesis of Bi-Se-Te alloy. The prepared samples are characterized by X-Ray Diffraction to investigate the structural properties and UV-Visible spectroscopy for the spectroscopic analysis. The absorption spectrum reveals the sensitivity in the ultraviolet as well as in visible region.

  3. Test System for Thermoelectric Modules and Materials

    Hejtmánek, J.; Knížek, K.; Švejda, V.; Horna, P.; Sikora, M.

    2014-10-01

    We present a design for a complex measuring device that enables its user to assess the parameters of power-generating thermoelectric modules (TEMs) (or bulk thermoelectric materials) under a wide range of temperatures ( T cold = 25°C to 90°C, T hot i) a measuring chamber where the TEM/material is compressed between thermally shielded heating blocks equipped with a mechanical loading system and water-cooled copper-based cooler, (ii) an electrical load system, (iii) a type K thermocouple array connected to a data acquisition computer, and (iv) a thermostatic water-based cooling system with electronically controlled flow rate and temperature of cooling water. Our testing setup represents a useful tool able to assess, e.g., the thermoelectric parameters of newly developed TEMs and materials or to evaluate the thermoelectric parameters of commercially available modules and materials for comparison with values declared by the manufacturer.

  4. Decoupling interrelated parameters for designing high performance thermoelectric materials.

    Xiao, Chong; Li, Zhou; Li, Kun; Huang, Pengcheng; Xie, Yi

    2014-04-15

    The world's supply of fossil fuels is quickly being exhausted, and the impact of their overuse is contributing to both climate change and global political unrest. In order to help solve these escalating problems, scientists must find a way to either replace combustion engines or reduce their use. Thermoelectric materials have attracted widespread research interest because of their potential applications as clean and renewable energy sources. They are reliable, lightweight, robust, and environmentally friendly and can reversibly convert between heat and electricity. However, after decades of development, the energy conversion efficiency of thermoelectric devices has been hovering around 10%. This is far below the theoretical predictions, mainly due to the interdependence and coupling between electrical and thermal parameters, which are strongly interrelated through the electronic structure of the materials. Therefore, any strategy that balances or decouples these parameters, in addition to optimizing the materials' intrinsic electronic structure, should be critical to the development of thermoelectric technology. In this Account, we discuss our recently developed strategies to decouple thermoelectric parameters for the synergistic optimization of electrical and thermal transport. We first highlight the phase transition, which is accompanied by an abrupt change of electrical transport, such as with a metal-insulator and semiconductor-superionic conductor transition. This should be a universal and effective strategy to optimize the thermoelectric performance, which takes advantage of modulated electronic structure and critical scattering across phase transitions to decouple the power factor and thermal conductivity. We propose that solid-solution homojunction nanoplates with disordered lattices are promising thermoelectric materials to meet the "phonon glass electron crystal" approach. The formation of a solid solution, coupled with homojunctions, allows for

  5. Nano-materials Enabled Thermoelectricity from Window Glasses

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2012-11-13

    With a projection of nearly doubling up the world population by 2050, we need wide variety of renewable and clean energy sources to meet the increased energy demand. Solar energy is considered as the leading promising alternate energy source with the pertinent challenge of off sunshine period and uneven worldwide distribution of usable sun light. Although thermoelectricity is considered as a reasonable renewable energy from wasted heat, its mass scale usage is yet to be developed. Here we show, large scale integration of nano-manufactured pellets of thermoelectric nano-materials, embedded into window glasses to generate thermoelectricity using the temperature difference between hot outside and cool inside. For the first time, this work offers an opportunity to potentially generate 304 watts of usable power from 9 m2 window at a 206C temperature gradient. If a natural temperature gradient exists, this can serve as a sustainable energy source for green building technology.

  6. Nano-materials for enhanced thermoelectric efficiencies

    Boukai, Akram

    2010-04-01

    Energy is the ultimate currency that drives the world economy. Without energy, the global economy would cease to function normally. Most of the world's energy comes from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. Unfortunately, these fossil fuels are limited and pollute the atmosphere. The rising costs and demand of energy products and the alarming rate of global warming have focused research efforts into alternative forms of renewable energy. Thermoelectrics are one class of renewable energy producing devices. Thermoelectrics operate by converting temperature differences into electrical power and vice versa. They find limited use due to their low efficiencies and high cost. This article will review the operation of thermoelectrics and their current state-of-the-art. It will also explore future promising research endeavors that aim to increase their efficiency.

  7. Size effects in thermoelectric cobaltate heterostructures

    Brinks, Petrus

    2014-01-01

    Thermoelectric energy conversion is a promising method to convert (waste) heat into useful electrical energy. To improve the efficiency of this process, which is currently limited, materials with improved thermoelectric performance are required. The performance indicator for thermoelectric materials

  8. Alternative Approaches to Group IV Thermoelectric Materials

    Snedaker, Matthew Loren

    In the pursuit of energy efficiency, there is a demand for systems capable of recovering waste heat. A temperature gradient across a thermoelectric material results in the thermal diffusion of charge carriers from the hot side to the cold side, giving rise to a voltage that can be used to convert waste heat to electricity. Silicon germanium (SiGe) alloys are the standard materials used for thermoelectric generators at high temperatures. We report an alternative method for preparing p-type Si1- xGex alloys from a boron-doped silica-germania nanocomposite. This is the first demonstration of the thermoelectric properties of SiGe-based thermoelectrics prepared at temperatures below the alloy's melting point through a magnesiothermic reduction of the (SiO 2)1-x(GeO2) x. We observe a thermoelectric power factor that is competitive with the literature record for the conventionally prepared SiGe. The large grain size in our hot pressed SiGe limits the thermoelectric figure of merit to 0.5 at 800°C for an optimally doped p-type Si80Ge 20 alloy. A phosphorus-doped oxide can yield n-type Si1- xGex; however, the current processing method introduces a background boron content that compensates ~10% of the donor impurities and limits the thermoelectric power factor. Spark plasma sintering of the nano-Si1-xGe x yields a heterogeneous alloy with thermal conductivity lower than that of the hot pressed homogeneous alloy due to a reduction in the average crystallite size. Magnesiothermic reduction in the presence of molten salts allows some control over crystallite growth and the extent of Si-Ge alloying.

  9. Methods for Enhancing the Thermal Durability of High-Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    Skomedal, Gunstein; Kristiansen, Nils R.; Engvoll, Marianne; Middleton, Hugh

    2014-06-01

    Thermoelectric materials, for example skutterudites and magnesium silicides, are being investigated as promising materials for medium-to-high-temperature waste heat recovery in transport and in industry. A crucial aspect of the success of a thermoelectric material is its stability over time when exposed to rapid heating and cooling. In this work different aspects of the degradation of these thermoelectric materials at high temperature were examined. Initial thermal durability was studied, and several candidate coatings were evaluated to enhance durability by protecting the materials from oxidation and sublimation during thermal cycles in air for up to 500 h and up to 873 K. The samples were characterized by SEM and EDS. The results showed it is possible to reduce degradation of the thermoelectric material without compromising overall thermoelectric efficiency.

  10. Shockwave Consolidation of Nanostructured Thermoelectric Materials

    Prasad, Narasimha S.; Taylor, Patrick; Nemir, David

    2014-01-01

    Nanotechnology based thermoelectric materials are considered attractive for developing highly efficient thermoelectric devices. Nano-structured thermoelectric materials are predicted to offer higher ZT over bulk materials by reducing thermal conductivity and increasing electrical conductivity. Consolidation of nano-structured powders into dense materials without losing nanostructure is essential towards practical device development. Using the gas atomization process, amorphous nano-structured powders were produced. Shockwave consolidation is accomplished by surrounding the nanopowder-containing tube with explosives and then detonating. The resulting shock wave causes rapid fusing of the powders without the melt and subsequent grain growth. We have been successful in generating consolidated nano-structured bismuth telluride alloy powders by using the shockwave technique. Using these consolidated materials, several types of thermoelectric power generating devices have been developed. Shockwave consolidation is anticipated to generate large quantities of nanostructred materials expeditiously and cost effectively. In this paper, the technique of shockwave consolidation will be presented followed by Seebeck Coefficient and thermal conductivity measurements of consolidated materials. Preliminary results indicate a substantial increase in electrical conductivity due to shockwave consolidation technique.

  11. Recent Progress on PEDOT-Based Thermoelectric Materials

    Qingshuo Wei

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric properties of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (PEDOT-based materials have attracted attention recently because of their remarkable electrical conductivity, power factor, and figure of merit. In this review, we summarize recent efforts toward improving the thermoelectric properties of PEDOT-based materials. We also discuss thermoelectric measurement techniques and several unsolved problems with the PEDOT system such as the effect of water absorption from the air and the anisotropic thermoelectric properties. In the last part, we describe our work on improving the power output of thermoelectric modules by using PEDOT, and we outline the potential applications of polymer thermoelectric generators.

  12. Thermoelectric Phenomena, Materials, Devices, and Applications

    Toberer, Eric

    2013-03-01

    Thermoelectric materials, which can generate electricity from waste heat or be used as solid-state Peltier coolers, could play an important role in a global sustainable energy solution. However, advanced materials with improved conversion efficiency are required for widespread implementation. Improving thermoelectric efficiency requires reconciling competing electronic and thermal transport properties - a material must have both a large carrier effective mass and mobility and low lattice thermal conductivity. Historically, this has been achieved through engineering carrier scattering rates. This talk will focus on new approaches that achieve these conflicting properties through modifications of the electron and phonon band structures. Example materials such as Yb14MnSb11 and Ba8Ga16Ge30 will be discussed and pathways towards further material improvements will be highlighted. Such tailored control of transport properties will be vital to realize the next generation of energy materials.

  13. WSe2 nanoribbons: new high-performance thermoelectric materials.

    Chen, Kai-Xuan; Luo, Zhi-Yong; Mo, Dong-Chuan; Lyu, Shu-Shen

    2016-06-28

    In this work, for the first time, we systematically investigate the ballistic transport properties of WSe2 nanoribbons using first-principles methods. Armchair nanoribbons with narrow ribbon width are mostly semiconductive but the zigzag nanoribbons are metallic. Surprisingly, an enhancement in thermoelectric performance is discovered moving from monolayers to nanoribbons, especially armchair ones. The maximum room-temperature thermoelectric figure of merit of 2.2 for an armchair nanoribbon is discovered. This may be contributed to by the effects of the disordered edges, owing to the existence of dangling bonds at the ribbon edge. H-passivation has turned out to be an effective way to stabilize the edge atoms, which enhances the thermodynamic stability of the nanoribbons. In addition, after H-passivation, all of the armchair nanoribbons exhibit semiconductive properties with similar band gaps (∼1.3 eV). Our work provides instructional theoretical evidence for the application of armchair WSe2 nanoribbons as promising thermoelectric materials. The enhancement mechanism of the disordered edge effect can also encourage further exploration to achieve outstanding thermoelectric materials.

  14. Chalcopyrite Nanoparticles as a Sustainable Thermoelectric Material

    Maninder Singh

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available In this report, copper iron sulfide nanoparticles with various composition were synthesized by a thermolysis based wet chemical method. These inherently sustainable nanoparticles were then fully characterized in terms of composition, structure, and morphology, as well as for suitability as a thermoelectric material. The merits of the material preparation include a straightforward bulk material formation where particles do not require any specialized treatment, such as spark plasma sintering or thermal heating. The Seebeck coefficient of the materials reveals P-type conductivity with a maximum value of 203 µV/K. The results give insight into how to design and create a new class of sustainable nanoparticle material for thermoelectric applications.

  15. Fabrication of Advanced Thermoelectric Materials by Hierarchical Nanovoid Generation

    Choi, Sang Hyouk (Inventor); Park, Yeonjoon (Inventor); Chu, Sang-Hyon (Inventor); Elliott, James R. (Inventor); King, Glen C. (Inventor); Kim, Jae-Woo (Inventor); Lillehei, Peter T. (Inventor); Stoakley, Diane M. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    A novel method to prepare an advanced thermoelectric material has hierarchical structures embedded with nanometer-sized voids which are key to enhancement of the thermoelectric performance. Solution-based thin film deposition technique enables preparation of stable film of thermoelectric material and void generator (voigen). A subsequent thermal process creates hierarchical nanovoid structure inside the thermoelectric material. Potential application areas of this advanced thermoelectric material with nanovoid structure are commercial applications (electronics cooling), medical and scientific applications (biological analysis device, medical imaging systems), telecommunications, and defense and military applications (night vision equipments).

  16. p × n-type transverse thermoelectrics: an alternative Peltier refrigerator with cryogenic promise

    Zhou, Chuanle; Tang, Y.; Grayson, M.

    2014-02-01

    This work describes a band-engineered transverse thermoelectric with p-type Seebeck in one direction and ntype orthogonal, with off-diagonal terms that drive heat flow transverse to electrical current. Such materials are named p × n type transverse thermoelectrics. Whereas thermoelectric performance is normally limited by the figure of merit ZT, p × n type materials can be more easily geometrically shaped and integrated for devices, leading to more compact, longer lifetime, enhanced efficiency coolers for infrared detectors or photovoltaic generators.

  17. Oxide Thermoelectric Materials: A Structure-Property Relationship

    Nag, Abanti; Shubha, V.

    2014-04-01

    Recent demand for thermoelectric materials for power harvesting from automobile and industrial waste heat requires oxide materials because of their potential advantages over intermetallic alloys in terms of chemical and thermal stability at high temperatures. Achievement of thermoelectric figure of merit equivalent to unity ( ZT ≈ 1) for transition-metal oxides necessitates a second look at the fundamental theory on the basis of the structure-property relationship giving rise to electron correlation accompanied by spin fluctuation. Promising transition-metal oxides based on wide-bandgap semiconductors, perovskite and layered oxides have been studied as potential candidate n- and p-type materials. This paper reviews the correlation between the crystal structure and thermoelectric properties of transition-metal oxides. The crystal-site-dependent electronic configuration and spin degeneracy to control the thermopower and electron-phonon interaction leading to polaron hopping to control electrical conductivity is discussed. Crystal structure tailoring leading to phonon scattering at interfaces and nanograin domains to achieve low thermal conductivity is also highlighted.

  18. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering.

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K H; Fischer, Karl F F; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials.

  19. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K. H.; Fischer, Karl F. F.; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B.

    2016-03-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials.

  20. CaMn(1-x)Nb(x)O3 (x < or = 0.08) perovskite-type phases as promising new high-temperature n-type thermoelectric materials.

    Bocher, L; Aguirre, M H; Logvinovich, D; Shkabko, A; Robert, R; Trottmann, M; Weidenkaff, A

    2008-09-15

    Perovskite-type CaMn(1-x)Nb(x)O(3+/-delta) (x = 0.02, 0.05, and 0.08) compounds were synthesized by applying both a "chimie douce" (SC) synthesis and a classical solid state reaction (SSR) method. The crystallographic parameters of the resulting phases were determined from X-ray, electron, and neutron diffraction data. The manganese oxidations states (Mn(4+)/Mn(3+)) were investigated by X-ray photoemission spectroscopy. The orthorhombic CaMn(1-x)Nb(x)O(3+/-delta) (x = 0.02, 0.05, and 0.08) phases were studied in terms of their high-temperature thermoelectric properties (Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity, and thermal conductivity). Differences in electrical transport and thermal properties can be correlated with different microstructures obtained by the two synthesis methods. In the high-temperature range, the electron-doped manganate phases exhibit large absolute Seebeck coefficient and low electrical resistivity values, resulting in a high power factor, PF (e.g., for x = 0.05, S(1000K) = -180 microV K(-1), rho(1000K) = 16.8 mohms cm, and PF > 1.90 x 10(-4) W m(-1) K(-2) for 450 K 0.3) make these phases the best perovskitic candidates as n-type polycrystalline thermoelectric materials operating in air at high temperatures.

  1. Chalcopyrite CuGaTe{sub 2}: a high-efficiency bulk thermoelectric material

    Plirdpring, Theerayuth; Harnwunggmoung, Adul [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Suita (Japan); Thermoelectric and Nanotechnology Research Center, Faculty of Science and Technology, Rajamangala University of Technology Suvarnabhumi, Huntra Phranakhon Si Ayutthaya (Thailand); Kurosaki, Ken; Sugahara, Tohru; Ohishi, Yuji; Muta, Hiroaki [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Suita (Japan); Kosuga, Atsuko [Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Research Center, Research Organization for the 21st Century, Osaka Prefecture University, Osaka (Japan); Day, Tristan; Snyder, G. Jeffrey [Department of Materials Science, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA (United States); Firdosy, Samad [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA (United States); Ravi, Vilupanur [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA (United States); California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, CA (United States); Yamanaka, Shinsuke [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Suita (Japan); Research Institute of Nuclear Engineering, University of Fukui (Japan)

    2012-07-17

    CuGaTe{sub 2} with a chalcopyrite structure demonstrates promising thermoelectric properties. The maximum figure of merit ZT is 1.4 at 950 K. CuGaTe{sub 2} and related chalcopyrites are a new class of high-efficiency bulk thermoelectric material for high-temperature applications. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  2. Accelerated Discovery of Thermoelectric Materials: Combinatorial Facility and High-Throughput Measurement of Thermoelectric Power Factor.

    García-Cañadas, Jorge; Adkins, Nicholas J E; McCain, Stephen; Hauptstein, Bastian; Brew, Ashley; Jarvis, David J; Min, Gao

    2016-06-13

    A series of processes have been developed to facilitate the rapid discovery of new promising thermoelectric alloys. A novel combinatorial facility where elements are wire-fed and laser-melted was designed and constructed. Different sample compositions can be achieved by feeding different element wires at specific rates. The composition of all the samples prepared was tested by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS). Then, their thermoelectric properties (power factor) at room temperature were screened in a specially designed new high-throughput setup. After the screening, the thermoelectric properties can be mapped with the possibility of identifying compositional trends. As a proof-of-concept, a promising thermoelectric ternary system, Al-Fe-Ti, has been identified, demonstrating the capability of this accelerated approach.

  3. Development in Zn4Sb-based thermoelectric materials

    Yin, Hao

    Thermoelectric material, as a functional material which has the dual ability of electrical-thermal energy conversion, has attracted tremendous interests in the last decades, especially against the background of global energy shortage and surging of new materials. The present work focuses...... on the notable Zn4Sb3, with the effort to further the basic understanding of the compound, as well as improve the thermoelectric performance to meet the commercial use. The maximum efficiency of a thermoelectric material is determined by its figure of merit, zT=TS2/ where S is the Seebeck coefficient...... or thermopower,  the electrical conductivity, the thermal conductivity and T the absolute temperature. The best thermoelectrics are heavily doped semiconductors with high thermoelectric power factors and low thermal conductivities, known as “Phonon Glasses Electrical Crystals”. Zn4Sb3 is one such material...

  4. Rare earth-doped materials with enhanced thermoelectric figure of merit

    Venkatasubramanian, Rama; Cook, Bruce Allen; Levin, Evgenii M.; Harringa, Joel Lee

    2016-09-06

    A thermoelectric material and a thermoelectric converter using this material. The thermoelectric material has a first component including a semiconductor material and a second component including a rare earth material included in the first component to thereby increase a figure of merit of a composite of the semiconductor material and the rare earth material relative to a figure of merit of the semiconductor material. The thermoelectric converter has a p-type thermoelectric material and a n-type thermoelectric material. At least one of the p-type thermoelectric material and the n-type thermoelectric material includes a rare earth material in at least one of the p-type thermoelectric material or the n-type thermoelectric material.

  5. Designing high-Performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K. H.

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited...... insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach...... naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth...

  6. Zinc Antimonides and Copper Chalcogenides as Thermoelectric Materials

    Blichfeld, Anders Bank

    2017-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials offer solid state solution to convert waste heat into usable electric energy or to use electrical power for cooling with no movable parts and with no maintenance required. Thermoelectrics possess a large potential in an ever increasing concern with power management...... and utilizing environmental energy sources to minimize the anthropogenic impact on global climate changes. The efficiency of the current state of the art thermoelectric materials will have to be increased for making a change on global scale. For this to happen a detail structural understanding is needed...... thermoelectric materials because of their low price and high performance, but that still have unknown structural aspects that needs to be understood for control and utilization of their full thermoelectric potential. A range of syntheses techniques have been used to prepare zinc antimony compounds, e.g., spark...

  7. WS2 as an excellent high-temperature thermoelectric material

    Gandi, Appala

    2014-11-25

    The potential of WS2 as a thermoelectric material is assessed. The electronic contribution to the thermoelectric properties is calculated within the constant relaxation time approximation from the electronic band structure, whereas the lattice contribution is evaluated using self-consistently calculated phonon lifetimes. In addition, the dependence of the lattice thermal conductivity on the mean free path of the phonons is determined.

  8. Thermoelectric Modules Based on Half-Heusler Materials Produced in Large Quantities

    Bartholomé, Kilian; Balke, Benjamin; Zuckermann, Daniel; Köhne, Martin; Müller, Michael; Tarantik, Karina; König, Jan

    2014-06-01

    Half-Heusler (HH) compounds are some of the most promising candidates among the medium-temperature thermoelectric materials being investigated for automotive and industrial waste heat recovery applications. For n- as well as p-type material, peak ZT values larger than one have been published recently, and first modules have been built. The next step to facilitate the industrialization of thermoelectric module production is upscaling of material synthesis. In this paper, the latest results of the thermoelectric properties of HH compounds produced in kg batches are presented and compared with values published in the literature. The performance of modules built from these materials is analyzed with respect to power output and long-term stability of the material and electrical contacts.

  9. Organic thermoelectric materials for energy harvesting and temperature control

    Russ, Boris; Glaudell, Anne; Urban, Jeffrey J.; Chabinyc, Michael L.; Segalman, Rachel A.

    2016-10-01

    Conjugated polymers and related processing techniques have been developed for organic electronic devices ranging from lightweight photovoltaics to flexible displays. These breakthroughs have recently been used to create organic thermoelectric materials, which have potential for wearable heating and cooling devices, and near-room-temperature energy generation. So far, the best thermoelectric materials have been inorganic compounds (such as Bi2Te3) that have relatively low Earth abundance and are fabricated through highly complex vacuum processing routes. Molecular materials and hybrid organic-inorganic materials now demonstrate figures of merit approaching those of these inorganic materials, while also exhibiting unique transport behaviours that are suggestive of optimization pathways and device geometries that were not previously possible. In this Review, we discuss recent breakthroughs for organic materials with high thermoelectric figures of merit and indicate how these materials may be incorporated into new module designs that take advantage of their mechanical and thermoelectric properties.

  10. New Materials for Thermoelectric Applications Theory and Experiment

    Hewson, Alex

    2013-01-01

    Thermoelectric devices could play an important role in making efficient use of our energy resources but their efficiency would need to be increased for their wide scale application. There is a multidisciplinary search for materials with an enhanced thermoelectric responses for use in such devices. This volume covers the latest ideas and developments in this research field, covering topics ranging from the fabrication and characterization of new materials, particularly those with strong electron correlation, use of nanostructured, layered materials and composites, through to theoretical work to gain a deeper understanding of thermoelectric behavior. It should be a useful guide and stimulus to all working in this very topical field.

  11. A promising approach to enhanced thermoelectric properties using carbon nanotube networks

    Meng, Chuizhou; Liu, Changhong; Fan, Shoushan [Tsinghua-Foxconn Nanotechnology Research Center, Department of Physics Tsinghua University Beijing (China)

    2010-01-26

    Enhanced Seebeck coefficients and power factors - important for the conversion of heat to electrical energy - are obtained in polyaniline/carbon nanotube (PANI/CNT) composites in which PANI coats CNT networks. The values are several times larger than those of either of the individual components. This new approach has potential for synthesizing high-performance thermoelectric materials. (Abstract Copyright [2010], Wiley Periodicals, Inc.)

  12. Correlation between structure, doping and performance of thermoelectric materials

    ZHAO Yu

    2014-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials can convert thermal energy into electrical energy and vice-versa. They are widely used in energy harvesters, thermal sensors, and cooling systems. However, the low efficiency and high cost of the known material compositions limit their widespread utilization in electricity generation applications. Therefore, there is a strong interest in identifying new thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit. In response to this need, this dissertation works on the synthes...

  13. Research Progress on AgSbTe2-based Thermoelectric Materials

    CAO Qigao; MA Guang; JIA Zhihua; ZHENG Jing; LI Jin

    2012-01-01

    Thermoelectric power generation represents a class of energy conversion technology,which has been used in power supply of aeronautic and astronautic exploring missions,now showing notable advantages to harvest the widely distributed waste heat and convert the abundant solar energy into electricity at lower cost than Si-based photovoltaic technology.Thermoelectric dimensionless figure of merit ZT plays a key role in the conversion efficiency from thermal to electrical energy.Low thermal conductivity and large Seebeck coefficient make the AgSbTe2 compound a very promising candidate for high efficiency p-type thermoelectric applications.The AgSbTe2-based thermoelectric system has been repeatedly studied as prospective thermoelectric materials.In this review,we firstly clarify some fundamental tradeoffs dictating the ZT value through the relationship ZT =S2σT/κ.We also pay special attentions to the recent advances in AgSbTe2-based thermoelectric materials.Finally,we provide an outlook of new directions in this filed.

  14. Efficient Space Hardy Thermoelectric Materials with Broad Temperature Range Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The goal of this work is developing new thermoelectric materials for use in fabricating solid state cooling devices and electrical power generators, which are 200 to...

  15. Efficient Space Hardy Thermoelectric Materials with Broad Temperature Range Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The goal of this work is to develop new thermoelectric materials for use in fabricating solid state cooling devices and electrical power generators, which are 200 to...

  16. High Temperature Stable Nanocrystalline SiGe Thermoelectric Material

    Yang, Sherwin (Inventor); Matejczyk, Daniel Edward (Inventor); Determan, William (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    A method of forming a nanocomposite thermoelectric material having microstructural stability at temperatures greater than 1000 C. The method includes creating nanocrystalline powder by cryomilling. The method is particularly useful in forming SiGe alloy powder.

  17. High Temperature Thermoelectric Properties of ZnO Based Materials

    Han, Li

    This thesis investigated the high temperature thermoelectric properties of ZnO based materials. The investigation first focused on the doping mechanisms of Al-doped ZnO, and then the influence of spark plasma sintering conditions on the thermoelectric properties of Al, Ga-dually doped ZnO. Follow......This thesis investigated the high temperature thermoelectric properties of ZnO based materials. The investigation first focused on the doping mechanisms of Al-doped ZnO, and then the influence of spark plasma sintering conditions on the thermoelectric properties of Al, Ga-dually doped Zn...... for conventional ZnO materials. For Al-doped ZnO, α- and γ-Al2O3 were selectively used as dopants in order to understand the doping mechanism of each phase and their effects on the thermoelectric properties. The samples were prepared by the spark plasma sintering technique from precursors calcined at various...... temperatures. Clear correlations between the initial crystallographic phase of the dopants and the thermoelectric properties of the resulting Al-doped ZnO were observed. For Al, Ga-dually doped ZnO, the spark plasma sintering conditions together with the microstructural evolution and thermoelectric properties...

  18. Perspective: Web-based machine learning models for real-time screening of thermoelectric materials properties

    Michael W. Gaultois

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The experimental search for new thermoelectric materials remains largely confined to a limited set of successful chemical and structural families, such as chalcogenides, skutterudites, and Zintl phases. In principle, computational tools such as density functional theory (DFT offer the possibility of rationally guiding experimental synthesis efforts toward very different chemistries. However, in practice, predicting thermoelectric properties from first principles remains a challenging endeavor [J. Carrete et al., Phys. Rev. X 4, 011019 (2014], and experimental researchers generally do not directly use computation to drive their own synthesis efforts. To bridge this practical gap between experimental needs and computational tools, we report an open machine learning-based recommendation engine (http://thermoelectrics.citrination.com for materials researchers that suggests promising new thermoelectric compositions based on pre-screening about 25 000 known materials and also evaluates the feasibility of user-designed compounds. We show this engine can identify interesting chemistries very different from known thermoelectrics. Specifically, we describe the experimental characterization of one example set of compounds derived from our engine, RE12Co5Bi (RE = Gd, Er, which exhibits surprising thermoelectric performance given its unprecedentedly high loading with metallic d and f block elements and warrants further investigation as a new thermoelectric material platform. We show that our engine predicts this family of materials to have low thermal and high electrical conductivities, but modest Seebeck coefficient, all of which are confirmed experimentally. We note that the engine also predicts materials that may simultaneously optimize all three properties entering into zT; we selected RE12Co5Bi for this study due to its interesting chemical composition and known facile synthesis.

  19. Perspective: Web-based machine learning models for real-time screening of thermoelectric materials properties

    Gaultois, Michael W.; Oliynyk, Anton O.; Mar, Arthur; Sparks, Taylor D.; Mulholland, Gregory J.; Meredig, Bryce

    2016-05-01

    The experimental search for new thermoelectric materials remains largely confined to a limited set of successful chemical and structural families, such as chalcogenides, skutterudites, and Zintl phases. In principle, computational tools such as density functional theory (DFT) offer the possibility of rationally guiding experimental synthesis efforts toward very different chemistries. However, in practice, predicting thermoelectric properties from first principles remains a challenging endeavor [J. Carrete et al., Phys. Rev. X 4, 011019 (2014)], and experimental researchers generally do not directly use computation to drive their own synthesis efforts. To bridge this practical gap between experimental needs and computational tools, we report an open machine learning-based recommendation engine (http://thermoelectrics.citrination.com) for materials researchers that suggests promising new thermoelectric compositions based on pre-screening about 25 000 known materials and also evaluates the feasibility of user-designed compounds. We show this engine can identify interesting chemistries very different from known thermoelectrics. Specifically, we describe the experimental characterization of one example set of compounds derived from our engine, RE12Co5Bi (RE = Gd, Er), which exhibits surprising thermoelectric performance given its unprecedentedly high loading with metallic d and f block elements and warrants further investigation as a new thermoelectric material platform. We show that our engine predicts this family of materials to have low thermal and high electrical conductivities, but modest Seebeck coefficient, all of which are confirmed experimentally. We note that the engine also predicts materials that may simultaneously optimize all three properties entering into zT; we selected RE12Co5Bi for this study due to its interesting chemical composition and known facile synthesis.

  20. Materials growth and characterization of thermoelectric and resistive switching devices

    Norris, Kate J.

    In the 74 years since diode rectifier based radar technology helped the allied forces win WWII, semiconductors have transformed the world we live in. From our smart phones to semiconductor-based energy conversion, semiconductors touch every aspect of our lives. With this thesis I hope to expand human knowledge of semiconductor thermoelectric devices and resistive switching devices through experimentation with materials growth and subsequent materials characterization. Metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) was the primary method of materials growth utilized in these studies. Additionally, plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD), atomic layer deposition (ALD),ion beam sputter deposition, reactive sputter deposition and electron-beam (e-beam) evaporation were also used in this research for device fabrication. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and Electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) were the primary characterization methods utilized for this research. Additional device and materials characterization techniques employed include: current-voltage measurements, thermoelectric measurements, x-ray diffraction (XRD), reflection absorption infra-red spectroscopy (RAIRS), atomic force microscopy (AFM), photoluminescence (PL), and raman spectroscopy. As society has become more aware of its impact on the planet and its limited resources, there has been a push toward developing technologies to sustainably produce the energy we need. Thermoelectric devices convert heat directly into electricity. Thermoelectric devices have the potential to save huge amounts of energy that we currently waste as heat, if we can make them cost-effective. Semiconducting thin films and nanowires appear to be promising avenues of research to attain this goal. Specifically, in this work we will explore the use of ErSb thin films as well as Si and InP nanowire networks for thermoelectric applications. First we will discuss the growth of

  1. Fabrication of 200 mm Diameter Sintering Body of Skutterudite Thermoelectric Material by Spark Plasma Sintering

    Tomida, T.; Sumiyoshi, A.; Nie, G.; Ochi, T.; Suzuki, S.; Kikuchi, M.; Mukaiyama, K.; Guo, J. Q.

    2016-11-01

    Filled skutterudite is a promising material for thermoelectric power generation because its ZT value is relatively high. However, mass production of high-performance thermoelectric materials remains a challenge. This study focused on the sintering process of thermoelectric materials. Large-diameter n-type (Yb or La, Ca, Al, Ga, In)0.8(Co, Fe)4Sb12 skutterudite sintering bodies with a small thickness were successfully produced by the spark plasma sintering (SPS) method. When direct current flows through the thermoelectric sintering body during the SPS pulse, the Peltier effect causes a temperature difference within the sintering body. To eliminate the Peltier effect, an electrical insulating material was inserted between the punch (electrode) and the sintering body. In this way, an n-type La-filled skutterudite sample with a diameter of 200 mm, thickness of 21 mm, and weight of 5 kg was successfully produced. The thermoelectric properties and microstructures of the sample were almost the same throughout the whole sintering body, and the dimensionless figure of merit reached 1.0 at 773 K.

  2. Thermoelectric properties of porous (Bi0.15Sb0.85)2Te3 thermoelectric materials

    Guiying Xu; Tingjie Chen; Jianqiang Liu; Zhangjian Zhou

    2003-01-01

    In order to obtain thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit, the concept of Hollow (Vacuum) Quantum Structure or Effect and related thermoelectric materials design were proposed. To demonstrate the theory, the materials of (Bio.15Sb0.85)2Te3 with porous structure have been fabricated. Their thermoelectric properties and the microstructure were investigated and compared with their density structure. It was found that the porous structure could improve their properties greatly.

  3. Thermal Expansion Studies of Selected High-Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    Ravi, Vilupanur; Firdosy, Samad; Caillat, Thierry; Brandon, Erik; van der Walde, Keith; Maricic, Lina; Sayir, Ali

    2009-07-01

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) generate electrical power by converting the heat released from the nuclear decay of radioactive isotopes (typically plutonium-238) into electricity using a thermoelectric converter. RTGs have been successfully used to power a number of space missions and have demonstrated their reliability over an extended period of time (tens of years) and are compact, rugged, radiation resistant, scalable, and produce no noise, vibration or torque during operation. System conversion efficiency for state-of-practice RTGs is about 6% and specific power ≤5.1 W/kg. A higher specific power would result in more onboard power for the same RTG mass, or less RTG mass for the same onboard power. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been leading, under the advanced thermoelectric converter (ATEC) project, the development of new high-temperature thermoelectric materials and components for integration into advanced, more efficient RTGs. Thermoelectric materials investigated to date include skutterudites, the Yb14MnSb11 compound, and SiGe alloys. The development of long-lived thermoelectric couples based on some of these materials has been initiated and is assisted by a thermomechanical stress analysis to ensure that all stresses under both fabrication and operation conditions will be within yield limits for those materials. Several physical parameters are needed as input to this analysis. Among those parameters, the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is critically important. Thermal expansion coefficient measurements of several thermoelectric materials under consideration for ATEC are described in this paper. The stress response at the interfaces in material stacks subjected to changes in temperature is discussed, drawing on work from the literature and project-specific tools developed here. The degree of CTE mismatch and the associated effect on the formation of stress is highlighted.

  4. Thermal Expansion Studies of Selected High Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    Ravi, Vilupanur; Firdosy, Samad; Caillat, Thierry; Brandon, Erik; Van Der Walde, Keith; Maricic, Lina; Sayir, Ali

    2008-01-01

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) generate electrical power by converting the heat released from the nuclear decay of radioactive isotopes (typically plutonium-238) into electricity using a thermoelectric converter. RTGs have been successfully used to power a number of space missions and have demonstrated their reliability over an extended period of time (tens of years) and are compact, rugged, radiation resistant, scalable, and produce no noise, vibration or torque during operation. System conversion efficiency for state-of-practice RTGs is about 6% and specific power less than or equal to 5.1 W/kg. Higher specific power would result in more on-board power for the same RTG mass, or less RTG mass for the same on-board power. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been leading, under the advanced thermoelectric converter (ATEC) project, the development of new high-temperature thermoelectric materials and components for integration into advanced, more efficient RTGs. Thermoelectric materials investigated to date include skutterudites, the Yb14MnSb11 compound, and SiGe alloys. The development of long-lived thermoelectric couples based on some of these materials has been initiated and is assisted by a thermo-mechanical stress analysis to ensure that all stresses under both fabrication and operation conditions will be within yield limits for those materials. Several physical parameters are needed as input to this analysis. Among those parameters, the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is critically important. Thermal expansion coefficient measurements of several thermoelectric materials under consideration for ATEC are described in this paper. The stress response at the interfaces in material stacks subjected to changes in temperature is discussed, drawing on work from the literature and project-specific tools developed here. The degree of CTE mismatch and the associated effect on the formation of stress is highlighted.

  5. Advanced materials for high-temperature thermoelectric energy conversion

    Vining, Cronin B.; Vandersande, Jan W.; Wood, Charles

    1992-01-01

    A number of refractory semiconductors are under study at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for application in thermal to electric energy conversion for space power. The main thrust of the program is to improve or develop materials of high figure of merit and, therefore, high conversion efficiencies over a broad temperature range. Materials currently under investigation are represented by silicon-germanium alloys, lanthanum telluride, and boron carbide. The thermoelectric properties of each of these materials, and prospects for their further improvements, are discussed. Continued progress in thermoelectric materials technology can be expected to yield reliable space power systems with double to triple the efficiency of current state of the art systems.

  6. Optimization of the thermoelectric properties of FeNbSb-based half-Heusler materials

    Li, Wenfeng; Yang, Gui; Zhang, Jianwei

    2016-05-01

    FeNbSb-based half-Heusler compounds have recently been reported as promising materials for good high-temperature thermoelectric materials with a ZT  >  1. Their electronic structure and thermoelectric properties are investigated based on a first-principles simulation and the semi-classical Boltzmann transport theory. The band structures show not only light and heavy bands but also high band degeneracy near the valence band maximum, which is beneficial for thermoelectric performance. The calculated Seebeck coefficients of p-type FeNbSb at high carrier concentrations exhibit the expected high values, which is consistent with experimental data. The evolution of the electrical conductivity and power factor with carrier concentration at different temperatures is investigated. Our results show that the thermoelectric performance of p-type FeNbSb can be improved by appropriate substitution; for example, by doping Hf on the Nb site, the maximum ZT of the p-type FeNb1-x Hf x Sb can reach ~1.5 at 1200 K. This study can provide some theoretical guidance for experimental research to improve the thermoelectric performance of FeNbSb-based half-Heusler compounds.

  7. Express method for contactless measurement of parameters of thermoelectric materials

    Ashcheulov A. A.

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents an original method for contactless express measurement of parameters of thermoelectric materials. The presence of a combination of AC and DC magnetic fields in the gap of the oscillating circuit, where the monitored sample of the thermoelectric material is located, leads — due to Ampere force — to delamination of geometric regions of the occurrence of half-cycles of Foucault current. This in turn causes the appearance of additional heat losses in the oscillating circuit caused by Peltier effect. Computer modeling of these processes with the use of the software package ComsolFenlab 3.3 allowed determining the nature and magnitude of the electric currents in oscillating circuit, the range of operating frequencies, and the ratio of amplitudes of the variable and fixed components of the magnetic field. These components eventually cause a certain temperature difference along the controlled sample, which difference is proportional to the thermoelectric figure of merit Z of the material. The basic expressions are obtained for determining the value of the Seebeck coefficient a, thermal conductivity ?, electrical conductivity ? and thermoelectric figure of merit Z. A description is given to the design of the device for contactless express measurement of parameters of thermoelectric materials based on Bi—Te—Se—Sb solid solutions. Its distinctive feature is the ability to determine the symmetric and asymmetric components of the electric conductivity of the material values. The actual error in parameter measurement in this case is 2%.

  8. Introduction to thermoelectricity

    Goldsmid, H Julian

    2010-01-01

    Introduction to Thermoelectricity is the latest work by Professor Julian Goldsmid drawing on his 55 years experience in the field. The theory of the thermoelectric and related phenomena is presented in sufficient detail to enable researchers to understand their observations and develop improved thermoelectric materials. The methods for the selection of materials and their improvement are discussed. Thermoelectric materials for use in refrigeration and electrical generation are reviewed. Experimental techniques for the measurement of properties and for the production of thermoelements are described. Special emphasis is placed on nanotechnology which promises to yield great improvements in the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Chapters are also devoted to transverse thermoelectric effects and thermionic energy conversion, both techniques offering the promise of important applications in the future.

  9. Thermoelectric material including conformal oxide layers and method of making the same using atomic layer deposition

    Cho, Jung Young; Ahn, Dongjoon; Salvador, James R.; Meisner, Gregory P.

    2016-06-07

    A thermoelectric material includes a substrate particle and a plurality of conformal oxide layers formed on the substrate particle. The plurality of conformal oxide layers has a total oxide layer thickness ranging from about 2 nm to about 20 nm. The thermoelectric material excludes oxide nanoparticles. A method of making the thermoelectric material is also disclosed herein.

  10. Thinking Like a Chemist: Intuition in Thermoelectric Materials.

    Zeier, Wolfgang G; Zevalkink, Alex; Gibbs, Zachary M; Hautier, Geoffroy; Kanatzidis, Mercouri G; Snyder, G Jeffrey

    2016-06-06

    The coupled transport properties required to create an efficient thermoelectric material necessitates a thorough understanding of the relationship between the chemistry and physics in a solid. We approach thermoelectric material design using the chemical intuition provided by molecular orbital diagrams, tight binding theory, and a classic understanding of bond strength. Concepts such as electronegativity, band width, orbital overlap, bond energy, and bond length are used to explain trends in electronic properties such as the magnitude and temperature dependence of band gap, carrier effective mass, and band degeneracy and convergence. The lattice thermal conductivity is discussed in relation to the crystal structure and bond strength, with emphasis on the importance of bond length. We provide an overview of how symmetry and bonding strength affect electron and phonon transport in solids, and how altering these properties may be used in strategies to improve thermoelectric performance.

  11. High Temperature Thermoelectric Materials for Waste Heat Regeneration

    2013-01-01

    Thermoelectric Oxide Materials. Science of Advanced Materials 2011, 321 (1457), 682–686. 2. International World Energy, Wold Energy Outlook 2006 Edition...power is clearly limited to the inefficiencies of the TE material and is currently a major road block to wide TEG acceptance. A TE material can be...International World Energy, 2001. 3. Board, D. S. Report of the Defense Science Board Task Force on DoD Energy Strategy, More Fight-Less Fuel, Office

  12. Avoided crossing of rattler modes in thermoelectric materials

    Christensen, Mogens; Abrahamsen, Asger Bech; Christensen, Niels Bech

    2008-01-01

    thermoelectric materials, and the challenge is to limit the conduction of heat by phonons, without simultaneously reducing the charge transport. This is named the 'phonon glass-electron crystal' concept and may be realized in host-guest systems. The guest entities are believed to have independent oscillations...

  13. Thermoelectric Figure of Merit of Low-temperature Generator Materials and Possibilities to Improve It

    A.V. Simkin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric properties of semiconductor material based on the bismuth telluride solid solution manufactured by the extrusion method, which has high mechanical properties, are studied in the work. Using the obtained values of thermoelectric semiconductor parameters, the coefficients of efficiency of generator thermopile of a flat design in the working temperature range are calculated. The ways to improve the efficiency of thermoelectric conversion through the use of bulk nanostructured thermoelectric materials based on bismuth telluride are considered.

  14. Noncontacting thermoelectric detection of material imperfections in metals

    Peter B. Nagy; Adnan H. Nayfeh; Waseem I. Faidi; Hector Carreon; Balachander Lakshminaraya; Feng Yu; Bassam Abu-Nabah

    2005-06-17

    This project was aimed at developing a new noncontacting thermoelectric method for nondestructive detection of material imperfections in metals. The method is based on magnetic sensing of local thermoelectric currents around imperfections when a temperature gradient is established throughout a conducting specimen by external heating and cooling. The surrounding intact material serves as the reference electrode therefore the detection sensitivity could be very high if a sufficiently sensitive magnetometer is used in the measurements. This self-referencing, noncontacting, nondestructive inspection technique offers the following distinct advantages over conventional methods: high sensitivity to subtle variations in material properties, unique insensitivity to the size, shape, and other geometrical features of the specimen, noncontacting nature with a substantial stand-off distance, and the ability to probe relatively deep into the material. The potential applications of this method cover a very wide range from detection metallic inclusions and segregations, inhomogeneities, and tight cracks to characterization of hardening, embrittlement, fatigue, texture, and residual stresses.

  15. Zero-dimensional nanostructured material with metallic bismuth nanoparticles: a new route for thermoelectrics

    Benoit, Roland; Treguer, Mona; Saboungi, Marie-Louise

    2011-03-01

    The thermoelectric figure of merit ZT has so far not exceeded the value ZT=3 need to compete with mechanical energy conversion systems. However, theoretical work has shown that it is possible to reach values of ZT higher than this. One of the most promising routes is nanostructured materials, which offer the opportunity to tailor physical properties such as electrical and heat transport, due to the effects of electron filtering and phonon confinement. Dresselhaus et al. (ref.?) were among the first to show that 2D and 1D structures are capable of reaching ZT values higher than 2. The thermoelectric materials of current interest are in the form of nanotubes, nanodots and, more generally, superlattices composed of a matrix and nanoparticles. In our work we synthesize a periodic network of bismuth nanoparticles in a matrix of mesoporous Si O2 . We find that in this form bismuth transforms from a rhombohedral to a cubic structure, with improved filtering of electrons and phonons.

  16. Thermoelectric properties of p-type Bi-Sb-Te compositionally graded thermoelectric materials with different barriers

    2002-01-01

    In order to find more suitable materials as barriers and to improve the thermoelectric properties, p-type (BiSb)2Te3 (0.85, 0.9) two segments compositionally graded thermoelectric materials (CGTM) with different barriers were fabricated by conventional hot pressure method. Metals Fe, Co, Cu and Al were used as barriers between two segments. The effects of different barriers on thermoelectric properties of CGTM were investigated. The results show that metal Fe is more stable and suitable as the barrier.

  17. Thermal transport in layered materials for thermoelectrics and thermal management

    Qui, Bo

    Atomic level thermal transport in layered materials, namely, Bi 2Te3 and graphene is investigated using first principles calculations, lattice dynamics (LD) calculations, molecular dynamics simulations, spectral phonon analysis and empirical modeling. These materials resemble geometrically while differ significantly in the nature of thermal transport. Because of their uniquely low/high thermal conductivities, they are of great interest in thermoelectrics and thermal management applications, respectively. Besides Bi2Te3 and graphene, many other materials in the family of layered materials also exhibit great promises for various applications in thermoelectrics, thermal management, and electronics. In order to investigate the thermal properties of general layered materials, we explore the use of tight-binding molecular dynamics (TBMD) approach, which neither relies on the availability of classical potentials nor demands significant computational resources as ab initio MD approach does. In addition, a general model for the effective phonon group velocities, which is relevant for the lattice thermal transport in general few-layer materials, is developed. First of all, two-body interatomic potentials in the Morse potential form have been developed for bismuth telluride. The density functional theory with local-density approximations is first used to calculate the total energies for many artificially distorted Bi2Te3 configurations to produce the energy surface. Then by fitting to this energy surface and other experimental data, the Morse potential form is parameterized. The fitted empirical interatomic potentials are shown to reproduce the elastic and phonon data well. With the classical interatomic potentials developed, molecular dynamics simulations are performed to predict the thermal conductivity of bulk Bi2Te3 at different temperatures, and the results agree with experimental data well. To facilitate phonon-engineering, we predict the thermal conductivity of Bi2Te3

  18. Engineering half-Heusler thermoelectric materials using Zintl chemistry

    Zeier, Wolfgang G.; Schmitt, Jennifer; Hautier, Geoffroy; Aydemir, Umut; Gibbs, Zachary M.; Felser, Claudia; Snyder, G. Jeffrey

    2016-06-01

    Half-Heusler compounds based on XNiSn and XCoSb (X = Ti, Zr or Hf) have rapidly become important thermoelectric materials for converting waste heat into electricity. In this Review, we provide an overview on the electronic properties of half-Heusler compounds in an attempt to understand their basic structural chemistry and physical properties, and to guide their further development. Half-Heusler compounds can exhibit semiconducting transport behaviour even though they are described as ‘intermetallic’ compounds. Therefore, it is most useful to consider these systems as rigid-band semiconductors within the framework of Zintl (or valence-precise) compounds. These considerations aid our understanding of their properties, such as the bandgap and low hole mobility because of interstitial Ni defects in XNiSn. Understanding the structural and bonding characteristics, including the presence of defects, will help to develop different strategies to improve and design better half-Heusler thermoelectric materials.

  19. Thermoelectric properties of monolayer MSe2 (M = Zr, Hf): low lattice thermal conductivity and a promising figure of merit

    Ding, Guangqian; Gao, G. Y.; Huang, Zhishuo; Zhang, Wenxu; Yao, Kailun

    2016-09-01

    Monolayer transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) MX2 (M = Mo, W, Zr, Hf, etc; X = S, Se, Te) have become well-known in recent times for their promising applications in thermoelectrics and field effect transistors. In this work, we perform a systematic study on the thermoelectric properties of monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2 using first-principles calculations combined with Boltzmann transport equations. Our results point to a competitive thermoelectric figure of merit (close to 1 at optimal doping) in both monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2, which is markedly higher than previous explored monolayer TMDCs such as MoS2 and MoSe2. We also reveal that the higher figure of merits arise mainly from their low lattice thermal conductivity, and this is partly due to the strong coupling of acoustic modes with low frequency optical modes. It is found that the figure of merits can be better optimized in n-type than in p-type. In particular, the performance of HfSe2 is superior to ZrSe2 at a higher temperature. Our results suggest that monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2 with lower lattice thermal conductivity than usual monolayer TMDCs are promising candidates for thermoelectric applications.

  20. Nanostructured Composite Materials for High Temperature Thermoelectric Energy Conversion

    2012-08-29

    Mechanical Testing Measurements were made of the Young’s modulus and toughness of half-Heusler bulk materials with compositions [Zro.5Hfo...will be optimized to meet the needs of engineered devices. A microhardness tester will be used to obtain hardness measurements and determine the...modulus of elasticity for thermoelectric samples. These tests will be used to assess homogeneity of mechanical properties as a function of processing

  1. Magnetoelectric interaction and transport behaviours in magnetic nanocomposite thermoelectric materials

    Zhao, Wenyu; Liu, Zhiyuan; Wei, Ping; Zhang, Qingjie; Zhu, Wanting; Su, Xianli; Tang, Xinfeng; Yang, Jihui; Liu, Yong; Shi, Jing; Chao, Yimin; Lin, Siqi; Pei, Yanzhong

    2017-01-01

    How to suppress the performance deterioration of thermoelectric materials in the intrinsic excitation region remains a key challenge. The magnetic transition of permanent magnet nanoparticles from ferromagnetism to paramagnetism provides an effective approach to finding the solution to this challenge. Here, we have designed and prepared magnetic nanocomposite thermoelectric materials consisting of BaFe12O19 nanoparticles and Ba0.3In0.3Co4Sb12 matrix. It was found that the electrical transport behaviours of the nanocomposites are controlled by the magnetic transition of BaFe12O19 nanoparticles from ferromagnetism to paramagnetism. BaFe12O19 nanoparticles trap electrons below the Curie temperature (TC) and release the trapped electrons above the TC, playing an 'electron repository' role in maintaining high figure of merit ZT. BaFe12O19 nanoparticles produce two types of magnetoelectric effect—electron spiral motion and magnon-drag thermopower—as well as enhancing phonon scattering. Our work demonstrates that the performance deterioration of thermoelectric materials in the intrinsic excitation region can be suppressed through the magnetic transition of permanent magnet nanoparticles.

  2. New Materials for High Temperature Thermoelectric Power Generation

    Kauzlarich, Susan [Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)

    2016-02-03

    The scope of this proposal was to develop two new high ZT materials with enhanced properties for the n- and p-leg of a thermoelectric device capable of operating at a maximum temperature of 1275 K and to demonstrate the efficiency in a working device. Nanostructured composites and new materials based on n– and p–type nanostructured Si1-xGex (ZT1273K ~ 1) and the recently discovered p–type high temperature Zintl phase material, Yb14MnSb11 (ZT1273K ~1) were developed and tested in a working device.

  3. Paper Thermoelectrics: Merging Nanotechnology with Naturally Abundant Fibrous Material.

    Sun, Chengjun; Goharpey, Amir Hossein; Rai, Ayush; Zhang, Teng; Ko, Dong-Kyun

    2016-08-31

    The development of paper-based sensors, antennas, and energy-harvesting devices can transform the way electronic devices are manufactured and used. Herein we describe an approach to fabricate paper thermoelectric generators for the first time by directly impregnating naturally abundant cellulose materials with p- or n-type colloidal semiconductor quantum dots. We investigate Seebeck coefficients and electrical conductivities as a function of temperature between 300 and 400 K as well as in-plane thermal conductivities using Angstrom's method. We further demonstrate equipment-free fabrication of flexible thermoelectric modules using p- and n-type paper strips. Leveraged by paper's inherently low thermal conductivity and high flexibility, these paper modules have the potential to efficiently utilize heat available in natural and man-made environments by maximizing the thermal contact to heat sources of arbitrary geometry.

  4. Thermoelectric and thermospintronic transport in Dirac material-based nanostructures

    Chang, Po-Hao

    The growing need for power due to the rapid developments of the technologies has urged both engineers and scientists to study more sustainable types of energy. On the other hand, the improvement of our abilities although enable us, for example, to double the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit approximately every two years (Moore's law), comes with side effect due to overheating. Taking advantage of thermoelectric effect has thus become one of the obvious solutions for the problems. But due to the poor efficiency of electricity-heat conversion, there are still challenges to be overcome in order to fully utilize the idea. In the past few years, the realization of graphene along with the discoveries of topological insulators (TI) which are both considered as Dirac material (DM) have offer alternative routs for improving the energy conversion efficiency through different approaches as well as novel quantum effects of materials themselves for investigation. The aim of this thesis is to present contributions to improving the efficiency of thermoelectric conversion as well as analyzing spin transport phenomena that occur in nano-devices. This thesis spans the areas of thermoelectric (TE) effect, spin-Seebeck effect (SSE) and the spin transport on the 3D topological insulator (TI). The different methods have been applied ranging from tight-binding (TB) approximation to density function theory (DFT) combined with non-equilibrium function (NEGF) techniques.

  5. Micro to Nano Scale Heat Conduction in Thermoelectric Materials

    Maldovan, Martin

    2011-03-01

    Understanding and controlling heat transfer in solids is very important for increasing the efficiency of thermoelectric materials such as skutterudites, clatharates, superlattices, nanowires, and quantum dots. Although the mechanisms governing the thermal conductivity have been understood for years, a comprehensive theoretical method to calculate heat transfer, particularly at small scales, has not been available. This is mainly due to the complexity of anharmonic processes and phonon boundary scattering. We present a comprehensive theoretical model to calculate the thermal conductivity of thermoelectric materials at small length scales. The approach involves an exact calculation of the reduction of the phonon mean free paths due to boundary scattering and removes the need to solve the Boltzmann equation or to use adjustable terms as in the Callaway or Holland models. The analysis is based on the kinetic theory of transport processes and considers general expressions for dispersion relations, phonon mean free paths, and surface specularity parameters. The results show an excellent agreement with experiments for thin films, nanowires, and superlattices over a wide range of temperature and across multiple length scales. The theoretical approach can further be applied to a wide variety of problems involving the conduction of heat in micro/nanostructured thermoelectrics. This research was funded by the MIT Energy Initiative.

  6. Mechanical characterization of hydroxyapatite, thermoelectric materials and doped ceria

    Fan, Xiaofeng

    For a variety of applications of brittle ceramic materials, porosity plays a critical role structurally and/or functionally, such as in engineered bone scaffolds, thermoelectric materials and in solid oxide fuel cells. The presence of porosity will affect the mechanical properties, which are essential to the design and application of porous brittle materials. In this study, the mechanical property versus microstructure relations for bioceramics, thermoelectric (TE) materials and solid oxide fuel cells were investigated. For the bioceramic material hydroxyapatite (HA), the Young's modulus was measured using resonant ultrasound spectroscopy (RUS) as a function of (i) porosity and (ii) microcracking damage state. The fracture strength was measured as a function of porosity using biaxial flexure testing, and the distribution of the fracture strength was studied by Weibull analysis. For the natural mineral tetrahedrite based solid solution thermoelectric material (Cu10Zn2As4S13 - Cu 12Sb4S13), the elastic moduli, hardness and fracture toughness were studied as a function of (i) composition and (ii) ball milling time. For ZiNiSn, a thermoelectric half-Heusler compound, the elastic modulus---porosity and hardness---porosity relations were examined. For the solid oxide fuel cell material, gadolina doped ceria (GDC), the elastic moduli including Young's modulus, shear modulus, bulk modulus and Poisson's ratio were measured by RUS as a function of porosity. The hardness was evaluated by Vickers indentation technique as a function of porosity. The results of the mechanical property versus microstructure relations obtained in this study are of great importance for the design and fabrication of reliable components with service life and a safety factor. The Weibull modulus, which is a measure of the scatter in fracture strength, is the gauge of the mechanical reliability. The elastic moduli and Poisson's ratio are needed in analytical or numerical models of the thermal and

  7. Thermoelectric materials: ternary penta telluride and selenide compounds

    Sharp, Jeffrey W.

    2002-06-04

    Ternary tellurium compounds and ternary selenium compounds may be used in fabricating thermoelectric devices with a thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) of 1.5 or greater. Examples of such compounds include Tl.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5, Tl.sub.2 GeTe.sub.5, K.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5 and Rb.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5. These compounds have similar types of crystal lattice structures which include a first substructure with a (Sn, Ge) Te.sub.5 composition and a second substructure with chains of selected cation atoms. The second substructure includes selected cation atoms which interact with selected anion atoms to maintain a desired separation between the chains of the first substructure. The cation atoms which maintain the desired separation between the chains occupy relatively large electropositive sites in the resulting crystal lattice structure which results in a relatively low value for the lattice component of thermal conductivity (.kappa..sub.g). The first substructure of anion chains indicates significant anisotropy in the thermoelectric characteristics of the resulting semiconductor materials.

  8. Thermoelectric materials ternary penta telluride and selenide compounds

    Sharp, Jeffrey W.

    2001-01-01

    Ternary tellurium compounds and ternary selenium compounds may be used in fabricating thermoelectric devices with a thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) of 1.5 or greater. Examples of such compounds include Tl.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5, Tl.sub.2 GeTe.sub.5, K.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5 and Rb.sub.2 SnTe.sub.5. These compounds have similar types of crystal lattice structures which include a first substructure with a (Sn, Ge) Te.sub.5 composition and a second substructure with chains of selected cation atoms. The second substructure includes selected cation atoms which interact with selected anion atoms to maintain a desired separation between the chains of the first substructure. The cation atoms which maintain the desired separation between the chains occupy relatively large electropositive sites in the resulting crystal lattice structure which results in a relatively low value for the lattice component of thermal conductivity (.kappa..sub.g). The first substructure of anion chains indicates significant anisotropy in the thermoelectric characteristics of the resulting semiconductor materials.

  9. Functionally Graded Thermoelectric Material though One Step Band Gap and Dopant Engineering

    Jensen, Ellen Marie; Borup, Kasper Andersen; Cederkrantz, Daniel;

    For a given doping level a thermoelectric material is optimized for a given temperature. Thermoelectric modules, however, operates over large gradients in temperature. To circumvent this problem we have synthesized a functionally graded thermoelectric material optimized for large temperature...... gradients. It has previously been shown that a large functionally graded thermoelectric single crystal can be synthesized by the Czochralski method (1). Utilizing element gradients inherent to the Czochralski process we have synthesized a Ge1-xSix:B crystal with a continuously varying x, band gap......, and dopant concentration. Parameters relevant to the thermoelectric properties have been determined along the pulling direction. All of these properties exhibit the wanted gradient. It has thereby been shown that engineering of the electrical contributions to the thermoelectric properties of a material...

  10. Discovery of high-performance low-cost n-type Mg3Sb2-based thermoelectric materials with multi-valley conduction bands

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Pedersen, Steffen Hindborg; Yin, Hao; Hung, Le Thanh; Iversen, Bo Brummerstedt

    2017-01-01

    Widespread application of thermoelectric devices for waste heat recovery requires low-cost high-performance materials. The currently available n-type thermoelectric materials are limited either by their low efficiencies or by being based on expensive, scarce or toxic elements. Here we report a low-cost n-type material, Te-doped Mg3Sb1.5Bi0.5, that exhibits a very high figure of merit zT ranging from 0.56 to 1.65 at 300-725 K. Using combined theoretical prediction and experimental validation, we show that the high thermoelectric performance originates from the significantly enhanced power factor because of the multi-valley band behaviour dominated by a unique near-edge conduction band with a sixfold valley degeneracy. This makes Te-doped Mg3Sb1.5Bi0.5 a promising candidate for the low- and intermediate-temperature thermoelectric applications.

  11. The Study of the Thermoelectric Properties of Phase Change Materials

    Yin, Ming; Abdi, Mohammed; Noimande, Zibusisu; Mbamalu, Godwin; Alameeri, Dheyaa; Datta, Timir

    We study thermoelectric property that is electrical phenomena occurring in conjunction with the flow of heat of phase-change materials (PCM) in particular GeSbTe (GST225). From given sets of material parameters, COMSOL Multiphysics heat-transfer module is used to compute maps of temperature and voltage distribution in the PCM samples. These results are used to design an apparatus including the variable temperature sample holder set up. An Arbitrary/ Function generator and a circuit setup is also designed to control the alternation of heaters embedded on the sample holder in order to ensure sequential back and forward flow of heat current from both sides of the sample. Accurate values of potential differences and temperature distribution profiles are obtained in order to compute the Seebeck coefficient of the sample. The results of elemental analysis and imaging studies such as XRD, UV-VIS, EDEX and SEM of the sample are obtained. Factors affecting the thermoelectric properties of phase change memory are also discussed. NNSA/ DOD Consortium for Materials and Energy Studies.

  12. Non-invasive method of determination of thermoelectric materials figure of merit

    Ashcheulov А. А.

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric effects arising in a sample placed in a measuring oscillating loop have been studied. It has been shown that asymmetric character of flowing current results in a volumetric bundle of induced Foucault currents and regions of Peltier heat release by thermoelectric sample which leads to increasing of irreversible heat losses recorded by measuring oscillating loop. The presence of this effect has caused the emergence of ingenious non-invasive method for recording of thermoelectric materials figure of merit.

  13. High-entropy alloys as high-temperature thermoelectric materials

    Shafeie, Samrand; Guo, Sheng; Hu, Qiang; Fahlquist, Henrik; Erhart, Paul; Palmqvist, Anders

    2015-11-01

    Thermoelectric (TE) generators that efficiently recycle a large portion of waste heat will be an important complementary energy technology in the future. While many efficient TE materials exist in the lower temperature region, few are efficient at high temperatures. Here, we present the high temperature properties of high-entropy alloys (HEAs), as a potential new class of high temperature TE materials. We show that their TE properties can be controlled significantly by changing the valence electron concentration (VEC) of the system with appropriate substitutional elements. Both the electrical and thermal transport properties in this system were found to decrease with a lower VEC number. Overall, the large microstructural complexity and lower average VEC in these types of alloys can potentially be used to lower both the total and the lattice thermal conductivity. These findings highlight the possibility to exploit HEAs as a new class of future high temperature TE materials.

  14. High-entropy alloys as high-temperature thermoelectric materials

    Shafeie, Samrand [Surface and Microstructure Engineering Group, Materials and Manufacturing Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296 Gothenburg (Sweden); Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296 Gothenburg (Sweden); Guo, Sheng, E-mail: sheng.guo@chalmers.se [Surface and Microstructure Engineering Group, Materials and Manufacturing Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296 Gothenburg (Sweden); Hu, Qiang [Institute of Applied Physics, Jiangxi Academy of Sciences, Nanchang 330029 (China); Fahlquist, Henrik [Bruker AXS Nordic AB, 17067 Solna (Sweden); Erhart, Paul [Department of Applied Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296 Gothenburg (Sweden); Palmqvist, Anders, E-mail: anders.palmqvist@chalmers.se [Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296 Gothenburg (Sweden)

    2015-11-14

    Thermoelectric (TE) generators that efficiently recycle a large portion of waste heat will be an important complementary energy technology in the future. While many efficient TE materials exist in the lower temperature region, few are efficient at high temperatures. Here, we present the high temperature properties of high-entropy alloys (HEAs), as a potential new class of high temperature TE materials. We show that their TE properties can be controlled significantly by changing the valence electron concentration (VEC) of the system with appropriate substitutional elements. Both the electrical and thermal transport properties in this system were found to decrease with a lower VEC number. Overall, the large microstructural complexity and lower average VEC in these types of alloys can potentially be used to lower both the total and the lattice thermal conductivity. These findings highlight the possibility to exploit HEAs as a new class of future high temperature TE materials.

  15. Thermal and Thermoelectric Properties of Nanostructured Materials and Interfaces

    Liao, Hao-Hsiang

    Many modern technologies are enabled by the use of thin films and/or nanostructured composite materials. For example, many thermoelectric devices, solar cells, power electronics, thermal barrier coatings, and hard disk drives contain nanostructured materials where the thermal conductivity of the material is a critical parameter for the device performance. At the nanoscale, the mean free path and wavelength of heat carriers may become comparable to or smaller than the size of a nanostructured material and/or device. For nanostructured materials made from semiconductors and insulators, the additional phonon scattering mechanisms associated with the high density of interfaces and boundaries introduces additional resistances that can significantly change the thermal conductivity of the material as compared to a macroscale counterpart. Thus, better understanding and control of nanoscale heat conduction in solids is important scientifically and for the engineering applications mentioned above. In this dissertation, I discuss my work in two areas dealing with nanoscale thermal transport: (1) I describe my development and advancement of important thermal characterization tools for measurements of thermal and thermoelectric properties of a variety of materials from thin films to nanostructured bulk systems, and (2) I discuss my measurements on several materials systems done with these characterization tools. First, I describe the development, assembly, and modification of a time-domain thermoreflectance (TDTR) system that we use to measure the thermal conductivity and the interface thermal conductance of a variety of samples including nanocrystalline alloys of Ni-Fe and Co-P, bulk metallic glasses, and other thin films. Next, a unique thermoelectric measurement system was designed and assembled for measurements of electrical resistivity and thermopower of thermoelectric materials in the temperature range of 20 to 350 °C. Finally, a commercial Anter Flashline 3000 thermal

  16. Ultra-Fast Synthesis for Ag2Se and CuAgSe Thermoelectric Materials

    DUAN, H. Z.; LI, Y. L.; ZHAO, K. P.; QIU, P. F.; SHI, X.; CHEN, L. D.

    2016-10-01

    Ag2Se and CuAgSe have been recently reported as promising thermoelectric materials at room temperature. The traditional melting-annealing-sintering processes are used to grow Ag2Se and CuAgSe materials with the disadvantages of high costs of energy and time. In this work, phase-pure polycrystalline Ag2Se and CuAgSe compounds were synthesized from raw elemental powders directly by manual mixing followed by spark plasma sintering (MM-SPS) in a few minutes. The influence of SPS heating rate on the phase composition, microstructure, and thermoelectric properties, including Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity, and thermal conductivity, were investigated. The zTs of 0.8 at 390 K and 0.6 at 450 K are obtained for Ag2Se and CuAgSe, respectively, which is comparable with the values in the materials prepared by the traditional method. Furthermore, this ultrafast sample synthesis can significantly save material synthesis time and thus has the obvious advantage for large-scale production.

  17. Advanced Thermoelectric Materials for Efficient Waste Heat Recovery in Process Industries

    Adam Polcyn; Moe Khaleel

    2009-01-06

    The overall objective of the project was to integrate advanced thermoelectric materials into a power generation device that could convert waste heat from an industrial process to electricity with an efficiency approaching 20%. Advanced thermoelectric materials were developed with figure-of-merit ZT of 1.5 at 275 degrees C. These materials were not successfully integrated into a power generation device. However, waste heat recovery was demonstrated from an industrial process (the combustion exhaust gas stream of an oxyfuel-fired flat glass melting furnace) using a commercially available (5% efficiency) thermoelectric generator coupled to a heat pipe. It was concluded that significant improvements both in thermoelectric material figure-of-merit and in cost-effective methods for capturing heat would be required to make thermoelectric waste heat recovery viable for widespread industrial application.

  18. Nanoscale thermoelectrics

    Wang, Xiaodong

    2013-01-01

    This book offers comprehensive coverage of thermoelectric materials and nanostructures. It provides the keys to understanding the theory underlying improvements in thermoelectric efficiency and describes a key enabling technology for energy applications.

  19. Thermoelectricity - A Promising Complementarity with Efficient Stoves in Off-grid-areas

    Camille Favarel

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric modules produce electricity from heat flow. In areas without electricity, biomass is generally burnt in open fires or rudimentary stoves in order to generate heat, to cook and to produce domestic hot water. Combustion quality in these devices is very low and needs a large amount of wood extracted from surrounding forests. “Planète Bois” develops highly efficient clean multifunction stoves based on double chamber combustion.  As an exhaust fan is necessary to adjust the primary and secondary air flows for optimal combustion, these stoves cannot currently be used without electricity. Thermoelectric modules incorporated in a heat exchanger between the flue and the hot water tank can supply the exhaust fan and also produce some electricity for other basic purposes. Our paper presents tests that were done on one of these stoves to size the thermoelectric generator and thus the produced electricity. These preliminary tests are used to identify an outlook for the successful implementation of these stoves.

  20. Thermoelectric materials by using two-dimensional materials with negative correlation between electrical and thermal conductivity.

    Lee, Myoung-Jae; Ahn, Ji-Hoon; Sung, Ji Ho; Heo, Hoseok; Jeon, Seong Gi; Lee, Woo; Song, Jae Yong; Hong, Ki-Ha; Choi, Byeongdae; Lee, Sung-Hoon; Jo, Moon-Ho

    2016-06-21

    In general, in thermoelectric materials the electrical conductivity σ and thermal conductivity κ are related and thus cannot be controlled independently. Previously, to maximize the thermoelectric figure of merit in state-of-the-art materials, differences in relative scaling between σ and κ as dimensions are reduced to approach the nanoscale were utilized. Here we present an approach to thermoelectric materials using tin disulfide, SnS2, nanosheets that demonstrated a negative correlation between σ and κ. In other words, as the thickness of SnS2 decreased, σ increased whereas κ decreased. This approach leads to a thermoelectric figure of merit increase to 0.13 at 300 K, a factor ∼1,000 times greater than previously reported bulk single-crystal SnS2. The Seebeck coefficient obtained for our two-dimensional SnS2 nanosheets was 34.7 mV K(-1) for 16-nm-thick samples at 300 K.

  1. Transport and first-principles study of novel thermoelectric materials

    Chi, Hang

    Thermoelectric materials can recover waste industrial heat and convert it to electricity as well as provide efficient local cooling of electronic devices. The efficiency of such environmentally responsible and exceptionally reliable solid state energy conversion is determined by the dimensionless figure-of-merit ZT = alpha2 sigmaT/kappa, where alpha is the Seebeck coefficient, sigma is the electrical conductivity, kappa is the thermal conductivity, and T is the absolute temperature. The goal of the thesis is to (i) illustrate the physics to achieve high ZT of advanced thermoelectric materials and (ii) explore fundamental structure and transport properties in novel condensed matter systems, via an approach combining comprehensive experimental techniques and state-of-the-art first-principles simulation methods. Thermo-galvanomagnetic transport coefficients are derived from Onsager's reciprocal relations and evaluated via solving Boltzmann transport equation using Fermi-Dirac statistics, under the relaxation time approximation. Such understanding provides insights on enhancing ZT through two physically intuitive and very effective routes: (i) improving power factor PF = alpha2sigma; and (ii) reducing thermal conductivity kappa, as demonstrated in the cases of Mg2Si1-xSnx solid solution and Ge/Te double substituted skutterudites CoSb3(1-x)Ge1.5x Te1.5x, respectively. Motivated by recent theoretical predictions of enhanced thermoelectric performance in highly mismatched alloys, ZnTe:N molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) films deposited on GaAs (100) substrates are carefully examined, which leads to a surprising discovery of significant phonon-drag thermopower (reaching 1-2 mV/K-1) at ~13 K. Further systematic study in Bi2Te3 MBE thin films grown on sapphire (0001) and/or BaF2 (111) substrates, reveal that the peak of phonon drag can be tuned by the choice of substrates with different Debye temperatures. Moreover, the detailed transport and structure studies of Bi2-xTl xTe3

  2. Analytic Thermoelectric Couple Modeling: Variable Material Properties and Transient Operation

    Mackey, Jonathan A.; Sehirlioglu, Alp; Dynys, Fred

    2015-01-01

    To gain a deeper understanding of the operation of a thermoelectric couple a set of analytic solutions have been derived for a variable material property couple and a transient couple. Using an analytic approach, as opposed to commonly used numerical techniques, results in a set of useful design guidelines. These guidelines can serve as useful starting conditions for further numerical studies, or can serve as design rules for lab built couples. The analytic modeling considers two cases and accounts for 1) material properties which vary with temperature and 2) transient operation of a couple. The variable material property case was handled by means of an asymptotic expansion, which allows for insight into the influence of temperature dependence on different material properties. The variable property work demonstrated the important fact that materials with identical average Figure of Merits can lead to different conversion efficiencies due to temperature dependence of the properties. The transient couple was investigated through a Greens function approach; several transient boundary conditions were investigated. The transient work introduces several new design considerations which are not captured by the classic steady state analysis. The work helps to assist in designing couples for optimal performance, and also helps assist in material selection.

  3. Nanostructured multilayered thin film barriers for Mg2Si thermoelectric materials

    Battiston, S.; Boldrini, S.; Fiameni, S.; Agresti, F.; Famengo, A.; Fabrizio, M.; Barison, S.

    2012-06-01

    The Mg2Si-based alloys are promising candidates for thermoelectric energy conversion in the middle-high temperature range in order to replace lead compounds. The main advantages of silicide-based thermoelectrics are the nontoxicity and the abundance of their constituent elements in the earth crust. The drawback of such kind of materials is their oxygen sensitivity at high temperature that entails their use under vacuum or inert atmosphere. In order to limit the corrosion phenomena, nanostructured multilayered molybdenum silicide-based materials were deposited via RF magnetron sputtering onto stainless steel, alumina and silicon (100) to set up the deposition process and then onto Mg2Si pellets. XRD, EDS, FE-SEM and electrical measurements at high temperature were carried out in order to obtain, respectively, the structural, compositional, morphological and electrical characterization of the deposited coatings. At the end, the mechanical behavior of the system thin film/Mg2Si-substrate as a function of temperature and the barrier properties for oxygen protection after thermal treatment in air at high temperature were qualitatively evaluated by FE-SEM.

  4. Semimetal/Semiconductor Nanocomposites for Thermoelectrics

    Lu, Hong [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Materials Dept.; Burke, Peter G. [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Materials Dept.; Gossard, Arthur C. [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Materials Dept.; Zeng, Gehong [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering; Ramu, Ashok T. [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering; Bahk, Je-Hyeong [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering; Bowers, John E. [Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    2011-04-15

    In this work, we present research on semimetal-semiconductor nanocomposites grown by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) for thermoelectric applications. We study several different III-V semiconductors embedded with semimetallic rare earth-group V (RE-V) compounds, but focus is given here to ErSb:InxGa1-xSb as a promising p-type thermoelectric material. Nano­structures of RE-V compounds are formed and embedded within the III-V semiconductor matrix. By codoping the nanocomposites with the appropriate dopants, both n-type and p-type materials have been made for thermoelectric applications. The thermoelectric properties have been engineered for enhanced thermoelectric device performance. Segmented thermoelectric power generator modules using 50 μm thick Er-containing nanocomposites have been fabricated and measured. Research on different rare earth elements for thermoelectrics is discussed.

  5. Nanocluster metal films as thermoelectric material for radioisotope mini battery unit

    Borisyuk, P. V.; Krasavin, A. V.; Tkalya, E. V.; Lebedinskii, Yu. Yu.; Vasiliev, O. S.; Yakovlev, V. P.; Kozlova, T. I.; Fetisov, V. V.

    2016-10-01

    The paper is devoted to studying the thermoelectric and structural properties of films based on metal nanoclusters (Au, Pd, Pt). The experimental results of the study of single nanoclusters' tunneling conductance obtained with scanning tunneling spectroscopy are presented. The obtained data allowed us to evaluate the thermoelectric power of thin film consisting of densely packed individual nanoclusters. It is shown that such thin films can operate as highly efficient thermoelectric materials. A scheme of miniature thermoelectric radioisotope power source based on the thorium-228 isotope is proposed. The efficiency of the radioisotope battery using thermoelectric converters based on nanocluster metal films is shown to reach values up to 1.3%. The estimated characteristics of the device are comparable with the parameters of up-to-date radioisotope batteries based on nickel-63.

  6. THERMAL AND ELECTRIC FIELDS AT SPARK PLASMA SINTERING OF THERMOELECTRIC MATERIALS

    L. P. Bulat

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement. Improvement of thermoelectric figure of merit is connected with the usage of nanostructured thermoelectric materials fabricated from powders by the spark plasma sintering (SPS method. Preservation of powder nanostructure during sintering is possible at optimum temperature modes of thermoelectrics fabrication. The choice of these modes becomes complicated because of anisotropic properties of semiconductor thermoelectric materials. The decision of the given problem by sintering process simulation demands the competent approach to the problem formulation, a correct specification of thermoelectric properties, the properties of materials forming working installation, and also corrects boundary conditions. The paper deals with the efficient model for sintering of thermoelectrics. Methods. Sintering process of the bismuth telluride thermoelectric material by means of SPS-511S installation is considered. Temperature dependences of electric and thermal conductivities of bismuth telluride, and also temperature dependences of installation elements materials are taken into account. It is shown that temperature distribution in the sample can be defined within the limits of a stationary problem. The simulation is carried out in the software product Comsol Multiphysics. Boundary conditions include convective heat exchange and also radiation under Stefan-Boltzmann law. Results. Computer simulation of electric and thermal processes at spark plasma sintering is carried out. Temperature and electric potential distributions in a sample are obtained at the sintering conditions. Determinative role of graphite compression mould in formation of the temperature field in samples is shown. The influence of geometrical sizes of a graphite compression mould on sintering conditions of nanostructured thermoelectrics is analyzed. Practical importance. The optimum sizes of a cylindrical compression mould for fabrication of volume homogeneous samples based on

  7. A New Class of High Z Nanocrystalline and Textured Oxide-Based Thermoelectric Material Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop high figure of merit (ZT) oxide-based thermoelectric materials. This will be accomplished by engineering a novel microstructure that will lead...

  8. Scanning thermoelectric and acoustic emission dignostic of structural inhomogeneities of thermocouple materials

    Prokhorenko V.J.

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available New method for diagnostic of constructional and functional materials by means of thermoelectric and acoustic- emission measurements is proposed. The method allows not only to establish the defect location, but its partial temperature relaxation achieve.

  9. Nanocellular polymer foams as promising high performance thermal insulation materials

    Liu, S.; Duvigneau, J.; Vancso, G.J.

    2015-01-01

    Low density, nanocellular polymer nanocomposite foams are considered as a promising new class of materials with many promising applications, for example to passively enhance the energy efficiency of buildings. This paper discusses recent developments in this field of polymer materials science. Parti

  10. Design, crystal growth, and physical properties of low-temperature thermoelectric materials

    Fuccillo, Michael K.

    Thermoelectric materials serve as the foundation for two important modern technologies, namely 1) solid-state cooling, which enables small-area refrigeration without vibrations or moving parts, and 2) thermoelectric power generation, which has important implications for waste heat recovery and improved sources of alternative energy. Although the overall field of thermoelectrics research has been active for decades, and several consumer and industrial products have already been commercialized, the design and synthesis of new thermoelectrics that outperform long-standing state of the art materials has proven extremely challenging. This is particularly true for low-temperature refrigeration applications, which is the focus of this work; however, scientific advances in this area generally support power generation as well. In order to achieve more efficient materials for virtually all thermoelectric applications, improved materials design principles must be developed and synthetic procedures must be better understood. We aim to contribute to these goals by studying two classes of materials, namely 1) the tetradymites Bi2TeSe 2 and Bi2Te2Se, which are close relatives of state of the art thermoelectric cooling materials, and 2) Kondo insulating (-like) FeSb2 and FeSi, which possess anomalously enhanced low-temperature thermoelectric properties that arise from exotic electronic and magnetic properties. The organization of this dissertation is as follows: Chapter 1 is a brief perspective on solid-state chemistry. Chapter 2 presents experimental methods for synthesizing and characterizing thermoelectric materials. In Chapter 3, two original research projects are discussed: first, work on the tetradymite Bi2TeSe2 doped with Sb to achieve an n- to p-type transition, and second, the tetradymite Bi2Te2Se with chemical defects through two different methods. Chapter 4 gives the magnetic and transport properties of FeSb 2--RuSb2 alloys, a family of compounds exemplifying what we

  11. Carbon nanotube bundles/polystyrene composites as high-performance flexible thermoelectric materials

    Suemori, Kouji; Watanabe, Yuichi; Hoshino, Satoshi

    2015-03-01

    Lightweight and flexible thermoelectric devices consisting of carbon nanotube (CNT)-based materials have the potential to be used for the various applications, such as energy harvesting from the low-temperature waste heat that exists ubiquitously in living areas. Because high-performance CNT-based materials are crucial for the broad-ranging employment of CNT-based thermoelectric devices, considerable efforts are being made to improve the power-generation capability of CNT-based thermoelectric materials. Here, we report high-performance thermoelectric composites consisting of CNT bundles and polystyrene fabricated by a planetary ball milling-based dispersion technique, which allows for the direct dispersion of the CNT bundles within the polystyrene matrix without causing the disaggregation of the bundled CNTs into individual ones. The CNT-bundles/polystyrene composites reported here exhibit a power factor of 413 μW/K2.m.

  12. Thermoelectric generators incorporating phase-change materials for waste heat recovery from engine exhaust

    Meisner, Gregory P; Yang, Jihui

    2014-02-11

    Thermoelectric devices, intended for placement in the exhaust of a hydrocarbon fuelled combustion device and particularly suited for use in the exhaust gas stream of an internal combustion engine propelling a vehicle, are described. Exhaust gas passing through the device is in thermal communication with one side of a thermoelectric module while the other side of the thermoelectric module is in thermal communication with a lower temperature environment. The heat extracted from the exhaust gasses is converted to electrical energy by the thermoelectric module. The performance of the generator is enhanced by thermally coupling the hot and cold junctions of the thermoelectric modules to phase-change materials which transform at a temperature compatible with the preferred operating temperatures of the thermoelectric modules. In a second embodiment, a plurality of thermoelectric modules, each with a preferred operating temperature and each with a uniquely-matched phase-change material may be used to compensate for the progressive lowering of the exhaust gas temperature as it traverses the length of the exhaust pipe.

  13. 3D Printing Fabrication of Amorphous Thermoelectric Materials with Ultralow Thermal Conductivity.

    He, Minhong; Zhao, Yan; Wang, Biao; Xi, Qing; Zhou, Jun; Liang, Ziqi

    2015-11-25

    Thermoelectric materials are prepared by developing 3D printing technology. The 3D fabricated Bi0.5 Sb1.5 Te3 samples exhibit amorphous characteristics and thus show an ultralow thermal conductivity of 0.2 W m(-1) K(-1) . 3D printing fabrication readily generates bulk thermoelectric samples of any shape, which is not the case with traditional hot-pressing and spark plasma sintering methods.

  14. High-Resolution ^125Te NMR of Novel Thermoelectric Materials

    Levin, E. M.; Schmidt-Rohr, K.; Cook, B. A.; Han, Mi-Kyung; Kanatzidis, M. G.

    2008-03-01

    Several novel Te-based thermoelectric materials with extraordinary figure of merit ZT >=1.4 have been studied by high-resolution 25 kHz magic angle spinning ^125Te nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) in order to investigate variations in composition on the nano-scale. A 20-fold wider ^125Te NMR signal of both AgSbGe4Te6 and AgSbGe5.67Te7.67 (˜90 kHz) compared to that of PbTe (4.5 kHz) indicates a variation of shifts due to local composition fluctuations. The similar total shift of the main peak in Ag0.53Pb18Sb1.2Te20 (-1790 ppm) and PbTe (-1750 ppm) and similarly long T2 relaxation time show that the majority of Te atoms in both materials has a similar environment. A second peak in Ag0.53Pb18Sb1.2Te20 at -1600 ppm shows the presence of a second type of Te site, accounting for ˜1/3 of all Te. These are apparently located in Ag,Sb-rich inclusions, as indicated by a much shorter T2, which can be due to the effect of quadrupolar relaxation of ^121Sb or ^123Sb (spin 5/2 or 7/2, respectively) on ^125Te. Our data confirm suggestions made by Hsu et al., Science (2004) and by Chen et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. (2005) about the presence of nano-scale inclusions in Ag0.53Pb18Sb1.2Te20, which result in low lattice thermal conductivity and high ZT.

  15. Numerical Modeling of Thermoelectric Generators with Varing Material Properties in a Circuit Simulator

    Chen, Min; Rosendahl, Lasse; Condra, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    -compatible environment. This model of thermoelectric battery accounts for all temperature-dependent characteristics of the thermoelectric materials to include the nonlinear voltage, current, and electrothermal coupled effects. It is validated with simulation data from the recognized program ANSYS and experimental data......When a thermoelectric generator (TEG) and its external load circuitry are considered together as a system, the codesign and cooptimization of the electronics and the device are crucial in maximizing the system efficiency. In this paper, an accurate TEG model is proposed and implemented in a SPICE...... from a real thermoelectric device, respectively.Within a common circuit simulator, the model can be easily connected to various electrical models of applied loads to predict and optimize the system performance....

  16. Mg2Si-Based Materials for the Thermoelectric Energy Conversion

    Cheng, X.; Farahi, N.; Kleinke, H.

    2016-10-01

    Thermoelectric materials are capable of converting a temperature gradient into electricity (thermoelectric power generation) and vice versa (Peltier cooling). The thermoelectric power generation has been used for decades in spacecraft, where radioactive decay provides the heat source. Additional applications under consideration are based on the utilization of waste heat, for example in automotives or the manufacturing industries. Commercial thermoelectric materials are normally based on Bi2Te3, PbTe, or possibly in the future on the so-called filled skutterudites, such as YbxCo4Sb12. The downside of these materials is that some of their major constituent elements are toxic, namely tellurium, lead, and antimony, and in part rare and expensive (ytterbium, tellurium). Mg2Si on the other hand is composed of abundant, environmentally benign elements, and thus offers a huge advantage for commercial applications. Here, we provide a review of Mg2Si-based materials for thermoelectric energy conversion, discussing how competitive these materials have become in comparison to the above-mentioned more traditional materials.

  17. Hybrid-Type Organic Thermoelectric Materials Containing Nanoparticles as a Carrier Transport Promoter

    Oshima, Keisuke; Inoue, Junta; Sadakata, Shifumi; Shiraishi, Yukihide; Toshima, Naoki

    2016-08-01

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have recently received much attention as thermoelectric materials. Although the carrier mobility within a single CNT is very high, the charge carrier transport between CNTs is quite slow. We have utilized nanoparticles (NPs) for promotion of the carrier transport between CNTs for improving their thermoelectric performance. Poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC) was used as a binder of the CNTs. Thus, hybrid-type organic thermoelectric materials containing the NPs were constructed from Pd NPs, CNTs, and PVC. The thermoelectric properties were slightly improved in the three-component films by only mixing the separately-prepared Pd NPs. The NPs of a polymer complex, poly(nickel 1,1,2,2-ethenetetrathiolate) (n-PETT), were also used as a charge carrier transport promoter instead of the Pd NPs to produce n-PETT/CNT/PVC hybrid films. Treatment of the three-component films with methanol produced a high thermoelectric power factor and low thermal conductivity, resulting in a high "apparent" thermoelectric performance (ZT ˜ 0.3 near room temperature) although the thermal conductivity was measured in the through-plane direction, which is a different direction from that for the electrical conductivity.

  18. LaBiTe3: An unusual thermoelectric material

    Singh, Nirpendra

    2014-06-18

    Using first-principles calculations and semi-classical Boltzmann transport theory, the thermoelectric properties of LaBiTe3 are studied. The band gap and, hence, the thermoelectric response are found to be easily tailored by application of strain. Independent of the temperature, the figure of merit turns out to be maximal at a doping of about 1.6 × 1021 cm-3. At room temperature we obtain values of 0.4 and 0.5 for unstrained and moderately strained LaBiTe3, which increases to 1.1 and 1.3 at 800 K. A large spin splitting is observed in the conduction band at the T point. Therefore, LaBiTe3 merges characteristics that are interesting for thermoelectric as well as spintronic devices.

  19. High-throughput Z T predictions of nanoporous bulk materials as next-generation thermoelectric materials: A material genome approach

    Hao, Qing; Xu, Dongchao; Lu, Na; Zhao, Hongbo

    2016-05-01

    The advancement of computational tools for material property predictions enables a broad search of novel materials for various energy-related applications. However, challenges still exist in accurately predicting the mean free paths of electrons and phonons in a high-throughput frame for thermoelectric property predictions, which largely hinders the computation-driven material search for novel materials. In this work, this need is eliminated under the limit of reduced nanostructure size within a bulk material, in which these mean free paths are restricted by the nanostructure size. A criterion for Z T evaluation is proposed for general nanoporous bulk materials and is demonstrated with representative oxides.

  20. A Critical Overview of Recent Approaches to Improved Thermoelectric Materials

    Sales, Brian C [ORNL

    2007-01-01

    Thermoelectric devices can convert heat into useful electricity with no moving parts. Considerable progress has been made in improving the efficiency of these devices over the past 15 years. The key ideas responsible for most of this progress will be examined using specific examples. Recent improvements in thermoelectric efficiency appear to be dominated by a reduction in the lattice thermal conductivity. This reduction is accomplished by the careful introduction of 0.1 to 5 nm sized "objects" that effectively scatter acoustic phonons without significantly affecting electronic transport. Future research directions will be discussed.

  1. Improved thermal isolation of silicon suspended platforms for an all-silicon thermoelectric microgenerator based on large scale integration of Si nanowires as thermoelectric material

    Fonseca, L.; Donmez, I.; Salleras, M.; Calaza, C.; Gadea, G.; Santos, J. D.; Morata, A.; Tarancon, A.

    2015-12-01

    Special suspended micro-platforms have been designed as a part of silicon compatible planar thermoelectric microgenerators. Bottom-up grown silicon nanowires are going to bridge in the future such platforms to the surrounding silicon bulk rim. They will act as thermoelectric material thus configuring an all-silicon thermoelectric device. In the new platform design other additional bridging elements (usually auxiliary support silicon beams) are substituted by low conductance thin film dielectric membranes in order to maximize the temperature difference developed between both areas. These membranes follow a sieve-like design that allows fabricating them with a short additional wet anisotropic etch step.

  2. Thermoelectric properties of monolayer MSe2 (M = Zr, Hf): low lattice thermal conductivity and a promising figure of merit.

    Ding, Guangqian; Gao, G Y; Huang, Zhishuo; Zhang, Wenxu; Yao, Kailun

    2016-09-16

    Monolayer transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) MX2 (M = Mo, W, Zr, Hf, etc; X = S, Se, Te) have become well-known in recent times for their promising applications in thermoelectrics and field effect transistors. In this work, we perform a systematic study on the thermoelectric properties of monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2 using first-principles calculations combined with Boltzmann transport equations. Our results point to a competitive thermoelectric figure of merit (close to 1 at optimal doping) in both monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2, which is markedly higher than previous explored monolayer TMDCs such as MoS2 and MoSe2. We also reveal that the higher figure of merits arise mainly from their low lattice thermal conductivity, and this is partly due to the strong coupling of acoustic modes with low frequency optical modes. It is found that the figure of merits can be better optimized in n-type than in p-type. In particular, the performance of HfSe2 is superior to ZrSe2 at a higher temperature. Our results suggest that monolayer ZrSe2 and HfSe2 with lower lattice thermal conductivity than usual monolayer TMDCs are promising candidates for thermoelectric applications.

  3. Hydrogen-incorporation stabilization of metallic VO2(R) phase to room temperature, displaying promising low-temperature thermoelectric effect.

    Wu, Changzheng; Feng, Feng; Feng, Jun; Dai, Jun; Peng, Lele; Zhao, Jiyin; Yang, Jinlong; Si, Cheng; Wu, Ziyu; Xie, Yi

    2011-09-07

    Regulation of electron-electron correlation has been found to be a new effective way to selectively control carrier concentration, which is a crucial step toward improving thermoelectric properties. The pure electronic behavior successfully stabilized the nonambient metallic VO(2)(R) to room temperature, giving excellent thermoelectric performance among the simple oxides with wider working temperature ranges.

  4. Earth-Abundant and Non-Toxic SiX (X = S, Se) Monolayers as Highly Efficient Thermoelectric Materials

    Yang, Ji-Hui; Yuan, Qinghong; Deng, Huixiong; Wei, Su-Huai; Yakobson, Boris I.

    2017-01-12

    Current thermoelectric (TE) materials often have low performance or contain less abundant and/or toxic elements, thus limiting their large-scale applications. Therefore, new TE materials with high efficiency and low cost are strongly desirable. Here we demonstrate that SiS and SiSe monolayers made from nontoxic and earth-abundant elements intrinsically have low thermal conductivities arising from their low-frequency optical phonon branches with large overlaps with acoustic phonon modes, which is similar to the state-of-the-art experimentally demonstrated material SnSe with a layered structure. Together with high thermal power factors due to their two-dimensional nature, they show promising TE performances with large figure of merit (ZT) values exceeding 1 or 2 over a wide range of temperatures. We establish some basic understanding of identifying layered materials with low thermal conductivities, which can guide and stimulate the search and study of other layered materials for TE applications.

  5. Electronic, Vibrational and Thermoelectric Properties of Two-Dimensional Materials

    Wickramaratne, Darshana

    The discovery of graphene's unique electronic and thermal properties has motivated the search for new two-dimensional materials. Examples of these materials include the layered two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDC) and metal mono-chalcogenides. The properties of the TMDCs (eg. MoS 2, WS2, TaS2, TaSe2) and the metal mono-chalcogenides (eg. GaSe, InSe, SnS) are diverse - ranging from semiconducting, semi-metallic and metallic. Many of these materials exhibit strongly correlated phenomena and exotic collective states such as exciton condensates, charge density waves, Lifshitz transitions and superconductivity. These properties change as the film thickness is reduced down to a few monolayers. We use first-principles simulations to discuss changes in the electronic and the vibrational properties of these materials as the film thickness evolves from a single atomic monolayer to the bulk limit. In the semiconducting TMDCs (MoS2, MoSe2, WS2 and WSe2) and monochalcogenides (GaS, GaSe, InS and InSe) we show confining these materials to their monolayer limit introduces large band degeneracies or non-parabolic features in the electronic structure. These changes in the electronic structure results in increases in the density of states and the number of conducting modes. Our first-principles simulations combined with a Landauer approach show these changes can lead to large enhancements up to an order of magnitude in the thermoelectric performance of these materials when compared to their bulk structure. Few monolayers of the TMDCs can be misoriented with respect to each other due to the weak van-der-Waals (vdW) force at the interface of two monolayers. Misorientation of the bilayer semiconducting TMDCs increases the interlayer van-der-Waals gap distance, reduces the interlayer coupling and leads to an increase in the magnitude of the indirect bandgap by up to 100 meV compared to the registered bilayer. In the semi-metallic and metallic TMDC compounds (TiSe2, Ta

  6. GEO-TEP. Development of thermoelectric materials for geothermal energy conversion systems. Final report 2008

    Bocher, L.; Weidenkaff, A.

    2008-07-01

    Geothermal heat can be directly converted into electricity by using thermoelectric converters. Thermoelectric conversion relies on intrinsic materials properties which have to be optimised. In this work novel environmentally friendly and stable oxide ceramics were developed to fulfil this task. Thus, manganate phases were studied regarding their potential thermoelectric properties for converting geothermal heat into electricity. Perovskite-type phases were synthesized by applying different methods: the ceramic route, and innovative synthesis routes such as the 'chimie douce' method by bulk thermal decomposition of the citrate precursor or using an USC process, and also the polyol-mediated synthesis route. The crystal structures of the manganate phases are evaluated by XRPD, NPD, and ED techniques while specific microstructures such as twinned domains are highlighted by HRTEM imaging. Besides, the thermal stability of the Mn-oxide phases in air atmosphere are controlled over a wide temperature range (T < 1300 K). The thermoelectric figure of merit ZT was enhanced from 0.021 to 0.3 in a broad temperature range for the studied phases which makes these phases the best perovskitic candidates as n-type polycrystalline thermoelectric materials operating in air at high temperatures. (author)

  7. Enhanced Flexible Thermoelectric Generators Based on Oxide-Metal Composite Materials

    Geppert, Benjamin; Brittner, Artur; Helmich, Lailah; Bittner, Michael; Feldhoff, Armin

    2017-04-01

    The thermoelectric performance of flexible thermoelectric generator stripes was investigated in terms of different material combinations. The thermoelectric generators were constructed using Cu-Ni-Mn alloy as n-type legs while varying the p-type leg material by including a metallic silver phase and an oxidic copper phase. For the synthesis of Ca_3Co_4O9/CuO/Ag ceramic-based composite materials, silver and the copper were added to the sol-gel batches in the form of nitrates. For both additional elements, the isothermal specific electronic conductivity increases with increasing amounts of Ag and CuO in the samples. The amounts for Ag and Cu were 0 mol.%, 2 mol.%, 5 mol.%, 10 mol.%, and 20 mol.%. The phases were confirmed by x-ray diffraction. Furthermore, secondary electron microscopy including energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy were processed in the scanning electron microscope and the transmission electron microscope. For each p-type material, the data for the thermoelectric parameters, isothermal specific electronic conductivity σ and the Seebeck coefficient α, were determined. The p-type material with a content of 5 mol.% Ag and Cu exhibited a local maximum of the power factor and led to the generator with the highest electric power output P_el.

  8. Review of nanostructured devices for thermoelectric applications.

    Pennelli, Giovanni

    2014-01-01

    A big research effort is currently dedicated to the development of thermoelectric devices capable of a direct thermal-to-electrical energy conversion, aiming at efficiencies as high as possible. These devices are very attractive for many applications in the fields of energy recovery and green energy harvesting. In this paper, after a quick summary of the fundamental principles of thermoelectricity, the main characteristics of materials needed for high efficiency thermoelectric conversion will be discussed, and a quick review of the most promising materials currently under development will be given. This review paper will put a particular emphasis on nanostructured silicon, which represents a valid compromise between good thermoelectric properties on one side and material availability, sustainability, technological feasibility on the other side. The most important bottom-up and top-down nanofabrication techniques for large area silicon nanowire arrays, to be used for high efficiency thermoelectric devices, will be presented and discussed.

  9. Review of nanostructured devices for thermoelectric applications

    Giovanni Pennelli

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available A big research effort is currently dedicated to the development of thermoelectric devices capable of a direct thermal-to-electrical energy conversion, aiming at efficiencies as high as possible. These devices are very attractive for many applications in the fields of energy recovery and green energy harvesting. In this paper, after a quick summary of the fundamental principles of thermoelectricity, the main characteristics of materials needed for high efficiency thermoelectric conversion will be discussed, and a quick review of the most promising materials currently under development will be given. This review paper will put a particular emphasis on nanostructured silicon, which represents a valid compromise between good thermoelectric properties on one side and material availability, sustainability, technological feasibility on the other side. The most important bottom-up and top-down nanofabrication techniques for large area silicon nanowire arrays, to be used for high efficiency thermoelectric devices, will be presented and discussed.

  10. Solid Liquid Interdiffusion Bonding of Zn4Sb3 Thermoelectric Material with Cu Electrode

    Lin, Y. C.; Lee, K. T.; Hwang, J. D.; Chu, H. S.; Hsu, C. C.; Chen, S. C.; Chuang, T. H.

    2016-10-01

    The ZnSb intermetallic compound may have thermoelectric applications because it is low in cost and environmentally friendly. In this study, a Zn4Sb3 thermoelectric element coated with a Ni barrier layer and a Ag reaction layer was bonded with a Ag-coated Cu electrode using a Ag/Sn/Ag solid-liquid interdiffusion bonding process. The results indicated that a Ni5Zn21 intermetallic phase formed easily at the Zn4Sb3/Ni interface, leading to sound adhesion. In addition, Sn film was found to react completely with the Ag layer to form a Ag3Sn intermetallic layer having a melting point of 480°C. The resulting Zn4Sb3 thermoelectric module can be applied at the optimized operation temperature (400°C) of Zn4Sb3 material as a thermoelectric element. The bonding strengths ranged from 14.9 MPa to 25.0 MPa, and shear tests revealed that the Zn4Sb3/Cu-joints fractured through the interior of the thermoelectric elements.

  11. Titanium Trisulfide Monolayer as a Potential Thermoelectric Material: A First-Principles-Based Boltzmann Transport Study.

    Zhang, Jie; Liu, Xiaolin; Wen, Yanwei; Shi, Lu; Chen, Rong; Liu, Huijun; Shan, Bin

    2017-01-25

    Good electronic transport capacity and low lattice thermal conductivity are beneficial for thermoelectric applications. In this study, the potential use as a thermoelectric material for the recently synthesized two-dimensional TiS3 monolayer is explored by applying first-principles method combined with Boltzmann transport theory. Our work demonstrates that carrier transport in the TiS3 sheet is orientation-dependent, caused by the difference in charge density distribution at band edges. Due to a variety of Ti-S bonds with longer lengths, we find that the TiS3 monolayer shows thermal conductivity much lower compared with that of transition-metal dichalcogenides such as MoS2. Combined with a high power factor along the y-direction, a considerable n-type ZT value (3.1) can be achieved at moderate carrier concentration, suggesting that the TiS3 monolayer is a good candidate for thermoelectric applications.

  12. Estimating Energy Conversion Efficiency of Thermoelectric Materials: Constant Property Versus Average Property Models

    Armstrong, Hannah; Boese, Matthew; Carmichael, Cody; Dimich, Hannah; Seay, Dylan; Sheppard, Nathan; Beekman, Matt

    2017-01-01

    Maximum thermoelectric energy conversion efficiencies are calculated using the conventional "constant property" model and the recently proposed "cumulative/average property" model (Kim et al. in Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 112:8205, 2015) for 18 high-performance thermoelectric materials. We find that the constant property model generally predicts higher energy conversion efficiency for nearly all materials and temperature differences studied. Although significant deviations are observed in some cases, on average the constant property model predicts an efficiency that is a factor of 1.16 larger than that predicted by the average property model, with even lower deviations for temperature differences typical of energy harvesting applications. Based on our analysis, we conclude that the conventional dimensionless figure of merit ZT obtained from the constant property model, while not applicable for some materials with strongly temperature-dependent thermoelectric properties, remains a simple yet useful metric for initial evaluation and/or comparison of thermoelectric materials, provided the ZT at the average temperature of projected operation, not the peak ZT, is used.

  13. Materials development for solar thermoelectric generators, SOLAR-TEP - 2007 Annual report

    Bocher, L.; Weidenkaff, A.

    2007-07-01

    This annual report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) takes a look at the work done at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology EMPA in 2007 on Thermoelectric applications that are emerging as a potential technology that allows the conversion of heat into electric power. This energy conversion procedure uses the Seebeck effect to generate electricity without using moving parts or any chemical conversion. The Solar-TEP project is based on the idea of the potential use of concentrated solar heat as a source of energy for Solar Thermoelectric Generators (Solar-TEG). The development of novel functional materials with enhanced figures of merit, high temperature stability, and without harmful effects is commented on. The authors state that oxide ceramics can be used at high temperatures due to their chemical stability and their resistance to thermal oxidation in air. The advantages offered by thermoelectric modules based on oxide materials for the generation of power with increased temperature operating ranges are discussed. Additionally, thermoelectric oxide devices which can be realised on the basis of low-cost materials with low toxicity are discussed.

  14. Development and Processing of p-type Oxide Thermoelectric Materials

    Wu, NingYu; Van Nong, Ngo

    have attracted much attention due to features such as a natural abundance of constituent elements, environmental benignity and durability at high temperature in air. This research aims to develop and investigate the misfit-layered cobaltate Ca3Co4O9+δ, which demonstrates a large potential for high......-combustion reaction for the synthesis of Ca3Co4O9+δ nano-powder is developed to realize nanostructuring for enhanced thermoelectric properties. The procedure is a modification of the conventional citrate–nitrate sol–gel method where an auto-combustion process is initiated by a controlled thermal oxidation...

  15. Nanostructured Thermoelectrics and the New Paradigm

    Kanatzidis, Mercouri

    2012-02-01

    A comprehensive and stable energy strategy would require proportionate attention to all three legs of the ``energy stool''; supply (sources), demand (efficiency) and storage/transport (delivery). Thermoelectric materials, that convert waste thermal energy into useful electrical energy, have an important role to play in any and all these three legs. The efficacy and efficiency of thermoelectrics is reflected in the figure of merit ZT, which is directly proportional to the power factor (comprising electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient) and inversely proportional to thermal conductivity (comprising carrier and lattice contributions). The recent emergence of nanostructured thermoelectrics has ushered in a new era for bulk thermoelectrics, which show considerable promise to enhance the ``contra-indicating'' parameters of high electrical conductivity and low thermal conductivity. This is achieved by introducing nanostructures in bulk thermoelectric host materials to significantly reduce lattice thermal conductivity via effective scattering of heat carrying phonon through hierarchical architecture of nanostructured thermoelectrics. The presentation will cover recent developments, current research in our EFRC and future prospects for high performance bulk materials. Systems based on lead chalcogenides (e.g., PbTe, PbSe, PbS) present key science challenges with promising properties and are given particular emphasis. We have achieved excellent control of synthesis and crystal growth of such materials resulting in record enhancements in the figure of merit. These enhancements derive from very large reductions in lattice thermal conductivity possible with nanostructuring. We have experimentally realized concurrent synergistic effect of phonon blocking and charge transmission via the endotaxial placement of nanocrystals in thermoelectric material host. In particular, we have shown that the enhanced performance is due to nanostructuring of thermoelectric host matrix

  16. Copper Selenide Nanocrystals as a High Performance, Solution Processed Thermoelectric Material

    Forster, Jason; Lynch, Jared; Coates, Nelson; Sahu, Ayaskanta; Liu, Jun; Cahill, David; Urban, Jeff

    Nano-structuring a thermoelectric material often results in enhanced performance due to a decrease in the materials' thermal conductivity. Traditional nano-structuring techniques involve ball milling a bulk material followed by spark plasma sintering, a very energy intensive process. In this talk, we will describe the development of a self-assembled, high-performing, nano-structured thin film based on copper selenide nanocrystals. Mild thermal annealing of these films results in concurrent increases in the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity. We are able to achieve power factors at room temperature that are as high as the best spark plasma sintered materials. These solution-processed films have potential applications as conformal, flexible materials for thermoelectric power generation.

  17. Development of a prototype thermoelectric space cooling system using phase change material to improve the performance

    Zhao, Dongliang

    The thermoelectric cooling system has advantages over conventional vapor compression cooling devices, including compact in size, light in weight, high reliability, no mechanical moving parts, no refrigerant, being powered by direct current, and easily switching between cooling and heating modes. However, it has been long suffering from its relatively high cost and low energy efficiency, which has restricted its usage to niche applications, such as space missions, portable cooling devices, scientific and medical equipment, where coefficient of performance (COP) is not as important as reliability, energy availability, and quiet operation environment. Enhancement of thermoelectric cooling system performance generally relies on two methods: improving thermoelectric material efficiency and through thermoelectric cooling system thermal design. This research has been focused on the latter one. A prototype thermoelectric cooling system integrated with phase change material (PCM) thermal energy storage unit for space cooling has been developed. The PCM thermal storage unit used for cold storage at night, functions as the thermoelectric cooling system's heat sink during daytime's cooling period and provides relatively lower hot side temperature for the thermoelectric cooling system. The experimental test of the prototype system in a reduced-scale chamber has realized an average cooling COP of 0.87, with the maximum value of 1.22. Another comparison test for efficacy of PCM thermal storage unit shows that 35.3% electrical energy has been saved from using PCM for the thermoelectric cooling system. In general, PCM faces difficulty of poor thermal conductivity at both solid and liquid phases. This system implemented a finned inner tube to increase heat transfer during PCM charging (melting) process that directly impacts thermoelectric system's performance. A simulation tool for the entire system has been developed including mathematical models for a single thermoelectric module

  18. Development of Polythiophene and Its Derivatives as Thermoelectric Materials%聚噻吩及其衍生物热电材料研究进展

    王大刚; 王雷; 王文馨; 朱光明; 白晓军; 李均钦

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, polymer thermoelectric material is considered to be one kind of the most promising thermoelectric materials due to low cost, abundant resources,low thermal conductivity, etc. Polythiophene and its derivatives are widely studied as thermoelectric materials. The recent development of polythiophene and its derivatives in thermoelectric field are reviewed. These results indicate that polythiophene and its derivatives possess high Seebeck coefficient, and Seebeck coefficient usually decreases with an increasing electrical conductivity. The thermoelectric properties of polythiophene and its derivatives can be enhanced by reducing the material dimension, compounding with highly conductive inorganic nano-particles, doping with appropriate dopants, and so on.%近来,聚合物热电材料因其成本低、资源丰富、热导率低等优势被认为是最有前途的热电材料之一.聚噻吩及其衍生物是研究较为广泛的一类聚合物热电材料.综述了近年来聚噻吩、聚噻吩衍生物以及聚噻吩基/无机复合热电材料在热电领域的研究进展.已有研究表明,聚噻吩及其衍生物热电材料具有高的Seebeck系数,其Seebeck系数与电导率通常是此消彼长的关系.通过制备低维材料,与高电导率的无机纳米材料复合以及适度掺杂等方法可有效提高聚噻吩及其衍生物的热电性能.

  19. Promises

    1998-01-01

    AT dusk, I switched on my radio. What I heard was a special call-in program entitled "New Air of the City," on a local music channel; the two silver-tongued hosts were discussing the topic of promises. A young woman with a soft voice managed to get through first. She said that she had been in love for many years. She and her fiance often went to the banks of the Yangtze River in their spare time, lifting stones to look for small crabs, as tiny as fingernails. They liked to raise the crabs in a glass bowl. But one day, there were few stones by the river; they searched for a long time, but found nothing. An old man who was catching fish told them that it was difficult to find those crabs on the bank. Then he took several crabs out of his

  20. Molecular design and control of fullerene-based bi-thermoelectric materials.

    Rincón-García, Laura; Ismael, Ali K; Evangeli, Charalambos; Grace, Iain; Rubio-Bollinger, Gabino; Porfyrakis, Kyriakos; Agraït, Nicolás; Lambert, Colin J

    2016-03-01

    Molecular junctions are a versatile test bed for investigating nanoscale thermoelectricity and contribute to the design of new cost-effective environmentally friendly organic thermoelectric materials. It was suggested that transport resonances associated with discrete molecular levels could play a key role in thermoelectric performance, but no direct experimental evidence has been reported. Here we study single-molecule junctions of the endohedral fullerene Sc3N@C80 connected to gold electrodes using a scanning tunnelling microscope. We find that the magnitude and sign of the thermopower depend strongly on the orientation of the molecule and on applied pressure. Our calculations show that Sc3N inside the fullerene cage creates a sharp resonance near the Fermi level, whose energetic location, and hence the thermopower, can be tuned by applying pressure. These results reveal that Sc3N@C80 is a bi-thermoelectric material, exhibiting both positive and negative thermopower, and provide an unambiguous demonstration of the importance of transport resonances in molecular junctions.

  1. Graphene - a promising material for organic photovoltaic cells.

    Wan, Xiangjian; Long, Guankui; Huang, Lu; Chen, Yongsheng

    2011-12-01

    As a promising two-dimensional nanomaterial with outstanding electronic, optical, thermal, and mechanical properties, graphene has been proposed for many applications. In this Progress Report we summarize and discuss comprehensively the advances made so far for applications of graphene in organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells, including that for transparent electrodes, active layers and interfaces layer in OPV. It is concluded that graphene may very likely play a major role in new developments/improvements in OPVs. The future studies for this area are proposed to focus on the following: i) improving the conductivity without comprising the transparency as a transparent electrode material; ii) controlling the sheet sizes, band structure and surface morphology for use as a electron acceptor material, and iii) controlling and improving the functionalization and compatibility with other materials as interface layer material.

  2. Terbium Ion Doping in Ca3Co4O9: A Step towards High-Performance Thermoelectric Materials

    Saini, Shrikant; Yaddanapudi, Haritha Sree; Tian, Kun; Yin, Yinong; Magginetti, David; Tiwari, Ashutosh

    2017-01-01

    The potential of thermoelectric materials to generate electricity from the waste heat can play a key role in achieving a global sustainable energy future. In order to proceed in this direction, it is essential to have thermoelectric materials that are environmentally friendly and exhibit high figure of merit, ZT. Oxide thermoelectric materials are considered ideal for such applications. High thermoelectric performance has been reported in single crystals of Ca3Co4O9. However, for large scale applications single crystals are not suitable and it is essential to develop high-performance polycrystalline thermoelectric materials. In polycrystalline form, Ca3Co4O9 is known to exhibit much weaker thermoelectric response than in single crystal form. Here, we report the observation of enhanced thermoelectric response in polycrystalline Ca3Co4O9 on doping Tb ions in the material. Polycrystalline Ca3−xTbxCo4O9 (x = 0.0–0.7) samples were prepared by a solid-state reaction technique. Samples were thoroughly characterized using several state of the art techniques including XRD, TEM, SEM and XPS. Temperature dependent Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity and thermal conductivity measurements were performed. A record ZT of 0.74 at 800 K was observed for Tb doped Ca3Co4O9 which is the highest value observed till date in any polycrystalline sample of this system. PMID:28317853

  3. Analysis of Phase Separation in High Performance PbTe–PbS Thermoelectric Materials

    Girard, Steven N. [Northwestern University; Schmidt-Rohr, Klaus [Ames Laboratory; Chasapis, Thomas C. [Northwestern University; Hatzikraniotis, Euripides [Aristotle University of Thessaloniki; Njegic, B. [Ames Laboratory; Levin, E. M. [Ames Laboratory; Rawal, A. [Ames Laboratory; Paraskevopoulos, Konstantios M. [Aristotle University of Thessaloniki; Kanatzidis, Mercouri G. [Northwestern University

    2013-02-11

    Phase immiscibility in PbTe–based thermoelectric materials is an effective means of top-down synthesis of nanostructured composites exhibiting low lattice thermal conductivities. PbTe1-x Sx thermoelectric materials can be synthesized as metastable solid solution alloys through rapid quenching. Subsequent post-annealing induces phase separation at the nanometer scale, producing nanostructures that increase phonon scattering and reduce lattice thermal conductivity. However, there has yet to be any study investigating in detail the local chemical structure of both the solid solution and nanostructured variants of this material system. Herein, quenched and annealed (i.e., solid solution and phase-separated) samples of PbTe–PbS are analyzed by in situ high-resolution synchrotron powder X-ray diffraction, solid-state 125Te nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), and infrared (IR) spectroscopy analysis. For high concentrations of PbS in PbTe, e.g., x >16%, NMR and IR analyses reveal that rapidly quenched samples exhibit incipient phase separation that is not detected by state-of-the-art synchrotron X-ray diffraction, providing an example of a PbTe thermoelectric “alloy” that is in fact phase inhomogeneous. Thermally-induced PbS phase separation in PbTe–PbS occurs close to 200 °C for all compositions studied, and the solubility of the PbS phase in PbTe at elevated temperatures >500 °C is reported. The findings of this study suggest that there may be a large number of thermoelectric alloy systems that are phase inhomogeneous or nanostructured despite adherence to Vegard's Law of alloys, highlighting the importance of careful chemical characterization to differentiate between thermoelectric alloys and composites.

  4. Spark plasma sintered bismuth telluride-based thermoelectric materials incorporating dispersed boron carbide

    Williams, H.R., E-mail: hugo.williams@leicester.ac.uk [Department of Engineering, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester LE1 7RH (United Kingdom); Ambrosi, R.M. [Space Research Centre, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester LE1 7RH (United Kingdom); Chen, K. [School of Engineering and Materials Science, Queen Mary, University of London, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS (United Kingdom); Friedman, U. [Department of Engineering, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester LE1 7RH (United Kingdom); Ning, H.; Reece, M.J. [School of Engineering and Materials Science, Queen Mary, University of London, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS (United Kingdom); Robbins, M.C.; Simpson, K. [European Thermodynamics Ltd., 8 Priory Business Park, Wistow Road, Kibworth LE8 0R (United Kingdom); Stephenson, K. [European Space Agency, ESTEC TEC-EP, Keplerlaan 1, 2201AZ Noordwijk (Netherlands)

    2015-03-25

    Highlights: • Nano-B{sub 4}C reinforced Bi{sub 0.5}Sb{sub 1.5}Te{sub 3} p-type thermoelectric produced by SPS. • Addition of B{sub 4}C up to 0.2 vol% to SPS’d material has little effect on zT. • Vickers hardness improved by 27% by adding 0.2 vol% B{sub 4}C. • Fracture toughness of SPS material: K{sub IC} = 0.80 MPa m{sup 1/2} by SEVNB. • Mechanical properties much better than commercial directionally solidified material. - Abstract: The mechanical properties of bismuth telluride based thermoelectric materials have received much less attention in the literature than their thermoelectric properties. Polycrystalline p-type Bi{sub 0.5}Sb{sub 1.5}Te{sub 3} materials were produced from powder using spark plasma sintering (SPS). The effects of nano-B{sub 4}C addition on the thermoelectric performance, Vickers hardness and fracture toughness were measured. Addition of 0.2 vol% B{sub 4}C was found to have little effect on zT but increased hardness by approximately 27% when compared to polycrystalline material without B{sub 4}C. The K{sub IC} fracture toughness of these compositions was measured as 0.80 MPa m{sup 1/2} by Single-Edge V-Notched Beam (SEVNB). The machinability of polycrystalline materials produced by SPS was significantly better than commercially available directionally solidified materials because the latter is limited by cleavage along the crystallographic plane parallel to the direction of solidification.

  5. Use of Photothermally Generated Seebeck Voltage for Thermal Characterization of Thermoelectric Materials

    Kuriakose, Maju; Depriester, Michael; King, Roch Chan Yu; Roussel, Frédérick; Sahraoui, Abdelhak Hadj

    2014-06-01

    A simple and accurate experimental procedure to measure simultaneously the thermal properties (conductivity, diffusivity, and effusivity) of thermoelectric (TE) materials using their Seebeck voltage is proposed. The technique is based on analysis of a periodically oscillating thermoelectric signal generated from a TE material when it is thermally excited using an intensity-modulated laser source. A self-normalization procedure is implemented in the presented method using TE signals generated by changing the laser heating from one side to another of the TE material. Experiments are done on a polyaniline carbon nanohybrid (6.6 wt.% carbon nanotubes), yielding a thermal conductivity of 1.106 ± 0.001 W/m-K. The results are compared with the results from photothermal infrared radiometry experiments.

  6. Harman Measurements for Thermoelectric Materials and Modules under Non-Adiabatic Conditions

    Roh, Im-Jun; Lee, Yun Goo; Kang, Min-Su; Lee, Jae-Uk; Baek, Seung-Hyub; Kim, Seong Keun; Ju, Byeong-Kwon; Hyun, Dow-Bin; Kim, Jin-Sang; Kwon, Beomjin

    2016-12-01

    Accuracy of the Harman measurement largely depends on the heat transfer between the sample and its surroundings, so-called parasitic thermal effects (PTEs). Similar to the material evaluations, measuring thermoelectric modules (TEMs) is also affected by the PTEs especially when measuring under atmospheric condition. Here, we study the correction methods for the Harman measurements with systematically varied samples (both bulk materials and TEMs) at various conditions. Among several PTEs, the heat transfer via electric wires is critical. Thus, we estimate the thermal conductance of the electric wires, and correct the measured properties for a certain sample shape and measuring temperature. The PTEs are responsible for the underestimation of the TEM properties especially under atmospheric conditions (10–35%). This study will be useful to accurately characterize the thermoelectric properties of materials and modules.

  7. Thermoelectric properties of p—type Bi—Sb—Te Compositionally Graded thermodelectric materials with different barriers

    GuyingXu; ChangchunGe; 等

    2002-01-01

    In order to find more suitable materials as barriers and to improve the thermoelectric properties,p-type(Bi1-xSbx)2Te3(x=0.85,0.9) two segments compositionally graded thermoelectric materials(CGTM) with different barriers were fabricated by conventional hot pressure method.Metals Fe,Co,Cu and Al were used as barriers between two segments.The effects of different barriers on thermoelectric properties of CGTM were investigated.The results show that metal Fe is more stable and suitable as the barrier.

  8. Thermoelectric properties of p-type (Bi0.15Sb0.85)2Te3-PbTe graded thermoelectric materials with different barriers

    2005-01-01

    The p-type (Bi0.15Sb0.85)2Te3 and PbTe are typical thermoelectric materials used for low and middle temperature range and functional graded materials (FGM) is an inevitable way to widen the working temperature range. Here two segments graded thermoelectric materials (GTM) consisting of (Bi0.15Sb0.85)2Te3, PbTe and different barriers were fabricated by the common hot pressure method. Metals Fe, Mg and Ni were used as barriers between the two segments. The diffusion of different barriers between the barriers and bases were analyzed by electron microprobe analysis (EMA). The phase and crystal structures were determined by X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD). The thermoelectric properties were measured at 303 K along the direction parallel to the pressing direction.The results show that the compositional diffusion occurs when there is no barrier at the interface of the two segments, and the diffusion of Pb is most obvious; as the barrier material, the diffusion of metals Fe, Mg and Ni between different bases is not very obvious,and the thermoelectric properties of GTM is much better than that of the original segment.

  9. Multi-Scale Microstructural Thermoelectric Materials: Transport Behavior, Non-Equilibrium Preparation, and Applications.

    Su, Xianli; Wei, Ping; Li, Han; Liu, Wei; Yan, Yonggao; Li, Peng; Su, Chuqi; Xie, Changjun; Zhao, Wenyu; Zhai, Pengcheng; Zhang, Qingjie; Tang, Xinfeng; Uher, Ctirad

    2017-01-23

    Considering only about one third of the world's energy consumption is effectively utilized for functional uses, and the remaining is dissipated as waste heat, thermoelectric (TE) materials, which offer a direct and clean thermal-to-electric conversion pathway, have generated a tremendous worldwide interest. The last two decades have witnessed a remarkable development in TE materials. This Review summarizes the efforts devoted to the study of non-equilibrium synthesis of TE materials with multi-scale structures, their transport behavior, and areas of applications. Studies that work towards the ultimate goal of developing highly efficient TE materials possessing multi-scale architectures are highlighted, encompassing the optimization of TE performance via engineering the structures with different dimensional aspects spanning from the atomic and molecular scales, to nanometer sizes, and to the mesoscale. In consideration of the practical applications of high-performance TE materials, the non-equilibrium approaches offer a fast and controllable fabrication of multi-scale microstructures, and their scale up to industrial-size manufacturing is emphasized here. Finally, the design of two integrated power generating TE systems are described-a solar thermoelectric-photovoltaic hybrid system and a vehicle waste heat harvesting system-that represent perhaps the most important applications of thermoelectricity in the energy conversion area.

  10. Scandium-doped zinc cadmium oxide as a new stable n-type oxide thermoelectric material

    Han, Li; Christensen, Dennis Valbjørn; Bhowmik, Arghya;

    2016-01-01

    Scandium-doped zinc cadmium oxide (Sc-doped ZnCdO) is proposed as a new n-type oxide thermoelectric material. The material is sintered in air to maintain the oxygen stoichiometry and avoid instability issues. The successful alloying of CdO with ZnO at a molar ratio of 1 : 9 significantly reduced...... of the highest ZT values among those reported for ZnO based thermoelectric materials over the temperature range, e.g., its ZT value at 300 K, which is 0.012, is over 1 order of magnitude higher than that of the state-of-the-art nanostructured Al-doped ZnO, which is 0.0013. It suggests that this material...... is a good candidate for improving the overall conversion efficiencies in oxide thermoelectric modules. Meanwhile, Sc-doped ZnCdO is robust in air at high temperatures, whereas other n-type materials, such as Al-doped ZnO, will experience rapid degradation of their electrical conductivity and ZT....

  11. Tuning the Transport Properties of Layered Materials for Thermoelectric Applications using First-Principles Calculations

    Saeed, Yasir

    2014-05-11

    Thermoelectric materials can convert waste heat into electric power and thus provide a way to reduce the dependence on fossil fuels. Our aim is to model the underlying materials properties and, in particular, the transport as controlled by electrons and lattice vibrations. The goal is to develop an understanding of the thermoelectric properties of selected materials at a fundamental level. The structural, electronic, optical, and phononic properties are studied in order to tune the transport, focusing on KxRhO2, NaxRhO2, PtSb2 and Bi2Se3. The investigations are based on density functional theory as implemented in the all electron linearized augmented plane wave plus local orbitals WIEN2k and pseudo potential Quantum-ESPRESSO codes. The thermoelectric properties are derived from Boltzmann transport theory under the constant relaxation time approximation, using the BoltzTraP code. We will discuss first the changes in the electronic band structure under variation of the cation concentration in layered KxRhO2 in the 2H phase and NaxRhO2 in the 3R phase. We will also study the hydrated phase. The deformations of the RhO6 octahedra turn out to govern the thermoelectric properties, where the high Seebeck coefficient results from ”pudding mold" bands. We investigate the thermoelectric properties of electron and hole doped PtSb2, which is not a layered material but shares “pudding mold" bands. PtSb2 has a high Seebeck coefficient at room temperature, which increases significantly under As alloying by bandgap opening and reduction of the lattice thermal conductivity. Bi2Se3 (bulk and thin film) has a larger bandgap then the well-known thermoelectric material Bi2Te3, which is important at high temperature. The structural stability, electronic structure, and transport properties of one to six quintuple layers of Bi2Se3 will be discussed. We also address the effect of strain on a single quintuple layer by phonon band structures. We will analyze the electronic and transport

  12. In situ neutron scattering study of nanostructured PbTe-PbS bulk thermoelectric material

    Ren, Fei [Temple University; Schmidt, Robert D [ORNL; Case, Eldon D [Michigan State University, East Lansing; An, Ke [ORNL

    2016-01-01

    Nanostructures play an important role in thermoelectric materials. Their thermal stability, such as phase change and evolution at elevated temperatures, is thus of great interest to the thermoelectric community. In this study, in situ neutron diffraction was used to examine the phase evolution of nanostructured bulk PbTe-PbS materials fabricated using hot pressing and pulsed electrical current sintering (PECS). The PbS second phase was observed in all samples in the as-pressed condition. The temperature dependent lattice parameter and phase composition data show an initial formation of PbS precipitates followed by a redissolution during heating. The redissolution process started around 570 600 K, and completed at approximately 780 K. During cooling, the PECS sample followed a reversible curve while the heating/cooling behavior of the hot pressed sample was irreversible.

  13. Thermoelectric Properties of Hot-Pressed Materials Based on Mg2Si n Sn1- n

    Samunin, A. Yu.; Zaitsev, V. K.; Konstantinov, P. P.; Fedorov, M. I.; Isachenko, G. N.; Burkov, A. T.; Novikov, S. V.; Gurieva, E. A.

    2013-07-01

    Mg2Si n Sn1- n solid solutions consist of nontoxic widespread elements. In this work a number of samples of Mg2Si n Sn1- n solid solutions, where 1 ≥ n ≥ 0.7 with various carrier concentrations, were obtained using microcrystalline powder by hot pressing in vacuum. The Seebeck coefficient and the thermal and electrical conductivity were measured in the temperature range from 300 K to 800 K. It is shown that the specific thermoelectric figure of merit (the ratio of the thermoelectric figure of merit to the material density) of these samples weakly depends on the composition of the solid solution. Hence, whether a solid solution or pure Mg2Si is used depends on the application temperature of the material.

  14. Fabrication and property of high-performance Ag-Pb-Sb-Te system semiconducting thermoelectric materials

    ZHOU Min; LI JingFeng; WANG Heng

    2007-01-01

    High performance Ag-Pb-Sb-Te system thermoelectric bulk materials were fabricated by a combination of mechanical alloying (MA) and spark plasma sintering (SPS). Phase composition and microstructure of the resultant materials were investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis. A special emphasis was paid to the effects of chemical composition, especially the Pb content on the thermoelectric properties of the Ag0.8Pb18+xSbTe20 samples, including electrical resistivity, Seebeck coefficient, power factor, thermal conductivity and dimensionless figure of merit.The present study reveals that the optimal composition of Ag0.8Pb18+xSbTe20 samples is Ag0.8Pb22.5SbTe20 and the maximum figure of merit (ZT) is 1.2 at 673 K.

  15. Promising bulk nanostructured Cu2Se thermoelectrics via high throughput and rapid chemical synthesis

    Tafti, Mohsen Y.; Ballikaya, Sedat; Khachatourian, Adrine Malek;

    2016-01-01

    of Cu2Se were synthesized. Powder samples and compacted pellets have been characterized in detail for their structural, microstructural and transport properties. α to β phase transition of Cu2Se was confirmed using temperature dependent X-ray powder diffraction and differential scanning calorimetry...... synthesis scheme as well as the consolidation could lead to reliable production of large scale thermoelectric nanopowders for niche applications....

  16. Nanostructured Thermoelectric Oxide Materials for Effective Power Generation from Waste Heat

    Van Nong, Ngo; Pryds, Nini

    9+δ and n-type doped-ZnO oxide systems is presented. The thermoelectric generator (TEG) devices based on these oxide materials were fabricated, examined, and demonstrated with various output applications. At a ΔT = 500 K, the maximum output power of our TEG composed of 32 p-n couples reached 1W......, which is among the best one so far and is enough for a practical application such as phone charge or GPS device (see Fig. 1)....

  17. Nanostructured Thermoelectric Oxides for Energy Harvesting Applications

    Abutaha, Anas I.

    2015-11-24

    As the world strives to adapt to the increasing demand for electrical power, sustainable energy sources are attracting significant interest. Around 60% of energy utilized in the world is wasted as heat. Different industrial processes, home heating, and exhausts in cars, all generate a huge amount of unused waste heat. With such a huge potential, there is also significant interest in discovering inexpensive technologies for power generation from waste heat. As a result, thermoelectric materials have become important for many renewable energy research programs. While significant advancements have been done in improving the thermoelectric properties of the conventional heavy-element based materials (such as Bi2Te3 and PbTe), high-temperature applications of thermoelectrics are still limited to one materials system, namely SiGe, since the traditional thermoelectric materials degrade and oxidize at high temperature. Therefore, oxide thermoelectrics emerge as a promising class of materials since they can operate athigher temperatures and in harsher environments compared to non-oxide thermoelectrics. Furthermore, oxides are abundant and friendly to the environment. Among oxides, crystalline SrTiO3 and ZnO are promising thermoelectric materials. The main objective of this work is therefore to pursue focused investigations of SrTiO3 and ZnO thin films and superlattices grown by pulsed laser deposition (PLD), with the goal of optimizing their thermoelectric properties by following different strategies. First, the effect of laser fluence on the thermoelectric properties of La doped epitaxial SrTiO3 films is discussed. Films grown at higher laser fluences exhibit better thermoelectric performance. Second, the role of crystal orientation in determining the thermoelectric properties of epitaxial Al doped ZnO (AZO) films is explained. Vertically aligned (c-axis) AZO films have superior thermoelectric properties compared to other films with different crystal orientations. Third

  18. Research Update: Oxide thermoelectrics: Beyond the conventional design rules

    Terasaki, Ichiro

    2016-10-01

    Materials' design for high-performance thermoelectric oxides is discussed. Since chemical stability at high temperature in air is a considerable advantage in oxides, we evaluate thermoelectric power factor in the high temperature limit. We show that highly disordered materials can be good thermoelectric materials at high temperatures, and the effects of strong correlation can further enhance the figure of merit by adding thermopower arising from the spin and orbital degrees of freedom. We also discuss the Kelvin formula as a promising expression for strongly correlated materials and show that the calculation based on the Kelvin formula can be directly compared with the cross-layer thermopower of layered materials.

  19. A materials approach to improving the efficiency of thermoelectric cooling devices

    Poduska, Kristin Marie

    Solid state thermoelectric devices are not yet efficient enough to replace conventional cooling technologies. Device efficiency will only improve with the development of better materials, as cooling is caused by simply flowing current through material junctions. Efficiency increases with each material's thermoelectric figure of merit (Z), which is proportional to the square of its thermopower and inversely proportional to its electrical resistivity and thermal conductivity. Since these properties are interdependent, developing materials with a favorable balance of transport properties is a formidable task. This dissertation focuses on two classes of materials which could yield this opportune balance: high-symmetry, large-volume semiconductors and intermediate-valent (IV), Ce-containing, intermetallic compounds. Theory indicates that a semiconductor's band extremum multiplicity near the Fermi energy (NV) directly influences thermoelectric efficiency: complex, high-symmetry semiconductors are more likely to have a higher NV, leading to a higher Z. Solid state reactants containing tetrahedral anions were used to form such large-volume, high-symmetry compounds. Efforts culminated in structural studies of two families of semiconductors which contain discrete tetrahedral [Ge(S,Se) 4]4- anions: the new cubic Pb2- xSnxS4- ySy solid solution, and the previously-reported hexagonal La3CuGe(S,Se)7 phases. These compounds are all brightly colored, suggesting that their carrier mobilities are too low for them to be good thermoelectric materials. Empirical evidence shows that Z peaks for an optimal carrier density, indicating that this is another important property for potential thermoelectric materials. Room temperature carrier concentrations for CeSbTe (a poor metal) and the NdxCe3-xPt 3Sb4 Kondo insulators are reported from Hall coefficient measurements. Metal-like IV compounds have been studied extensively because they display anomalously-large thermopowers. This work

  20. Research Update: Cu-S based synthetic minerals as efficient thermoelectric materials at medium temperatures

    Suekuni, Koichiro; Takabatake, Toshiro

    2016-10-01

    Synthetic minerals and related systems based on Cu-S are attractive thermoelectric (TE) materials because of their environmentally benign characters and high figures of merit at around 700 K. This overview features the current examples including kesterite, binary copper sulfides, tetrahedrite, colusite, and chalcopyrite, with emphasis on their crystal structures and TE properties. This survey highlights the superior electronic properties in the p-type materials as well as the close relationship between crystal structures and thermophysical properties. We discuss the mechanisms of high power factor and low lattice thermal conductivity, approaching higher TE performances for the Cu-S based materials.

  1. Nanoscale Phase Immiscibility in High-ZT Bulk Lead Telluride Thermoelectric Materials

    Girard, Steven Neal

    Renewable energy initiatives have increased interest in thermoelectric materials as an option for inexpensive and environmentally friendly waste heat-to-power generation. Unfortunately, low efficiencies have limited their wide-scale utilization. This work describes the synthesis and characterization of bulk nanostructured thermoelectric materials wherein natural phase immiscibility is manipulated to selectively generate nanoscale inclusions of a second phase that improve their efficiency through reductions in lattice thermal conductivity. The PbTe-PbS system exhibits natural phase separation by nucleation and growth or spinodal decomposition phase transformations depending on composition and temperature treatment. Through rapid quenching, nearly ideal solid solution alloys of PbTe-PbS are observed by powder X-ray diffraction. However, characterization by solid-state NMR and IR reflectivity show that solid solutions are obtained for rapidly quenched samples within the nucleation and growth region of the phase diagram, but samples within the spinodal decomposition region exhibit very slight phase immiscibility. We report the temperatures of phase separation using high temperature powder X-ray diffraction. Microscopy reveals that phase separation in PbTe-PbS naturally produces nanoinclusions. A decrease in lattice thermal conductivity is observed as a result of the solid solution-to-nanostructured phase transformation in this materials system, increasing thermoelectric figure of merit. Sn addition to PbTe-PbS produces a pseudobinary system of PbTe-PbSnS 2. This materials system produces microscale lamellae that effectively reduce lattice thermal conductivity. Unfortunately, the PbSnS2 inclusions also scatter electrons, reducing electrical conductivity and producing only a minimal increase in thermoelectric figure of merit. We additionally investigate PbSnS2 as prepared through Bridgman crystal growth. PbTe-PbS doped with Na appears to increase the kinetic rate of

  2. Low-Cost Structural Thermoelectric Materials: Processing and Consolidation

    2015-01-01

    nanocrystalline materials11,12 and this research utilizes the existing powder processing infrastructure at ARL to explore nanostructured TE materials ...The process of utilizing mechanical alloying to produce bulk nanocrystalline materials is shown in Fig. 3. There are a number of different types of...consolidate nanocrystalline metal powders. In fact, the bottom image in Fig. 9 is the Ti–Ni–Sn material consolidated at 1,000 ◦C. The hollowed area is the

  3. A MODIFIED VAN DER PAUW SETUP FOR MEASURING THE RESISTIVITY AND THERMOPOWER OF THERMOELECTRIC MATERIALS OF VARYING THICKNESSES

    HITCHCOCK, DALE

    2013-10-01

    In the investigation of thermoelectric (TE) materials as a practical, and efficient, means of power generation/ refrigeration nearly ninety percent of the possible high-efficient binary compounds have been evaluated. But only a few proved to be useful such as Bi2Te3 alloys, PbTe and SiGe to name the most important materials. Therefore, in order to expand the research of high-efficiency TE materials new compounds and methods of efficiency optimization must be explored. There currently exist a vast number of uninvestigated ternary and quaternary materials that could be potential high-efficiency thermoelectric materials. The device and methodology discussed herein deal with rapidly measuring both the electrical resistivity and the Seebeck coefficient of thermoelectric materials, at a set temperature of T ≈ 300 K. Using nontraditional resistivity measurements and rapid, room-temperature thermopower measurements, a reliable and time-efficient means of gauging the power factor (defined below) values of newly synthesized thermoelectric materials is achievable. Furthermore, the efficacy of the van der Pauw technique for measuring the resistivity of thermoelectric materials has been verified. © World Scientific Publishing Company.

  4. Influence of the effectiveness of raw materials on the reliability of thermoelectric cooling devices. Part I: single-stage TEDs

    Zaikov V. P.

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Increase of the reliability of information systems depends on the reliability improvement of their component elements, including cooling devices, providing efficiency of thermally loaded components. Thermoelectric devices based on the Peltier effect have significant advantages compared with air and liquid systems for thermal modes of the radio-electronic equipment. This happens due to the absence of moving parts, which account for the failure rate. The article presents research results on how thermoelectric efficiency modules affect the failure rate and the probability of non-failure operation in the range of working temperature of thermoelectric coolers. The authors investigate a model of relative failure rate and the probability of failure-free operation single-stage thermoelectric devices depending on the main relevant parameters: the operating current flowing through the thermocouple and resistance, temperature changes, the magnitude of the heat load and the number of elements in the module. It is shown that the increase in the thermoelectric efficiency of the primary material for a variety of thermocouple temperature changes causes the following: maximum temperature difference increases by 18%; the number of elements in the module decreases; cooling coefficient increases; failure rate reduces and the probability of non-failure operation of thermoelectric cooling device increases. Material efficiency increase by 1% allows reducing failure rate by 2,6—4,3% in maximum refrigeration capacity mode and by 4,2—5,0% in minimal failure rate mode when temperature difference changes in the range of 40—60 K. Thus, the increase in the thermoelectric efficiency of initial materials of thermocouples can significantly reduce the failure rate and increase the probability of failure of thermoelectric coolers depending on the temperature difference and the current operating mode.

  5. Thermoelectric material comprising scandium doped zinc cadmium oxide

    2016-01-01

    There is presented a composition of scandium doped Zinc Cadmium Oxide with the general formula ZnzCdxScyO which the inventors have prepared, and for which material the inventors have made the insight that it is particularly advantageous as an n-type oxide material, such as particularly advantageous...

  6. Band structure and transport studies of copper selenide: An efficient thermoelectric material

    Tyagi, Kriti; Gahtori, Bhasker; Bathula, Sivaiah; Auluck, S.; Dhar, Ajay

    2014-10-01

    We report the band structure calculations for high temperature cubic phase of copper selenide (Cu2Se) employing Hartree-Fock approximation using density functional theory within the generalized gradient approximation. These calculations were further extended to theoretically estimate the electrical transport coefficients of Cu2Se employing Boltzmann transport theory, which show a reasonable agreement with the corresponding experimentally measured values. The calculated transport coefficients are discussed in terms of the thermoelectric (TE) performance of this material, which suggests that Cu2Se can be a potential p-type TE material with an optimum TE performance at a carrier concentration of ˜ 4 - 6 × 10 21 cm - 3 .

  7. Two-dimensional molybdenum carbides: potential thermoelectric materials of the MXene family.

    Khazaei, Mohammad; Arai, Masao; Sasaki, Taizo; Estili, Mehdi; Sakka, Yoshio

    2014-05-01

    A newly synthesized family of two-dimensional transition metal carbides and nitrides, so-called MXenes, exhibit metallic or semiconducting properties upon appropriate surface functionalization. Owing to their intrinsic ceramic nature, MXenes may be suitable for energy conversion applications at high temperature. Using the Boltzmann theory and first-principles electronic structure calculations, we explore the thermoelectric properties of monolayer and multilayer M2C (M = Sc, Ti, V, Zr, Nb, Mo, Hf, and Ta) and M2N (M = Ti, Zr, and Hf) MXenes functionalized with F, OH, and O groups. From our calculations, it turns out that monolayer and multilayer nanosheets of Mo2C acquire superior power factors to other MXenes upon any type of functionalization. We therefore propose the functionalized Mo2C nanosheets as potential thermoelectric materials of the MXene family. The exceptional thermoelectric properties of the functionalized Mo2C nanosheets are attributed to the peculiar t2g band shapes, which are a combination of flat and dispersive portions. These types of band shapes allow Mo2C to gain a large Seebeck coefficient and simultaneously a good electrical conductivity at low carrier concentrations.

  8. Thermoelectric properties of BiSbx (x=0.6-0.8) thermoelectric materials fabricated by different processing

    2003-01-01

    In order to improve the thermoelectric properties, hot-pressing sintering and ultra high pressure sintering methods wereadopted to fabricate BiSbx. The phase and crystal structures were determined by X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD). The thermoelectricproperties were measured at 303 K along the direction parallel to the pressing direction. The electric conductivity of the samples wasmeasured at 303 K by the four-probe technique. To measure the Seebeck coefficient, heat was applied to the samples placed betweentwo Cu discs. The thermoelectric electromotive force (E) was measured upon applying small temperature differences ( △T<2℃)between the both ends of the samples. The Seebeck coefficient of the samples was determined from the value of E/△T. The resultsindicate that the thermoelectric properties of the samples fabricated by UHPS (ultra high pressure sintering) method are much higherthan that by HPS (hot pressing sintering) method and have the highest values at x=0.7.

  9. Direct waste heat recovery via thermoelectric materials - chosen issues of the thermodynamic description

    Kolasiński, Piotr; Kolasińska, Ewa

    2016-02-01

    The effective waste heat recovery is one of the present-day challenges in the industry and power engineering. The energy systems dedicated for waste heat conversion into electricity are usually characterized by low efficiency and are complicated in the design. The possibility of waste heat recovery via thermoelectric materials may be an interesting alternative to the currently used technologies. In particular, due to their material characteristics, conducting polymers may be competitive when compared with the power machinery and equipment. These materials can be used in a wide range of the geometries e.g. the bulk products, thin films, pristine form or composites and the others. In this article, the authors present selected issues related to the mathematical and thermodynamic description of the heat transfer processes in the thermoelectric materials dedicated for the waste heat recovery. The link of these models with electrical properties of the material and a material solution based on a conducting polymer have also been presented in this paper.

  10. n型CaMnO3基氧化物热电材料研究进展%Progress in n-type CaMnO3-based Oxide Thermoelectric Materials

    张飞鹏; 郭志超; 刘剑; 王新练; 张坤书

    2013-01-01

      n型CaMnO3基氧化物是一种具有优异高温热电性能的n型热电材料体系,从CaMnO3基热电氧化物晶体结构、物性、电子结构、电热传输理论以及Ca位掺杂、Mn位掺杂、Ca和Mn位复合掺杂优化其电热输运性能的角度,综述了 n 型 CaMnO3基热电氧化物的最新研究进展,给出了存在的问题和今后研究的方向。%The n-type CaMnO3 oxide based compound is one of the most promising thermoelectric materials due to its high temperature thermoelectric properties. The paper summarizes the CaMnO3 oxide based thermoelectric materials, mainly in terms of the crystal structure, physical properties, electronic structure, thermoelectric transport theory and Ca site doping, Mn site doping, as well as double doping effects on thermoelectric transport properties. And the research issues and orientations in the near future are pointed out.

  11. An active thermography approach for thermal and electrical characterization of thermoelectric materials

    Streza, M.; Longuemart, S.; Guilmeau, E.; Strzalkowski, K.; Touati, K.; Depriester, M.; Maignan, A.; Sahraoui, A. Hadj

    2016-07-01

    The enhancement of figure of merit (ZT) of thermoelectrics is becoming extremely important for an efficient conversion of thermal energy into electrical energy. In this respect, reliable measurements of thermal and electrical parameters are of paramount importance in order to characterize thermoelectric materials in terms of their efficiency. In this work, a combined theoretical-experimental active thermography approach is presented. The method consists of selecting the right sequential interdependence between the excitation frequency and the sampling rate of the infrared camera, by computing a temporal Fourier analysis of each pixel of the recorded IR image. The method is validated by using a reference sample which is then applied to a recent synthesized titanium trisulphide thermoelectric material (TiS3). By combining AC and steady-state experiments, one can obtain information on both thermal and electrical parameters of TE materials (namely thermal diffusivity, Seebeck coefficient). The thermal diffusivity and thermal conductivity of TiS3 are also measured using photothermal radiometry technique (PTR) and the resulting values of these parameters are α  =  9.7*10-7 m2 s-1 and k  =  2.2 W m-1 K, respectively. The results obtained with the two techniques are in good agreement. In the case of TE materials, the main benefit of the proposed method is related to its non-contact nature and the possibility of obtaining the electric potential and temperature at the same probes. The Seebeck coefficient obtained by active IR thermography (S  =  -554 μV K-1) is consistent with the one obtained using an ULVAC-ZEM3 system (S  =  -570 μV K-1). For a large number of users of thermographic cameras, which are not equipped with a lock-in thermography module, the present approach provides an affordable and cheaper solution.

  12. Advanced Low Temperature Thermoelectric Materials for Cryogenic Power Generation Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In this work we will: 1) develop novel TE materials  with a factor of 2x or more improvement in the dimensionless TE figure of merit (ZT) over state-of-the-art...

  13. Design of Ball-Milling Experiments on Bi2Te3 Thermoelectric Material

    Kanatzia, A.; Papageorgiou, Ch.; Lioutas, Ch.; Kyratsi, Th.

    2013-07-01

    In this work, factorial ball-milling experiments have been applied to Bi2Te3 material, for the first time, aiming to investigate the effect of the main process parameters on the structural features and thermoelectric properties of the ball-milled materials. The selected main parameters were the duration of milling, the speed, and the ball-to-material ratio. Analysis suggests a strong effect of the speed and duration of processing, whereas the ball-to-material ratio is of minor importance. This approach is advantageous for better understanding of the milling mechanism and the importance of the role of each independent parameter as well as their interaction. All experiments led to nanocrystalline Bi2Te3, whose structural features were studied. The nanocrystalline size was estimated based on x-ray diffraction analysis, while transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies were also performed to confirm the presence of nanoscale crystals. A mathematical model was developed based on statistical analysis for prediction of the crystalline size and the Seebeck coefficient of the nanopowders. The thermoelectric properties were also investigated on selected, highly dense pellets fabricated via hot-pressing of the nanopowders.

  14. A quick and efficient measurement technique for performance evaluation of thermoelectric materials

    Rao, Ashwin; Banjade, Pawan; Bosak, Gregg; Joshi, Binay; Keane, Jennifer; Nally, Luke; Peng, Adam; Perera, Susanthri; Waring, Alfred; Joshi, Giri; Poudel, Bed

    2016-10-01

    Evaluating the performance of thermoelectric (TE) materials is critical for developing an efficient long lasting thermoelectric generator. Various parameters like resistance, TE power, TE efficiency as a function of temperature and time play an important role in developing and optimizing TE materials and legs. If one needs to evaluate the TE legs for performance or contact metallization optimization, study of a brazed or packaged device everytime could prove to be an expensive, time consuming process especially as a quick intermediate qualification. In this work, a simple approach that uses eutectic Gallium Indium (Ga-In) paste as a metallizing substitute with good electrical/thermal contact is employed which also avoids the need for brazing/welding (or any permanent joining) and provides a reliable platform for a quick leg qualification. Using open circuit voltage (V oc) and device voltage (V d), one can evaluate important TE quantities like peak power, material resistance changes, peak current and power versus current characteristics to understand the leg performance. The proposed approach is successfully demonstrated with three different TE material systems namely Bismuth Telluride, Skutterudite and Half Heusler systems.

  15. Electronic and thermoelectric properties of van der Waals materials with ring-shaped valence bands

    Wickramaratne, Darshana; Zahid, Ferdows; Lake, Roger K.

    2015-08-01

    The valence band of a variety of few-layer, two-dimensional materials consist of a ring of states in the Brillouin zone. The energy-momentum relation has the form of a "Mexican hat" or a Rashba dispersion. The two-dimensional density of states is singular at or near the band edge, and the band-edge density of modes turns on nearly abruptly as a step function. The large band-edge density of modes enhances the Seebeck coefficient, the power factor, and the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT. Electronic and thermoelectric properties are determined from ab initio calculations for few-layer III-VI materials GaS, GaSe, InS, InSe, for Bi2Se3, for monolayer Bi, and for bilayer graphene as a function of vertical field. The effect of interlayer coupling on these properties in few-layer III-VI materials and Bi2Se3 is described. Analytical models provide insight into the layer dependent trends that are relatively consistent for all of these few-layer materials. Vertically biased bilayer graphene could serve as an experimental test-bed for measuring these effects.

  16. Electronic and thermoelectric properties of van der Waals materials with ring-shaped valence bands

    Wickramaratne, Darshana, E-mail: darshanaw@engineering.ucsb.edu, E-mail: rlake@ece.ucr.edu; Lake, Roger K., E-mail: darshanaw@engineering.ucsb.edu, E-mail: rlake@ece.ucr.edu [Laboratory for Terahertz and Terascale Electronics, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of California, Riverside, California 92521 (United States); Zahid, Ferdows [Department of Physics and the Center of Theoretical and Computational Physics, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong (China)

    2015-08-21

    The valence band of a variety of few-layer, two-dimensional materials consist of a ring of states in the Brillouin zone. The energy-momentum relation has the form of a “Mexican hat” or a Rashba dispersion. The two-dimensional density of states is singular at or near the band edge, and the band-edge density of modes turns on nearly abruptly as a step function. The large band-edge density of modes enhances the Seebeck coefficient, the power factor, and the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT. Electronic and thermoelectric properties are determined from ab initio calculations for few-layer III–VI materials GaS, GaSe, InS, InSe, for Bi{sub 2}Se{sub 3}, for monolayer Bi, and for bilayer graphene as a function of vertical field. The effect of interlayer coupling on these properties in few-layer III–VI materials and Bi{sub 2}Se{sub 3} is described. Analytical models provide insight into the layer dependent trends that are relatively consistent for all of these few-layer materials. Vertically biased bilayer graphene could serve as an experimental test-bed for measuring these effects.

  17. Electronic and thermal transport in GeTe: A versatile base for thermoelectric materials

    Levin, E. M.; Besser, M. F.; Hanus, R.

    2013-08-01

    GeTe is a narrow-band gap semiconductor, where Ge vacancies generate free charge carriers, holes, forming a self-dopant degenerate system with p-type conductivity, and serves as a base for high-performance multicomponent thermoelectric materials. There is a significant discrepancy between the electronic and thermal transport data for GeTe-based materials reported in the literature, which obscures the baseline knowledge and prevents a clear understanding of the effect of alloying GeTe with various elements. A comprehensive study including XRD, SEM, EDS, Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity, thermal conductivity, and 125Te NMR of several GeTe samples was conducted. Similar Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivity are observed for all GeTe samples used showing that the concentration of Ge vacancies generating charge carriers is constant along the ingot. Very short 125Te NMR spin-relaxation time agrees well with high carrier concentration obtained from the Hall effect measurements. Our data show that at ˜700 K, GeTe has a very large power factor, 42 μWcm-1K-2, much larger than that of any high efficiency thermoelectric telluride at these temperatures. Electronic and thermal properties of GeTe are compared to PbTe, another well-known thermoelectric material, where free charge carriers, holes or electrons, are generated by vacancies on Pb or Te sites, respectively. Discrepancy in the data for GeTe reported in literature can be attributed to the variation in the Ge:Te ratio of solidified samples as well as to different conditions of measurements.

  18. Thermoelectric properties of Al doped Mg{sub 2}Si material

    Kaur, Kulwinder, E-mail: kulwindercmp@gmail.com; Kumar, Ranjan [Department of Physics, Center of Advanced Study in Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh-160 014 (India); Rani, Anita [Department of Physics, Center of Advanced Study in Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh-160 014 (India); Guru Nanak College for Girls, Sri Muktsar Sahib, Punjab (India)

    2015-08-28

    In the present paper we have calculated thermoelectric properties of Al doped Mg{sub 2}Si material (Mg{sub 2−x}Al{sub x}Si, x=0.06) using Pseudo potential plane wave method based on DFT and Semi classical Boltzmann theory. The calculations showed n-type conduction, indicating that the electrical conduction are due to electron. The electrical conductivity increasing with increasing temperature and the negative value of Seebeck Coefficient also show that the conduction is due to electron. The thermal conductivity was increased slightly by Al doping with increasing temperature due to the much larger contribution of lattice thermal conductivity over electronic thermal conductivity.

  19. Protective coatings for CoSb{sub 3}-base thermoelectric materials

    Godlewska, E.; Zawadzka, K.; Mars, K.; Nocun, M.; Opoka, A.; Wojciechowski, K. [AGH-UST, Krakow (Poland). Faculty of Materials Science and Ceramics

    2010-07-01

    Doped cobalt antimonides, are used as components of thermoelectric devices at temperatures not exceeding 450 C because of poor thermal and chemical stability. In absence of oxygen they degrade by sublimation of antimony, while in air they easily oxidize to form volatile antimony oxides and non-volatile thick double oxide scales. In both cases, protective coatings are indispensable to ensure safe performance of thermoelectric devices over extended times. The most promising solution, reported so far, is a thick aerogel coating, which practically stops antimony loss by sublimation. The assessment of coating effectiveness is generally based on thermogravimetric tests in vacuum, so no conclusion can be drawn about permeability of oxygen and oxidation prevention. The paper presents investigations on the development of protective coatings, which would prevent oxidation of CoSb{sub 3}. Two types of coatings were applied: magnetron sputtered Cr-Si thin layers and thick enamel layers. Testing involved interrupted oxidation in air for 20-80 h at 500 C and 600 C. The Cr-Si thin layers appeared oxygen-tight at 500 C while the enamel layers - even at 600 C. (orig.)

  20. Hierarchical Architecturing for Layered Thermoelectric Sulfides and Chalcogenides

    Priyanka Jood

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Sulfides are promising candidates for environment-friendly and cost-effective thermoelectric materials. In this article, we review the recent progress in all-length-scale hierarchical architecturing for sulfides and chalcogenides, highlighting the key strategies used to enhance their thermoelectric performance. We primarily focus on TiS2-based layered sulfides, misfit layered sulfides, homologous chalcogenides, accordion-like layered Sn chalcogenides, and thermoelectric minerals. CS2 sulfurization is an appropriate method for preparing sulfide thermoelectric materials. At the atomic scale, the intercalation of guest atoms/layers into host crystal layers, crystal-structural evolution enabled by the homologous series, and low-energy atomic vibration effectively scatter phonons, resulting in a reduced lattice thermal conductivity. At the nanoscale, stacking faults further reduce the lattice thermal conductivity. At the microscale, the highly oriented microtexture allows high carrier mobility in the in-plane direction, leading to a high thermoelectric power factor.

  1. Alkaline earth lead and tin compounds Ae2Pb, Ae2Sn, Ae = Ca, Sr, Ba, as thermoelectric materials

    David Parker and David J Singh

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We present a detailed theoretical study of three alkaline earth compounds Ca2Pb, Sr2Pb and Ba2Pb, which have undergone little previous study, calculating electronic band structures and Boltzmann transport and bulk moduli using density functional theory. We also study the corresponding tin compounds Ca2Sn, Sr2Sn and Ba2Sn. We find that these are all narrow band gap semiconductors with an electronic structure favorable for thermoelectric performance, with substantial thermopowers for the lead compounds at temperature ranges from 300 to 800 K. For the lead compounds, we further find very low calculated bulk moduli—roughly half of the values for the lead chalcogenides, suggestive of soft phonons and hence low lattice thermal conductivity. All these facts indicate that these materials merit experimental investigation as potential high performance thermoelectrics. We find good potential for thermoelectric performance in the environmentally friendly stannide materials, particularly at high temperature.

  2. Performance and stress analysis of oxide thermoelectric module architecture designed for maximum power output

    Wijesekara, Waruna; Rosendahl, Lasse; Wu, NingYu;

    Oxide thermoelectric materials are promising candidates for energy harvesting from mid to high temperature heat sources. In this work, the oxide thermoelectric materials and the final design of the high temperature thermoelectric module were developed. Also, prototypes of oxide thermoelectric...... generator were built for high temperature applications. This paper specifically discusses the thermoelectric module design and the prototype validations of the design. Here p type calcium cobalt oxide and n type aluminum doped ZnO were developed as the oxide thermoelectric materials. Hot side and cold side...... temperatures were used as 1100 K and 400 K respectively. Using analytical methods, the optimum thermoelement length and the thermoelements area ratio were explored in order to provide the maximum power output by the uni-couple and it is compared to methods reported in literature. Based on operating conditions...

  3. A theoretical prediction of super high-performance thermoelectric materials based on MoS2/WS2 hybrid nanoribbons.

    Zhang, Zhongwei; Xie, Yuee; Peng, Qing; Chen, Yuanping

    2016-02-17

    Modern society is hungry for electrical power. To improve the efficiency of energy harvesting from heat, extensive efforts seek high-performance thermoelectric materials that possess large differences between electronic and thermal conductance. Here we report a super high-performance material of consisting of MoS2/WS2 hybrid nanoribbons discovered from a theoretical investigation using nonequilibrium Green's function methods combined with first-principles calculations and molecular dynamics simulations. The hybrid nanoribbons show higher efficiency of energy conversion than the MoS2 and WS2 nanoribbons due to the fact that the MoS2/WS2 interface reduces lattice thermal conductivity more than the electron transport. By tuning the number of the MoS2/WS2 interfaces, a figure of merit ZT as high as 5.5 is achieved at a temperature of 600 K. Our results imply that the MoS2/WS2 hybrid nanoribbons have promising applications in thermal energy harvesting.

  4. Preparation of high performance Zn4Sb3 bulk thermoelectric materials%Zn4Sb3高性能热电材料的制备

    陈中春; 辻村润一; 葳本遼

    2011-01-01

    A "reaction -extrusion process" has been developed to prepare Zn4Sb3 bulk materials with high thermoelectric performance. The synthesis, densification, and shape -forming of Zn4Sb3 bulk materials were realized simultaneously in one hot - extrusion process, and the resulting extrudates had high density with single β - Zn4 Sb3phase. A large extrusion ratio and a small punch speed are advantageous to enhance thermoelectric performance. The extruded Zn4Sb3 materials exhibited excellent thermoelectric performance, for example, the dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit is 1.77 at 623 K, which is 36% higher compared to conventional hot - pressed materials. On the other hand, the incorporation of 1% SiC nanosized particles into Zn4Sb3 matrix leads to improvements in both thermoelectric and mechanical properties.

  5. Thermoelectric properties of LaFe3CoSb12 skutterudite materials with different nanostructures

    LU Pengxian; WANG Chunhua; YAN Guojin; ZOU Wenjun; HU Xing

    2011-01-01

    Nanostructures with different morphologies could profoundly influence the electron and phonon transport in thermoelectric materials and thus their properties could be improved by tuning the nanostructures.The LaFe3CoSb12 skutterudite nano powders with different morphologies were fabricated via a hydro/solvo thermal route.The microstructures of the hot-pressed LaFe3CoSb12 bulks were characterized through X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and the effects of the nanostructures on the thermoelectric properties were investigated by measuring the electrical conductivity,the Seebeck coefficient and the thermal conductivity.The results suggested that the mixed morphology of nanorods and nanospheres could enhance the electrical conductivity largely although the Seebeck coefficient was decreased and the themal conductivity was increased slightly.Differently,a higher Seebeck coefficient,a lower thermal conductivity and a lower electrical conductivity could be obtained for the LaFe3CoSb12 bulk with a single morphology of nanospheres.Consequently,the figure of merit of LaFe3CoSb12 bulk with a mixed morphology of nanorods and nanospheres could be increased by about 59% as compared to that with a single morphology of nanospheres.

  6. Phase Change Material Based Accumulation Panels in Combination with Renewable Energy Sources and Thermoelectric Cooling

    Jan Skovajsa

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The article deals with the use of modern materials and technologies that can improve the thermal comfort in buildings. The article describes the design and usage of a special accumulation device, which is composed of thermal panels based on phase change materials (PCMs. The thermal panels have an integrated tube heat exchanger and heating foils. The technology can be used as a passive or active system for heating and cooling. It is designed as a “green technology”, so it is able to use renewable energy sources, e.g., photovoltaic (PV panels, solar thermal collectors and heat pumps. Moreover, an interesting possibility is the ability to use thermoelectric coolers. In the research, measurements of the different operating modes were made, and the results are presented in the text. The measurement approves that the technology improves the thermal capacity of the building, and it is possible to use it for active heating and cooling.

  7. Lead telluride alloy thermoelectrics

    Aaron D. LaLonde

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The opportunity to use solid-state thermoelectrics for waste heat recovery has reinvigorated the field of thermoelectrics in tackling the challenges of energy sustainability. While thermoelectric generators have decades of proven reliability in space, from the 1960s to the present, terrestrial uses have so far been limited to niche applications on Earth because of a relatively low material efficiency. Lead telluride alloys were some of the first materials investigated and commercialized for generators but their full potential for thermoelectrics has only recently been revealed to be far greater than commonly believed. By reviewing some of the past and present successes of PbTe as a thermoelectric material we identify the issues for achieving maximum performance and successful band structure engineering strategies for further improvements that can be applied to other thermoelectric materials systems.

  8. Thermoelectric heat exchange element

    Callas, James J.; Taher, Mahmoud A.

    2007-08-14

    A thermoelectric heat exchange module includes a first substrate including a heat receptive side and a heat donative side and a series of undulatory pleats. The module may also include a thermoelectric material layer having a ZT value of 1.0 or more disposed on at least one of the heat receptive side and the heat donative side, and an electrical contact may be in electrical communication with the thermoelectric material layer.

  9. Corrosion Behavior of Bi2Te3-Based Thermoelectric Materials Fabricated by Melting Method

    Kohri, Hitoshi; Yagasaki, Takayoshi

    2016-11-01

    Bi2Te3-based compounds are used practically as thermoelectric cooling materials. Bi2Te3-Sb2Te3 or Bi2Te3-Bi2Se3 pseudobinary system compounds are usually applied as p- or n-type material, respectively. Atmospheric water may condense on the surface of thermoelectric materials constituting Peltier modules, depending on their operating environment. Very few studies on the corrosion resistance of Bi2Te3-based compounds have been reported in literature. Moreover, the detailed corrosion behavior of Bi2Te3-based compounds remains unclear. In this study, the corrosion behavior of cleavage planes of Bi2Te3-based compounds fabricated by a melting method has been investigated. Bi2Te3, Sb2Te3, and Bi2Se3 were prepared by the vertical Bridgman method, respectively. Their electrochemical properties evaluated at room temperature by cyclic voltammetry in a standard three-electrode cell with naturally aerated 0.6 mass% or 3.0 mass% NaCl solution as working electrolyte. The c-planes of Bi2Te3 and Sb2Te3 exhibited similar corrosion potential. The corrosion potential of c-plane of Bi2Se3 was more cathodic compared with that of the telluride. The passive current density of the Bi2Te3-based compounds was single or double digit lower than that of stainless steel. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy results for the electrolyte after testing indicated the possibility that a corrosion product diffuses to the environment including NaCl for Sb2Te3 and Bi2Se3.

  10. Unique magnetic and thermoelectric properties of chemically functionalized narrow carbon polymers

    Zberecki, K.; Wierzbicki, M.; Swirkowicz, R.; Barnaś, J.

    2017-02-01

    We analyze magnetic, transport and thermoelectric properties of narrow carbon polymers, which are chemically functionalized with nitroxide groups. Numerical calculations of the electronic band structure and the corresponding transmission function are based on density functional theory. Transport and thermoelectric parameters are calculated in the linear response regime, with particular interest in charge and spin thermopowers (charge and spin Seebeck effects). Such nanoribbons are shown to have thermoelectric properties described by large thermoelectric efficiency, which makes these materials promising from the application point of view.

  11. Design, modeling and utilization of thermoelectrical materials and devices in energy systems

    Chen, Min

    Thermoelectric generators can convert waste heat that abounds in modern societies into electricity in an environmentally-friendly and reliable manner, and many applications of thermoelectric devices can be envisaged. The research of this PhD dissertation focuses thermoelectric generator modeling...... at a device level as well as its applications in energy systems. The purpose is to introduce the use of thermoelectric generator into energy systems, and to indicate the impact of implementing thermoelectric generator on the design and operation of energy systems. For this purpose, this dissertation produces...... numerical models as versatile simulation tools to identify speci c optimum design criteria for thermoelectric generators used in various associated thermal and electrical systems, so that the generation performance can be improved due to the optimum system design....

  12. Biphasic thermoelectric materials derived from the half-Heusler/full-Heusler system Ti-Ni-Sn

    Douglas, Jason Everett

    Among the possible avenues for increasing the efficiency of global energy usage, thermoelectrics are an exciting, solid-state option. Thermoelectric materials, which convert an internal temperature gradient into a voltage and vice versa, have found applications in refrigeration as well as power generation from waste heat. TiNiSn, a semiconductor of the half-Heusler (hH) crystal structure, is of particular interest due to its very favorable electronic transport properties, conductivity (sigma) and Seebeck coefficient ( S), at relevant temperature regimes (between 600 K and 900 K). Unfortunately, its overall efficiency is hampered by a comparatively high thermal conductivity (kappa). In the design of thermoelectric materials, a number of approaches have been taken to increase the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT = ( S2sigma/kappa)T, where T is temperature. In this work we examine how microstructure can be used to alter these thermoelectric propertiesin a biphasic Ti-Ni-Sn materials containing full-Heusler (fH) TiNi2Sn embedded within hH thermoelectric TiNiSn. We explored a wide range of Ni compositions in TiNi1+xSn--from stoichiometric TiNiSn to high Heusler volume fraction, TiNi1.25Sn--materials prepared by levitation induction melting followed by annealing. Phase distributions and microstructure were characterized using synchrotron x-ray diffraction and optical and electron microscopy. In a sample of the nominal composition TiNi1.15Sn, a significant decrease in thermal conductivity (about 30%) is observed for the biphasic material despite the metallic second-phase particles existing at the micrometer scale; a 50% increase in the electrical conductivity is also measured. These result in a maximum figure of merit, ZT, of 0.44 at 800 K, which is 25% greater than is observed for the x = 0 sample. Density functional theory calculations using hybrid functionals were performed to determine band alignments between the half- and full-Heusler compounds, as well as

  13. Japan researches new thermo-electric materials; Japan onderzoekt nieuwe thermo-elektrische materialen

    Moitzheim, S.

    2012-10-15

    Research on thermoelectric materials is hot in Japan. These materials are able to generate heat from electricity. Due to their low efficiency, high cost and poor stability, however, they have never been applied on a large scale. An important motivation is to develop new cheap and safe materials from common materials The special properties of nanostructured materials, such as nanowires and nano cubes, make that possible. Such materials may be used for example in internal combustion engines and industrial furnaces in order to reduce consumption of energy [Dutch] In Japan vindt volop onderzoek plaats naar thermo-elektrische materialen, onder andere met steun van de overheid. Deze materialen zijn in staat om elektriciteit op te wekken uit warmte. Door hun lage efficientie, hoge kosten en geringe stabiliteit zijn ze echter nooit op grote schaal toegepast. Een belangrijke drijfveer is nu om nieuwe goedkope en veilige materialen uit veel voorkomende grondstoffen te ontwikkelen. De speciale eigenschappen van nanogestructureerde materialen zoals nanodraden en nanokubussen maken dat mogelijk. Als deze materialen zijn ontwikkeld, kunnen ze mogelijk toegepast worden in bijvoorbeeld verbrandingsmotoren en industriele ovens om het energieverbruik te verminderen.

  14. Electrical and thermal transport property studies of high-temperature thermoelectric materials

    Bates, J. L.

    1984-12-01

    High-temperature materials that exhibit small polaron conduction appear to exhibit the highest figures of merit. A thermoelectric model based on small polaron transport has been developed. The model predicts that broad-band semiconductors with small polarons hopping along inequivalent sites of distorted sublattices can result in increases in both the electrical conductivity and the Seeback coefficient with increasing temperature without significant increases in thermal conductivity. High figures of merit (ZT), greater than 1 at 1000K, that increase with increasing temperatures are predicted. The model is being applied to the divalent metal containing (Y,LA)Cr0(3) systems with an ABO(3) perovskite structure. Transport properties have been determined for various doping elements and for different compositions. These data are being used for the evaluation of this model.

  15. First-principles analysis of anharmonic nuclear motion and thermal transport in thermoelectric materials

    Tadano, Terumasa [Department of Applied Physics, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-8656 (Japan); Tsuneyuki, Shinji [Department of Physics, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-0033 (Japan); Institute for Solid State Physics, The University of Tokyo, Kashiwa 277-8581 (Japan)

    2015-12-31

    We show a first-principles approach for analyzing anharmonic properties of lattice vibrations in solids. We firstly extract harmonic and anharmonic force constants from accurate first-principles calculations based on the density functional theory. Using the many-body perturbation theory of phonons, we then estimate the phonon scattering probability due to anharmonic phonon-phonon interactions. We show the validity of the approach by computing the lattice thermal conductivity of Si, a typical covalent semiconductor, and selected thermoelectric materials PbTe and Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} based on the Boltzmann transport equation. We also show that the phonon lifetime and the lattice thermal conductivity of the high-temperature phase of SrTiO{sub 3} can be estimated by employing the perturbation theory on top of the solution of the self-consistent phonon equation.

  16. Alternative Green Technology for Power Generation Using Waste-Heat Energy And Advanced Thermoelectric Materials Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA is interested in advancing green technology research for achieving sustainable and environmentally friendly energy sources. Thermo-electric power generation...

  17. Electronic Inhomogeneity in PbTe-based High Performance Thermoelectric Materials Observed by NMR

    Levin, E. M.; Schmidt-Rohr, K.; Cook, B. A.; Kanatzidis, M. G.

    2009-03-01

    Effects of composition and synthesis conditions on the local structure and charge carrier concentration in AgxSbyPb18Te20 (LAST-18) thermoelectric (TE) materials have been studied by ^125Te and ^207Pb nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) with magic-angle spinning. The high-resolution ^125Te NMR spectra show that most Sb and Ag is not part of Sb2Te3, AgSbTe2, or Ag2Te inclusions. Biexponential NMR spin-lattice (T1) relaxation as well as Knight shifts of ^125Te and ^207Pb NMR signals show that many LAST-18 materials contain two phases of similar composition but with free electron concentrations that differ by more than an order of magnitude, i.e. these materials are electronically inhomogeneous. The NMR data were calibrated against Hall- and Seebeck-effect measurements to give the charge carrier concentrations in the two phases. This electronic inhomogeneity may result in the appearance of potential barriers inside TE materials, similar to those observed for semiconductor-semiconductor or metal-semiconductor junctions. Such barriers may affect thermopower, electrical, and thermal conductivity of TE materials.

  18. Thermoelectric transport properties of novel nanoscaled materials via homemade and commercial apparatus measurements

    Lukas, Kevin C.

    Thermoelectric (TE) materials are of broad interest for alternate energy applications, specifically waste heat applications, as well as solid-state refrigeration. The efficiency of TE materials can be improved through either the enhancement of the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity, or through the reduction of the thermal conductivity, kappa, specifically the lattice portion of thermal conductivity, kappalatt. Nanostructuring has been proven to reduce kappalatt and therefore increase efficiency. The inability to accurately model the lattice and electronic contributions to kappa makes optimizing the reduction of kappalatt difficult. This work demonstrates that the lattice and electronic contributions to kappa in nanostructured materials can be directly measured experimentally by separating the contributions using magnetic field. We use this technique along with other characterization techniques to determine the effects of doping Ce, Sm, and Ho into Bi88Sb12. Along with enhancing the efficiency of the material, TE devices must be thermally stable in the temperature range of operation. Therefore we also study the effects of temperature cycling, annealing, oxidation, and diffusion barriers on TE devices. These studies are accomplished through both homemade and commercially available measurement equipment.

  19. Nanostructured complex cobalt oxides as potential materials for solar thermoelectric power generators

    Robert, R.; Romer, S.; Weidenkaff, A. [Laboratory of Solid State Chemistry and Analyses, Empa Materials Science and Technology, Ueberlandstrasse 129, CH-8600 Dubendorf (Switzerland); Reller, A. [Solid State Chemistry, University of Augsburg, Universitaetsstrasse 1, D-86150 Augsburg (Germany)

    2005-05-01

    Thermoelectrically active and stable perovskite-type materials e.g. La{sub 1-x}Ca{sub x}CoO{sub 3} (0thermoelectric values measured of the nanostructured ''misfit cobaltite Ca{sub 3}Co{sub 4}O{sub 9}'' shows a Seebeck coefficient of S{sub 300K} {proportional_to} + 123 {mu}VK{sup -1}, and a resistivity of {rho} {proportional_to} 1.9 m{omega} cm at room temperature, which is comparable to the reported value for single crystals. Ca- and Ti-substituted LaCoO{sub 3} reveal thermopower values in the range from S{sub 300K} {proportional_to} + 70 to + 180 {mu}VK{sup -1}. The electrical conductivity of the nanostructured compounds is high in spite of the fact that the grain boundary influence is increasing. The Seebeck coefficient values of the products are positive in the whole temperature range indicating p-type conduction. (Abstract Copyright [2005], Wiley Periodicals, Inc.)

  20. Polylactide-based bionanocomposites: a promising class of hybrid materials.

    Sinha Ray, Suprakas

    2012-10-16

    Polylactide (PLA) is the oldest and potentially one of the most interesting and useful biodegradable man-made polymers because of its renewable origin, controlled synthesis, good mechanical properties, and inherent biocompatibility. The blending of PLA with functional nanoparticles can yield a new class of hybrid materials, commonly known as bionanocomposites, where 1-5% nanoparticles by volume are molecularly dispersed within the PLA matrix. The dispersed nanoparticles with their large surface areas and low percolation thresholds both can improve the properties significantly in comparison with neat PLA and can introduce new value-added properties. Recently, researchers have made extraordinary progress in the practical processing and development of products from PLA bionanocomposites. The variation of the nanofillers with different functionalities can lead to many bionanocomposite applications including environmentally friendly packaging, materials for construction, automobiles, and tissue regeneration, and load-bearing scaffolds for bone reconstruction. This Account focuses on these recent research efforts, processing techniques, and key research challenges in the development of PLA-based bionanocomposites for use in applications from green plastics to biomedical applications. Growing concerns over environmental issues and high demand for advanced polymeric materials with balanced properties have led to the development of bionanocomposites of PLA and natural origin fillers, such as nanoclays. The combination of nanoclays with the PLA matrix allows us to develop green nanocomposites that possess several superior properties. For example, adding ∼5 vol % clay to PLA improved the storage modulus, tensile strength, break elongation, crystallization rate, and other mechanical properties. More importantly, the addition of clay decreases the gas and water vapor permeation, increases the heat distortion temperature and scratch resistance, and controls the biodegradation

  1. Work function determination of promising electrode materials for thermionic converters

    Jacobson, D.

    1977-01-01

    Work performed on this contract was primarily for the evaluation of selected electrode materials for thermionic energy converters. The original objective was to characterize selected nickel based superalloys up to temperatures of 1400 K. It was found that an early selection, Inconel 800 produced a high vapor pressure which interfered with the vacuum emission measurements. The program then shifted to two other areas. The first area was to obtain emission from the superalloys in a cesiated atmosphere. The cesium plasma helps to suppress the vaporization interference. The second area involved characterization of the Lanthanum-Boron series as thermionic emitters. These final two areas resulted in three journal publications which are attached to this report.

  2. Evaluation of Thermoelectric Performance and Durability of Functionalized Skutterudite Legs

    Skomedal, Gunstein; Kristiansen, Nils R.; Sottong, Reinhard; Middleton, Hugh

    2017-04-01

    Thermoelectric generators are a promising technology for waste heat recovery. As new materials and devices enter a market penetration stage, it is of interest to employ fast and efficient measurement methods to evaluate the long-term stability of thermoelectric materials in combination with metallization and coating (functionalized thermoelectric legs). We have investigated a method for measuring several thermoelectric legs simultaneously. The legs are put under a common temperature gradient, and the electrical characteristics of each leg are measured individually during thermal cycling. Using this method, one can test different types of metallization and coating applied to skutterudite thermoelectric legs and look at the relative changes over time. Postcharacterization of these initial tests with skutterudite legs using a potential Seebeck microprobe and an electron microscope showed that oxidation and interlayer diffusion are the main reasons for the gradual increase in internal resistance and the decrease in open-circuit voltage. Although we only tested skutterudite material in this work, the method is fully capable of testing all kinds of material, metallization, and coating. It is thus a promising method for studying the relationship between failure modes and mechanisms of functionalized thermoelectric legs.

  3. Bifunctional thermoelectric tube made of tilted multilayer material as an alternative to standard heat exchangers.

    Takahashi, Kouhei; Kanno, Tsutomu; Sakai, Akihiro; Tamaki, Hiromasa; Kusada, Hideo; Yamada, Yuka

    2013-01-01

    Enormously large amount of heat produced by human activities is now mostly wasted into the environment without use. To realize a sustainable society, it is important to develop practical solutions for waste heat recovery. Here, we demonstrate that a tubular thermoelectric device made of tilted multilayer of Bi(0.5)Sb(1.5)Te3/Ni provides a promising solution. The Bi(0.5)Sb(1.5)Te3/Ni tube allows tightly sealed fluid flow inside itself, and operates in analogy with the standard shell and tube heat exchanger. We show that it achieves perfect balance between efficient heat exchange and high-power generation with a heat transfer coefficient of 4.0 kW/m(2)K and a volume power density of 10 kW/m(3) using low-grade heat sources below 100°C. The Bi(0.5)Sb(1.5)Te3/Ni tube thus serves as a power generator and a heat exchanger within a single unit, which is advantageous for developing new cogeneration systems in factories, vessels, and automobiles where cooling of excess heat is routinely carried out.

  4. Recent Research Progress on the Mg2Si Based Thermoelectric Materials%Mg2Si基热电材料的制备与掺杂研究现状

    曹萌萌; 周园; 任秀峰; 年洪恩; 李翔

    2012-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials can convert electricity into heat reversible directly. It is a material which has a superior performance with a environment-friendly property. Mg2Si based semiconductor is one of the most promising material among the entire semiconductor materials which are nontoxic and cheap. It has a potentially high dimensionless figure of merit ZT. And it is very difficult to synthesize Mg2Si alloy because of the high activity of magnesium. So it becomes the researching key about how to synthesize high performance Mg2Si based thermoelectric materials. In this paper, the basic properties had been briefly introduced, the preparation methods and the doping of Mg-Si based thermoelectric materials and its research progress had been reviewed. Based on the introduction of the various synthetic methods, the advantages and disadvantages of these methods as well as how to improve them were summarized. Whats more, the development direction of thermoelectric materials had been prospected.%热电材料是一种性能优越的环境友好型材料,它能够直接把电能和热能相互转化,是目前新技术能源材料领域的关键材料.Mg2Si基半导体是一种新型的中温区热电材料,具有热电值高,原料无毒害等优点,由于镁的活性较高,如何制备出性能更加优良的Mg2Si基块体热电材料成为本领域研究的重点.本文简要介绍了Mg2Si基热电材料的基本性质,阐述其各种制备方法和掺杂研究现状,并展望其未来研究方向.

  5. Operational Readiness Review Plan for the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Materials Production Tasks

    Cooper, R. H.; Martin, M. M.; Riggs, C. R.; Beatty, R. L.; Ohriner, E. K.; Escher, R. N.

    1990-04-19

    In October 1989, a US shuttle lifted off from Cape Kennedy carrying the spacecraft Galileo on its mission to Jupiter. In November 1990, a second spacecraft, Ulysses, will be launched from Cape Kennedy with a mission to study the polar regions of the sun. The prime source of power for both spacecraft is a series of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs), which use plutonium oxide (plutonia) as a heat source. Several of the key components in this power system are required to ensure the safety of both the public and the environment and were manufactured at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in the 1980 to 1983 period. For these two missions, Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc. (Energy Systems), will provide an iridium alloy component used to contain the plutonia heat source and a carbon composite material that serves as a thermal insulator. ORNL alone will continue to fabricate the carbon composite material. Because of the importance to DOE that Energy Systems deliver these high quality components on time, performance of an Operational Readiness Review (ORR) of these manufacturing activities is necessary. Energy Systems Policy GP 24 entitled "Operational Readiness Process" describes the formal and comprehensive process by which appropriate Energy Systems activities are to be reviewed to ensure their readiness. This Energy System policy is aimed at reducing the risks associated with mission success and requires a management approved "readiness plan" to be issued. This document is the readiness plan for the RTG materials production tasks.

  6. Effect of Initial Bulk Material Composition on Thermoelectric Properties of Bi2Te3 Thin Films

    Budnik, A. V.; Rogacheva, E. I.; Pinegin, V. I.; Sipatov, A. Yu.; Fedorov, A. G.

    2013-07-01

    V2VI3 compounds and solid solutions based on them are known to be the best low-temperature thermoelectric (TE) materials. The predicted possibility of enhancement of the TE figure of merit in two-dimensional (2D) structures has stimulated studies of the properties of these materials in the thin-film state. The goal of the present work is to study the dependences of the Seebeck coefficient S, electrical conductivity σ, Hall coefficient R H, charge carrier mobility μ H, and TE power factor P = S 2 σ of Bi2Te3 thin films on the composition of the initial bulk material used for preparing them. Thin films with thickness d = 200 nm to 250 nm were grown by thermal evaporation in vacuum of stoichiometric Bi2Te3 crystals (60.0 at.% Te) and of crystals with 62.8 at.% Te onto glass substrates at temperatures T S of 320 K to 500 K. It was established that the conductivity type of the initial material is reproduced in films fairly well. For both materials, an increase in T S leads to an increase in the thin-film structural perfection, better correspondence between the film composition and that of the initial material, and increase in S, R H, μ H, σ, and P. The room-temperature maximum values of P for the films grown from crystals with 60.0 at.% and 62.8 at.% Te are P = 7.5 × 10-4 W/K2 m and 35 × 10-4 W/K2 m, respectively. Thus, by using Bi2Te3 crystals with different stoichiometry as initial materials, one can control the conductivity type and TE parameters of the films, applying a simple and low-cost method of thermal evaporation from a single source.

  7. Hybrid thermoelectric piezoelectric generator

    Montgomery, D. S.; Hewitt, C. A.; Carroll, D. L.

    2016-06-01

    This work presents an integration of flexible thermoelectric and piezoelectric materials into a single device structure. This device architecture overcomes several prohibitive issues facing the combination of traditional thermoelectric and piezoelectric generators, while optimizing performance of the combined power output. The structure design uses a carbon nanotube/polymer thin film as a flexible thermoelectric generator that doubles as an electrode on a piezoelectric generator made of poly(vinylidene fluoride). An example 2 × 2 array of devices is shown to generate 89% of the maximum thermoelectric power, and provide 5.3 times more piezoelectric voltage when compared with a traditional device.

  8. Microstructures of FeSi2 based thermoelectric materials prepared by rapid solidification and hot pressing

    Haiyan Chen; Xinbing Zhao; Eckhard Mueller; Yufeng Lu; Cestmir Drasar; Antje Mrotzek

    2004-01-01

    FeSi2 based thermoelectric materials have been prepared by melt spinning and vacuum hot pressing. Most of the rapidly solidified (melt spinning) powders are thin flakes with a thickness less than 0.1 mm. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) surface profiles show there are further finer grain structures with the characteristic size of about 100 nm in a flake. The samples obtained by hot uniaxial pressing (HUP) in vacuum have densities higher than 90% the theoretical density of the materials. It was found by SEM observations that the microstructures are very different for vertical and parallel sections of the HUP samples. X-ray diffraction (XRD)analyses show there are some texture features in the samples. It is considered that the textures of the samples are originated from the orientation of the flakes that tended to align perpendicular to the hot press axis. WSi2 was introduced into the powders unexpectedly during melting process before the rapid solidification, but it makes the microstructures more easily to be explained.

  9. Opportunities and challenges in the use of heavily doped polycrystalline silicon as a thermoelectric material. An experimental study

    2010-01-01

    Large-volume deployment of Si-based Seebeck generators can be foreseen only if polycrystalline rather than single crystalline materials can be actually used. The aim of this study was therefore to verify whether polycrystalline Si films deposited on top of a SiO$_2$ insulating layer can develop interesting thermoelectric power factors. We prepared 450-nm thick heavily boron doped polysilicon layers, setting the initial boron content in the film to be in excess of the boron solubility in polyc...

  10. Sublimation measurements and analysis of high temperature thermoelectric materials and devices

    Shields, V.; Noon, L.

    1983-01-01

    High temperature thermoelectric device sublimation effects are compared for rare earth sulfides, selenides, and state-of-the-art Si-Ge alloys. Although rare earth calcogenides can potentially exhibit superior sublimation characteristics, the state-of-the-art Si-Ge alloy with silicon nitride sublimation-inhibitive coating has been tested to 1000 C. Attention is given to the ceramic electrolyte cells, forming within electrical and thermal insulation, which affect leakage conductance measurements in Si-Ge thermoelectric generators.

  11. Synthesis and characterization of bismuth telluride based nanostructured thermoelectric composite materials

    Keshavarz Khorasgani, Mohsen

    Thermoelectric (TE) materials and devices are attractive in solid-state energy conversion applications such as waste heat recovery, air-conditioning, and refrigeration. Since the 1950's lots of unremitting efforts have been made to enhance the efficiency of energy conversion in TE materials (i. e. improving the figure of merit (ZT)), however, most of commercial bulk TE materials still suffer from low efficiency with ZTs around unity. To enhance the performance of bismuth telluride based TE alloys, we have developed composite TE materials, based on the idea that introducing more engineered interfaces in the bulk TE materials may lead to thermal conductivity reduction due to increased phonon scattering by these interfaces. In this approach it is expected that the electronic transport properties of the material are not effectively affected. Consequently, ZT enhancement can be achieved. In this dissertation we will discuss synthesis and characterization of two types of bismuth telluride based bulk composite TE materials. The first type is engineered to contain the presence of coherent interfaces between phases in the material resulting from different mixtures of totally miscible compounds with similar composition. The second type includes the nanocomposites with embedded foreign nano-particles in which the matrix and the particles are delimited by incoherent interfaces. The synthesis procedure, micro- and nano-structures as well as thermoelectric properties of these composites will be presented. In our study on the composites with coherent interfaces, we produced a series of different composites of p-type bismuth antimony telluride alloys and studied their microstructure and thermoelectric properties. Each composite consists of two phases that were obtained in powder form by mechanical alloying. Mixed powders in various proportions of the two different phases were consolidated by hot extrusion to obtain each bulk composite. The minimum grain size of bulk composites as

  12. Synthesis and Characterization of Polythiophene/Bi2Te3 Nanocomposite Thermoelectric Material

    Ao, W. Q.; Wang, L.; Li, J. Q.; Pan, Fred; Wu, C. N.

    2011-09-01

    To achieve low thermal conductivity, polythiophene (PTh)/bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3) nanocomposite has been prepared by spark plasma sintering using a mixture of nanosized Bi2Te3 and PTh powders. Bi2Te3 powder with spherical-shaped particles of 30 nm diameter and PTh nanosheet powder were first prepared by hydrothermal synthesis and chemical oxidation, respectively. X-ray diffraction analysis and scanning electron microscopy observations revealed that the hybrid composite consists of PTh nanosheets and spherical Bi2Te3. The organic PTh acts as an adhesive in the composite. Transport measurements showed that the PTh in the Bi2Te3 matrix can reduce its thermal conductivity significantly, but also dramatically reduces its electrical conductivity. As a result, the figure of merit of the composite is lower than that of pure Bi2Te3 prepared under the same conditions. The maximum value of ZT for the sample with 5% PTh (by weight) was 0.18 at 473 K, which is rather high compared with other polymer/inorganic thermoelectric material composites.

  13. Eco-friendly p-type Cu2SnS3 thermoelectric material: crystal structure and transport properties

    Shen, Yawei; Li, Chao; Huang, Rong; Tian, Ruoming; Ye, Yang; Pan, Lin; Koumoto, Kunihito; Zhang, Ruizhi; Wan, Chunlei; Wang, Yifeng

    2016-01-01

    As a new eco-friendly thermoelectric material, copper tin sulfide (Cu2SnS3) ceramics were experimentally studied by Zn-doping. Excellent electrical transport properties were obtained by virtue of 3-dimensionally conductive network for holes, which are less affected by the coexistence of cubic and tetragonal phases that formed upon Zn subsitition for Sn; a highest power factors ~0.84 mW m−1 K−2 at 723 K was achieved in the 20% doped sample. Moreover, an ultralow lattice thermal conductivity close to theoretical minimum was observed in these samples, which could be related to the disordering of atoms in the coexisting cubic and tetragonal phases and the interfaces. Thanks to the phonon-glass-electron-crystal features, a maximum ZT ~ 0.58 was obtained at 723 K, which stands among the tops for sulfide thermoelectrics at the same temperature. PMID:27666524

  14. Room-temperature pressure-induced nanostructural CuInTe(2) thermoelectric material with low thermal conductivity.

    Kosuga, Atsuko; Umekage, Kouhei; Matsuzawa, Mie; Sakamoto, Yasuhiro; Yamada, Ikuya

    2014-07-07

    A room-temperature high-pressure synthesis method is proposed as an alternative way to induce nanoscale structural disorder in the bulk thermoelectric CuInTe2 matrix. This disorder stems from the coexistence of distinct domains with different degrees and geometries of disorder at Cu/In cation sites. The lattice thermal conductivity of high-pressure-treated CuInTe2 is substantially less than that of hot-pressed CuInTe2. The Debye-Callaway model reveals that the reduced lattice thermal conductivity is mainly attributed to disorder at the Cu/In cation sites and stacking faults, which were probably created during formation of the high-pressure-treated phases. This study demonstrates that room-temperature high-pressure synthesis can produce a radical change in the crystal structure and physical properties of conventional thermoelectric materials.

  15. Operational readiness review plan for the radioisotope thermoelectric generator materials production tasks

    Cooper, R.H.; Martin, M.M.; Riggs, C.R.; Beatty, R.L.; Ohriner, E.K.; Escher, R.N.

    1990-04-19

    In October 1989, a US shuttle lifted off from Cape Kennedy carrying the spacecraft Galileo on its mission to Jupiter. In November 1990, a second spacecraft, Ulysses, will be launched from Cape Kennedy with a mission to study the polar regions of the sun. The prime source of power for both spacecraft is a series of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs), which use plutonium oxide (plutonia) as a heat source. Several of the key components in this power system are required to ensure the safety of both the public and the environment and were manufactured at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in the 1980 to 1983 period. For these two missions, Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc. (Energy Systems), will provide an iridium-alloy component used to contain the plutonia heat source and a carbon-composite material that serves as a thermal insulator. ORNL alone will continue to fabricate the carbon-composite material. Because of the importance to DOE that Energy Systems deliver these high-quality components on time, performance of an Operational Readiness Review (ORR) of these manufacturing activities is necessary. Energy Systems Policy GP-24 entitled Operational Readiness Process'' describes the formal and comprehensive process by which appropriate Energy Systems activities are to be reviewed to ensure their readiness. This Energy System policy is aimed at reducing the risks associated with mission success and requires a management-approved readiness plan'' to be issued. This document is the readiness plan for the RTG materials production tasks. 6 refs., 11 figs., 1 tab.

  16. Electronic and thermoelectric properties of Mexican hat bands in van-der-Waals materials

    Wickramaratne, Darshana; Zahid, Ferdows; Lake, Roger

    2015-03-01

    Mexican hat dispersions are relatively common in few-layer two-dimensional materials. In one to four monolayers of the group-III chalcogenides (GaS, GaSe, InS, InSe) and Bi2Se3 the valence band undergoes a band inversion from a parabolic to an inverted Mexican hat dispersion as the film thickness is reduced from bulk to a single monolayer. The band inversion is robust against changes in stacking order, omission or inclusion of spin-orbit coupling and the choice of functional. The Mexican hat dispersion results in a 1/√{ E} singularity in the two-dimensional density of states and a step-function turn on in the density of modes. The largest radius of the ring of states occurs for a single monolayer of each material. The dispersion with the largest radius coincides with the maximum power factor and ZT for a material at room temperature. Ab-initio electronic structure calculations are used with a Landauer approach to calculate the thermoelectric transport coefficients. Analytical models of the Mexican hat and the parabolic dispersions are used for comparison and analysis. Vertically biased bilayer graphene could serve as an experimental test-bed for measuring this effect since the radius of the Mexican hat band edge increases linearly with vertical electric field. Support by the NSF and SRC-NRI Project 2204.001 (NSF-ECCS-1124733), FAME, one of six centers of STARnet, a SRC program sponsored by MARCO and DARPA and the use of XSEDE NSF Grant # OCI-1053575.

  17. Nanoscale heat transfer and thermoelectrics for alternative energy

    Robinson, Richard

    2011-03-01

    In the area of alternative energy, thermoelectrics have experienced an unprecedented growth in popularity because of their ability to convert waste heat into electricity. Wired in reverse, thermoelectrics can act as refrigeration devices, where they are promising because they are small in size and lightweight, have no moving parts, and have rapid on/off cycles. However, due to their low efficiencies bulk thermoelectrics have historically been a niche market. Only in the last decade has thermoelectric efficiency exceeded ~ 20 % due to fabrication of nanostructured materials. Nanoscale materials have this advantage because electronic and acoustic confinement effects can greatly increase thermoelectric efficiency beyond bulk values. In this talk, I will introduce our work in the area of nanoscale heat transfer with the goal of more efficient thermoelectrics. I will discuss our experiments and methods to study acoustic confinement in nanostructures and present some of our new nanostructured thermoelectric materials. To study acoustic confinement we are building a nanoscale phonon spectrometer. The instrument can excite phonon modes in nanostructures in the ~ 100 s of GHz. Ballistic phonons from the generator are used to probe acoustic confinement and surface scattering effects. Transmission studies using this device will help optimize materials and morphologies for more efficient nanomaterial-based thermoelectrics. For materials, our group has synthesized nano-layer superlattices of Na x Co O2 . Sodium cobaltate was recently discovered to have a high Seebeck coeficent and is being studied as an oxide thermoelectric material. The thickness of our nano-layers ranges from 5 nm to 300 nm while the lengths can be varied between 10 μ m and 4 mm. Typical aspect ratios are 40 nm: 4 mm, or 1:100,000. Thermoelectric characterization of samples with tilted multiple-grains along the measurement axis indicate a thermoelectric efficiency on par with current polycrystalline samples

  18. Reassessment of the carrier concentration in GeTe-based thermoelectric materials by ^125Te NMR

    Levin, E. M.; Acton, J. D.; Schmidt-Rohr, K.

    2012-02-01

    Ge1-xAgx/2Sbx/2Te p-type thermoelectric materials (``TAGS-n'') were studied extensively in the 1970s and then again recently. They exhibit an unusual combination of large thermopower, S, and high hole concentration, p, reported based on the Hall effect data, which has not been explained. To solve this puzzle, we have synthesized GeTe, GeTe:Bi, and TAGS-n with n = 97, 94, 90, and 85 and studied XRD, thermopower, electrical resistivity, thermal conductivity, and ^125Te NMR. Most importantly, we have determined the carrier concentrations using ^125Te NMR spin-lattice relaxation and Knight shift. In GeTe and GeTe:Bi, we found that carrier concentrations generally agree with the values reported from Hall effect. In TAGS-n, they are much lower but agree better with the values expected from S vs. p for GeTe-based materials, solving the puzzle partially. The NMR vs. Hall effect discrepancy in TAGS-n can be due to the presence not only of holes but also electrons generated by Sb atoms, which results in artificially high hole concentration from Hall effect. Even though the true hole concentration is lower than reported, the thermopower of TAGS-n is still significantly larger than that of GeTe and GeTe:Bi at similar carrier concentration. This can be explained by energy filtering enhanced by potential barriers formed due to Ag-Sb pairs in the TAGS-n lattice.

  19. Thermoelectric plastics: from design to synthesis, processing and structure-property relationships.

    Kroon, Renee; Mengistie, Desalegn Alemu; Kiefer, David; Hynynen, Jonna; Ryan, Jason D; Yu, Liyang; Müller, Christian

    2016-11-07

    Thermoelectric plastics are a class of polymer-based materials that combine the ability to directly convert heat to electricity, and vice versa, with ease of processing. Potential applications include waste heat recovery, spot cooling and miniature power sources for autonomous electronics. Recent progress has led to surging interest in organic thermoelectrics. This tutorial review discusses the current trends in the field with regard to the four main building blocks of thermoelectric plastics: (1) organic semiconductors and in particular conjugated polymers, (2) dopants and counterions, (3) insulating polymers, and (4) conductive fillers. The design and synthesis of conjugated polymers that promise to show good thermoelectric properties are explored, followed by an overview of relevant structure-property relationships. Doping of conjugated polymers is discussed and its interplay with processing as well as structure formation is elucidated. The use of insulating polymers as binders or matrices is proposed, which permit the adjustment of the rheological and mechanical properties of a thermoelectric plastic. Then, nanocomposites of conductive fillers such as carbon nanotubes, graphene and inorganic nanowires in a polymer matrix are introduced. A case study examines poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT) based materials, which up to now have shown the most promising thermoelectric performance. Finally, a discussion of the advantages provided by bulk architectures e.g. for wearable applications highlights the unique advantages that thermoelectric plastics promise to offer.

  20. Preparation and Thermoelectric Properties of SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 Nanocomposite Materials

    RUAN Xuefeng; XIAO Wenkai

    2009-01-01

    A series of SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 core-shell composite particles with 3,6,9,and 12 nm of SiO_2 shell in thickness were prepared by coatingβ-Zn_4Sb_3 microparticles with SiO_2 nanoparticles formed by hydrolyzing the tetraethoxysilane in alcohol-alkali-water solution.SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 nanocomposite thermoelectric materials were fabricated with these core-shell composite particles by spark plasma sintering(SPS)method.Microstructure,phase composition,and thermoelectric properties of SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 nanocomposite thermoelectric materials were systemically investigated.The results show thatβ-Zn_4Sb_3 microparticles are uniformly coated by SiO_2 nanoparticles,and no any phase transformation reaction takes place during SPS process.The electrical and thermal conductivity gradually decreases,and the Seebeck coefficient increases compared to that ofβ-Zn_4Sb_3 bulk material,but the increment of Seebeck coefficient in high temperature range remarkably increases.The thermal conductivity of SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 nanocomposite material with 12 nm of SiO_2 shell is the lowest and only 0.56 W·m~(-1)·K~(-1)at 460 K.As a result,the ZT value of the SiO_2/β-Zn_4Sb_3 nanocomposite material reaches 0.87 at 700 K and increases by 30%.

  1. Foldable Thermoelectric Materials: Improvement of the Thermoelectric Performance of Directly Spun CNT Webs by Individual Control of Electrical and Thermal Conductivity.

    An, Cheng Jin; Kang, Young Hun; Lee, A-Young; Jang, Kwang-Suk; Jeong, Youngjin; Cho, Song Yun

    2016-08-31

    We suggest the fabrication of foldable thermoelectric (TE) materials by embedding conducting polymers into Au-doped CNT webs. The CNT bundles, which are interconnected by a direct spinning method to form 3D networks without interfacial contact resistance, provide both high electrical conductivity and high carrier mobility. The ZT value of the spun CNT web is significantly enhanced through two simple processes. Decorating the porous CNT webs with Au nanoparticles increases the electrical conductivity, resulting in an optimal ZT of 0.163, which represents a more than 2-fold improvement compared to the ZT of pristine CNT webs (0.079). After decoration, polyaniline (PANI) is integrated into the Au-doped CNT webs both to improve the Seebeck coefficient by an energy-filtering effect and to decrease the thermal conductivity by the phonon-scattering effect. This leads to a ZT of 0.203, which is one of the highest ZT values reported for organic TE materials. Moreover, Au-doped CNT/PANI web is ultralightweight, free-standing, thermally stable, and mechanically robust, which makes it a viable candidate for a hybrid TE conversion device for wearable electronics. When a 20 K temperature gradient is applied to the TE module consisting of seven p-n couples, 1.74 μW of power is generated.

  2. Thermoelectric material including a multiple transition metal-doped type I clathrate crystal structure

    Yang, Jihui; Shi, Xun; Bai, Shengqiang; Zhang, Wenqing; Chen, Lidong; Yang, Jiong

    2012-01-17

    A thermoelectric material includes a multiple transition metal-doped type I clathrate crystal structure having the formula A.sub.8TM.sub.y.sub.1.sup.1TM.sub.y.sub.2.sup.2 . . . TM.sub.y.sub.n.sup.nM.sub.zX.sub.46-y.sub.1.sub.-y.sub.2.sub.- . . . -y.sub.n.sub.-z. In the formula, A is selected from the group consisting of barium, strontium, and europium; X is selected from the group consisting of silicon, germanium, and tin; M is selected from the group consisting of aluminum, gallium, and indium; TM.sup.1, TM.sup.2, and TM.sup.n are independently selected from the group consisting of 3d, 4d, and 5d transition metals; and y.sub.1, y.sub.2, y.sub.n and Z are actual compositions of TM.sup.1, TM.sup.2, TM.sup.n, and M, respectively. The actual compositions are based upon nominal compositions derived from the following equation: z=8q.sub.A-|.DELTA.q.sub.1|y.sub.1-|.DELTA.q.sub.2|y.sub.2- . . . -|.DELTA.q.sub.n|y.sub.n, wherein q.sub.A is a charge state of A, and wherein .DELTA.q.sub.1, .DELTA.q.sub.2, .DELTA.q.sub.n are, respectively, the nominal charge state of the first, second, and n-th TM.

  3. Solar-TEP - Development of materials for thermo-electric power generators; SOLAR-TEP - Materialentwicklung fuer solarthermoelektrische Stromerzeuger - Schlussbericht 2008

    Robert, R.; Weidenkaff, A.

    2008-06-15

    This final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) reports on the development of materials for thermo-electric power generators. Cobaltate phases are discussed as being suitable materials for thermoelectric applications at high temperatures. These potential thermoelectric materials are characterised with respect to their crystal structure, microstructure, composition, and thermal stability. The Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity and electrical resistivity of polycrystalline cobaltates with perovskite-type and layered-cobaltite structure are evaluated for a wide temperature range. The large Seebeck coefficient exhibited by both perovskite-type and layered cobaltite phases is analysed using the Heikes formula. The work is illustrated with results obtained for various materials in graphical form.

  4. Crystal structure and mechanical properties of spark plasma sintered Cu2Se: An efficient photovoltaic and thermoelectric material

    Tyagi, Kriti; Gahtori, Bhasker; Bathula, Sivaiah; Jayasimhadri, M.; Sharma, Sakshi; Singh, Niraj Kumar; Haranath, D.; Srivastava, A. K.; Dhar, Ajay

    2015-04-01

    Copper selenide (Cu2Se) based materials are currently being investigated globally for efficient photovoltaic and thermoelectric (TE) device applications. Despite having enormous device potential its crystal structure and mechanical properties are still not fully explored owing to its complex behavior. Stereographic projection is one of such useful tools to estimate the crystallography of the material conclusively. In the current study, the crystal structure of α and β-phases of Cu2Se was determined by its stereographic projections in reciprocal space. Further, mechanical properties of Cu2Se are highly important to avoid catastrophic failure and ensure longevity of the TE devices made out of these materials. Cu2Se exhibited the compressive strength of 45 MPa with 3% of plastic strain and a fracture toughness value of 2±0.02 MPa√m, the latter being significantly higher than that of the other known TE materials. Finally, thermal shock resistance, which is one of the crucial parameters for the stability and longevity of the device applications, was calculated to be 281±12 W m-1. Superior mechanical properties coupled with highly reported thermoelectric behavior makes Cu2Se as a potential candidate for green energy generation.

  5. Design, Modeling, Fabrication, and Evaluation of Thermoelectric Generators with Hot-Wire Chemical Vapor Deposited Polysilicon as Thermoelement Material

    de Leon, Maria Theresa; Tarazona, Antulio; Chong, Harold; Kraft, Michael

    2014-11-01

    This paper presents the design, modeling, fabrication, and evaluation of thermoelectric generators (TEGs) with p-type polysilicon deposited by hot-wire chemical vapor deposition (HWCVD) as thermoelement material. A thermal model is developed based on energy balance and heat transfer equations using lumped thermal conductances. Several test structures were fabricated to allow characterization of the boron-doped polysilicon material deposited by HWCVD. The film was found to be electrically active without any post-deposition annealing. Based on the tests performed on the test structures, it is determined that the Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity, and electrical resistivity of the HWCVD polysilicon are 113 μV/K, 126 W/mK, and 3.58 × 10-5 Ω m, respectively. Results from laser tests performed on the fabricated TEG are in good agreement with the thermal model. The temperature values derived from the thermal model are within 2.8% of the measured temperature values. For a 1-W laser input, an open-circuit voltage and output power of 247 mV and 347 nW, respectively, were generated. This translates to a temperature difference of 63°C across the thermoelements. This paper demonstrates that HWCVD, which is a cost-effective way of producing solar cells, can also be applied in the production of TEGs. By establishing that HWCVD polysilicon can be an effective thermoelectric material, further work on developing photovoltaic-thermoelectric (PV-TE) hybrid microsystems that are cost-effective and better performing can be explored.

  6. BiCuSeO Thermoelectrics: An Update on Recent Progress and Perspective

    Xiaoxuan Zhang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available A BiCuSeO system has been reported as a promising thermoelectric material and has attracted great attention in the thermoelectric community since 2010. Recently, several remarkable studies have been reported and the ZT of BiCuSeO was pushed to a higher level. It motivates us to systematically summarize the recent reports on the BiCuSeO system. In this short review, we start with several attempts to optimize thermoelectric properties of BiCuSeO. Then, we introduce several opinions to explore the origins of low thermal conductivity for BiCuSeO. Several approaches to enhance thermoelectric performance are also summarized, including modulation doping, introducing dual-vacancies, and dual-doping, etc. At last, we propose some possible strategies for enhancing thermoelectric performance of BiCuSeO in future research.

  7. Synthesis of the thermoelectric nanopowder recovered from the used thermoelectric modules.

    Lee, Kun-Jae; Jin, Yun-Ho; Kong, Man-Sik

    2014-10-01

    We fabricated the thermoelectric powder using the used thermoelectric modules in a vehicle. As a starting material, the used thermoelectric modules were collected and separated to substrate, electrode, solder, and thermoelectric parts by a thermal process. The separation process was performed in a wet process at the critical temperature. The solder in the module was the neighbor part of the thermoelectric material with the lowest melting temperature in the module. We focused on the thermal property of the solder to separate the thermoelectric chips in the module. After the separation process, we prepared the pure thermoelectric material by the chemical etching for an impurity removal. Also the thermoelectric nanopowder was fabricated by a chemical reduction reaction using the recycled thermoelectric materials. The recovered nanopowder was confirmed to the phase of bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3) with the particle size of -15 nm.

  8. Enhanced thermoelectric performance of rough silicon nanowires.

    Hochbaum, Allon I; Chen, Renkun; Delgado, Raul Diaz; Liang, Wenjie; Garnett, Erik C; Najarian, Mark; Majumdar, Arun; Yang, Peidong

    2008-01-10

    Approximately 90 per cent of the world's power is generated by heat engines that use fossil fuel combustion as a heat source and typically operate at 30-40 per cent efficiency, such that roughly 15 terawatts of heat is lost to the environment. Thermoelectric modules could potentially convert part of this low-grade waste heat to electricity. Their efficiency depends on the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT of their material components, which is a function of the Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity, thermal conductivity and absolute temperature. Over the past five decades it has been challenging to increase ZT > 1, since the parameters of ZT are generally interdependent. While nanostructured thermoelectric materials can increase ZT > 1 (refs 2-4), the materials (Bi, Te, Pb, Sb, and Ag) and processes used are not often easy to scale to practically useful dimensions. Here we report the electrochemical synthesis of large-area, wafer-scale arrays of rough Si nanowires that are 20-300 nm in diameter. These nanowires have Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivity values that are the same as doped bulk Si, but those with diameters of about 50 nm exhibit 100-fold reduction in thermal conductivity, yielding ZT = 0.6 at room temperature. For such nanowires, the lattice contribution to thermal conductivity approaches the amorphous limit for Si, which cannot be explained by current theories. Although bulk Si is a poor thermoelectric material, by greatly reducing thermal conductivity without much affecting the Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivity, Si nanowire arrays show promise as high-performance, scalable thermoelectric materials.

  9. Search for Lower Temperature(T-100K) Thermoelectric Materials in the Pentatelluride System and other Low Dimensional Systems

    2007-11-02

    International Conference of Thermoelectrics, Baltimore, MD, August 1999, p. 336, IEEE Press, (2000). - Bandgap Features and Thermoelectric Properties...Proceedings of the 18th International Conference of Thermoelectrics, Baltimore, MD, August 1999, IEEE Press, pg. 336, (2000). - Bandgap Features and...Johnson MRS Fall 2001 Symposium G: (# G5-3) - Transformation of Multiwalled Carbon Nanotube into Strings of Carbon Nanoshells B. Sadanadan, J

  10. Multiwalled carbon nanotube-reinforced ceramic matrix composites as a promising structural material

    Estili, Mehdi, E-mail: mehdiestili@gmail.co [Institute for Materials Research, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8577 (Japan); Department of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Engineering, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8579 (Japan); Kwon, Hansang; Kawasaki, Akira; Cho, Seungchan; Takagi, Kenta; Kikuchi, Keiko [Institute for Materials Research, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8577 (Japan); Kawai, Masayoshi [Institute of Materials Structure Science, High Energy Accelerator Research Organization, Oho, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-0801 (Japan)

    2010-03-15

    In this paper, we introduce fully dense, multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)-reinforced ceramic matrix composites recently processed by a novel powder technology in our laboratory to be considered as a promising potential structural materials for employment in severe working conditions. A strategy is also offered to investigate the effect of working condition on the mechanical properties of MWCNTs embedded in the ceramic matrix for a reliable material selection for the working conditions needed.

  11. Carbon nanotubes: A promising catalyst support material for supercritical water gasification of biomass waste

    Vlieger, de D.J.M.; Thakur, D.B.; Lefferts, L.; Seshan, K.

    2012-01-01

    Supercritical water (SCW) as a reaction medium is especially promising for the production of renewable chemicals from biomass. Stability issues of catalyst support materials in SCW are a major setback for these reactions and hinder the further development and industrial exploitation of this techniqu

  12. Electronic cooling using thermoelectric devices

    Zebarjadi, M., E-mail: m.zebarjadi@rutgers.edu [Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854 (United States); Institute of Advanced Materials, Devices, and Nanotechnology, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854 (United States)

    2015-05-18

    Thermoelectric coolers or Peltier coolers are used to pump heat in the opposite direction of the natural heat flux. These coolers have also been proposed for electronic cooling, wherein the aim is to pump heat in the natural heat flux direction and from hot spots to the colder ambient temperature. In this manuscript, we show that for such applications, one needs to use thermoelectric materials with large thermal conductivity and large power factor, instead of the traditionally used high ZT thermoelectric materials. We further show that with the known thermoelectric materials, the active cooling cannot compete with passive cooling, and one needs to explore a new set of materials to provide a cooling solution better than a regular copper heat sink. We propose a set of materials and directions for exploring possible materials candidates suitable for electronic cooling. Finally, to achieve maximum cooling, we propose to use thermoelectric elements as fins attached to copper blocks.

  13. Properties of thin film thermoelectric materials: application to sensors using the Seebeck effect

    Boyer, A.; Cisse, E. (CEM, Sciences et Techniques du Languedoc, 34 - Montpellier (France))

    1992-03-30

    The main thermoelectric properties, i.e. Seebeck coefficient {alpha}, electrical resistivity, {rho}, thermal conductivity K and the coefficient Z of the thermoelectric merit, are determined for narrow-gap V{sub 2}VI{sub 3} semiconductors and semimetals. Variations in {alpha}, K and {rho} depending on the thickness e of the thin film are also measured. The essential technical characteristics such as the sensitivity S{sub f} to flux, the time constant {tau} and the noise equivalent power of a wide-band radiation detector are modelled acording to the adapted thermal conductance eK. The most significant results concerning specific applications are described. Knowledge of these data is useful for the production of sensors based on the Seebeck effect, such as thermocouples, thermopiles, radiation detectors, hyperfrequency power sensors and electrical converters. (orig.).

  14. Apparatuses And Systems For Embedded Thermoelectric Generators

    Hussain, Muhammad M.

    2013-08-08

    An apparatus and a system for embedded thermoelectric generators are disclosed. In one embodiment, the apparatus is embedded in an interface where the ambient temperatures on two sides of the interface are different. In one embodiment, the apparatus is fabricated with the interface in integrity as a unitary piece. In one embodiment, the apparatus includes a first thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The apparatus further includes a second thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The first thermoelectric material is electrically coupled to the second thermoelectric material. In one embodiment, the apparatus further includes an output structure coupled to the first thermoelectric material and the second thermoelectric material and configured to output a voltage.

  15. Green thermoelectrics: Observation and analysis of plant thermoelectric response

    Goupil Christophe

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Plants are sensitive to thermal and electrical effects; yet the coupling of both, known as thermoelectricity, and its quantitative measurement in vegetal systems never were reported. We recorded the thermoelectric response of bean sprouts under various thermal conditions and stress. The obtained experimental data unambiguously demonstrate that a temperature difference between the roots and the leaves of a bean sprout induces a thermoelectric voltage between these two points. Basing our analysis of the data on the force-flux formalism of linear response theory, we found that the strength of the vegetal equivalent to the thermoelectric coupling is one order of magnitude larger than that in the best thermoelectric materials. Experimental data also show the importance of the thermal stress variation rate in the plant’s electrophysiological response. therefore, thermoelectric effects are sufficiently important to partake in the complex and intertwined processes of energy and matter transport within plants.

  16. Green thermoelectrics: Observation and analysis of plant thermoelectric response

    Goupil, C; Khamsing, A; Apertet, Y; Bouteau, F; Mancuso, S; Patino, R; Lecoeur, Ph

    2015-01-01

    Plants are sensitive to thermal and electrical effects; yet the coupling of both, known as thermoelectricity, and its quantitative measurement in vegetal systems never were reported. We recorded the thermoelectric response of bean sprouts under various thermal conditions and stress. The obtained experimental data unambiguously demonstrate that a temperature difference between the roots and the leaves of a bean sprout induces a thermoelectric voltage between these two points. Basing our analysis of the data on the force-flux formalism of linear response theory, we found that the strength of the vegetal equivalent to the thermoelectric coupling is one order of magnitude larger than that in the best thermoelectric materials. Experimental data also show the importance of the thermal stress variation rate in the plant's electrophysiological response. Therefore, thermoelectric effects are sufficiently important to partake in the complex and intertwined processes of energy and matter transport within plants.

  17. Optimization of thermoelectric performance in semiconducting polymers for understanding charge transport and flexible thermoelectric applications

    Glaudell, Anne; Chabinyc, Michael

    2014-03-01

    Organic electronic materials have been widely considered for a variety of energy conversion applications, from photovoltaics to LEDs. Only very recently have organic materials been considered for thermoelectric applications - converting between temperature gradients and electrical potential. The intrinsic disorder in semiconducting polymers leads to an inherently low thermal conductivity, a key parameter in thermoelectric performance. The ability to solution deposit on flexible substrates opens up niche applications including personal cooling and conformal devices. Here work is presented on the electrical conductivity and thermopower of thin film semiconducting polymers, including P3HT and PBTTT-C14. Thermoelectric properties are explored over a wide range of conductivities, from nearly insulating to beyond 100 S/cm, enabled by employing different doping mechanisms, including molecular charge-transfer doping with F4TCNQ and vapor doping with a fluoroalkyl trichlorosilane (FTS). Temperature-dependent measurements suggest competing charge transport mechanisms, likely due to the mixed ordered/disordered character of these polymers. These results show promise for organic materials for thermoelectric applications, and recent results on thin film devices will also be presented.

  18. Solar thermoelectric generator

    Toberer, Eric S.; Baranowski, Lauryn L.; Warren, Emily L.

    2016-05-03

    Solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) are solid state heat engines that generate electricity from concentrated sunlight. A novel detailed balance model for STEGs is provided and applied to both state-of-the-art and idealized materials. STEGs can produce electricity by using sunlight to heat one side of a thermoelectric generator. While concentrated sunlight can be used to achieve extremely high temperatures (and thus improved generator efficiency), the solar absorber also emits a significant amount of black body radiation. This emitted light is the dominant loss mechanism in these generators. In this invention, we propose a solution to this problem that eliminates virtually all of the emitted black body radiation. This enables solar thermoelectric generators to operate at higher efficiency and achieve said efficient with lower levels of optical concentration. The solution is suitable for both single and dual axis solar thermoelectric generators.

  19. Hybrid materials science: a promised land for the integrative design of multifunctional materials

    Nicole, Lionel; Laberty-Robert, Christel; Rozes, Laurence; Sanchez, Clément

    2014-05-01

    For more than 5000 years, organic-inorganic composite materials created by men via skill and serendipity have been part of human culture and customs. The concept of ``hybrid organic-inorganic'' nanocomposites exploded in the second half of the 20th century with the expansion of the so-called ``chimie douce'' which led to many collaborations between a large set of chemists, physicists and biologists. Consequently, the scientific melting pot of these very different scientific communities created a new pluridisciplinary school of thought. Today, the tremendous effort of basic research performed in the last twenty years allows tailor-made multifunctional hybrid materials with perfect control over composition, structure and shape. Some of these hybrid materials have already entered the industrial market. Many tailor-made multiscale hybrids are increasingly impacting numerous fields of applications: optics, catalysis, energy, environment, nanomedicine, etc. In the present feature article, we emphasize several fundamental and applied aspects of the hybrid materials field: bioreplication, mesostructured thin films, Lego-like chemistry designed hybrid nanocomposites, and advanced hybrid materials for energy. Finally, a few commercial applications of hybrid materials will be presented.

  20. Hybrid materials science: a promised land for the integrative design of multifunctional materials.

    Nicole, Lionel; Laberty-Robert, Christel; Rozes, Laurence; Sanchez, Clément

    2014-06-21

    For more than 5000 years, organic-inorganic composite materials created by men via skill and serendipity have been part of human culture and customs. The concept of "hybrid organic-inorganic" nanocomposites exploded in the second half of the 20th century with the expansion of the so-called "chimie douce" which led to many collaborations between a large set of chemists, physicists and biologists. Consequently, the scientific melting pot of these very different scientific communities created a new pluridisciplinary school of thought. Today, the tremendous effort of basic research performed in the last twenty years allows tailor-made multifunctional hybrid materials with perfect control over composition, structure and shape. Some of these hybrid materials have already entered the industrial market. Many tailor-made multiscale hybrids are increasingly impacting numerous fields of applications: optics, catalysis, energy, environment, nanomedicine, etc. In the present feature article, we emphasize several fundamental and applied aspects of the hybrid materials field: bioreplication, mesostructured thin films, Lego-like chemistry designed hybrid nanocomposites, and advanced hybrid materials for energy. Finally, a few commercial applications of hybrid materials will be presented.

  1. Ionic thermoelectric gating organic transistors

    Zhao, Dan; Fabiano, Simone; Berggren, Magnus; Crispin, Xavier

    2017-01-01

    Temperature is one of the most important environmental stimuli to record and amplify. While traditional thermoelectric materials are attractive for temperature/heat flow sensing applications, their sensitivity is limited by their low Seebeck coefficient (∼100 μV K−1). Here we take advantage of the large ionic thermoelectric Seebeck coefficient found in polymer electrolytes (∼10,000 μV K−1) to introduce the concept of ionic thermoelectric gating a low-voltage organic transistor. The temperature sensing amplification of such ionic thermoelectric-gated devices is thousands of times superior to that of a single thermoelectric leg in traditional thermopiles. This suggests that ionic thermoelectric sensors offer a way to go beyond the limitations of traditional thermopiles and pyroelectric detectors. These findings pave the way for new infrared-gated electronic circuits with potential applications in photonics, thermography and electronic-skins. PMID:28139738

  2. Ionic thermoelectric gating organic transistors

    Zhao, Dan; Fabiano, Simone; Berggren, Magnus; Crispin, Xavier

    2017-01-01

    Temperature is one of the most important environmental stimuli to record and amplify. While traditional thermoelectric materials are attractive for temperature/heat flow sensing applications, their sensitivity is limited by their low Seebeck coefficient (~100 μV K-1). Here we take advantage of the large ionic thermoelectric Seebeck coefficient found in polymer electrolytes (~10,000 μV K-1) to introduce the concept of ionic thermoelectric gating a low-voltage organic transistor. The temperature sensing amplification of such ionic thermoelectric-gated devices is thousands of times superior to that of a single thermoelectric leg in traditional thermopiles. This suggests that ionic thermoelectric sensors offer a way to go beyond the limitations of traditional thermopiles and pyroelectric detectors. These findings pave the way for new infrared-gated electronic circuits with potential applications in photonics, thermography and electronic-skins.

  3. Thermoelectric Energy Conversion: Future Directions and Technology Development Needs

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre

    2007-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the process of thermoelectric energy conversion along with key technology needs and challenges. The topics include: 1) The Case for Thermoelectrics; 2) Advances in Thermoelectrics: Investment Needed; 3) Current U.S. Investment (FY07); 4) Increasing Thermoelectric Materials Conversion Efficiency Key Science Needs and Challenges; 5) Developing Advanced TE Components & Systems Key Technology Needs and Challenges; 6) Thermoelectrics; 7) 200W Class Lightweight Portable Thermoelectric Generator; 8) Hybrid Absorption Cooling/TE Power Cogeneration System; 9) Major Opportunities in Energy Industry; 10) Automobile Waste Heat Recovery; 11) Thermoelectrics at JPL; 12) Recent Advances at JPL in Thermoelectric Converter Component Technologies; 13) Thermoelectrics Background on Power Generation and Cooling Operational Modes; 14) Thermoelectric Power Generation; and 15) Thermoelectric Cooling.

  4. Synthesis of PbTe-SnTe particles by thermal decomposition of salts to create nano-structured thermoelectric materials

    Leontyev, V.G.; Ivanova, L.D. [Institution of Russian Academy of Sciences A.A. Baikov Institute of Metallurgy and Material Science RAS, Leninskii prospect, 49, 119991 Moscow (Russian Federation); Bente, K. [Institut fuer Mineralogie, Kristallographie und Materialwissenschaft, Leipzig University, Scharnhorststr. 20, 04275 Leipzig (Germany); Gremenok, V.F. [State Scientific and Production Association ' ' Scientific-Practical Materials Research Centre of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus' ' , P. Brovka str. 19, 220072 Minsk (Belarus)

    2012-05-15

    Micro- and nanocrystalline particles of Pb-Sn-Te mixed crystals were synthesized using thermal decomposition and chemical interaction of lead acetate, tin oxalate and tellurium powder mixture in H{sub 2} atmosphere. For the process parameter optimization data of thermal gravimetry (TG), X-ray diffraction (XRD), electronic microscopy (TEM, SEM) and measurements of the specific surface of particles were used. Additionally the influence of gas phases on the decomposition kinetics, crystal structure, size, specific surface of the particles, gains composition and the physical properties were analyzed. Seebeck coefficient values increased and conductivity decreased with decreasing tin concentration. The presented method for preparing PbTe-SnTe polydisperse particles is developed to create nano-structured thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit. (copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim) (orig.)

  5. Copper-based diamond-like ternary semiconductors for thermoelectric applications

    Skoug, Eric John

    Heightened global concern over greenhouse gas emissions has led to an increased demand for clean energy conversion technologies. Thermoelectric materials convert directly between thermal and electrical energy and can increase the efficiency of existing processes via waste heat recovery and solid-state climate control applications. The conversion efficiency of available thermoelectric materials and the devices comprised of them is unfortunately quite low, and thus new materials must be developed in order for thermoelectrics to keep pace with competing technologies. One approach to increasing the conversion efficiency of a given material is to decrease its lattice thermal conductivity, which has traditionally been accomplished by introducing phonon scattering centers into the material. These scattering centers also tend to degrade electronic transport in the material, thereby minimizing the overall effect on the thermoelectric performance. The purpose of this work is to develop materials with inherently low lattice thermal conductivity such that no extrinsic modifications are required. A novel approach in which complex ternary semiconductors are derived from well-known binary or elemental semiconductors is employed to identify candidate materials. Ternary diamond-like compounds, namely Cu2SnSe 3 and Cu3SbSe4, are synthesized, characterized, and optimized for thermoelectric applications. It is found that sample-to-sample variations in hole concentration limits the plausibility of Cu2SnSe3 as a thermoelectric material. Cu3SbSe 4 is found to be a promising material that can achieve thermoelectric performance comparable to state-of-the-art materials when optimized. This work uncovers anomalous thermal conductivity in several Cu-Sb-Se ternary compounds, which is used to develop a set of guidelines relating crystal structure to inherently low lattice thermal conductivity.

  6. Introduction to thermoelectricity

    Goldsmid, H Julian

    2016-01-01

    This book is a comprehensive introduction to all aspects of thermoelectric energy conversion. It covers both theory and practice. The book is timely as it refers to the many improvements that have come about in the last few years through the use of nanostructures. The concept of semiconductor thermoelements led to major advances during the second half of the twentieth century, making Peltier refrigeration a widely used technique. The latest materials herald thermoelectric generation as the preferred technique for exploiting low-grade heat. The book shows how progress has been made by increasing the thermal resistivity of the lattice until it is almost as large as it is for glass. It points the way towards the attainment of similar improvements in the electronic parameters. It does not neglect practical considerations, such as the desirability of making thermocouples from inexpensive and environmentally acceptable materials. The second edition was extended to also include recent advances in thermoelectric ener...

  7. Apparatus for the measurement of electrical resistivity, Seebeck coefficient, and thermal conductivity of thermoelectric materials between 300 K and 12 K.

    Martin, Joshua; Nolas, George S

    2016-01-01

    We have developed a custom apparatus for the consecutive measurement of the electrical resistivity, the Seebeck coefficient, and the thermal conductivity of materials between 300 K and 12 K. These three transport properties provide for a basic understanding of the thermal and electrical properties of materials. They are of fundamental importance in identifying and optimizing new materials for thermoelectric applications. Thermoelectric applications include waste heat recovery for automobile engines and industrial power generators, solid-state refrigeration, and remote power generation for sensors and space probes. The electrical resistivity is measured using a four-probe bipolar technique, the Seebeck coefficient is measured using the quasi-steady-state condition of the differential method in a 2-probe arrangement, and the thermal conductivity is measured using a longitudinal, multiple gradient steady-state technique. We describe the instrumentation and the measurement uncertainty associated with each transport property, each of which is presented with representative measurement comparisons using round robin samples and/or certified reference materials. Transport properties data from this apparatus have supported the identification, development, and phenomenological understanding of novel thermoelectric materials.

  8. Apparatus for the measurement of electrical resistivity, Seebeck coefficient, and thermal conductivity of thermoelectric materials between 300 K and 12 K

    Martin, Joshua; Nolas, George S.

    2016-01-01

    We have developed a custom apparatus for the consecutive measurement of the electrical resistivity, the Seebeck coefficient, and the thermal conductivity of materials between 300 K and 12 K. These three transport properties provide for a basic understanding of the thermal and electrical properties of materials. They are of fundamental importance in identifying and optimizing new materials for thermoelectric applications. Thermoelectric applications include waste heat recovery for automobile engines and industrial power generators, solid-state refrigeration, and remote power generation for sensors and space probes. The electrical resistivity is measured using a four-probe bipolar technique, the Seebeck coefficient is measured using the quasi-steady-state condition of the differential method in a 2-probe arrangement, and the thermal conductivity is measured using a longitudinal, multiple gradient steady-state technique. We describe the instrumentation and the measurement uncertainty associated with each transport property, each of which is presented with representative measurement comparisons using round robin samples and/or certified reference materials. Transport properties data from this apparatus have supported the identification, development, and phenomenological understanding of novel thermoelectric materials.

  9. Ti-decorated graphitic-C3N4 monolayer: A promising material for hydrogen storage

    Zhang, Weibin; Zhang, Zhijun; Zhang, Fuchun; Yang, Woochul

    2016-11-01

    Ti-decorated graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) monolayer as a promising material system for high-capacity hydrogen storage is proposed through density functional theory calculations. The stability and hydrogen adsorption of Ti-decorated g-C3N4 is analyzed by computing the adsorption energy, the charge population, and electronic density of states. The most stable decoration site of Ti atom is the triangular N hole in g-C3N4 with an adsorption energy of -7.58 eV. The large diffusion energy barrier of the adsorbed Ti atom of ∼6.00 eV prohibits the cluster formation of Ti atoms. The electric field induced by electron redistribution of Ti-adsorbed porous g-C3N4 significantly enhanced hydrogen adsorption up to five H2 molecules at each Ti atom with an average adsorption energy of -0.30 eV/H2. The corresponding hydrogen capacity reaches up to 9.70 wt% at 0 K. In addition, the hydrogen capacity is predicted to be 6.30 wt% at 233 K and all adsorbed H2 are released at 393 K according to molecular dynamics simulation. Thus, the Ti-decorated g-C3N4 monolayer is suggested to be a promising material for hydrogen storage suggested by the DOE for commercial applications.

  10. Influence of Thomson effect on the resultant local Seebeck coefficient in thermoelectric composite materials

    Yamashita, Osamu; Odahara, Hirotaka; Ochi, Takahiro; Satou, Kouji

    2009-01-01

    The resultant local Seebeck coefficient α R (= α S- α T) at the interface of a thermoelement has not yet been measured, although it is an important factor governing the thermoelectric efficiency, where α S is the local Seebeck coefficient and α T is the one caused by the Thomson effect. It is shown in this paper that α S, α T, and α R of the p- and n-type Cu/Bi Te/Cu composites are obtained analytically and experimentally on the assumption that the local temperature of the composite on which the temperature difference Δ T is imposed varies linearly with changes in position along the composite. They were indeed estimated as a function of position from the local experimental data of R,Δ I,Δ T, and V generated by applying an additional current of ± I to the composite, where R is the electrical resistance and Δ I is a current generated by the composite. As a result, it was found that the absolute values of α S at the hot interface of the p- and n-type composites are approximately 1.5 and 1.4 times higher than their lowest values in the middle region of the composite, respectively, while those of α T are less than 8% of α S all over the composite and are so small that the relation α R≈ α S can be held. We thus succeeded in measuring α R at the interfaces of the composite.

  11. High thermoelectric power factor in two-dimensional crystals of Mo S2

    Hippalgaonkar, Kedar; Wang, Ying; Ye, Yu; Qiu, Diana Y.; Zhu, Hanyu; Wang, Yuan; Moore, Joel; Louie, Steven G.; Zhang, Xiang

    2017-03-01

    The quest for high-efficiency heat-to-electricity conversion has been one of the major driving forces toward renewable energy production for the future. Efficient thermoelectric devices require high voltage generation from a temperature gradient and a large electrical conductivity while maintaining a low thermal conductivity. For a given thermal conductivity and temperature, the thermoelectric power factor is determined by the electronic structure of the material. Low dimensionality (1D and 2D) opens new routes to a high power factor due to the unique density of states (DOS) of confined electrons and holes. The 2D transition metal dichalcogenide (TMDC) semiconductors represent a new class of thermoelectric materials not only due to such confinement effects but especially due to their large effective masses and valley degeneracies. Here, we report a power factor of Mo S2 as large as 8.5 mW m-1K-2 at room temperature, which is among the highest measured in traditional, gapped thermoelectric materials. To obtain these high power factors, we perform thermoelectric measurements on few-layer Mo S2 in the metallic regime, which allows us to access the 2D DOS near the conduction band edge and exploit the effect of 2D confinement on electron scattering rates, resulting in a large Seebeck coefficient. The demonstrated high, electronically modulated power factor in 2D TMDCs holds promise for efficient thermoelectric energy conversion.

  12. Assessing the thermoelectric properties of single InSb nanowires: the role of thermal contact resistance

    Yazji, S.; Swinkels, M. Y.; De Luca, M.; Hoffmann, E. A.; Ercolani, D.; Roddaro, S.; Abstreiter, G.; Sorba, L.; Bakkers, E. P. A. M.; Zardo, I.

    2016-06-01

    The peculiar shape and dimensions of nanowires (NWs) have opened the way to their exploitation in thermoelectric applications. In general, the parameters entering into the thermoelectric figure of merit are strongly interdependent, which makes it difficult to realize an optimal thermoelectric material. In NWs, instead, the power factor can be increased and the thermal conductivity reduced, thus boosting the thermoelectric efficiency compared to bulk materials. However, the assessment of all the thermoelectric properties of a NW is experimentally very challenging. Here, we focus on InSb NWs, which have proved to be promising thermoelectric materials. The figure of merit is accurately determined by using a novel method based on a combination of Raman spectroscopy and electrical measurements. Remarkably, this type of experiment provides a powerful approach allowing us to neglect the role played by thermal contact resistance. Furthermore, we compare the thermal conductivity determined by this novel method to the one determined on the same sample by the thermal bridge method. In this latter approach, the thermal contact resistance is a non-negligible parameter, especially in NWs with large diameters. We provide experimental evidence of the crucial role played by thermal contact resistance in the assessment of the thermal properties of nanostructures, using two different measurement methods of the thermal conductivity.

  13. Crystallite size dependence of thermoelectric performance of CuCrO2

    Ngo, T. N. M.; Palstra, T. T. M.; Blake, G. R.

    2016-01-01

    The layered delafossite CuCrO2 has attracted attention as a promising thermoelectric material because its electrical conductivity can be greatly increased by doping. Here we study the effect of crystallite size and morphology on the thermal conductivity, Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivit

  14. Thermoelectric system

    Reiners, Eric A.; Taher, Mahmoud A.; Fei, Dong; McGilvray, Andrew N.

    2007-10-30

    In one particular embodiment, an internal combustion engine is provided. The engine comprises a block, a head, a piston, a combustion chamber defined by the block, the piston, and the head, and at least one thermoelectric device positioned between the combustion chamber and the head. In this particular embodiment, the thermoelectric device is in direct contact with the combustion chamber. In another particular embodiment, a cylinder head configured to sit atop a cylinder bank of an internal combustion engine is provided. The cylinder head comprises a cooling channel configured to receive cooling fluid, valve seats configured for receiving intake and exhaust valves, and thermoelectric devices positioned around the valve seats.

  15. Optimization of p-type Segmented Bi2Te3/CoSb3 Thermoelectric Material Prepared by Spark Plasma Sintering

    WANG Jun; TANG Xinfeng; LIU Haiqiang; YANG Xiuli; ZHANG Qingjie

    2006-01-01

    A kind of p- type segmented Bi2 Te3/ CoSb3 thermoelectric material was prepared by spark plasma sintering( SPS ). When the segmented materials were used at the temperature ranging from 300 K to 800 K, the junction temperature was optimized, which is about 500 K, and the corresponding length ratio of CoSb3 to Bi2 Te3 is about 15:2. The measured maximum power output of segmented materials is about 320 W·m-2, which is about 1.8 times as high as that of monolithic material CoSb3 under the same measuring conditions.

  16. A promising method to derive the temperature coefficients of material constants of SAW and BAW materials. first application to LGS.

    Nicolay, Pascal; Aubert, Thierry

    2014-08-01

    Langasite (LGS) is a promising material for SAW applications at high temperature. However, the temperature coefficients of LGS material constants are not accurate enough to perform reliable simulations, and therefore to make good use of available design tools, above 300°C. In the first part of the paper, we describe a new possible way to derive these coefficients in a wider temperature range. The method is based on Simulated Annealing, a well-known optimization algorithm. The algorithm converges toward a set of optimized temperature coefficients of the stiffness constants which are used to perform accurate simulations up to at least 800°C. In the second part, a deeper analysis of the algorithm outputs demonstrates some of its strengths but also some of its main limitations. Possible solutions are described to predict and then improve the accuracy of the optimized coefficient values. In particular, one solution making use of additional BAW target curves is tested. A promising solution to extend the optimization to the temperature coefficients of piezoelectric constants is also discussed.

  17. Development Status and Plans of the Advanced Thermoelectric Converter (ATEC) Project

    Ewell, Richard; Caillat, Thierry

    2008-01-01

    Advances in thermoelectric materials with high ZT in mid-90's, revived interest in advanced thermoelectric materials at DOE, DOD and NASA NASA. JPL, in collaboration with Universities, identified promising high temperature thermoelectric materials for potential use in next generation RTGs nder DOD and NASA funding (1995 to 2005). Based on these advances the ATEC project was initiated in January 2006 to develop an advanced converter by 2010 (10-12% couple efficiency). ATEC is a technology maturation project with an off-ramp to a proposed Advanced RTG (ARTG) providing 6-8 W/kg and 8-10% system efficiency to support potential future SMD missions as early as 2017. In addition, work is continuing on advancing the TE materials technology to support development of an RTG with 12-14 W/kg and 15 to 20% efficiency by 2020.

  18. Influence of light waves on the thermoelectric power under large magnetic field in III-V, ternary and quaternary materials

    Ghatak, K.P. [Department of Electronic Science, The University of Calcutta, 92, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road, Kolkata 700 009 (India); Bhattacharya, S. [Post Graduate Department of Computer Science, St. Xavier' s College, 30 Park Street, Kolkata 700 016 (India); Pahari, S. [Department of Administration, Jadavpur University, Kolkata 700 032 (India); De, D. [Department of Computer Science and Engineering, West Bengal University of Technology, B. F. 142, Sector I, Salt Lake, Kolkata 700 064 (India); Ghosh, S.; Mitra, M. [Department of Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering, Bengal Engineering and Science University, Howrah 711 103 (India)

    2008-04-15

    We study theoretically the influence of light waves on the thermoelectric power under large magnetic field (TPM) for III-V, ternary and quaternary materials, whose unperturbed energy-band structures, are defined by the three-band model of Kane. The solution of the Boltzmann transport equation on the basis of this newly formulated electron dispersion law will introduce new physical ideas and experimental findings in the presence of external photoexcitation. It has been found by taking n-InAs, n-InSb, n-Hg{sub 1-x}Cd{sub x}Te and n-In{sub 1-x}Ga{sub x}As{sub y}P{sub 1-y} lattice matched to InP as examples that the TPM decreases with increase in electron concentration, and increases with increase in intensity and wavelength, respectively in various manners. The strong dependence of the TPM on both light intensity and wavelength reflects the direct signature of light waves that is in direct contrast as compared with the corresponding bulk specimens of the said materials in the absence of external photoexcitation. The rate of change is totally band-structure dependent and is significantly influenced by the presence of the different energy-band constants. The well-known result for the TPM for nondegenerate wide-gap materials in the absence of light waves has been obtained as a special case of the present analysis under certain limiting conditions and this compatibility is the indirect test of our generalized formalism. Besides, we have also suggested the experimental methods of determining the Einstein relation for the diffusivity:mobility ratio, the Debye screening length and the electronic contribution to the elastic constants for materials having arbitrary dispersion laws. (Abstract Copyright [2008], Wiley Periodicals, Inc.)

  19. On Electronic Structure Engineering and Thermoelectric Performance

    Jeong, Changwook; Lundstrom, Mark S.

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we address the question of how to engineer the electronic structure to enhance the performance of a thermoelectric material. We examine several different materials and show that all of them, even those for which giant Seebeck coefficients have been predicted, display a value that is expected from conventional thermoelectric theory. For molecular thermoelectrics, we show that the detailed lineshape plays an important role. Finally, using III-V alloy semiconductors as a model sys...

  20. Thermocouple Structure in Thermoelectric Conversion Devices

    WU; Wei-ming; TANG; Xian; LUO; Zhi-fu

    2013-01-01

    The core of thermoelectric conversion device is the thermocouples which are constituted with P-type and N-type thermoelectric material.Thermocouple structure is very important for efficiency of thermoelectric power generation.Common thermocouple is the segmented structure,as shown in Fig.1.Each material works in its best temperature range.This structure ensures that the device get a high figure

  1. Concentrated Solar Thermoelectric Power

    Chen, Gang [MIT; Ren, Zhifeng [University of Houston

    2015-07-09

    The goal of this project is to demonstrate in the lab that solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) can exceed 10% solar-to-electricity efficiency, and STEGs can be integrated with phase-change materials (PCM) for thermal storage, providing operation beyond daylight hours. This project achieved significant progress in many tasks necessary to achieving the overall project goals. An accurate Themoelectric Generator (TEG) model was developed, which included realistic treatment of contact materials, contact resistances and radiative losses. In terms of fabricating physical TEGs, high performance contact materials for skutterudite TE segments were developed, along with brazing and soldering methods to assemble segmented TEGs. Accurate measurement systems for determining device performance (in addition to just TE material performance) were built for this project and used to characterize our TEGs. From the optical components’ side, a spectrally selective cermet surface was developed with high solar absorptance and low thermal emittance, with thermal stability at high temperature. A measurement technique was also developed to determine absorptance and total hemispherical emittance at high temperature, and was used to characterize the fabricated spectrally selective surfaces. In addition, a novel reflective cavity was designed to reduce radiative absorber losses and achieve high receiver efficiency at low concentration ratios. A prototype cavity demonstrated that large reductions in radiative losses were possible through this technique. For the overall concentrating STEG system, a number of devices were fabricated and tested in a custom built test platform to characterize their efficiency performance. Additionally, testing was performed with integration of PCM thermal storage, and the storage time of the lab scale system was evaluated. Our latest testing results showed a STEG efficiency of 9.6%, indicating promising potential for high performance concentrated STEGs.

  2. Lunar Base Thermoelectric Power Station Study

    Determan, William; Frye, Patrick; Mondt, Jack; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Johnson, Ken; Stapfer, Gerhard; Brooks, Michael; Heshmatpour, Ben

    2006-01-01

    Under NASA's Project Prometheus, the Nuclear Space Power Systems Program, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, and Teledyne Energy Systems have teamed with a number of universities, under the Segmented Thermoelectric Multicouple Converter (STMC) Task, to develop the next generation of advanced thermoelectric converters for space reactor power systems. Work on the STMC converter assembly has progressed to the point where the lower temperature stage of the segmented multicouple converter assembly is ready for laboratory testing, and promising candidates for the upper stage materials have been identified and their properties are being characterized. One aspect of the program involves mission application studies to help define the potential benefits from the use of these STMC technologies for designated NASA missions such as a lunar base power station where kilowatts of power would be required to maintain a permanent manned presence on the surface of the moon. A modular 50 kWe thermoelectric power station concept was developed to address a specific set of requirements developed for this particular mission concept. Previous lunar lander concepts had proposed the use of lunar regolith as in-situ radiation shielding material for a reactor power station with a one kilometer exclusion zone radius to minimize astronaut radiation dose rate levels. In the present concept, we will examine the benefits and requirements for a hermetically-sealed reactor thermoelectric power station module suspended within a man-made lunar surface cavity. The concept appears to maximize the shielding capabilities of the lunar regolith while minimizing its handling requirements. Both thermal and nuclear radiation levels from operation of the station, at its 100-m exclusion zone radius, were evaluated and found to be acceptable. Site preparation activities are reviewed as well as transport issues for this concept. The goal of the study was to review the entire life cycle of the

  3. In-Situ Growth of Yb2O3 Layer for Sublimation Suppression for Yb14MnSb11 Thermoelectric Material for Space Power Applications

    Nesbitt, James A.; Opila, Elizabeth J.; Nathal, Michael V.

    2012-01-01

    The compound Yb14MnSb11 is a p-type thermoelectric material of interest to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) as a candidate replacement for the state-of-the-art Si-Ge used in current radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). Ideally, the hot end of this leg would operate at 1000 C in the vacuum of space. Although Yb14MnSb11 shows the potential to double the value of the thermoelectric figure of merit (zT) over that of Si-Ge at 1000 C, it suffers from a high sublimation rate at elevated temperatures and would require a coating in order to survive the required RTG lifetime of 14 years. The purpose of the present work is to measure the sublimation rate of Yb14MnSb11 and to investigate sublimation suppression for this material. This paper reports on the sublimation rate of Yb14MnSb11 at 1000 C (approximately 3 x 10(exp -3) grams per square centimeter hour) and efforts to reduce the sublimation rate with an in situ grown Yb2O3 layer. Despite the success in forming thin, dense, continuous, and adherent oxide scales on Yb14MnSb11, the scales did not prove to be sublimation barriers.

  4. Probing the mechanical properties and microstructure of WSi2/SixGe1-x multiphase thermoelectric material by nanoindentation, electron and focused ion beam microscopy methods

    Sola, Francisco; Dynys, Frederick

    2015-03-01

    Silicon germanium (SiGe) thermoelectric (TE) alloys have been traditionally used in radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG) NASA applications. While RTG applications is the main driver of our current research, we are exploring other applications in the energy harvesting arena. There is still a need to improve the TE figure of merit (ZT) of SiGe based TE alloys and we have been working on ways to improve it by incorporating tungsten di-silicide (WSi2) phases in to the matrix by directional solidification process. Considerable efforts have been focused until now in microstructural engineering methods that can lead to ZT improvement by microstructure optimization. Although critical for the previous mentioned applications, work pertinent to the mechanical integrity of WSi2/SiGe based TE materials is lacking. In this presentation, we report local mechanical properties (hardness, modulus and fracture toughness) and microstructure of WSi2/SiGe multiphase thermoelectric material by nanoindentation, scanning electron microscopy, focused ion beam and transmission electron microscopy methods.

  5. Could Borophene Be Used as a Promising Anode Material for High-Performance Lithium Ion Battery?

    Zhang, Yang; Wu, Zhi-Feng; Gao, Peng-Fei; Zhang, Sheng-Li; Wen, Yu-Hua

    2016-08-31

    The rapid development of electronic products has inspired scientists to design and explore novel electrode materials with an ultrahigh rate of charging/discharging capability, such as two-dimensional (2-D) nanostructures of graphene and MoS2. In this study, another 2-D nanosheet, that is a borophene layer, has been predicted to be utilized as a promising anode material for high-performance Li ion battery based on density functional theory calculations. Our study has revealed that Li atom can combine strongly with borophene surface strongly and easily, and exist as a pure Li(+) state. A rather small energy barrier (0.007 eV) of Li diffusion leads to an ultrahigh diffusivity along an uncorrugated direction of borophene, which is estimated to be 10(4) (10(5)) times faster than that on MoS2 (graphene) at room temperature. A high Li storage capacity of 1239 mA·h/g can be achieved when Li content reaches 0.5. A low average operating voltage of 0.466 V and metallic properties result in that the borophene can be used as a possible anode material. Moreover, the properties of Li adsorption and diffusion on the borophene affected by Ag (111) substrate have been studied. It has been found that the influence of Ag (111) substrate is very weak. Li atom can still bind on the borophene with a strong binding energy of -2.648 eV. A small energy barrier of 0.033 eV can be retained for Li diffusion along the uncorrugated direction, which can give rise to a high Li diffusivity. Besides, the performances of borophene-based Na ion battery have been explored. Our results suggest that an extremely high rate capability could be expected in borophene-based Li ion battery.

  6. Performance evaluation of an automotive thermoelectric generator

    Dubitsky, Andrei O.

    Around 40% of the total fuel energy in typical internal combustion engines (ICEs) is rejected to the environment in the form of exhaust gas waste heat. Efficient recovery of this waste heat in automobiles can promise a fuel economy improvement of 5%. The thermal energy can be harvested through thermoelectric generators (TEGs) utilizing the Seebeck effect. In the present work, a versatile test bench has been designed and built in order to simulate conditions found on test vehicles. This allows experimental performance evaluation and model validation of automotive thermoelectric generators. An electrically heated exhaust gas circuit and a circulator based coolant loop enable integrated system testing of hot and cold side heat exchangers, thermoelectric modules (TEMs), and thermal interface materials at various scales. A transient thermal model of the coolant loop was created in order to design a system which can maintain constant coolant temperature under variable heat input. Additionally, as electrical heaters cannot match the transient response of an ICE, modelling was completed in order to design a relaxed exhaust flow and temperature history utilizing the system thermal lag. This profile reduced required heating power and gas flow rates by over 50%. The test bench was used to evaluate a DOE/GM initial prototype automotive TEG and validate analytical performance models. The maximum electrical power generation was found to be 54 W with a thermal conversion efficiency of 1.8%. It has been found that thermal interface management is critical for achieving maximum system performance, with novel designs being considered for further improvement.

  7. Nanomesh phononic structures for low thermal conductivity and thermoelectric energy conversion materials

    Yu, Jen-Kan; Mitrovic, Slobodan; Heath, James R.

    2016-08-16

    A nanomesh phononic structure includes: a sheet including a first material, the sheet having a plurality of phononic-sized features spaced apart at a phononic pitch, the phononic pitch being smaller than or equal to twice a maximum phonon mean free path of the first material and the phononic size being smaller than or equal to the maximum phonon mean free path of the first material.

  8. Compositional ordering and stability in nanostructured, bulk thermoelectric alloys.

    Hekmaty, Michelle A.; Faleev, S.; Medlin, Douglas L.; Leonard, F.; Lensch-Falk, J.; Sharma, Peter Anand; Sugar, J. D.

    2009-09-01

    Thermoelectric materials have many applications in the conversion of thermal energy to electrical power and in solid-state cooling. One route to improving thermoelectric energy conversion efficiency in bulk material is to embed nanoscale inclusions. This report summarize key results from a recently completed LDRD project exploring the science underpinning the formation and stability of nanostructures in bulk thermoelectric and the quantitative relationships between such structures and thermoelectric properties.

  9. Modular Isotopic Thermoelectric Generator

    Schock, Alfred

    1981-01-01

    Advanced RTG concepts utilizing improved thermoelectric materials and converter concepts are under study at Fairchild for DOE. The design described here is based on DOE's newly developed radioisotope heat source, and on an improved silicon-germanium material and multicouple converter module under development at Syncal. Fairchild's assignment was to combine the above into an attractive power system for use in space, and to assess the specific power and other attributes of that design.

  10. Segmentation of low‐cost high efficiency oxide‐based thermoelectric materials

    Le, Thanh Hung; Van Nong, Ngo; Linderoth, Søren;

    2015-01-01

    efficiency of TE oxides has been a major drawback limiting these materials to broaden applications. In this work, theoretical calculations are used to predict how segmentation of oxide and semimetal materials, utilizing the benefits of both types of materials, can provide high efficiency, high temperature...... segmented legs based p-type Ca3Co4O9 and n-type ZnO oxides excluding electrical and thermal losses. It is found that the maximum efficiency of segmented unicouple could be linearly decreased with increasing the interfacial contact resistance. The obtained results provide useful tool for designing a low...... oxide-based segmented legs. The materials for segmentation are selected by their compatibility factors and their conversion efficiency versus material cost, i.e., “efficiency ratio”. Numerical modelling results showed that conversion efficiency could reach values of more than 10% for unicouples using...

  11. Inhomogeneous thermal conductivity enhances thermoelectric cooling

    Tingyu Lu

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available We theoretically investigate the enhancement of thermoelectric cooling performance in thermoelectric refrigerators made of materials with inhomogeneous thermal conductivity, beyond the usual practice of enhancing thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT of materials. The dissipation of the Joule heat in such thermoelectric refrigerators is asymmetric which can give rise to better thermoelectric cooling performance. Although the thermoelectric figure of merit and the coefficient-of-performance are slightly enhanced, both the maximum cooling power and the maximum cooling temperature difference can be enhanced significantly. This finding can be used to increase the heat absorption at the cold end. We further find that the asymmetric dissipation of Joule heat leads to thermal rectification.

  12. Alumina Paste Sublimation Suppression Barrier for Thermoelectric Device

    Paik, Jong-Ah (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor)

    2014-01-01

    Alumina as a sublimation suppression barrier for a Zintl thermoelectric material in a thermoelectric power generation device operating at high temperature, e.g. at or above 1000K, is disclosed. The Zintl thermoelectric material may comprise Yb.sub.14MnSb.sub.11. The alumina may be applied as an adhesive paste dried and cured on a substantially oxide free surface of the Zintl thermoelectric material and polished to a final thickness. The sublimation suppression barrier may be finalized by baking out the alumina layer on the Zintl thermoelectric material until it becomes substantially clogged with ytterbia.

  13. Pulsed thermoelectricity

    Apostol, M.; Nedelcu, M.

    2010-07-01

    A special mechanism of thermoelectric transport is described, consisting of pulses of charge carriers which "fly" periodically through the external circuit from the hot end of the sample to the cold end, with a determined duration of the "on" and "off" times of the electric contacts, while maintaining continuously the thermal contacts. It is shown that such a "resonant" ideal thermogenerator may work cyclically, with the same efficiency quotient as the ideal efficiency quotient of the thermoelectric devices operated in the usual stationary transport regime but the electric flow and power are increased, as a consequence of the concentration of the charge carriers on pulses of small spatial extent. The process is reversible, in the sense that it can be operated either as a thermoelectric generator or as an electrothermal cooler.

  14. Review of nanostructured devices for thermoelectric applications

    Giovanni Pennelli

    2014-01-01

    A big research effort is currently dedicated to the development of thermoelectric devices capable of a direct thermal-to-electrical energy conversion, aiming at efficiencies as high as possible. These devices are very attractive for many applications in the fields of energy recovery and green energy harvesting. In this paper, after a quick summary of the fundamental principles of thermoelectricity, the main characteristics of materials needed for high efficiency thermoelectric conversion will...

  15. Method of Suppressing Sublimation in Advanced Thermoelectric Devices

    Sakamoto, Jeffrey S. (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor); Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Snyder, G. Jeffrey (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    A method of applying a physical barrier to suppress thermal decomposition near a surface of a thermoelectric material including applying a continuous metal foil to a predetermined portion of the surface of the thermoelectric material, physically binding the continuous metal foil to the surface of the thermoelectric material using a binding member, and heating in a predetermined atmosphere the applied and physically bound continuous metal foil and the thermoelectric material to a sufficient temperature in order to promote bonding between the continuous metal foil and the surface of the thermoelectric material. The continuous metal foil forms a physical barrier to enclose a predetermined portion of the surface. Thermal decomposition is suppressed at the surface of the thermoelectric material enclosed by the physical barrier when the thermoelectric element is in operation.

  16. Predicted Thermoelectric Properties of the Layered XBi4S7 (X = Mn, Fe) Based Materials: First Principles Calculations

    Azam, Sikander; Khan, Saleem Ayaz; Goumri-Said, Souraya; Kanoun, Mohammed Benali

    2017-01-01

    We report a theoretical investigation of electronic structures, optical and thermoelectric properties of two ternary-layered chalcogenides, MnBi4S7 and FeBi4S7 , by combining the first principles density functional calculations and semi-local Boltzmann transport theory. The calculated electronic band structure have demonstrated that both compounds exhibit indirect band gaps. The optical transitions are explored via the dielectric function (real and imaginary parts) along with other related optical constants including refractive index, reflectivity, and energy loss spectrum. These chalcogenides have exhibited interesting thermoelectric properties such as Seebeck's coefficient, electrical and thermal conductivity, and power factor as function of temperatures.

  17. Thermoelectric Properties of ZrNiSn-Based Half-Heusler Compounds

    Yang, Jihui

    2002-03-01

    An increasing awareness of energy efficiency and environmental concerns has rekindled prospects for automotive and other applications of thermoelectric materials. For instance, getting “free” electric power from waste heat or obtaining cooling power from a solid-state device is very appealing for the automotive industry. ZrNiSn-based half-Heusler compounds show promising transport properties that make these materials of interest for thermoelectric power generation. The talk will focus on the effect on transport properties of alloying and doping on the various sublattices. New high temperature data will be presented that indicate that appropriately modified half-Heusler compounds possess very high power factor and relatively low thermal conductivity, leading to a dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit ZT of 0.7 at 800 K. This is the highest ZT value for any half-Heusler compound reported so far.

  18. Crystallography, semiconductivity, thermoelectricity, and other properties of boron and its compounds, especially B6O

    Slack, G. A.; Morgan, K. E.

    2015-09-01

    Electron deficient and non-deficient boron compounds are discussed as potential thermoelectric generator materials. Particular attention is paid to carbon-doped beta-boron, high-carbon boron carbide, and the alpha-boron derivative compound boron suboxide. Stoichiometric B6O shows some promise, and may have a higher ZT than the other two compounds. Carbon saturated beta-boron appears to have a higher ZT than undoped samples. Carbon saturated boron carbide at B12C3 does exist. Its thermoelectric behavior is unknown.

  19. Development of a Research Plan to Minimize Thermal Conductivity in Low Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    2010-12-03

    Mechanical refrigeration approaches such as Stirling , reverse Brayton, and Joule-Thomson cycle coolers are frequently used to attain such temperatures {3...an atomic level of detail. Each atom is represented as a classical particle connected to other atoms in the system through ‘springs’ whose...coupled dynamical motions of all particles in the system . Interatomic potential models for materials are determined by fitting parameters in the

  20. Friction Consolidation Processing of n-Type Bismuth-Telluride Thermoelectric Material

    Whalen, Scott A.; Jana, Saumyadeep; Catalini, David; Overman, Nicole R.; Sharp, Jeffrey

    2016-04-13

    This work focused on the development of a new mechanical processing route, called Friction Consolidation Processing (FCP), for densifying bismuth-telluride (Bi2Te3) powders into bulk form. FCP is a solid-state process wherein a rotating tool was used to generate severe plastic deformation within the Bi2Te3 powder, resulting in a recrystallizing flow of material. Upon cooling, the non-equilibrium microstructure within the flow was locked into the material. FCP was demonstrated on -325 mesh (~44 micron) n-type Bi2Te3 feedstock powder to form pucks with 92% theoretical density having a diameter of 25.4mm and thickness of 4.2mm. FCP was shown to achieve highly textured bulk materials, with sub-micron grain size, directly from coarse particle feedstock powders in a single process. An average grain size of 0.8 microns was determined for one sample and a multiple of uniform distribution (MUD) value of 15.49 was calculated for the (0001) pole figure from another sample. These results indicate that FCP can yield highly refined grains and textural alignment of the (0001) basal planes in Bi2Te3. ZT=0.37 at 336K was achieved for undoped stoichiometric Bi2Te3, which is near the “text book” value of ZT=0.5.

  1. Effects of Defects and Strain on Thermoelectric Properties of Single-walled Carbon Nanotubes

    Ohnishi, Masato; Shiga, Takuma; Shiomi, Junichiro

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have attracted much attention as a thermoelectric material. Although CNTs have large lattice thermal conductivity, CNT-based composites are promising candidates for thermoelectric material because the phonon transport is suppressed by scattering at contacts between CNTs. Therefore, previous studies have mainly focused on thermoelectric properties at contacts between CNTs. However, understanding the effects of defects and strain on the thermoelectric properties of CNTs themselves are important because they exist inevitably in real systems. In this study, we study the effects of defects, vacancy and Stone-Wales defect, and uniaxial compressive strain on single-walled CNTs (SWNTs) employing nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulation and Green's function method. We find that the defects and buckling deformation significantly decrease electron conductance, and the effect is much stronger than that on thermal conductivity and Seebeck coefficient, resulting in severe reduction of the figure of merit. In addition, the estimation of thermoelectric performance including a inter-SWNT contact indicates that the effect of defects and strain can deteriorate the figure of merit of the SWNT networks. This work is partially supported by Thermal Management Materials and Technology Research Association (TherMAT).

  2. Convergence of valence bands for high thermoelectric performance for p-type InN

    Li, Hai-Zhu; Li, Ruo-Ping; Liu, Jun-Hui; Huang, Ming-Ju

    2015-12-01

    Band engineering to converge the bands to achieve high valley degeneracy is one of effective approaches for designing ideal thermoelectric materials. Convergence of many valleys in the valence band may lead to a high Seebeck coefficient, and induce promising thermoelectric performance of p-type InN. In the current work, we have systematically investigated the electronic structure and thermoelectric performance of wurtzite InN by using the density functional theory combined with semiclassical Boltzmann transport theory. Form the results, it can be found that intrinsic InN has a large Seebeck coefficient (254 μV/K) and the largest value of ZeT is 0.77. The transport properties of p-type InN are better than that of n-type one at the optimum carrier concentration, which mainly due to the large Seebeck coefficient for p-type InN, although the electrical conductivity of n-type InN is larger than that of p-type one. We found that the larger Seebeck coefficient for p-type InN may originate from the large valley degeneracy in the valence band. Moreover, the low minimum lattice thermal conductivity for InN is one key factor to become a good thermoelectric material. Therefore, p-type InN could be a potential material for further applications in the thermoelectric area.

  3. High temperature thermoelectrics

    Moczygemba, Joshua E.; Biershcenk, James L.; Sharp, Jeffrey W.

    2014-09-23

    In accordance with one embodiment of the present disclosure, a thermoelectric device includes a plurality of thermoelectric elements that each include a diffusion barrier. The diffusion barrier includes a refractory metal. The thermoelectric device also includes a plurality of conductors coupled to the plurality of thermoelectric elements. The plurality of conductors include aluminum. In addition, the thermoelectric device includes at least one plate coupled to the plurality of thermoelectric elements using a braze. The braze includes aluminum.

  4. Thermoelectric Polymers and their Elastic Aerogels.

    Khan, Zia Ullah; Edberg, Jesper; Hamedi, Mahiar Max; Gabrielsson, Roger; Granberg, Hjalmar; Wågberg, Lars; Engquist, Isak; Berggren, Magnus; Crispin, Xavier

    2016-06-01

    Electronically conducting polymers constitute an emerging class of materials for novel electronics, such as printed electronics and flexible electronics. Their properties have been further diversified to introduce elasticity, which has opened new possibility for "stretchable" electronics. Recent discoveries demonstrate that conducting polymers have thermoelectric properties with a low thermal conductivity, as well as tunable Seebeck coefficients - which is achieved by modulating their electrical conductivity via simple redox reactions. Using these thermoelectric properties, all-organic flexible thermoelectric devices, such as temperature sensors, heat flux sensors, and thermoelectric generators, are being developed. In this article we discuss the combination of the two emerging fields: stretchable electronics and polymer thermoelectrics. The combination of elastic and thermoelectric properties seems to be unique for conducting polymers, and difficult to achieve with inorganic thermoelectric materials. We introduce the basic concepts, and state of the art knowledge, about the thermoelectric properties of conducting polymers, and illustrate the use of elastic thermoelectric conducting polymer aerogels that could be employed as temperature and pressure sensors in an electronic-skin.

  5. Low-Temperature Bonding of Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 Thermoelectric Material with Cu Electrodes Using a Thin-Film In Interlayer

    Lin, Yan-Cheng; Yang, Chung-Lin; Huang, Jing-Yi; Jain, Chao-Chi; Hwang, Jen-Dong; Chu, Hsu-Shen; Chen, Sheng-Chi; Chuang, Tung-Han

    2016-09-01

    A Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 thermoelectric material electroplated with a Ni barrier layer and a Ag reaction layer was bonded with a Ag-coated Cu electrode at low temperatures of 448 K (175 °C) to 523 K (250 °C) using a 4- μm-thick In interlayer under an external pressure of 3 MPa. During the bonding process, the In thin film reacted with the Ag layer to form a double layer of Ag3In and Ag2In intermetallic compounds. No reaction occurred at the Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3/Ni interface, which resulted in low bonding strengths of about 3.2 MPa. The adhesion of the Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3/Ni interface was improved by precoating a 1- μm Sn film on the surface of the thermoelectric element and preheating it at 523 K (250 °C) for 3 minutes. In this case, the bonding strengths increased to a range of 9.1 to 11.5 MPa after bonding at 473 K (200 °C) for 5 to 60 minutes, and the shear-tested specimens fractured with cleavage characteristics in the interior of the thermoelectric material. The bonding at 448 K (175 °C) led to shear strengths ranging from 7.1 to 8.5 MPa for various bonding times between 5 and 60 minutes, which were further increased to the values of 10.4 to 11.7 MPa by increasing the bonding pressure to 9.8 MPa. The shear strengths of Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3/Cu joints bonded with the optimized conditions of the modified solid-liquid interdiffusion bonding process changed only slightly after long-term exposure at 473 K (200 °C) for 1000 hours.

  6. Bulk dimensional nanocomposites for thermoelectric applications

    Nolas, George S

    2014-06-24

    Thermoelectric elements may be used for heat sensors, heat pumps, and thermoelectric generators. A quantum-dot or nano-scale grain size polycrystalline material the effects of size-quantization are present inside the nanocrystals. A thermoelectric element composed of densified Groups IV-VI material, such as calcogenide-based materials are doped with metal or chalcogenide to form interference barriers form along grains. The dopant used is either silver or sodium. These chalcogenide materials form nanoparticles of highly crystal grains, and may specifically be between 1- and 100 nm. The compound is densified by spark plasma sintering.

  7. Towards high efficiency segmented thermoelectric unicouples

    Pham, Hoang Ngan; Christensen, Dennis Valbjørn; Snyder, Gerald Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    Segmentation of thermoelectric (TE) materials is a widely used solution to improve the efficiency of thermoelectric generators over a wide working temperature range. However, the improvement can only be obtained with appropriate material selections. In this work, we provide an overview...... of the theoretical efficiency of the best performing unicouples designed from segmenting the state-of-the-art TE materials. The efficiencies are evaluated using a 1D numerical model which includes all thermoelectric effects, heat conduction, Joule effects and temperature dependent material properties, but neglects...

  8. Symmetry Analysis of Thermoelectric Energy Converters with Inhomogeneous Legs

    Korzhuev, M. A.

    2010-09-01

    Symmetry analysis has been applied to thermoelectric energy converters [thermoelectric generators (TEG), coolers (TEC), and heaters (TEH)] with inhomogeneous legs. The features of the crystallographic symmetry of thermoelectric materials and the symmetry of legs, thermocouples, and modules are studied. The effect of symmetry on the figure of merit Z of thermoelectric energy converters is considered. A general rule for proper placement of legs in thermoelectric converters is developed. A modified tetratomic classification for thermoelectric energy converters with inhomogeneous legs (TEGa, TEGb, TEC, and TEH) is proposed. An increase in Z for thermoelectric energy converters with inhomogeneous legs is due to the bulk thermoelectric effect. An increase in Z gives the reduction of irreversible processes in the modules (Joule heating and thermal conductivity), accompanying breaking of the symmetry of the legs. It is found that violations of the symmetry requirements can lead to significant energy losses in converters.

  9. Modular Isotopic Thermoelectric Generator

    Schock, Alfred

    1981-04-03

    Advanced RTG concepts utilizing improved thermoelectric materials and converter concepts are under study at Fairchild for DOE. The design described here is based on DOE's newly developed radioisotope heat source, and on an improved silicon-germanium material and a multicouple converter module under development at Syncal. Fairchild's assignment was to combine the above into an attractive power system for use in space, and to assess the specific power and other attributes of that design. The resultant design is highly modular, consisting of standard RTG slices, each producing ~24 watts at the desired output voltage of 28 volt. Thus, the design could be adapted to various space missions over a wide range of power levels, with little or no redesign. Each RTG slice consists of a 250-watt heat source module, eight multicouple thermoelectric modules, and standard sections of insulator, housing, radiator fins, and electrical circuit. The design makes it possible to check each thermoelectric module for electrical performance, thermal contact, leaktightness, and performance stability, after the generator is fully assembled; and to replace any deficient modules without disassembling the generator or perturbing the others. The RTG end sections provide the spring-loaded supports required to hold the free-standing heat source stack together during launch vibration. Details analysis indicates that the design offers a substantial improvement in specific power over the present generator of RTGs, using the same heat source modules. There are three copies in the file.

  10. High ZT in p-type (PbTe)1-2x(PbSe)x(PbS)x thermoelectric materials.

    Korkosz, Rachel J; Chasapis, Thomas C; Lo, Shih-han; Doak, Jeff W; Kim, Yoon Jun; Wu, Chun-I; Hatzikraniotis, Euripidis; Hogan, Timothy P; Seidman, David N; Wolverton, Chris; Dravid, Vinayak P; Kanatzidis, Mercouri G

    2014-02-26

    Lead chalcogenide thermoelectric systems have been shown to reach record high figure of merit values via modification of the band structure to increase the power factor or via nanostructuring to reduce the thermal conductivity. Recently, (PbTe)1-x(PbSe)x was reported to reach high power factors via a delayed onset of interband crossing. Conversely, the (PbTe)1-x(PbS)x was reported to achieve low thermal conductivities arising from extensive nanostructuring. Here we report the thermoelectric properties of the pseudoternary 2% Na-doped (PbTe)1-2x(PbSe)x(PbS)x system. The (PbTe)1-2x(PbSe)x(PbS)x system is an excellent platform to study phase competition between entropically driven atomic mixing (solid solution behavior) and enthalpy-driven phase separation. We observe that the thermoelectric properties of the PbTe-PbSe-PbS 2% Na doped are superior to those of 2% Na-doped PbTe-PbSe and PbTe-PbS, respectively, achieving a ZT ≈2.0 at 800 K. The material exhibits an increased the power factor by virtue of valence band modification combined with a very reduced lattice thermal conductivity deriving from alloy scattering and point defects. The presence of sulfide ions in the rock-salt structure alters the band structure and creates a plateau in the electrical conductivity and thermopower from 600 to 800 K giving a power factor of 27 μW/cmK(2). The very low total thermal conductivity values of 1.1 W/m·K of the x = 0.07 composition is accounted for essentially by phonon scattering from solid solution defects rather than the assistance of endotaxial nanostructures.

  11. Classification of Valleytronics in Thermoelectricity

    Norouzzadeh, Payam; Vashaee, Daryoosh

    2016-03-01

    The theory of valleytronics as a material design tool for engineering both thermal and electrical transport properties is presented. It is shown that the interplay among the valleytronics parameters such as the degeneracy of the band, intervalley transitions, effective mass, scattering exponent, and the Fermi energy may deteriorate or ameliorate any or all of the main thermoelectric properties. A flowchart classifying the different paths through which the valleytronics can influence the thermoelectric figure-of-merit ZT is derived and discussed in detail. To exemplify the application of the flowchart, valleytronics in four different semiconductors, Mg2Si, Si0.8Ge0.2, AlxGa1-xAs and clathrate Si46-VIII were studied, which showed different trends. Therefore, a degenerate multivalley bandstructure, which is typically anticipated for a good thermoelectric material, cannot be a general design rule for ZT enhancement and a detailed transport study is required to engineer the optimum bandstructure.

  12. Silicon-based semimetals and semiconductors for thermoelectric applications

    Sun, Hui

    The direct conversion between heat and electricity can be achieved by thermoelectric devices. Thus, thermoelectricity is considered as not only an environmentally friendly substitute for compressor-based refrigerators but also a promising energy solution to harvest waste heat. State-of-the-art thermoelectric materials are often comprised of expensive tellurium or germanium elements and hence are hardly suitable for mass production. The silicon-based thermoelectrics, e.g. semimetallic CoSi and semiconducting beta -FeSi2 materials we study here, are composed of abundant elements in nature. They are also chemically stable, non-toxic, and mechanically robust. Despite the above benefits, they exhibit relatively lower efficiencies compared to state-of-the-art materials. In this dissertation, we have intended to understand the thermal and electrical transport in these materials and enhance their thermoelectric performance. CoSi possesses one of the highest power factors among thermoelectrics due to the sharp features around the Fermi level in its electronic density of states. In order to improve the performance, the effects of p-type dopants, isoelectronic substitutions, n-type dopants, and double doping were systematically studied for arc-melted CoSi samples. The results show that p-type dopants like iron and gallium and n-type dopants like nickel and palladium deteriorate the electrical properties due to the introduction of excess holes and electrons, respectively. Boron and platinum have very limited solubility in CoSi and the segregated impurity phases at grain boundaries are helpful to improve the electrical properties. The isoelectronic substitutions influence the power factor slightly; however, they result in a drastic decrease in the lattice thermal conductivity and hence an enhancement in the figure of merit. In addition, CoSi samples prepared by powder processing were investigated to further reduce the lattice thermal conductivity. Unfortunately, all the

  13. Validation of Hydrogenography for the search of promising hydrogen storage materials

    Pivak, Y.

    2012-01-01

    Hydrogenography is a combinatorial optical thin film technique to study the thermodynamic properties of metal hydride storage materials. It allows to study thousands of compositions simultaneously with exactly the same experimental conditions. Hydrogenography can pin point the most interesting regio

  14. Electron work function-a promising guiding parameter for material design.

    Lu, Hao; Liu, Ziran; Yan, Xianguo; Li, Dongyang; Parent, Leo; Tian, Harry

    2016-04-14

    Using nickel added X70 steel as a sample material, we demonstrate that electron work function (EWF), which largely reflects the electron behavior of materials, could be used as a guide parameter for material modification or design. Adding Ni having a higher electron work function to X70 steel brings more "free" electrons to the steel, leading to increased overall work function, accompanied with enhanced e(-)-nuclei interactions or higher atomic bond strength. Young's modulus and hardness increase correspondingly. However, the free electron density and work function decrease as the Ni content is continuously increased, accompanied with the formation of a second phase, FeNi3, which is softer with a lower work function. The decrease in the overall work function corresponds to deterioration of the mechanical strength of the steel. It is expected that EWF, a simple but fundamental parameter, may lead to new methodologies or supplementary approaches for metallic materials design or tailoring on a feasible electronic base.

  15. First-principles search for n -type oxide, nitride, and sulfide thermoelectrics

    Garrity, Kevin F.

    2016-07-01

    Oxides have many potentially desirable characteristics for thermoelectric applications, including low cost and stability at high temperatures, but thus far there are few known high z T n -type oxide thermoelectrics. In this work, we use high-throughput first-principles calculations to screen transition metal oxides, nitrides, and sulfides for candidate materials with high power factors and low thermal conductivity. We find a variety of promising materials, and we investigate these materials in detail in order to understand the mechanisms that cause them to have high power factors. These materials all combine a high density of states near the Fermi level with dispersive bands, reducing the trade-off between the Seebeck coefficient and the electrical conductivity, but they do so for several different reasons. In addition, our calculations indicate that many of our candidate materials have low thermal conductivity.

  16. High thermoelectric performance from optimization of hole-doped CuInTe2.

    Zhou, Gang; Wang, Dong

    2016-02-17

    We investigated the electronic structure, lattice dynamics and thermoelectric transport properties of CuInTe2 based on first-principles calculations. From the analysis of density of states and partial charge density, it can be expected that p-doping at the In-site or n-doping at the Cu-site will barely modify the electronic states near the valence or conduction band edge but increase the carrier concentration to achieve the highest thermoelectric efficiency. Lattice dynamics calculations suggest that the thermal conductivity of CuInTe2 can be effectively reduced by introducing structural defects at Cu, In and Te sites. p-type CuInTe2 possesses better thermoelectric properties as compared to the n-type one, which mainly originates from the steeper density of states resulting from nearly degenerate valence bands near the band edge. The temperature dependence of the thermoelectric transport properties of p-type CuInTe2 at different carrier concentrations was studied in detail, which is found to be in good agreement with the experimental data. Our results of calculation showed that p-type CuInTe2 can achieve an upper-limit figure of merit value of 1.72 at 850 K and are promising thermoelectric materials for waste heat recovery at medium temperatures.

  17. Sn-doped CdTe as promising intermediate-band photovoltaic material

    Flores, Mauricio A.; Menéndez-Proupin, Eduardo; Orellana, Walter; Peña, Juan L.

    2017-01-01

    The formation energies, charge transition levels and quasiparticle defect states of several tin-related impurities are investigated within the DFT  +  GW formalism. The optical spectrum obtained from the solution of the Bethe-Salpeter equation shows that the absorption strongly increases in the sub-bandgap region after doping, suggesting a two-step photoexcitation process that facilitates transitions from photons with insufficient energy to cause direct transitions from the valence to the conduction band via an intermediate-band. We propose Sn-doped CdTe as a promising candidate for the development of high-efficiency solar cells, which could potentially overcome the Shockley-Queisser limit.

  18. Tunable thermoelectric transport in nanomeshes via elastic strain engineering

    Piccione, Brian; Gianola, Daniel S., E-mail: gianola@seas.upenn.edu [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States)

    2015-03-16

    Recent experimental explorations of silicon nanomeshes have shown that the unique metastructures exhibit reduced thermal conductivity while preserving bulk electrical conductivity via feature sizes between relevant phonon and electron mean free paths, aiding in the continued promise that nanometer-scale engineering may further enhance thermoelectric behavior. Here, we introduce a strategy for tuning thermoelectric transport phenomena in semiconductor nanomeshes via heterogeneous elastic strain engineering, using silicon as a model material for demonstration of the concept. By combining analytical models for electron mobility in uniformly stressed silicon with finite element analysis of strained silicon nanomeshes in a lumped physical model, we show that the nonuniform and multiaxial strain fields defined by the nanomesh geometry give rise to spatially varying band shifts and warping, which in aggregate accelerate electron transport along directions of applied stress. This allows for global electrical conductivity and Seebeck enhancements beyond those of homogenous samples under equivalent far-field stresses, ultimately increasing thermoelectric power factor nearly 50% over unstrained samples. The proposed concept and structures—generic to a wide class of materials with large dynamic ranges of elastic strain in nanoscale volumes—may enable a new pathway for active and tunable control of transport properties relevant to waste heat scavenging and thermal management.

  19. Graphene and graphene-based nanomaterials: the promising materials for bright future of electroanalytical chemistry.

    Chen, Xiao-mei; Wu, Geng-huang; Jiang, Ya-qi; Wang, Yi-ru; Chen, Xi

    2011-11-21

    Similar to its popular older cousins of fullerene and carbon nanotubes (CNTs), the latest form of nanocarbon, graphene, is inspiring intensive research efforts in its own right. As an atomically thin layer of sp(2)-hybridized carbon, graphene possesses spectacular electronic, optical, magnetic, thermal and mechanical properties, which make it an exciting material in a variety of important applications. In this review, we present the current advances in the field of graphene electroanalytical chemistry, including the modern methods of graphene production, and graphene functionalization. Electrochemical (bio) sensing developments using graphene and graphene-based materials are summarized in more detail, and we also speculate on their future and discuss potential progress for their applications in electroanalytical chemistry.

  20. Membrane and Films Based on Novel Crown-Containing Dyes as Promising Chemosensoring Materials

    Sergei Yu. Zaitsev

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses several works on supramolecular systems such as monolayer and multilayer, polymer films of various crown-containing dyes, surface-active monomers and polymers. Design, production and investigation of the membrane nanostructures based on crown ethers is a rapidly developing field at the “junction” of materials sciences and nanotechnology. These nanostructures can serve as convenient models for studying the self-organization and molecular recognition processes at interfaces that are typical for biomembranes. Based on the results obtained for such structures by absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy, atomic force and Brewster-angle microscopy, surface pressure and surface potential isotherm measurements, the possibility of developing micro- and nanomaterials possessing a set of specified properties (including chemosensor, photochromic and photorefractive materials is demonstrated.

  1. The investigation of thermal properties on multilayer Sb2Te3/Au thermoelectric material system with ultra-thin Au interlayers

    Zhang, Haiming; Ye, Fengjie; Hu, Yangsen; Liu, Jun; Zhang, Yan; Wu, Yigui; Hu, Zhiyu

    2016-01-01

    The manipulation of heat transport across multilayer thin films with metal-semicounductor interfaces is of great interest for thermoelectric material optimization. Here we fabricated Sb2Te3/Au multilayer films with different Au thickness by magnetron sputtering. We demonstrated that the thermal conductivity of the system can be facilely manipulated by simply changing the Au layer thickness, where an optimal thickness (5 nm) value exists with the lowest thermal conductivity (˜0.44 Wm-1K-1, 44% of the pure Sb2Te3 thin film thermal conductivity). It has been proved that the decreased thermal conductivity was mainly attributed to the strong electron-phonon coupling in a metal-nonmetal multilayered system with Au layer thickness larger than 5 nm, where the Two Temperature Model (TTM) predicts the experimental data perfectly. It was also proposed that the grain boundary effect may dominiate the phonon scattering when the Au layer is in a discountinuous form (<5 nm).

  2. The Impact and Promise of Open-Source Computational Material for Physics Teaching

    Christian, Wolfgang

    2017-01-01

    A computer-based modeling approach to teaching must be flexible because students and teachers have different skills and varying levels of preparation. Learning how to run the ``software du jour'' is not the objective for integrating computational physics material into the curriculum. Learning computational thinking, how to use computation and computer-based visualization to communicate ideas, how to design and build models, and how to use ready-to-run models to foster critical thinking is the objective. Our computational modeling approach to teaching is a research-proven pedagogy that predates computers. It attempts to enhance student achievement through the Modeling Cycle. This approach was pioneered by Robert Karplus and the SCIS Project in the 1960s and 70s and later extended by the Modeling Instruction Program led by Jane Jackson and David Hestenes at Arizona State University. This talk describes a no-cost open-source computational approach aligned with a Modeling Cycle pedagogy. Our tools, curricular material, and ready-to-run examples are freely available from the Open Source Physics Collection hosted on the AAPT-ComPADRE digital library. Examples will be presented.

  3. Thermoelectric Properties of Au- Containing Type-I Clathrates Ba8AuxGa16-3xGe30+2x

    Ye, Zuxin [Optimal Inc., Plymouth, Michigan 48170, USA; Cho, Jung Young [Optimal Inc., Plymouth, Michigan 48170, USA; Tessema, Misle M. [Optimal Inc., Plymouth, Michigan 48170, USA; Salvador, James R. [General Motors, Global Research and Development; Waldo, Richard A. [General Motors, Global Research and Development; Yang, Jihui [University of Washington; Wang, Hsin [ORNL; Cai, Wei [ORNL; Kirkham, Melanie J [ORNL; Yang, Jiong [Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS); Zhang, Wenqing [Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (SICCAS)

    2014-01-01

    Type I clathrates, with compositions based on Ba8Ga16Ge30, are a class of promising thermoelectric materials due to their intrinsically low thermal conductivity. It has been demonstrated previously that the thermoelectric performance can be improved by transition metal substitution of the framework atoms. In this study, the effects of Au substitution for Ga/Ge on thermal and electrical transport properties of type I clathrate compounds have been investigated. Polycrystalline samples with a large range of Au content have been synthesized using conventional solid state techniques with the actual compositions of resulting materials approximately following Zintl-Klemm rules. The charge carrier type changes from electrons (n) to holes (p) as the Au content increases. The Seebeck coefficient (S) and power factor (S2/ where is the electrical resistivity) were improved by Au substitution and the resulting overall thermoelectric properties were enhanced by Au substitution with a thermoelectric figure of merit ZT ~ 0.63 at temperature T = 740 K for the composition Ba8Au5.47Ge39.96. The results presented herein show that Au-containing type I clathrates are promising p-type thermoelectric materials for high temperature applications.

  4. Work function determination of promising electrode materials for thermionic energy converters

    Jacobson, D.; Storms, E.; Skaggs, B.; Kouts, T.; Jaskie, J.; Manda, M.

    1976-01-01

    The work function determinations of candidate materials for low temperature (1400 K) thermionics through vacuum emission tests are discussed. Two systems, a vacuum emission test vehicle and a thermionic emission microscope are used for emission measurements. Some nickel and cobalt based super alloys were preliminarily examined. High temperature physical properties and corrosion behavior of some super alloy candidates are presented. The corrosion behavior of sodium is of particular interest since topping cycles might use sodium heat transfer loops. A Marchuk tube was designed for plasma discharge studies with the carbide and possibly some super alloy samples. A series of metal carbides and other alloys were fabricated and tested in a special high temperature mass spectrometer. This information coupled with work function determinations was evaluated in an attempt to learn how electron bonding occurs in transition alloys.

  5. Defective graphene as promising anode material for Na-ion battery and Ca-ion battery

    Datta, Dibakar; Shenoy, Vivek B

    2013-01-01

    We have investigated adsorption of Na and Ca on graphene with divacancy (DV) and Stone-Wales (SW) defect. Our results show that adsorption is not possible on pristine graphene. However, their adsorption on defective sheet is energetically favorable. The enhanced adsorption can be attributed to the increased charge transfer between adatoms and underlying defective sheet. With the increase in defect density until certain possible limit, maximum percentage of adsorption also increases giving higher battery capacity. For maximum possible DV defect, we can achieve maximum capacity of 1459 mAh/g for Na-ion batteries (NIBs) and 2900 mAh/g for Ca-ion batteries (CIBs). For graphene full of SW defect, we find the maximum capacity of NIBs and CIBs is around 1071 mAh/g and 2142 mAh/g respectively. Our results will help create better anode materials with much higher capacity and better cycling performance for NIBs and CIBs.

  6. CsMgCl{sub 3}: A promising cross luminescence material

    Shwetha, G. [Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, Ordnance Factory Estate, Yeddumailaram 502 205, Telangana (India); Kanchana, V., E-mail: kanchana@iith.ac.in [Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, Ordnance Factory Estate, Yeddumailaram 502 205, Telangana (India); Vaitheeswaran, G. [Advanced Center of Research in High Energy Materials (ACRHEM), University of Hyderabad, Prof. C. R. Rao Road, Gachibowli, Hyderabad 500 046, Telangana (India)

    2015-07-15

    Full-potential linearized augmented plane wave method has been used to study the cross luminescence of halide scintillators. The electronic structure and optical properties of alkali halides such as CsMgCl{sub 3}, CsCaCl{sub 3}, and CsSrCl{sub 3} are presented. One of the major criteria for the cross luminescence to happen is the energy difference between valence band and next deeper core valence band being lesser when compared to energy gap of the compound, so that radiative electronic transition may occur between core valence band and valence band which might lead to fast scintillation. We found this criterion to be satisfied in these compounds leading to cross luminescence. The presence of high energy peaks in the absorption spectra indicates the creation of holes in the core valence band, which is an essential criterion for the occurrence of cross luminescence. The electronic structure, and optical properties studies clearly indicate CsMgCl{sub 3}, CsCaCl{sub 3}, and CsSrCl{sub 3} to be cross luminescence materials comparable to CsCl which is one of the well known fast scintillators. In addition, CsMgCl{sub 3} is found to be better among the studied compounds with optical isotropy though the compound is structurally anisotropic. - Graphical abstract: Absorption spectra of CsMCl{sub 3} (M=Mg, Ca, and Sr) along with CsCl, indicating both the spectra are similar in the lower energy region. - Highlights: • These are cross valence luminescence (CVL) materials with short day time of the order of nanosecond. • Chemical bonding of these compounds studied observed the ionic nature. • These are fast scintillators comparable to their binary halide. • CsMgCl{sub 3} good scintillator with optically isotropic nature.

  7. Zintl phase compounds AM2Sb2 (A=Ca, Sr, Ba, Eu, Yb;M=Zn, Cd) and their substitution variants:a class of potential thermoelectric materials

    郭凯; 操齐高; 赵景泰

    2013-01-01

    Zintl phase compounds AM2Sb2 (A=Ca, Sr, Ba, Eu, Yb;M=Zn, Cd) is a new class of promising thermoelectrics owing to their intrinsic features in electronic and crystal structure, such as a small or even disappeared band-gap, large density-of-states at the Fermi level, covalently bonded network of M-Sb, as well as the layered stacking by cations A2+and anionic slabs (M2Sb2)2-. In addi-tion, the rich solid-state chemistry of Zintl phase allows structural modification and chemical substitution to adjust the fundamental transport parameters (carrier concentration, mobility, effective mass, electronic and lattice thermal conductivity) for improving the thermoelectric performance. In the present review, the recent advances in synthesis and thermoelectric characterization of title com-pounds AM2Sb2 were presented, and the effects of alloying or substitution for sites A, M and Sb on the electrical and thermal trans-port were emphasized. The structural disorder yielded by the incorporation of multiple ions significantly increased the thermoelectric figure of merit mainly resulted from the reduction of thermal conductivity without disrupting the carrier transport region in substance. Therefore, alloying or substitution has been a feasible and common route utilized to enhance thermoelectric properties in these Zintl phase compounds, especially for YbZn0.4Cd1.6Sb2 (ZT700 K=1.26), EuZn1.8Cd0.2Sb2 (ZT650 K=1.06), and YbCd1.85Mn0.15Sb2 (ZT650 K=1.14).

  8. Ion-Electron-Conducting Polymer Composites: Promising Electromagnetic Interference Shielding Material.

    Vyas, Manoj Kumar; Chandra, Amita

    2016-07-20

    Polymer nanocomposites consisting of poly(vinylidenefluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) PVdF-HFP, inorganic salt (LiBF4), organic salt (EMIMBF4), multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), and Fe3O4 nanoparticles were prepared as electromagnetic shield material. Improvement in conductivity and dielectric property due to the introduction of EMIMBF4, LiBF4, and MWCNTs was confirmed by complex impedance spectroscopy. The highest conductivity obtained is ∼1.86 mS/cm. This is attributed to the high ionic conductivity of the ionic liquids and the formation of a connecting network by the MWCNTs facilitating electron conduction. The total electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding effectiveness has a major contribution to it due to absorption. Although the total shielding effectiveness in the Ku band (12.4-18 GHz) of pure ion-conducting system was found to be ∼19 dB and that for the polymer composites which are mixed (ion + electron) conductors is ∼46 dB, the contributions due to absorption are ∼16 and ∼42 dB, respectively.

  9. Poly(3-hydroxypropionate): a promising alternative to fossil fuel-based materials.

    Andreessen, Björn; Taylor, Nicolas; Steinbüchel, Alexander

    2014-11-01

    Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) are storage compounds synthesized by numerous microorganisms and have attracted the interest of industry since they are biobased and biodegradable alternatives to fossil fuel-derived plastics. Among PHAs, poly(3-hydroxypropionate) [poly(3HP)] has outstanding material characteristics and exhibits a large variety of applications. As it is not brittle like, e.g., the best-studied PHA, poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) [poly(3HB)], it can be used as a plasticizer in blends to improve their properties. Furthermore, 3-hydroxypropionic acid (3HP) is considered likely to become one of the new industrial building blocks, and it can be obtained from poly(3HP) by simple hydrolysis. Unfortunately, no natural organism is known to accumulate poly(3HP) so far. Thus, several efforts have been made to engineer genetically modified organisms capable of synthesizing the homopolymer or copolymers containing 3HP. In this review, the achievements made so far in efforts to obtain biomass which has accumulated poly(3HP) or 3HP-containing copolymers, as well as the properties of these polyesters and their applications, are compiled and evaluated.

  10. Thermoelectric Properties of Hot-Pressed β-K2Bi8Se13- x S x Materials

    Kyratsi, Theodora; Ioannou, Maria

    2013-07-01

    In this work, hot-pressed pellets of the K2Bi8Se13 family of compounds were prepared for the first time. The pellet fabrication of selected members of the K2Bi8Se13- x S x series was studied. Sintering parameters, such as temperature, pressure, and duration, were investigated based on a statistical design- of-experiments approach to identify the optimum conditions for fabrication of high-quality pellets. These optimum conditions were then applied for the K2Bi8Se13- x S x series, and the thermoelectric properties of the stoichiometric members for x = 0, 4, 6, and 8 were studied. Doping experiments were also investigated using sulfur excess in the x = 6 member in an attempt to modify its properties.

  11. Terpolymer polyrotaxanes: a promising supramolecular system as electron-transporting materials for optoelectronics

    Farcas, A.; Resmerita, A.-M.; Farcas, F.

    2016-12-01

    Optical, electrochemical and surface-morphological properties of three terpolymer polyrotaxanes (1a, 1b and 1c) composed of 2,7-dibromo-9,9-dicyanomethylenefluorene encapsulated into γ-cyclodextrin (γCD), β- or γ-persilylated cyclodextrin (PS-γCD, PS-γCD) cavities (acceptor) and 4,4'-dibromo-4''-methyltriphenylamine (donor) randomly distributed into 9,9-dioctylfluorene conjugated chains have been evaluated and compared to those of the reference 1. The role of the encapsulation on the thermal stability, solubility, film forming ability and transparency was also investigated. High fluorescence efficiency, almost identical normalized absorbance maximum in solution and solid-states of 1a, 1b and 1c provides the lower aggregation tendency. The fluorescence lifetimes (τ) of 1a, 1b and 1c follow a mono-exponential decay with a value τ = 1.11, 1.03 and 1.14 ns, compared with the neat 1, where a bi-exponential decay was identified. AFM studies reveal a smooth and homogenous surface morphology for polyrotaxanes than that of the reference. The electrochemical data provided that the investigated compounds exhibited n- and p-doping processes. The HOMO/LUMO energy levels 1a, 1b, 1c and 1 and in combination with the work function of anodic ITO glass substrates coated with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) (-5.2 eV) and cathodic Ca (-2.8 eV) or Al (-2.2 eV) indicate that the compounds are electrochemically accessible as electron-transporting materials.

  12. Synthesis, characterization and photophysical study of ethynyl pyrene derivatives as promising materials for organic optoelectronics

    Gama, Paola E.; Corrêa, Rodrigo J.; Garden, Simon J., E-mail: garden@iq.ufrj.br

    2015-05-15

    Two series of pyrene derivatives, phenylethynyl (4–6) and the previously unknown ethynylcyclohexanol (7–9), were prepared by Sonogashira cross-coupling reactions. The introduction of an increasing number of ethynyl substituents resulted in a progressive bathochromic shift in the absorption and emission spectra which culminated in an inversion of the nature of the first two excited states ({sup 1}L{sub a} and {sup 1}L{sub b}) of the tetra-substituted derivatives (6 and 9) relative to pyrene. In solution, only for the mono-cyclohexanolethynyl pyrene (7) a sufficiently concentrated solution could be obtained so as to observe the excimer. Additionally, the emission band ratio I{sub 1}/I{sub 3} for 7 was found to be moderately sensitive to the nature of the solvent and the ratio directly correlated with the Py scale. TDDFT calculations were used to explore the variation of the properties of the low lying excited states. Fluorescence emission in the solid state, with the appropriate choice of materials, covers the entire visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum due to static excimer emission. A massive red-shift for solid state photoluminescence from 9 resulted in emission at longer wavelength than the more highly conjugated 6. - Highlights: • Phenyl and cyclohexanol ethynylpyrene derivatives: photophysically compared. • Excimer formation and solvent dependent emission from cyclohexanolethynylpyrene. • Systematic red shifting of solid state photoluminescence from static excimers. • Massive red-shift in the solid state photoluminescence of 9. • TDDFT calculations: properties of the lowest singlet states, systematic comparison.

  13. High-temperature thermoelectric properties of the β-As2-xBixTe3 solid solution

    Vaney, J.-B.; Delaizir, G.; Piarristeguy, A.; Monnier, J.; Alleno, E.; Lopes, E. B.; Gonçalves, A. P.; Pradel, A.; Dauscher, A.; Candolfi, C.; Lenoir, B.

    2016-10-01

    Bi2Te3-based compounds are a well-known class of outstanding thermoelectric materials. β-As2Te3, another member of this family, exhibits promising thermoelectric properties around 400 K when appropriately doped. Herein, we investigate the high-temperature thermoelectric properties of the β-As2-xBixTe3 solid solution. Powder X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy experiments showed that a solid solution only exists up to x = 0.035. We found that substituting Bi for As has a beneficial influence on the thermopower, which, combined with extremely low thermal conductivity values, results in a maximum ZT value of 0.7 at 423 K for x = 0.017 perpendicular to the pressing direction.

  14. Thermoelectric properties of Al substituted misfit cobaltite Ca3(Co1-xAlx)4O9 at low temperature

    Yi Liu; Hong-mei Chen; Jin-lian Hu; Xu-bing Tang; Hai-jin Li; Wei Wang

    2014-01-01

    Thermoelectric properties of Al substituted compounds Ca3(Co1−xAlx)4O9 (x=0, 0.03, 0.05), prepared by a sol−gel process, have been investigated in the temperature range 305−20 K. The results indicate that after Al substitution for Co in Ca3(Co1−xAlx)4O9, the direct current electrical resistivity and thermopower increase due to the reduction of carrier concentration. Experiments show that Al substitution results in decreased lattice thermal conductivity. The figure of merit of temperature behavior suggests that Ca3(Co0.97Al0.03)4O9 would be a promising candidate thermoelectric material for high-temperature thermoelectric application.

  15. High Efficiency, Easy-to-Manufacture Engineered Nanomaterials for Thermoelectric Applications Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In this Phase I SBIR program, high thermoelectric figure-of-merit (ZT) nanocrystal quantum dot (NQD) thermoelectric (TE) materials will be developed that have...

  16. Thermoelectric Materials - New Directions and Approaches, Symposium Held in San Francisco, California, U.S.A. on March 31-April 3 1997

    1997-01-01

    parameter ATmax in Centigrade leads to the calculation of the Coefficient of Performance and % of Camot efficiency. This calculation uses equation (9...thermoelectrics for the past 40 years. From this perspective the 10% of Camot Efficiency provided by thermoelectric devices, leads to their being

  17. Computer modeling of thermoelectric generator performance

    Chmielewski, A. B.; Shields, V.

    1982-01-01

    Features of the DEGRA 2 computer code for simulating the operations of a spacecraft thermoelectric generator are described. The code models the physical processes occurring during operation. Input variables include the thermoelectric couple geometry and composition, the thermoelectric materials' properties, interfaces and insulation in the thermopile, the heat source characteristics, mission trajectory, and generator electrical requirements. Time steps can be specified and sublimation of the leg and hot shoe is accounted for, as are shorts between legs. Calculations are performed for conduction, Peltier, Thomson, and Joule heating, the cold junction can be adjusted for solar radition, and the legs of the thermoelectric couple are segmented to enhance the approximation accuracy. A trial run covering 18 couple modules yielded data with 0.3% accuracy with regard to test data. The model has been successful with selenide materials, SiGe, and SiN4, with output of all critical operational variables.

  18. Perspective: n-type oxide thermoelectrics via visual search strategies

    Guangzong Xing

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available We discuss and present search strategies for finding new thermoelectric compositions based on first principles electronic structure and transport calculations. We illustrate them by application to a search for potential n-type oxide thermoelectric materials. This includes a screen based on visualization of electronic energy isosurfaces. We report compounds that show potential as thermoelectric materials along with detailed properties, including SrTiO3, which is a known thermoelectric, and appropriately doped KNbO3 and rutile TiO2.

  19. B4CN3 and B3CN4 monolayers as the promising candidates for metal-free spintronic materials

    Pan, Hongzhe; Sun, Yuanyuan; Zheng, Yongping; Tang, Nujiang; Du, Youwei

    2016-09-01

    The search for candidates of spintronic materials, especially among the two-dimensional (2D) materials, has attracted tremendous attentions over the past decades. By using a particle swarm optimization structure searching method combined with density functional calculations, two kinds of boron carbonitride monolayer structures (B4CN3 and B3CN4) are proposed and confirmed to be dynamically and kinetically stable. Intriguingly, we demonstrate that the magnetic ground states of the two B x C y N z systems are ferromagnetic ordering with a high Curie temperature of respectively 337 K for B4CN3 and 309 K for B3CN4. Furthermore, based on their respective band structures, the B4CN3 is found to be a bipolar magnetic semiconductor (BMS), while the B3CN4 is identified to be a type of spin gapless semiconductor (SGS), both of which are potential spintronic materials. In particular, carrier doping in the B4CN3 can induce a transition from BMS to half-metal, and its spin polarization direction is switchable depending on the doped carrier type. The BMS property of B4CN3 is very robust under an external strain or even a strong electric field. By contrast, as a SGS, the electronic structure of B3CN4 is relatively sensitive to external influences. Our findings successfully disclose two promising materials toward 2D metal-free spintronic applications.

  20. Interpretation of thermoelectric properties of Cu substituted LaCoO3 ceramics

    Choudhary, K. K.; Kaurav, N.; Sharma, U.; Ghosh, S. K.

    2014-04-01

    The thermoelectric properties of LaCo1-xCuxO3-δ is theoretically analyzed, it is observed that thermoelectric figure of merit ZT (=S2σT/κ) is maximized by Cu substitution in LaCoO3 Ceramics at x=0.15. The lattice thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power were estimated by the scattering of phonons with defects, grain boundaries, electrons and phonons to evaluate the thermoelectric properties. We found that Cu substitution increase the phonon scattering with grain boundaries and defects which significantly increase the thermoelectric power and decrease the thermal conductivity. The present numerical analysis will help in designing more efficient thermoelectric materials.

  1. Thermoelectric Skutterudite Compositions and Methods for Producing the Same

    Ren, Zhifeng (Inventor); Yang, Jian (Inventor); Yan, Xiao (Inventor); He, Qinyu (Inventor); Chen, Gang (Inventor); Hao, Qing (Inventor)

    2014-01-01

    Compositions related to skutterudite-based thermoelectric materials are disclosed. Such compositions can result in materials that have enhanced ZT values relative to one or more bulk materials from which the compositions are derived. Thermoelectric materials such as n-type and p-type skutterudites with high thermoelectric figures-of-merit can include materials with filler atoms and/or materials formed by compacting particles (e.g., nanoparticles) into a material with a plurality of grains each having a portion having a skutterudite-based structure. Methods of forming thermoelectric skutterudites, which can include the use of hot press processes to consolidate particles, are also disclosed. The particles to be consolidated can be derived from (e.g., grinded from), skutterudite-based bulk materials, elemental materials, other non-Skutterudite-based materials, or combinations of such materials.

  2. {sup 90}Y microspheres prepared by sol-gel method, promising medical material for radioembolization of liver malignancies

    Łada, Wiesława, E-mail: w.lada@ichtj.waw.pl [Institute of Nuclear Chemistry and Technology, 03-195 Warsaw, Dorodna 16 (Poland); Iller, Edward [National Centre for Nuclear Research, Radioisotope Centre POLATOM, 05-400 Otwock, Andrzej Sołtan 7 (Poland); Wawszczak, Danuta [Institute of Nuclear Chemistry and Technology, 03-195 Warsaw, Dorodna 16 (Poland); Konior, Marcin, E-mail: marcin.konior@polatom.pl [National Centre for Nuclear Research, Radioisotope Centre POLATOM, 05-400 Otwock, Andrzej Sołtan 7 (Poland); Dziel, Tomasz [National Centre for Nuclear Research, Radioisotope Centre POLATOM, 05-400 Otwock, Andrzej Sołtan 7 (Poland)

    2016-10-01

    A new technology for the production of radiopharmaceutical {sup 90}Y microspheres in the form of spherical yttrium oxide grains obtained by sol-gel method has been described. The authors present and discuss the results of investigations performed in the development of new production technology of yttrium microspheres and determination of their physic-chemical properties. The final product has the structure of spherical yttrium oxide grains with a diameter 25–100 μm, is stable and free from contaminants. Irradiation of 20 mg samples of grains with diameter of 20–50 μm in the thermal neutron flux of 1.7 × 10{sup 14} cm{sup −2} s{sup −1} at the core of MARIA research nuclear reactor allowed to obtain microspheres labelled with the {sup 90}Y isotope on the way of the nuclear reaction {sup 89}Y(n, γ){sup 90}Y. Specific activity of irradiated microspheres has been determined by application of absolute triple to double coincidence ratio method (TDCR) and has been evaluated at 190 MBq/mg Y. {sup 90}Y microspheres prepared by the proposed technique can be regarded as a promising medical material for radioembolization of liver malignancies. - Highlights: • Sol-gel methods for preparation of spherical yttrium trioxide grains have been proposed. • Determination condition for irradiation {sup 89}Y{sub 2}O{sub 3} grains in nuclear reactor • Evaluation of specific activity of {sup 90}Y microspheres • Estimation of {sup 90}Y microspheres as promising medical material for radioembolization.

  3. Powder Metallurgic Synthesis of Mid-temperature Lead-free AgSn18SbTe20 Ther-moelectric Materials and Processing Influence on Thermoelectric Performance%AgSn18SbTe20无铅中温热电材料的粉末冶金法制备工艺及其对性能的影响

    邢志波; 李敬锋

    2015-01-01

    研究了制备p型AgSn18SbTe20无铅热电材料的机械合金化(MA)结合放电等离子烧结(SPS)工艺,调查了MA过程中球磨时间和SPS温度对材料电热传输性能和热电优值的影响,分析了样品的物相和显微结构。研究表明,适当延长球磨时间和降低烧结温度,可以有效提高材料的热电性能。优化制备条件可以实现59%的性能提升,最佳条件(球磨12 h、SPS温度743 K)下制备的样品ZT值在723 K达到0.62。%Lead-free thermoelectric materials gain increasing attention for environmentally friendly power- generation applications derived from waste-heat sources. In this work, mid-temperature lead-free p-type AgSn18SbTe20 thermoelectric materials were fabricated by a process combining mechanical alloying (MA) and spark plasma sintering (SPS). Electrical conductivity, Seeback coefficient, power factor and thermal conductivity of the sintered samples were measured in the temperature range from 300 K to 723 K, and the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, values were calculated. The phase structures and morphologies of the samples were observed. The effects of milling time and sintering temperatures on thermoelectric properties were investigated. And the results show that properly prolonging milling time and decreasing sintering temperature can enhance thermoelectric performance of the materials. TheZT value can be enhanced by 59% through optimizing the processing parameters, resulting in a relatively highZT up to 0.62 at 723 K when the materials are milled for 12 h and sintered at 743 K.

  4. Optimal Number of Thermoelectric Couples in a Heat Pipe Assisted Thermoelectric Generator for Waste Heat Recovery

    Liu, Tongjun; Wang, Tongcai; Luan, Weiling; Cao, Qimin

    2017-01-01

    Waste heat recovery through thermoelectric generators is a promising way to improve energy conversion efficiency. This paper proposes a type of heat pipe assisted thermoelectric generator (HP-TEG) system. The expandable evaporator and condenser surface of the heat pipe facilitates the intensive assembly of thermoelectric (TE) modules to compose a compact device. Compared with a conventional layer structure thermoelectric generator, this system is feasible for the installment of more TE couples, thus increasing power output. To investigate the performance of the HP-TEG and the optimal number of TE couples, a theoretical model was presented and verified by experiment results. Further theoretical analysis results showed the performance of the HP-TEG could be further improved by optimizing the parameters, including the inlet air temperature, the thermal resistance of the heating section, and thermal resistance of the cooling structure. Moreover, applying a proper number of TE couples is important to acquire the best power output performance.

  5. Structural, chemical, and thermoelectric properties of Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} Peltier materials. Bulk, thin films, and superlattices

    Peranio, Nicola

    2008-07-01

    In this work, the nature of the natural nanostructure (nns) was analysed and the correlations to the transport coefficients, particularly the lattice thermal conductivity, is discussed. Experimental methods are presented for the first time, yielding an accurate quantitative analysis of the chemical composition and of stress fields in Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and in compounds with similar structural and chemical microstructures. This work can be subdivided as follows: (I) N-type Bi{sub 2}(Te{sub 0.91}Se{sub 0.09}){sub 3} and p-type (Bi{sub 0.26}Sb{sub 0.74}){sub 1.98}(Te{sub 0.99}Se{sub 0.01}){sub 3.02} bulk materials synthesised by the Bridgman technique. (II) Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} thin films and Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}/Bi{sub 2}(Te{sub 0.88}Se{sub 0.12}){sub 3} superlattices epitaxially grown by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) on BaF{sub 2} substrates with periods of {delta}-12 nm at the Fraunhofer-Institut fuer Physikalische Messtechnik (IPM). (III) Experimental methods, i.e., TEM specimen preparation, high-accuracy quantitative chemical analysis by EDX in the TEM, and image simulations of dislocations and the nns according to the two-beam dynamical diffraction theory. The nns was analysed in detail by stereomicroscopy and by image simulation and was found to be a pure sinusoidal displacement field with (i) a displacement vector parallel to <5,-5,1> and an amplitude of about 10 pm and (ii) a wave vector parallel to {l_brace}1,0,10{r_brace} and a wavelength of 10 nm. The results obtained here showed a significant amount of stress in the samples, induced by the nns which was still not noticed and identified. Both kinds of nanostructures, artificial (ans) and natural (nns) nanostructures, yielded in thermoelectric materials a low lattice thermal conductivity which was beneficial for the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT. (orig.)

  6. Marine Thermoelectric Devices and Installations,

    thermoelectric devices and units as marine sources of electric power, Prospects for the use of thermoelectric generators in main ship propulsion plants, Electric propulsion complexes for marine thermoelectric plants).

  7. Critical review of thermoelectrics in modern power generation applications

    Saqr Khalid M.

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric complementary effects have been discovered in the nineteenth century. However, their role in engineering applications has been very limited until the first half of the twentieth century, the beginning of space exploration era. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators have been the actual motive for the research community to develop efficient, reliable and advanced thermoelectrics. The efficiency of thermoelectric materials has been doubled several times during the past three decades. Nevertheless, there are numerous challenges to be resolved in order to develop thermoelectric systems for our modern applications. This paper discusses the recent advances in thermoelectric power systems and sheds the light on the main problematic concerns which confront contemporary research efforts in that field.

  8. Morphology of PEDOT:PSS/SWCNT Composites: Insight into Carbon Nanotube Based Organic Thermoelectric Matrices

    Etampawala, Thusitha; Tehrani, Mehran; Dadmun, Mark

    2015-03-01

    Carbon nanotube (CNT) loaded poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) nanocomposites are promising materials as the active layer in organic thermoelectric devices. Improvements in the thermoelectric performance of these nanocomposites have been hampered by the lack of an understanding of the correlation between thermo-electrical performance and morphology. In this study, the morphology of highly conducting single walled CNT/PEDOT:PSS nanocomposites were probed by small and ultra-small angle neutron scattering (SANS and USANS respectively) as a function of CNT loading (10wt%, 30wt% and 50wt%,), sonication duration to control the CNT dispersion, and presence and absence of ethylene glycol (EG) in the deposition solution of PEDOT:PSS. The morphology of these composites is currently being correlated to their thermo-electric performance. The SANS and USANS profiles were analyzed with the hierarchical Beaucage model. Further, the USANS data were fit to a two ellipsoidal form factor, which is consistent with the analysis of the USANS data by the Beaucage model and SEM results. These results reveal that the sonication duration and presence of EG effectively de-bundle the CNTs and disperse them in the PEDOT:PSS matrix.

  9. Thermoelectric properties of the Ca(5)Al(2-x)In(x)Sb(6) solid solution.

    Zevalkink, Alex; Swallow, Jessica; Ohno, Saneyuki; Aydemir, Umut; Bux, Sabah; Snyder, G Jeffrey

    2014-11-14

    Zintl phases are attractive for thermoelectric applications due to their complex structures and bonding environments. The Zintl compounds Ca(5)Al(2)In(x)Sb(6)and Ca(5)Al(2)In(x)Sb(6) have both been shown to have promising thermoelectric properties, with zT values of 0.6 and 0.7, respectively, when doped to control the carrier concentration. Alloying can often be used to further improve thermoelectric materials in cases when the decrease in lattice thermal conductivity outweighs reductions to the electronic mobility. Here we present the high temperature thermoelectric properties of the Ca(5)Al(2-x)In(x)Sb(6)solid solution. Undoped and optimally Zn-doped samples were investigated. X-ray diffraction confirms that a full solid solution exists between the Al and In end-members. We find that the Al : In ratio does not greatly influence the carrier concentration or Seebeck effect. The primary effect of alloying is thus increased scattering of both charge carriers and phonons, leading to significantly reduced electronic mobility and lattice thermal conductivity at room temperature. Ultimately, the figure of merit is unaffected by alloying in this system, due to the competing effects of reduced mobility and lattice thermal conductivity.

  10. High-temperature thermoelectric behavior of lead telluride

    M P Singh; C M Bhandari

    2004-06-01

    Usefulness of a material in thermoelectric devices is temperature specific. The central problem in thermoelectric material research is the selection of materials with high figure-of-merit in the given temperature range of operation. It is of considerable interest to know the utility range of the material, which is decided by the degrading effect of minority carrier conduction. Lead telluride is among the best-known materials for use in the temperature range 400—900 K. This paper presents a detailed theoretical investigation of the role of minority carriers in degrading the thermoelectric properties of lead telluride and outlines the temperature range for optimal performance.

  11. Thermoelectric Study of Copper Selenide

    Yao, Mengliang; Liu, Weishu; Ren, Zhifeng; Opeil, Cyril

    2014-03-01

    Nanostructuring has been shown to be an effective approach in reducing lattice thermal conductivity and improving the figure of merit of thermoelectric materials. Copper selenide is a layered structure material, which has a low thermal conductivity and p-type Seebeck coefficient at low temperatures. We have evaluated several hot-pressed, nanostructured copper selenide samples with different dopants for their thermoelectric properties. The phenomenon of the charge-density wave observed in the nanocomposite, resistivity, Seebeck, thermal conductivity and carrier mobility will be discussed. Funding for this research was provided by the Solid State Solar - Thermal Energy Conversion Center (S3TEC), an Energy Frontier Research Center sponsored by the DOE, Office of Basic Energy Science, Award No. DE-SC0001299/ DE-FG02-09ER46577.

  12. Magnetic States of the Co-ions in Ca and Y Doped (Bi,Pb2Sr2Co2O8 Thermoelectric Materials

    Inge M. Sutjahja

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The magnetic states of Cobalt ions in magnetic thermoelectric materials of Bi1.5Pb0.5Ca2-zYzCo2O8 (z = 0, 0.1, 0.2, and 0.3 have been studied from the structural (X-ray diffraction and magnetic susceptibility data. The misfit structure was revealed from refinement of the XRD data, with reduction of the lattice parameters while increasing the Y doping content. Compared with the (Bi,Pb2Sr2Co2O8 parent compound system, the lattice parameter c was reduced significantly, while the misfit degree remained almost the same. The analysis of the magnetic data shows that the Cobalt ions are coupled antiferromagnetically within the CoO2 layers, with the existence of mixed valence states between Co3+ and Co4+ ions. Besides that, the effective magnetic moments of Cobalt ions are almost constant along the Y doping content. Assuming the orbital quenching as commonly found in most transition metal ions, the data are best fitted by taking the low-spin state of Co3+ ions and intermediate spin state of Co4+ ions. We argue qualitatively, that the spin-state transition across the gap are induced by the shrinkage of the charge transfer energy gaps between O 2p and Co levels due to reduction of the ionic spaces between Co and O ions.

  13. Ti-decorated graphitic-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} monolayer: A promising material for hydrogen storage

    Zhang, Weibin [Department of Physics, Dongguk University, Seoul 04620 (Korea, Republic of); Zhang, Zhijun [Department of Physics, Dongguk University, Seoul 04620 (Korea, Republic of); School of Materials Science and Engineering, Shanghai University, Shanghai 200072 (China); Zhang, Fuchun [College of Physics and Electronic Information, Yan’an University, Yan’an 716000 (China); Yang, Woochul, E-mail: wyang@dongguk.edu [Department of Physics, Dongguk University, Seoul 04620 (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-11-15

    Highlights: • Ti atoms are stably decorated at the triangular N hole in g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} with an adsorption energy of −7.58 eV. • Electron redistribution of Ti-adsorbed porous g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} significantly enhanced hydrogen adsorption up to five H{sub 2} molecules at each Ti atom. • The hydrogen capacity of the Ti-decorated g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} system reaches up to 9.70 wt%. • All H{sub 2} absorbed in the Ti/g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} system can be released at 393 K according to the molecular dynamic analysis. • Ti/g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} as a hydrogen storage system is suitable and reversible at the temperature range required for practical applications. - Abstract: Ti-decorated graphitic carbon nitride (g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4}) monolayer as a promising material system for high-capacity hydrogen storage is proposed through density functional theory calculations. The stability and hydrogen adsorption of Ti-decorated g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} is analyzed by computing the adsorption energy, the charge population, and electronic density of states. The most stable decoration site of Ti atom is the triangular N hole in g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} with an adsorption energy of −7.58 eV. The large diffusion energy barrier of the adsorbed Ti atom of ∼6.00 eV prohibits the cluster formation of Ti atoms. The electric field induced by electron redistribution of Ti-adsorbed porous g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} significantly enhanced hydrogen adsorption up to five H{sub 2} molecules at each Ti atom with an average adsorption energy of −0.30 eV/H{sub 2}. The corresponding hydrogen capacity reaches up to 9.70 wt% at 0 K. In addition, the hydrogen capacity is predicted to be 6.30 wt% at 233 K and all adsorbed H{sub 2} are released at 393 K according to molecular dynamics simulation. Thus, the Ti-decorated g-C{sub 3}N{sub 4} monolayer is suggested to be a promising material for hydrogen storage suggested by the DOE for commercial applications.

  14. Efficient thermoelectric device

    Ila, Daryush (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    A high efficiency thermo electric device comprising a multi nanolayer structure of alternating insulator and insulator/metal material that is irradiated across the plane of the layer structure with ionizing radiation. The ionizing radiation produces nanocrystals in the layered structure that increase the electrical conductivity and decrease the thermal conductivity thereby increasing the thermoelectric figure of merit. Figures of merit as high as 2.5 have been achieved using layers of co-deposited gold and silicon dioxide interspersed with layers of silicon dioxide. The gold to silicon dioxide ratio was 0.04. 5 MeV silicon ions were used to irradiate the structure. Other metals and insulators may be substituted. Other ionizing radiation sources may be used. The structure tolerates a wide range of metal to insulator ratio.

  15. Ge/SiGe superlattices for nanostructured thermoelectric modules

    Chrastina, D., E-mail: daniel@chrastina.net [L-NESS Politecnico di Milano, Polo di Como, via Anzani 42, 22100 Como (Italy); Cecchi, S. [L-NESS Politecnico di Milano, Polo di Como, via Anzani 42, 22100 Como (Italy); Hague, J.P. [Department of Physical Sciences, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA (United Kingdom); Frigerio, J. [L-NESS Politecnico di Milano, Polo di Como, via Anzani 42, 22100 Como (Italy); Samarelli, A.; Ferre–Llin, L.; Paul, D.J. [School of Engineering, University of Glasgow, Oakfield Avenue, Glasgow, G12 8LT (United Kingdom); Müller, E. [Electron Microscopy ETH Zurich (EMEZ), ETH-Zürich, CH-8093 (Switzerland); Etzelstorfer, T.; Stangl, J. [Institut für Halbleiter und Festkörperphysik, Universität Linz, A-4040 Linz (Austria); Isella, G. [L-NESS Politecnico di Milano, Polo di Como, via Anzani 42, 22100 Como (Italy)

    2013-09-30

    Thermoelectrics are presently used in a number of applications for both turning heat into electricity and also for using electricity to produce cooling. Mature Si/SiGe and Ge/SiGe heteroepitaxial growth technology would allow highly efficient thermoelectric materials to be engineered, which would be compatible and integrable with complementary metal oxide silicon micropower circuits used in autonomous systems. A high thermoelectric figure of merit requires that electrical conductivity be maintained while thermal conductivity is reduced; thermoelectric figures of merit can be improved with respect to bulk thermoelectric materials by fabricating low-dimensional structures which enhance the density of states near the Fermi level and through phonon scattering at heterointerfaces. We have grown and characterized Ge-rich Ge/SiGe/Si superlattices for nanofabricated thermoelectric generators. Low-energy plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition has been used to obtain nanoscale-heterostructured material which is several microns thick. Crystal quality and strain control have been investigated by means of high resolution X-ray diffraction. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy images confirm the material and interface quality. Electrical conductivity has been characterized by the mobility spectrum technique. - Highlights: ► High-quality Ge/SiGe multiple quantum wells for thermoelectric applications ► Mobility spectra of systems featuring a large number of parallel conduction channels ► Competitive thermoelectric properties measured in single devices.

  16. Notes on Computational Methodology and Tools of Thermoelectric Energy Systems

    Chen, Min; Bach, Inger Palsgaard; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2007-01-01

    The SPICE model allows the concurrent simulation of thermoelectric devices and application electric sub-models. It is an important step to implement the thermoelectric modeling at the system level. In this paper, temperature dependent material properties in the SPICE model, temperature and heat...

  17. Intermetallic Reactions during the Solid-Liquid Interdiffusion Bonding of Bi2Te2.55Se0.45 Thermoelectric Material with Cu Electrodes Using a Sn Interlayer

    Chien-Hsun Chuang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The intermetallic compounds formed during the diffusion soldering of a Bi2Te2.55Se0.45 thermoelectric material with a Cu electrode are investigated. For this bonding process, Bi2Te2.55Se0.45 was pre-coated with a 1 μm Sn thin film on the thermoelectric element and pre-heated at 250 °C for 3 min before being electroplated with a Ni barrier layer and a Ag reaction layer. The pre-treated thermoelectric element was bonded with a Ag-coated Cu electrode using a 4 μm Sn interlayer at temperatures between 250 and 325 °C. The results indicated that a multi-layer of Bi–Te–Se/Sn–Te–Se–Bi/Ni3Sn4 phases formed at the Bi2Te2.55Se0.45/Ni interface, ensuring sound cohesion between the Bi2Te2.55Se0.45 thermoelectric material and Ni barrier. The molten Sn interlayer reacted rapidly with both Ag reaction layers to form an Ag3Sn intermetallic layer until it was completely exhausted and the Ag/Sn/Ag sandwich transformed into a Ag/Ag3Sn/Ag joint. Satisfactory shear strengths ranging from 19.3 and 21.8 MPa were achieved in Bi2Te2.55Se0.45/Cu joints bonded at 250 to 300 °C for 5 to 30 min, dropping to values of about 11 MPa for 60 min, bonding at 275 and 300 °C. In addition, poor strengths of about 7 MPa resulted from bonding at a higher temperature of 325 °C for 5 to 60 min.

  18. THERMOELECTRIC POWER MODULES.

    MODULES (ELECTRONICS), GENERATORS, THERMOELECTRICITY, PERFORMANCE(ENGINEERING), TABLES(DATA), HEAT, ALUMINUM, WEIGHT, SEMICONDUCTORS, SILICON, GERMANIUM, MEASUREMENT, VOLTAGE, ELECTRICAL RESISTANCE, POWER, TEMPERATURE, TIME.

  19. Transient Thermoelectric Solution Employing Green's Functions

    Mackey, Jon; Sehirlioglu, Alp; Dynys, Fred

    2014-01-01

    The study works to formulate convenient solutions to the problem of a thermoelectric couple operating under a time varying condition. Transient operation of a thermoelectric will become increasingly common as thermoelectric technology permits applications in an increasing number of uses. A number of terrestrial applications, in contrast to steady-state space applications, can subject devices to time varying conditions. For instance thermoelectrics can be exposed to transient conditions in the automotive industry depending on engine system dynamics along with factors like driving style. In an effort to generalize the thermoelectric solution a Greens function method is used, so that arbitrary time varying boundary and initial conditions may be applied to the system without reformulation. The solution demonstrates that in thermoelectric applications of a transient nature additional factors must be taken into account and optimized. For instance, the materials specific heat and density become critical parameters in addition to the thermal mass of a heat sink or the details of the thermal profile, such as oscillating frequency. The calculations can yield the optimum operating conditions to maximize power output andor efficiency for a given type of device.

  20. Thermoelectric behavior of conducting polymers: On the possibility of off-diagonal thermoelectricity

    Mateeva, N.; Testardi, L. [TecOne, Inc., Tallahassee, FL (United States); Niculescu, H. [TecOne, Inc., Tallahassee, FL (United States)]|[Florida A and M Univ./Florida State Univ., Tallahassee, FL (United States) Coll. of Engineering; Schlenoff, J. [TecOne, Inc., Tallahassee, FL (United States)]|[Florida State Univ., Tallahassee, FL (United States). Chemistry Dept.

    1998-12-01

    Non-cubic materials, when structurally aligned, possess sufficient anisotropy to exhibit thermoelectric effects where the electrical and thermal paths can be orthogonal due to off-diagonal thermoelectricity (ODTE). The authors discuss the benefits of this form of thermoelectricity for device applications and describe a search for suitable thermoelectric properties in the air-stable conducting polymers polyaniline and polypyrrole. They find, at 300K for diagonal (ordinary) thermoelectricity (DTE), the general correlation that the logarithm of the electrical conductivity varies linearly with the Seebeck coefficient on doping, but with a proportionality in excess of a prediction from theory. The correlation is unexpected in its universality and unfavorable in its consequences for applications in DTE and ODTE. A standard model suggests that conduction by carriers of both signs occurs in these polymers, which thus leads to reduced thermoelectric efficiency. They also discuss polyacetylene (which is not air-stable), where this ambipolar conduction does not occur, and where properties seem more favorable for thermoelectricity.

  1. (90)Y microspheres prepared by sol-gel method, promising medical material for radioembolization of liver malignancies.

    Łada, Wiesława; Iller, Edward; Wawszczak, Danuta; Konior, Marcin; Dziel, Tomasz

    2016-10-01

    A new technology for the production of radiopharmaceutical (90)Y microspheres in the form of spherical yttrium oxide grains obtained by sol-gel method has been described. The authors present and discuss the results of investigations performed in the development of new production technology of yttrium microspheres and determination of their physic-chemical properties. The final product has the structure of spherical yttrium oxide grains with a diameter 25-100μm, is stable and free from contaminants. Irradiation of 20mg samples of grains with diameter of 20-50μm in the thermal neutron flux of 1.7×10(14)cm(-2)s(-1) at the core of MARIA research nuclear reactor allowed to obtain microspheres labelled with the (90)Y isotope on the way of the nuclear reaction (89)Y(n, ɤ)(90)Y. Specific activity of irradiated microspheres has been determined by application of absolute triple to double coincidence ratio method (TDCR) and has been evaluated at 190MBq/mg Y. (90)Y microspheres prepared by the proposed technique can be regarded as a promising medical material for radioembolization of liver malignancies.

  2. Hybrids of NiCo2O4 nanorods and nanobundles with graphene as promising electrode materials for supercapacitors.

    Wang, Zhuo; Zhang, Xin; Zhang, Zhongshen; Qiao, Nanli; Li, Yang; Hao, Zhengping

    2015-12-15

    High dispersion of NiCo2O4 nanorods and porous NiCo2O4 nanobundles decorated on RGO have been synthesized by a facile hydrothermal method, followed by calcination in one step. By adjusting the starting metal sources to realize the synthesis of different morphologies of NiCo2O4. The morphology and the microstructure of the as-prepared composites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) and transmission electron microscope (TEM) techniques. Among them, the porous RGO/NiCo2O4 nanobundles gives a higher specific capacitance of 1278F/g at 1A/g and 719F/g at 20A/g, showing a remarkable rate capability. The excellent electrochemical performances could ascribed to the unique structural feature with higher surface area. It could be anticipated that the synthesized electrode material will gain promising applications in supercapacitors and other devices because of their outstanding characteristics of controllable capacitance and facilely synthesized.

  3. Metal-Free Carbon-Based Materials: Promising Electrocatalysts for Oxygen Reduction Reaction in Microbial Fuel Cells

    Sandesh Y. Sawant

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Microbial fuel cells (MFCs are a promising green approach for wastewater treatment with the simultaneous advantage of energy production. Among the various limiting factors, the cathodic limitation, with respect to performance and cost, is one of the main obstacles to the practical applications of MFCs. Despite the high performance of platinum and other metal-based cathodes, their practical use is limited by their high cost, low stability, and environmental toxicity. Oxygen is the most favorable electron acceptor in the case of MFCs, which reduces to water through a complicated oxygen reduction reaction (ORR. Carbon-based ORR catalysts possessing high surface area and good electrical conductivity improve the ORR kinetics by lowering the cathodic overpotential. Recently, a range of carbon-based materials have attracted attention for their exceptional ORR catalytic activity and high stability. Doping the carbon texture with a heteroatom improved their ORR activity remarkably through the favorable adsorption of oxygen and weaker molecular bonding. This review provides better insight into ORR catalysis for MFCs and the properties, performance, and applicability of various metal-free carbon-based electrocatalysts in MFCs to find the most appropriate cathodic catalyst for the practical applications. The approaches for improvement, key challenges, and future opportunities in this field are also explored.

  4. Metal-Free Carbon-Based Materials: Promising Electrocatalysts for Oxygen Reduction Reaction in Microbial Fuel Cells

    Sawant, Sandesh Y.; Han, Thi Hiep; Cho, Moo Hwan

    2016-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a promising green approach for wastewater treatment with the simultaneous advantage of energy production. Among the various limiting factors, the cathodic limitation, with respect to performance and cost, is one of the main obstacles to the practical applications of MFCs. Despite the high performance of platinum and other metal-based cathodes, their practical use is limited by their high cost, low stability, and environmental toxicity. Oxygen is the most favorable electron acceptor in the case of MFCs, which reduces to water through a complicated oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). Carbon-based ORR catalysts possessing high surface area and good electrical conductivity improve the ORR kinetics by lowering the cathodic overpotential. Recently, a range of carbon-based materials have attracted attention for their exceptional ORR catalytic activity and high stability. Doping the carbon texture with a heteroatom improved their ORR activity remarkably through the favorable adsorption of oxygen and weaker molecular bonding. This review provides better insight into ORR catalysis for MFCs and the properties, performance, and applicability of various metal-free carbon-based electrocatalysts in MFCs to find the most appropriate cathodic catalyst for the practical applications. The approaches for improvement, key challenges, and future opportunities in this field are also explored. PMID:28029116

  5. Metal-Free Carbon-Based Materials: Promising Electrocatalysts for Oxygen Reduction Reaction in Microbial Fuel Cells.

    Sawant, Sandesh Y; Han, Thi Hiep; Cho, Moo Hwan

    2016-12-24

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a promising green approach for wastewater treatment with the simultaneous advantage of energy production. Among the various limiting factors, the cathodic limitation, with respect to performance and cost, is one of the main obstacles to the practical applications of MFCs. Despite the high performance of platinum and other metal-based cathodes, their practical use is limited by their high cost, low stability, and environmental toxicity. Oxygen is the most favorable electron acceptor in the case of MFCs, which reduces to water through a complicated oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). Carbon-based ORR catalysts possessing high surface area and good electrical conductivity improve the ORR kinetics by lowering the cathodic overpotential. Recently, a range of carbon-based materials have attracted attention for their exceptional ORR catalytic activity and high stability. Doping the carbon texture with a heteroatom improved their ORR activity remarkably through the favorable adsorption of oxygen and weaker molecular bonding. This review provides better insight into ORR catalysis for MFCs and the properties, performance, and applicability of various metal-free carbon-based electrocatalysts in MFCs to find the most appropriate cathodic catalyst for the practical applications. The approaches for improvement, key challenges, and future opportunities in this field are also explored.

  6. The fabrication of thermoelectric La0.95Sr0.05CoO3 nanofibers and Seebeck coefficient measurement.

    Xu, Weihe; Shi, Yong; Hadim, Hamid

    2010-10-01

    The P-type perovskite oxides La(1-x)Sr(x)CoO(3) are a promising group of complex oxide thermoelectric (TE) materials. The thermoelectric properties of these oxides are expected to be significantly improved when their critical dimensions are reduced to the nanoscale. In this paper, the La(0.95)Sr(0.05)CoO(3) nanofibers, with diameters in the range of approximately 35 nm, were successfully prepared by the electrospinning process. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were used to characterize these thermoelectric nanofibers. A micro-electromechanical (MEMS) tester was designed and fabricated to measure the Seebeck coefficient of the nanofibers. The measured voltage output was as large as 1.7 mV and the obtained Seebeck coefficient of the nanofibers reached 650 microV K(-1).

  7. Fuzzy promises

    Anker, Thomas Boysen; Kappel, Klemens; Eadie, Douglas

    2012-01-01

    This article clarifies the commonplace assumption that brands make promises by developing definitions of brand promise delivery. Distinguishing between clear and fuzzy brand promises, we develop definitions of what it is for a brand to deliver on fuzzy functional, symbolic, and experiential...

  8. Research and Development of Titania-Based Nanostructured Materials for High Performance Thermoelectric Applications%氧化钛基半导体热电材料的研究进展

    苗蕾; 刘呈燕; 周建华; 张明

    2013-01-01

    热电材料-即实现热能和电能之间直接相互转换的一类功能材料,提供了一种制冷或发电的新方法-在解决能源和环境危机问题上正在扮演越来越重要的角色。传统的三维材料中,由于几个决定热电性能的关键物理参数相互关联,使得现有热电材料很难获得较高热电优值(ZT)。金属氧化物热电材料由于其良好的耐高温性能,是中高温区使用的理想候选者。如果能提高氧化钛基化合物的热电优值,那么氧化钛基化合物将是一类非常优秀的热电材料,因为其不仅具有优良的化学稳定性和热稳定性,而且原材料丰富、不含有毒元素以及制备工艺简单。纳米化能显著降低材料的热导率,是最近二十年提高热电性能的一条主要途径。同时,通过界面和化学组成调控增加与电学性能相关的功率因子也是一种继续提高热电性能的重要方法。本文综述了我们近期对氧化钛基热电材料的研究成果,包括对钛酸盐纳米管较大赛贝克(Seebeck)系数的实验发现,提出利用一维纳米材料独特的空心结构和纳米管层状特殊构造,将两个相关联的物理参数(热导率和电导率)分别调控;通过合成氧化钛基纳米复合材料,研究界面对载流子和声子散射的作用,提出通过载流子能量过滤效应提高其热电性能;采用尿素燃烧法和高温烧结等方法合成具有纳米结构和化学组成调控的氧化钛基化合物,认识化学组成以及界面对声电输运的作用规律;最后介绍能显著提高热电材料功率因子的载流子非对称迁移的理论。%Thermoelectric materials, which can convert heat directly into electricity efficiently and vice versa, offer a new method to refrigeration and power generation. They therefore play an important role on solving intensified energy crisis and environmental problems. In traditional bulk

  9. High quality thin films of thermoelectric misfit cobalt oxides prepared by a chemical solution method.

    Rivas-Murias, Beatriz; Manuel Vila-Fungueiriño, José; Rivadulla, Francisco

    2015-07-08

    Misfit cobaltates ([Bi/Ba/Sr/Ca/CoO]n(RS)[CoO2]q) constitute the most promising family of thermoelectric oxides for high temperature energy harvesting. However, their complex structure and chemical composition makes extremely challenging their deposition by high-vacuum physical techniques. Therefore, many of them have not been prepared as thin films until now. Here we report the synthesis of high-quality epitaxial thin films of the most representative members of this family of compounds by a water-based chemical solution deposition method. The films show an exceptional crystalline quality, with an electrical conductivity and thermopower comparable to single crystals. These properties are linked to the epitaxial matching of the rock-salt layers of the structure to the substrate, producing clean interfaces free of amorphous phases. This is an important step forward for the integration of these materials with complementary n-type thermoelectric oxides in multilayer nanostructures.

  10. Improved Thermoelectric Performance in Flexible Tellurium Nanowires/Reduced Graphene Oxide Sandwich Structure Hybrid Films

    Gao, Jie; Liu, Chengyan; Miao, Lei; Wang, Xiaoyang; Peng, Ying; Chen, Yu

    2016-11-01

    With a high flexibility and an adjustable electronic structure, reduced graphene oxide (RGO) is a potential candidate for flexible thermoelectric materials. Here, we report that flexible RGO/tellurium nanowires (Te NWs)/RGO sandwich structure hybrid films are prepared on glass fabrics through the drop-cast method. The addition of 20 wt.% Te NWs into a RGO matrix remarkably improves the Seebeck coefficient from 15.2 μV/K to 89.7 μV/K while maintaining relatively high electrical conductivity, thus resulting in a one order of magnitude higher power factor value compared with the Te NWs. According to the values of carrier mobility and concentration of hybrid films, the improved thermoelectric properties are presented because of the energy filtering effect on the interfaces in hybrid films. This article suggests that RGO/Te NWs/RGO hybrid films would be promising for fabricating flexible energy sources.

  11. High quality thin films of thermoelectric misfit cobalt oxides prepared by a chemical solution method

    Rivas-Murias, Beatriz; Manuel Vila-Fungueiriño, José; Rivadulla, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    Misfit cobaltates ([Bi/Ba/Sr/Ca/CoO]nRS[CoO2]q) constitute the most promising family of thermoelectric oxides for high temperature energy harvesting. However, their complex structure and chemical composition makes extremely challenging their deposition by high-vacuum physical techniques. Therefore, many of them have not been prepared as thin films until now. Here we report the synthesis of high-quality epitaxial thin films of the most representative members of this family of compounds by a water-based chemical solution deposition method. The films show an exceptional crystalline quality, with an electrical conductivity and thermopower comparable to single crystals. These properties are linked to the epitaxial matching of the rock-salt layers of the structure to the substrate, producing clean interfaces free of amorphous phases. This is an important step forward for the integration of these materials with complementary n-type thermoelectric oxides in multilayer nanostructures. PMID:26153533

  12. Expansion Compression Contacts for Thermoelectric Legs

    Sakamoto, Jeffrey

    2009-01-01

    In a proposed alternative to previous approaches to making hot-shoe contacts to the legs of thermoelectric devices, one relies on differential thermal expansion to increase contact pressures for the purpose of reducing the electrical resistances of contacts as temperatures increase. The proposed approach is particularly applicable to thermoelectric devices containing p-type (positive-charge-carrier) legs made of a Zintl compound (specifically, Yb14MnSb11) and n-type (negative charge-carrier) legs made of SiGe. This combination of thermoelectric materials has been selected for further development, primarily on the basis of projected thermoelectric performance. However, it is problematic to integrate, into a practical thermoelectric device, legs made of these materials along with a metal or semiconductor hot shoe that is required to be in thermal and electrical contact with the legs. This is partly because of the thermal-expansion mismatch of these materials: The coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of SiGe is 4.5 x 10(exp -6) C (exp -1), while the CTE of Yb14MnSb11 is 20 x 10(exp -6) C(exp -1). Simply joining a Yb14MnSb11 and a SiGe leg to a common hot shoe could be expected to result in significant thermal stresses in either or both legs during operation. Heretofore, such thermal stresses have been regarded as disadvantageous. In the proposed approach, stresses resulting from the CTE mismatch would be turned to advantage.

  13. Effect of current on the microstructure and performance of (Bi2Te3)0.2(Sb2Te3)0.8 thermoelectric material via field activated and pressure assisted sintering

    Chen Ruixue; Meng Qingsen; Fan Wenhao; Wang Zhong

    2011-01-01

    (Bi2Te3)0.2(Sb2Te3)0.8 thermoelectric material was sintered via a field activated and pressure assisted sintering (FAPAS) process.By applying different current intensity (0,60,320 A/cm2) in the sintering process,the effects of electric current on the microstructure and thermoelectric performance were investigated.This demonstrated that the application of electric current in the sintering process could significantly improve the uniformity and density of(Bi2Te3)0.2(Sb2Te3)0.8 samples.When the current intensity was raised to 320 A/cm2,the preferred orientation of grains was observed.Moreover,positive effects on the thermoelectric performance of applying electric current in the sintering process were also confirmed.An increase of 0.02 and 0.11 in the maximum figure of merit ZT value could be acquired by applying current of 60 and 320 A/cm2,respectively.

  14. Thermoelectric properties of the ReCN

    Reyes-Serrato, A.; Sofo, Jorge

    2013-03-01

    We present thermoelectric properties of the new material, ReCN. Combining first principles band structure calculation with semi classical model analysis; we obtained the Seebeck coefficient as well as the electrical conductivity as a function of the relaxation time for the electrons. The results indicate the potential of the ReCN as a good thermoelectric material in the low region of the temperature. A. Reyes-Serrato wishes to acknowledge to Professor Jorge O Sofo and Department of Physics, The Pennsylvania State University, for the support during the sabbatical year.

  15. Research Update: Phonon engineering of nanocrystalline silicon thermoelectrics

    Shiomi, Junichiro

    2016-10-01

    Nanocrystalline silicon thermoelectrics can be a solution to improve the cost-effectiveness of thermoelectric technology from both material and integration viewpoints. While their figure-of-merit is still developing, recent advances in theoretical/numerical calculations, property measurements, and structural synthesis/fabrication have opened up possibilities to develop the materials based on fundamental physics of phonon transport. Here, this is demonstrated by reviewing a series of works on nanocrystalline silicon materials using calculations of multiscale phonon transport, measurements of interfacial heat conduction, and synthesis from nanoparticles. Integration of these approaches allows us to engineer phonon transport to improve the thermoelectric performance by introducing local silicon-oxide structures.

  16. Simulation Analysis of Tilted Polyhedron-Shaped Thermoelectric Elements

    Meng, Xiangning; Suzuki, Ryosuke O.

    2015-06-01

    The generation of thermoelectricity is considered a promising approach to harness the waste heat generated in industries, automobiles, gas fields, and other man-made processes. The waste heat can be converted to electricity via a thermoelectric (TE) generator. In this light, the generator performance depends on the geometric configuration of its constituent elements as well as their material properties. Our previous work reported TE behaviors for modules consisting of parallelogram-shaped elements, because elements with tilted laminate structures provide increased mechanical stability and efficient heat-transferring ability from the hot surface to the cold surface. Here, we study TE elements in the shape of a polyhedron that is obtained by mechanically truncating the edges of a parallelogram element in order to further enhance the generator performance and reduce TE material usage. The TE performance of the modules consisting of these polyhedron elements is numerically simulated by using the finite-volume method. The output power, voltage, and current of the polyhedral TE module are greater than those of the parallelogram-element module. The polyhedron shape positively affects heat transfer and the flow of electric charges in the light of increasing the efficiency of conversion from heat to electricity. By varying the shape of the truncated portions, we determine the optimal shape that enables homogeneous heat flux distribution and slow diffusion of thermal energy to obtain the better efficiency of conversion of heat into electricity. We believe that the findings of our study can significantly contribute to the design policy in TE generation.

  17. Fabrication and characterization methods for growth of CZTS as a promising material for thin film solar cells

    Emrani, Amin

    Current research trends are moving towards earth-abundant and low toxicity materials. Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS), which consists not only earth-abundant and non-toxic elemental constituents, but also possesses a nearly optimum band gap of 1.5 eV and a high absorption coefficient, has the potential to be a leading material for large scale generation of solar energy. Although theoretical calculations estimated the feasibility of achieving an efficiency between 30 to 40 %, for CZTS solar cells, unfortunately, there is no standard approach to fabricate CZTS cells to reach an efficiency even close to these numbers. In this dissertation, several potential methods from vacuum based techniques such as sputtering to a new solution-based process to deposit CZTS films have been explored, studied and developed. To further improve the CZTS solar cell performance, other layers essential for CZTS solar cells have also been analyzed and optimized. Lastly, the performance and efficiencies of the final integrated cells are presented. First, we report a two-step process with sputtering of elemental precursors followed by sulfurization in dilute H2S. Structural and optical properties of CZTS thin films at various temperatures are studied. The CZTS films formed at 550°C exhibited a compact void-free structure yields the highest efficiency of 5.75%. Since long duration annealing processes are not practical for industry and result in the formation of voids due to the sublimation of secondary phases, fast annealing under sulfur vapor atmosphere has further been investigated. Since the H2S annealing is cleaner and more controllable than dealing with sulfur vapor pressure. We report a two-step process with sputtering of elemental precursors followed by fast sulfurization in dilute H2S. The electrical characteristics and the efficiencies of the respective solar cells were analyzed and compared. The films annealed at 580°C for 30 minutes exhibited the highest efficiency of 3.8%. Another approach to

  18. Nanostructured p-type semiconducting transparent oxides: promising materials for nano-active devices and the emerging field of "transparent nanoelectronics".

    Banerjee, Arghya; Chattopadhyay, Kalyan K

    2008-01-01

    Transparent conducting oxides (TCO) with p-type semiconductivity have recently gained renewed interest for the fabrication of all-oxide transparent junctions, having potential applications in the emerging field of 'Transparent' or 'Invisible Electronics'. This kind of transparent junctions can be used as a "functional" window, which will transmit visible portion of solar radiation, but generates electricity by the absorption of the UV part. Therefore, these devices can be used as UV shield as well as UV cells. In this report, a brief review on the research activities on various p-TCO materials is furnished along-with the fabrication of different transparent p-n homojunction, heterojunction and field-effect transistors. Also the reason behind the difficulties in obtaining p-TCO materials and possible solutions are discussed in details. Considerable attention is given in describing the various patent generations on the field of p-TCO materials as well as transparent p-n junction diodes and light emitting devices. Also, most importantly, a detailed review and patenting activities on the nanocrystalline p-TCO materials and transparent nano-active device fabrication are furnished with considerable attention. And finally, a systematic description on the fabrication and characterization of nanocrystalline, p-type transparent conducting CuAlO(2) thin film, deposited by cost-effective low-temperature DC sputtering technique, by our group, is furnished in details. These p-TCO micro/nano-materials have wide range of applications in the field of optoelectronics, nanoelectronics, space sciences, field-emission displays, thermoelectric converters and sensing devices.

  19. Study of 5f electron based filled skutterudite compound EuFe{sub 4}Sb{sub 12}, a thermoelectric (TE) material: FP-LAPW method

    Shankar, A., E-mail: amitshan2009@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Mizoram University, Aizawl 796004 (India); Rai, D.P., E-mail: dibyaprakashrai@gmail.com [Beijing Computational Science Research Center, 3 Heqing Road, Beijing 100084 (China); Khenata, R. [Laboratoire de Physique Quantique et de Modlisation Mathmatique (LPQ3M), Dpartement de Technologie, Universit de Mascara, 29000 Mascara (Algeria); Maibam, J. [Department of Physics, Assam University, Silchar 788011 (India); Sandeep, E-mail: sndp.chettri@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Mizoram University, Aizawl 796004 (India); Thapa, R.K., E-mail: r.k.thapa@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Mizoram University, Aizawl 796004 (India)

    2015-01-15

    Highlights: • The compound EuFe{sub 4}Sb{sub 12} shows a semi-metallic behavior with pseudo gap. • The inherent dense band near E{sub F} facilitate the charge carriers. • The magnetic moment within LSDA and mBJ are underestimated. • The inclusion of onsite Coulomb repulsion (U) in LSDA has improved the result. • The results obtained from LSDA + U are consistent with the experimental data. - Abstract: We have studied the elastic, electronic and magnetic properties along with the thermoelectric properties of an undoped filled skutterudite EuFe{sub 4}Sb{sub 12} using full-potential linearized augmented plane wave (FP-LAPW) method. The LSDA, LSDA + U and a new exchange-correlation functional called modified Becke Johnson (mBJ) potential based on density functional theory (DFT) were used for studying material properties. The Eu-f and Fe-d are strongly correlated elements thus the inclusion of Coulomb repulsion (U) expected to give an exact ground state properties. The exchange-splitting of Eu-4f states were analyzed to explain the ferromagnetic behavior of EuFe{sub 4}Sb{sub 12} (half-metallic behavior). The numerical values of isotropic elastic parameters and related properties are estimated in the framework of the Voigt–Reuss–Hill approximation. The calculation of thermal transport properties at various temperature shows the high value of Seebeck coefficient and figure of merit (ZT) = 0.25 at room temperature in consistent to the experimental results.

  20. Peridynamic Formulation for Coupled Thermoelectric Phenomena

    Migbar Assefa

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Modeling of heat and electrical current flow simultaneously in thermoelectric convertor using classical theories do not consider the influence of defects in the material. This is because traditional methods are developed based on partial differential equations (PDEs and lead to infinite fluxes at the discontinuities. The usual way of solving such PDEs is by using numerical technique, like Finite Element Method (FEM. Although FEM is robust and versatile, it is not suitable to model evolving discontinuities. To avoid such shortcomings, we propose the concept of peridynamic theory to derive the balance of energy and charge equations in the coupled thermoelectric phenomena. Therefore, this paper presents the transport of heat and charge in thermoelectric material in the framework of peridynamic (PD theory. To illustrate the reliability of the PD formulation, numerical examples are presented and results are compared with those from literature, analytical solutions, or finite element solutions.

  1. Thermoelectric properties of the 3C, 2H, 4H, and 6H polytypes of the wide-band-gap semiconductors SiC, GaN, and ZnO

    Zheng Huang

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available We have investigated the thermoelectric properties of the 3C, 2H, 4H, and 6H polytypes of the wide-band-gap(n-type semiconductors SiC, GaN, and ZnO based on first-principles calculations and Boltzmann transport theory. Our results show that the thermoelectric performance increases from 3C to 6H, 4H, and 2H structures with an increase of hexagonality for SiC. However, for GaN and ZnO, their power factors show a very weak dependence on the polytype. Detailed analysis of the thermoelectric properties with respect to temperature and carrier concentration of 4H-SiC, 2H-GaN, and 2H-ZnO shows that the figure of merit of these three compounds increases with temperature, indicating the promising potential applications of these thermoelectric materials at high temperature. The significant difference of the polytype-dependent thermoelectric properties among SiC, GaN, and ZnO might be related to the competition between covalency and ionicity in these semiconductors. Our calculations may provide a new way to enhance the thermoelectric properties of wide-band-gap semiconductors through atomic structure design, especially hexagonality design for SiC.

  2. Thermoelectric properties of the 3C, 2H, 4H, and 6H polytypes of the wide-band-gap semiconductors SiC, GaN, and ZnO

    Huang, Zheng; Lü, Tie-Yu [Department of Physics, and Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005 (China); Wang, Hui-Qiong [Department of Physics, and Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005 (China); Xiamen University Malaysia Campus, Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia); Zheng, Jin-Cheng, E-mail: jczheng@xmu.edu.cn [Department of Physics, and Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005 (China); Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Theoretical and Computational Chemistry, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005 (China); Xiamen University Malaysia Campus, Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia)

    2015-09-15

    We have investigated the thermoelectric properties of the 3C, 2H, 4H, and 6H polytypes of the wide-band-gap(n-type) semiconductors SiC, GaN, and ZnO based on first-principles calculations and Boltzmann transport theory. Our results show that the thermoelectric performance increases from 3C to 6H, 4H, and 2H structures with an increase of hexagonality for SiC. However, for GaN and ZnO, their power factors show a very weak dependence on the polytype. Detailed analysis of the thermoelectric properties with respect to temperature and carrier concentration of 4H-SiC, 2H-GaN, and 2H-ZnO shows that the figure of merit of these three compounds increases with temperature, indicating the promising potential applications of these thermoelectric materials at high temperature. The significant difference of the polytype-dependent thermoelectric properties among SiC, GaN, and ZnO might be related to the competition between covalency and ionicity in these semiconductors. Our calculations may provide a new way to enhance the thermoelectric properties of wide-band-gap semiconductors through atomic structure design, especially hexagonality design for SiC.

  3. A Liquid-Liquid Thermoelectric Heat Exchanger as a Heat Pump for Testing Phase Change Material Heat Exchangers

    Sheth, Rubik B.; Makinen, Janice; Le, Hung V.

    2016-01-01

    The primary objective of the Phase Change HX payload on the International Space Station (ISS) is to test and demonstrate the viability and performance of Phase Change Material Heat Exchangers (PCM HX). The system was required to pump a working fluid through a PCM HX to promote the phase change material to freeze and thaw as expected on Orion's Multipurpose Crew Vehicle. Due to limitations on ISS's Internal Thermal Control System, a heat pump was needed on the Phase Change HX payload to help with reducing the working fluid's temperature to below 0degC (32degF). This paper will review the design and development of a TEC based liquid-liquid heat exchanger as a way to vary to fluid temperature for the freeze and thaw phase of the PCM HX. Specifically, the paper will review the design of custom coldplates and sizing for the required heat removal of the HX.

  4. Recent Advances in Layered Metal Chalcogenides as Superconductors and Thermoelectric Materials: Fe-Based and Bi-Based Chalcogenides.

    Mizuguchi, Yoshikazu

    2016-04-01

    Recent advances in layered (Fe-based and Bi-based) chalcogenides as superconductors or functional materials are reviewed. The Fe-chalcogenide (FeCh) family are the simplest Fe-based high-Tc superconductors. The superconductivity in the FeCh family is sensitive to external or chemical pressure, and high Tc is attained when the local structure (anion height) is optimized. The Bi-chalcogenide (BiCh2) family are a new group of layered superconductors with a wide variety of stacking structures. Their physical properties are also sensitive to external or chemical pressure. Recently, we revealed that the emergence of superconductivity and the Tc in this family correlate with the in-plane chemical pressure. Since the flexibility of crystal structure and electronic states are an advantage of the BiCh2 family for designing functionalities, I briefly review recent developments in this family as not only superconductors but also other functional materials.

  5. Complex oxides useful for thermoelectric energy conversion

    Majumdar, Arunava [Orinda, CA; Ramesh, Ramamoorthy [Moraga, CA; Yu, Choongho [College Station, TX; Scullin, Matthew L [Berkeley, CA; Huijben, Mark [Enschede, NL

    2012-07-17

    The invention provides for a thermoelectric system comprising a substrate comprising a first complex oxide, wherein the substrate is optionally embedded with a second complex oxide. The thermoelectric system can be used for thermoelectric power generation or thermoelectric cooling.

  6. Effect of nanocomposite structure on the thermoelectric properties of 0.7-at% Bi-doped Mg2Si nanocomposite

    Yang Mei-Jun; Shen Qiang; Zhang Lian-Meng

    2011-01-01

    Nanocomposites offer a promising approach to the incorporation of nanostructured constituents into bulk thermoelectric materials.The 0.7-at% Bi-doped Mg2Si nanocomposites are prepared by spark plasma sintering of the mixture of nanoscale and microsized 0.7-at% Bi-doped Mg2Si powders.Microstructure analysis shows that the bulk material is composed of nano- and micrograins.Although the nanograin hinders electrical conduction,the nanocomposite structure is more helpful to reduce thermal conductivity and increase the Seebeck coefficient,hence improving thermoelectric performance.A dimensionless figure of merit of 0.8 is obtained for the 0.7-at% Bi-doped Mg2Si nanocomposite with 50-wt % nanopowder,which is about twice larger than that of the sample without nanopowder.

  7. Oxide-based High Temperature Thermoelectric Generators - Development of Integrated Design Technique and Construction of a Thermoelectric Module

    Wijesooriyage, Waruna Dissanayaka

    In the field of energy management, thermoelectrics are niche candidates for electrical generator devices. For decades, scientists have been focused on thermoelectric (TE) material development. Thus TE module design techniques are still in relatively virgin state when comparing to the TE material...... development. This thesis is focused on development and optimization of thermoelectric generator (TEG) design techniques for high temperature (> 700 °C) applications. Some of the main targets of this optimization process are to achieve higher volumetric power density (VPD), and reduce the cost-per-Watt. Oxide...... of the thermoelectrically mismatched materials. U-TEG removed the weaker TE material and replaced it with a conductor. It is shown that U-TEG is a valuable concept to increase the VPD of a TE device that has mismatched TE materials. Moreover, U-TEG design is generalized using an idealized metal. Furthermore, well...

  8. A design approach for integrating thermoelectric devices using topology optimization

    Soprani, Stefano; Haertel, Jan Hendrik Klaas; Lazarov, Boyan Stefanov;

    2016-01-01

    to operate more efficiently. This work proposes and experimentally demonstrates a topology optimization approach as a design tool for efficient integration of thermoelectric modules into systems with specific design constraints. The approach allows thermal layout optimization of thermoelectric systems....... The design method incorporates temperature dependent properties of the thermoelectric device and other materials. The3D topology optimization model developed in this work was used to design a thermoelectric system, complete with insulation and heat sink, that was produced and tested. Good agreement between...... experimental results and model forecasts was obtained and the system was able to maintain the load at more than 33 K below the oil well temperature. Results of this study support topology optimizationas a powerful design tool for thermal design of thermoelectric systems....

  9. Harvesting Nanocatalytic Heat Localized in Nanoalloy Catalyst as a Heat Source in a Nanocomposite Thin Film Thermoelectric Device.

    Zhao, Wei; Shan, Shiyao; Luo, Jin; Mott, Derrick M; Maenosono, Shinya; Zhong, Chuan-Jian

    2015-10-20

    This report describes findings of an investigation of harvesting nanocatalytic heat localized in a nanoalloy catalyst layer as a heat source in a nanocomposite thin film thermoelectric device for thermoelectric energy conversion. This device couples a heterostructured copper-zinc sulfide nanocomposite for thermoelectrics and low-temperature combustion of methanol fuels over a platinum-cobalt nanoalloy catalyst for producing heat localized in the nanocatalyst layer. The possibility of tuning nanocatalytic heat in the nanocatalyst and thin film thermoelectric properties by compositions points to a promising pathway in thermoelectric energy conversion.

  10. Thermoelectric Energy Conversion: How Good Can Silicon Be?

    Haras, M; Morini, F; Robillard, J -F; Monfray, S; Skotnicki, T; Dubois, E

    2016-01-01

    Lack of materials which are thermoelectrically efficient and economically attractive is a challenge in thermoelectricity. Silicon could be a good thermoelectric material offering CMOS compatibility, harmlessness and cost reduction but it features a too high thermal conductivity. High harvested power density of 7W/cm2 at deltaT=30K is modeled based on a thin-film lateral architecture of thermo-converter that takes advantage of confinement effects to reduce the thermal conductivity. The simulation leads to the conclusion that 10nm thick Silicon has 10 times higher efficiency than bulk.

  11. Potential for high thermoelectric performance in n-type Zintl compounds: a case study of Ba doped KAlSb 4

    Ortiz, Brenden R.; Gorai, Prashun; Krishna, Lakshmi; Mow, Rachel; Lopez, Armando; McKinney, Robert; Stevanović, Vladan; Toberer, Eric S.

    2017-01-01

    High-throughput calculations (first-principles density functional theory and semi-empirical transport models) have the potential to guide the discovery of new thermoelectric materials. Herein we have computationally assessed the potential for thermoelectric performance of 145 complex Zintl pnictides. Of the 145 Zintl compounds assessed, 17% show promising n-type transport properties, compared with only 6% showing promising p-type transport. We predict that n-type Zintl compounds should exhibit high mobility un while maintaining the low thermal conductivity KL typical of Zintl phases. Thus, not only do candidate n-type Zintls outnumber their p-type counterparts, but they may also exhibit improved thermoelectric performance. From the computational search, we have selected n-type KAlSb4 as a promising thermoelectric material. Synthesis and characterization of polycrystalline KAlSb4 reveals non-degenerate n-type transport. With Ba substitution, the carrier concentration is tuned between 1018 and 1019 e- cm-3 with a maximum Ba solubility of 0.7% on the K site. High temperature transport measurements confirm a high un (50 cm2 V-1 s-1) coupled with a near minimum KL (0.5 W m-1 K-1) at 370 degrees C. Together, these properties yield a zT of 0.7 at 370 degrees C for the composition K0.99Ba0.01AlSb4. Based on the theoretical predictions and subsequent experimental validation, we find significant motivation for the exploration of n-type thermoelectric performance in other Zintl pnictides.

  12. Geo-thermo-electric power: geo-TEP materials; Geo-Thermopower. Geo-TEP Materials. Jahresbericht 2006

    Bocher, L.; Weidenkaff, A.

    2006-11-15

    This illustrated annual report for 2006 for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) summarises activities carried out at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research EMPA in the area of materials for use in thermo-electric power generation. Work carried out using Perovskite-type oxides exhibiting promising thermo-electric properties is described. The morphology and microstructure of polycrystalline particles are discussed as are the associated Seebeck coefficients. Further work to be carried out in 2007 is briefly reviewed.

  13. Three-dimensional multimodal imaging and analysis of biphasic microstructure in a Ti–Ni–Sn thermoelectric material

    Jason E. Douglas

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The three-dimensional microstructure of levitation melted TiNi1.20Sn has been characterized using the TriBeam system, a scanning electron microscope equipped with a femtosecond laser for rapid serial sectioning, to map the character of interfaces. By incorporating both chemical data (energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy and crystallographic data (electron backscatter diffraction, the grain structure and phase morphology were analyzed in a 155 μm × 178 μm × 210 μm volume and were seen to be decoupled. The predominant phases present in the material, half-Heusler TiNiSn, and full-Heusler TiNi2Sn have a percolated structure. The distribution of coherent interfaces and high-angle interfaces has been measured quantitatively.

  14. Investigations on an oriented cooling design for thermoelectric cogenerations

    Zheng, X. F.; Liu, C. X.; Yan, Y. Y.

    2012-11-01

    In thermoelectric application, it is widely known that the material limitation has still been the chief barrier of lifting its application to a higher level. Continuous efforts are extensively being made in developing novel material structures and constructions for thermoelectric modules with higher conversion efficiency. However, the overall system efficiency, which is one of the major parameters that most of the engineer and users care about, is not only ruled by the properties of applied thermoelectric materials, but also decided by the design of heat exchangers used on both sides of thermoelectric modules. Focusing on the cooling capacity and hydraulic characteristics of heat exchanger, this paper introduces an oriented cooling method for the domestic thermoelectric cogeneration, which delivers system efficiency up to 80%. This purpose-oriented cooling plate is designed for thermoelectric cogeneration for the residential houses installed with boiler or other heating facilities with a considerable amount of unused heat. The design enables Thermoelectric Cogeneration System (TCS) to be flexibly integrated into the existing hydraulic system. The mathematical model for the cooling plate has been established for a well understanding at the theoretical level. The performance of cooling plate has been investigated in a series of experimental studies which have been conducted under different coolant inlet velocity and temperature. The economic operating zone in which a good system performance could be achieved has been discussed and identified for the current configuration.

  15. The thermoelectric working fluid: Thermodynamics and transport

    Benenti, Giuliano; Ouerdane, Henni; Goupil, Christophe

    2016-12-01

    Thermoelectric devices are heat engines, which operate as generators or refrigerators using the conduction electrons as a working fluid. The thermoelectric heat-to-work conversion efficiency has always been typically quite low, but much effort continues to be devoted to the design of new materials boasting improved transport properties that would make them of the electron crystal-phonon glass type of systems. On the other hand, there are comparatively few studies where a proper thermodynamic treatment of the electronic working fluid is proposed. The present article aims at contributing to bridge this gap by addressing both the thermodynamic and transport properties of the thermoelectric working fluid covering a variety of models, including interacting systems. xml:lang="fr"

  16. Synthesis and Evaluation of Single Layer, Bilayer, and Multilayer Thermoelectric Thin Films

    Farmer, J. C.; Barbee, T. W. Jr.; Chapline, G. C. Jr.; Olsen, M. L.; Foreman, R. J.; Summers, L. J.; Dresselhaus, M. S.; Hicks, L. D.

    1995-01-20

    The relative efficiency of a thermoelectric material is measured in terms of a dimensionless figure of merit, ZT. Though all known thermoelectric materials are believed to have ZT{le}1, recent theoretical results predict that thermoelectric devices fabricated as two-dimensional quantum wells (2D QWs) or one-dimensional (ID) quantum wires could have ZT{ge}3. Multilayers with the dimensions of 2D QWs have been synthesized by alternately sputtering thermoelectric and barrier materials onto a moving single-crystal sapphire substrate from dual magnetrons. These materials have been used to test the thermoelectric quantum well concept and gain insight into relevant transport mechanisms. If successful, research could lead to thermoelectric devices that have efficiencies close to that of an ideal Carnot engine. Ultimately, such devices could be used to replace conventional heat engines and mechanical refrigeration systems.

  17. Copper ion liquid-like thermoelectrics

    Liu, Huili; Shi, Xun; Xu, Fangfang; Zhang, Linlin; Zhang, Wenqing; Chen, Lidong; Li, Qiang; Uher, Ctirad; Day, Tristan; Snyder, G. Jeffrey

    2012-05-01

    Advanced thermoelectric technology offers a potential for converting waste industrial heat into useful electricity, and an emission-free method for solid state cooling. Worldwide efforts to find materials with thermoelectric figure of merit, zT values significantly above unity, are frequently focused on crystalline semiconductors with low thermal conductivity. Here we report on Cu2-xSe, which reaches a zT of 1.5 at 1,000 K, among the highest values for any bulk materials. Whereas the Se atoms in Cu2-xSe form a rigid face-centred cubic lattice, providing a crystalline pathway for semiconducting electrons (or more precisely holes), the copper ions are highly disordered around the Se sublattice and are superionic with liquid-like mobility. This extraordinary ‘liquid-like’ behaviour of copper ions around a crystalline sublattice of Se in Cu2-xSe results in an intrinsically very low lattice thermal conductivity which enables high zT in this otherwise simple semiconductor. This unusual combination of properties leads to an ideal thermoelectric material. The results indicate a new strategy and direction for high-efficiency thermoelectric materials by exploring systems where there exists a crystalline sublattice for electronic conduction surrounded by liquid-like ions.

  18. Doping dependence of thermopower and thermoelectricity in strongly correlated systems

    Mukerjee, Subroto; Moore, J. E.

    2006-01-01

    The search for semiconductors with high thermoelectric figure of merit has been greatly aided by theoretical modeling of electron and phonon transport, both in bulk materials and in nanocomposites. Recent experiments have studied thermoelectric transport in ``strongly correlated'' materials derived by doping Mott insulators, whose insulating behavior without doping results from electron-electron repulsion, rather than from band structure as in semiconductors. Here a unified theory of electric...

  19. Nanocomposites with High Thermoelectric Figures of Merit

    Chen, Gang (Inventor); Dresselhaus, Mildred (Inventor); Ren, Zhifeng (Inventor)

    2015-01-01

    The present invention is generally directed to nanocomposite thermoelectric materials that exhibit enhanced thermoelectric properties. The nanocomposite materials include two or more components, with at least one of the components forming nano-sized structures within the composite material. The components are chosen such that thermal conductivity of the composite is decreased without substantially diminishing the composite's electrical conductivity. Suitable component materials exhibit similar electronic band structures. For example, a band-edge gap between at least one of a conduction band or a valence band of one component material and a corresponding band of the other component material at interfaces between the components can be less than about 5k(sub B)T, wherein k(sub B) is the Boltzman constant and T is an average temperature of said nanocomposite composition.

  20. Thermoelectricity Light Sources

    SHIYongji

    1997-01-01

    A thermoelectricity light source in a gaseous plasma discharge between two electrodes is described,one of which emits electrons thermoionically.The analytical model describing basic physical phenomena is developed.The results are excellent agreement with simulated test.

  1. THE THERMOELECTRIC SOLAR PANELS

    R. Ahiska

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available In this study, load characteristics of thermoelectric and photovoltaic solar panels are investigated and compared with each other with experiments. Thermoelectric solar panels converts the heat generated by sun directly to electricity; while, photovoltaic solar pales converts photonic energy from sun to electricity. In both types, maximum power can be obtained when the load resistance is equal to internal resistance. According to experimental results, power generated from unit surface with thermoelectric panel is 30 times greater than the power generated by photovoltaic panel. From a panel surface of 1 m2, thermoelectric solar panel has generated 4 kW electric power, while from the same surface, photovoltaic panel has generated 132 W only.

  2. Thermoelectric properties of inverse opals

    Mahan, G. D.; Poilvert, N.; Crespi, V. H.

    2016-02-01

    Rayleigh's method [Philos. Mag. Ser. 5 34, 481 (1892)] is used to solve for the classical thermoelectric equations in inverse opals. His theory predicts that in an inverse opal, with periodic holes, the Seebeck coefficient and the figure of merit are identical to that of the bulk material. We also provide a major revision to Rayleigh's method, in using the electrochemical potential as an important variable, instead of the electrostatic potential. We also show that in some cases, the thermal boundary resistance is important in the effective thermal conductivity.

  3. THE THERMOELECTRIC SOLAR PANELS

    R. Ahiska; Nykyruy, L. I.; Omer, G.; G. D. Mateik

    2016-01-01

    In this study, load characteristics of thermoelectric and photovoltaic solar panels are investigated and compared with each other with experiments. Thermoelectric solar panels converts the heat generated by sun directly to electricity; while, photovoltaic solar pales converts photonic energy from sun to electricity. In both types, maximum power can be obtained when the load resistance is equal to internal resistance. According to experimental results, power generated from unit surface with th...

  4. Compatibility of Segments of Thermoelectric Generators

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Ursell, Tristan

    2009-01-01

    A method of calculating (usually for the purpose of maximizing) the power-conversion efficiency of a segmented thermoelectric generator is based on equations derived from the fundamental equations of thermoelectricity. Because it is directly traceable to first principles, the method provides physical explanations in addition to predictions of phenomena involved in segmentation. In comparison with the finite-element method used heretofore to predict (without being able to explain) the behavior of a segmented thermoelectric generator, this method is much simpler to implement in practice: in particular, the efficiency of a segmented thermoelectric generator can be estimated by evaluating equations using only hand-held calculator with this method. In addition, the method provides for determination of cascading ratios. The concept of cascading is illustrated in the figure and the definition of the cascading ratio is defined in the figure caption. An important aspect of the method is its approach to the issue of compatibility among segments, in combination with introduction of the concept of compatibility within a segment. Prior approaches involved the use of only averaged material properties. Two materials in direct contact could be examined for compatibility with each other, but there was no general framework for analysis of compatibility. The present method establishes such a framework. The mathematical derivation of the method begins with the definition of reduced efficiency of a thermoelectric generator as the ratio between (1) its thermal-to-electric power-conversion efficiency and (2) its Carnot efficiency (the maximum efficiency theoretically attainable, given its hot- and cold-side temperatures). The derivation involves calculation of the reduced efficiency of a model thermoelectric generator for which the hot-side temperature is only infinitesimally greater than the cold-side temperature. The derivation includes consideration of the ratio (u) between the

  5. Mo(3)Sb(7-x)Te(x) for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Gascoin, Frank S.; Rasmussen, Julia

    2009-01-01

    Compounds having compositions of Mo(3)Sb(7-x)Te(x) (where x = 1.5 or 1.6) have been investigated as candidate thermoelectric materials. These compounds are members of a class of semiconductors that includes previously known thermoelectric materials. All of these compounds have complex crystalline and electronic structures. Through selection of chemical compositions and processing conditions, it may be possible to alter the structures to enhance or optimize thermoelectric properties.

  6. CuGaO2 : A Promising Inorganic Hole-Transporting Material for Highly Efficient and Stable Perovskite Solar Cells.

    Zhang, Hua; Wang, Huan; Chen, Wei; Jen, Alex K-Y

    2017-02-01

    The p-type inorganic semiconductor CuGaO2 as a hole-transporting layer (HTL) in perovskite solar cells (PSCs) provides higher carrier mobility, better-energy level matching, and superior stability, as well as low-temperature processing technique. Compared to organic HTL, a very competitive PCE of 18.51% with long-term stability is achieved. This indicates that CuGaO2 is a promising HTL for efficient and stable PSCs.

  7. High-performance thermoelectric nanocomposites from nanocrystal building blocks.

    Ibáñez, Maria; Luo, Zhishan; Genç, Aziz; Piveteau, Laura; Ortega, Silvia; Cadavid, Doris; Dobrozhan, Oleksandr; Liu, Yu; Nachtegaal, Maarten; Zebarjadi, Mona; Arbiol, Jordi; Kovalenko, Maksym V; Cabot, Andreu

    2016-01-01

    The efficient conversion between thermal and electrical energy by means of durable, silent and scalable solid-state thermoelectric devices has been a long standing goal. While nanocrystalline materials have already led to substantially higher thermoelectric efficiencies, further improvements are expected to arise from precise chemical engineering of nanoscale building blocks and interfaces. Here we present a simple and versatile bottom-up strategy based on the assembly of colloidal nanocrystals to produce consolidated yet nanostructured thermoelectric materials. In the case study on the PbS-Ag system, Ag nanodomains not only contribute to block phonon propagation, but also provide electrons to the PbS host semiconductor and reduce the PbS intergrain energy barriers for charge transport. Thus, PbS-Ag nanocomposites exhibit reduced thermal conductivities and higher charge carrier concentrations and mobilities than PbS nanomaterial. Such improvements of the material transport properties provide thermoelectric figures of merit up to 1.7 at 850 K.

  8. High performance bulk thermoelectrics via a panoscopic approach

    Jiaqing He

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available One of the intellectual challenges for next generation thermoelectric materials revolves around the synthesis and fabrication of hierarchically organized microstructures that do not appreciably compromise the innate high power factor of the chosen thermoelectric system, but significantly reduce lattice thermal conductivity to enhance the overall figure of merit, ZT. An effective emerging strategy is to introduce nanostructures into bulk thermoelectric materials, which allow for diverse phonon scattering mechanisms to reduce thermal conductivity. In this review, we present key examples to show the intricate but tractable relationship across all relevant length-scales between various microstructural attributes (point, line, interfacial and mesoscale defects; as well as associated elastic and plastic strain and lattice thermal conductivity in systems based on PbTe matrices. We emphasize the need for an overarching panoscopic approach that enables specific design strategies for the next generation of thermoelectric materials.

  9. 用于车辆尾气热能回收的热电材料和热喷涂工艺(英文)%Thermoelectric Materials and Thermal Spray Process for Vehicle Waste Heat Recovery

    左磊美国; 付高升; 于良耀

    2016-01-01

    With the global concerns on energy and environmental issues, various approaches of energy harvesting have been explored. As a solid state energy generator, Thermoelectric Generators (TEGs) can convert the temperature gradients to electrical voltage, thus recovery the energy from vehicle exhaust heat and increase overal efifciency. Recently a new industry-scalable thermal spray process has been extended for the integrated manufacturing of thermoelectric generators on the exhaust pipes directly. This paper is to provide a timely review of the state-of-the-art on thermoelectric materials and thermal spray fabrication process for the applications of vehicle exhaust heat recovery. They can also be used for energy harvesting in the power plants, manufacturing processing, and many others.%随着全球能源和环境保护问题的日益突出,人们在探索各种各样的能量回收方法。作为一种固态能量产生装置,热电发电装置能将温差转化为电压,从而实现车辆尾气废热的能量回收、提高总体能量利用效率。最近,出现一种新型可产业拓展的热喷涂工艺,可以用于热电发电装置的集成制造,直接用在排气管上。本文对应用于车辆尾气废热回收的热电材料和热喷涂工艺流程的前沿技术进行了综述。它们也可以用于热电厂、制造过程和其他场合的能量回收。

  10. Engineered Molecular Chain Ordering in Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes/Polyaniline Composite Films for High-Performance Organic Thermoelectric Materials.

    Wang, Liming; Yao, Qin; Xiao, Juanxiu; Zeng, Kaiyang; Qu, Sanyin; Shi, Wei; Wang, Qun; Chen, Lidong

    2016-06-21

    Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs)/polyaniline (PANI) composite films with enhanced thermoelectric properties were prepared by combining in situ polymerization and solution processing. Conductive atomic force microscopy and X-ray diffraction measurements confirmed that solution processing and strong π-π interactions between the PANI and SWNTs induced the PANI molecules to form a highly ordered structure. The improved degree of order of the PANI molecular arrangement increased the carrier mobility and thereby enhanced the electrical transport properties of PANI. The maximum in-plane electrical conductivity and power factor of the SWNTs/PANI composite films reached 1.44×10(3)  S cm(-1) and 217 μW m(-1)  K(-2) , respectively, at room temperature. Furthermore, a thermoelectric generator fabricated with the SWNTs/PANI composite films showed good electric generation ability and stability. A high power density of 10.4 μW cm(-2)  K(-1) was obtained, which is superior to most reported results obtained in organic thermoelectric modules.

  11. Preparation and thermoelectric transport properties of Ba-, La-and Ag-doped Ca3Co4O9 oxide materials

    张飞鹏; 路清梅; 李廷先; 张忻; 张久兴; 宋晓艳

    2013-01-01

    The Ba-, La-and Ag-doped polycrystalline Ca2.9M0.1Co4O9 (M=Ca, Ba, La, Ag) thermoelectric bulk samples were pre-pared via citrate acid sol-gel synthesis method followed by spark plasma sintering technique. The bulk samples were characterized and analyzed with regard to their phase compositions, grain orientations as well as microstructures. The high temperature thermoelec-tric transport properties of the bulk samples were studied in detail. All bulk samples were found to be single-phased with modified body texture. The electrical resistivity was modulated as a result of carrier concentration modification, however the carrier transport process was not influenced;the Seebeck coefficient was deteriorated simultaneously. The total thermal conductivity was remarkably reduced, on account of the decreasing of phonon thermal conductivity. The thermoelectric properties of the Ba-, La-, and Ag-doped bulk samples were optimized, and the Ba-doped Ca2.9Ba0.1Co4O9 system was found to have the highest dimensionless figure of merit ZT 0.20 at 973 K, which was remarkably higher than that of the un-doped sample.

  12. Effect of preparation procedure and nanostructuring on the thermoelectric properties of the lead telluride-based material system AgPbmBiTe2+m (BLST-m)

    Falkenbach, Oliver; Schmitz, Andreas; Hartung, David; Dankwort, Torben; Koch, Guenter; Kienle, Lorenz; Klar, Peter J.; Mueller, Eckhard; Schlecht, Sabine

    2016-06-01

    We report on the preparation and thermoelectric properties of the quaternary system AgPbmBiTe2+m (Bismuth-Lead-Silver-Tellurium, BLST-m) that were nanostructured by mechanical alloying. Nanopowders of various compositions were compacted by three different methods: cold pressing/annealing, hot pressing, and short term sintering. The products are compared with respect to microstructure and sample density. The thermoelectric properties were measured: thermal conductivity in the temperature range from 300 K to 800 K and electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient between 100 K and 800 K. The compacting method and the composition had a substantial impact on carrier concentration and mobility as well as on the thermoelectric parameters. Room temperature Hall measurements yielded carrier concentrations in the order of 1019 cm-3, slightly increasing with increasing content of the additive silver bismuth telluride to the lead telluride base. ZT values close to the ones of bulk samples were achieved. X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed macroscopically homogeneous distributions of the constituting elements inside the nanopowders ensembles, indicating a solid solution. However, high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) revealed disorder on the nanoscale inside individual nanopowders grains.

  13. BiSb and spin-related thermoelectric phenomena

    Heremans, Joseph P.; Jin, Hyungyu; Zheng, Yuanhua; Watzman, Sarah J.; Prakash, Arati

    2016-05-01

    This article reviews the factors limiting the figure of merit zT of conventional thermoelectrics especially at cryogenic temperatures and then highlights modern approaches used to increase zT below 200 K. Two type of materials are discussed. The first are BiSb alloys, relatively conventional thermoelectrics in which the zT is enhanced by using resonant levels. The second is the spin- Seebeck effect (SSE), a new solid-state energy conversion technology. Classical thermoelectric and SSE physics are combined to provide new concepts, like magnon-drag, in which we hope to increase the performance of solid-state coolers by exploiting the spin degree of freedom.

  14. Smart integration of silicon nanowire arrays in all-silicon thermoelectric micro-nanogenerators

    Fonseca, Luis; Santos, Jose-Domingo; Roncaglia, Alberto; Narducci, Dario; Calaza, Carlos; Salleras, Marc; Donmez, Inci; Tarancon, Albert; Morata, Alex; Gadea, Gerard; Belsito, Luca; Zulian, Laura

    2016-08-01

    Micro and nanotechnologies are called to play a key role in the fabrication of small and low cost sensors with excellent performance enabling new continuous monitoring scenarios and distributed intelligence paradigms (Internet of Things, Trillion Sensors). Harvesting devices providing energy autonomy to those large numbers of microsensors will be essential. In those scenarios where waste heat sources are present, thermoelectricity will be the obvious choice. However, miniaturization of state of the art thermoelectric modules is not easy with the current technologies used for their fabrication. Micro and nanotechnologies offer an interesting alternative considering that silicon in nanowire form is a material with a promising thermoelectric figure of merit. This paper presents two approaches for the integration of large numbers of silicon nanowires in a cost-effective and practical way using only micromachining and thin-film processes compatible with silicon technologies. Both approaches lead to automated physical and electrical integration of medium-high density stacked arrays of crystalline or polycrystalline silicon nanowires with arbitrary length (tens to hundreds microns) and diameters below 100 nm.

  15. CuSbS2: a promising semiconductor photo-absorber material for quantum dot sensitized solar cells.

    Liu, Zhifeng; Huang, Jiajun; Han, Jianhuan; Hong, Tiantian; Zhang, Jing; Liu, Zhihua

    2016-06-22

    A facile, low-cost, simple solution-based process for preparing novel promising chalcostibite CuSbS2 sensitized ZnO nanorod arrays, and the application of these as photoanodes of semiconductor quantum dot sensitized inorganic-organic solar cells (QDSSCs) is reported for the first time. ZnO/CuSbS2 nanofilms were designed and prepared through a simple successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction (SILAR) method and heat treatment process by employing ZnO nanorods as reactive templates. Novel efficient QDSSCs based on the ZnO/CuSbS2 nanofilms plus a solid electrolyte of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) were formed, and a power conversion efficiency of 1.61% was achieved. The excellent photoelectric performance is attributed to the improved light absorption efficiency, widened light absorption region, ideal band gap value, and high speed electron injection and transportation. The results demonstrate that a novel ternary sensitizer (I-V-VI2) can be synthesized via a low-cost method as described here and has great promising potential as a sensitizer in solar cells.

  16. Theoretical Approach to Predict the Performance of Thermoelectric Generator Modules

    Elarusi, Abdulmunaem H.; Fagehi, Hassan; Lee, Hosung; Attar, Alaa

    2017-02-01

    The aim of this work was to examine the validity of the thermoelectric modules' performance predicted by formulating the effective thermoelectric material properties. The three maximum parameters (output power, current, and efficiency) are defined in terms of the average temperature of the thermoelectric generator (TEG). These three maximum parameters, which are either taken from commercial TEG modules or measurements for particular operating conditions, are used to define the effective material properties (Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity, and electrical resistivity). The commercial performance curves provided by the manufacturer were compared with the results obtained here by the effective material properties with the simple standard thermoelectric equations. It has been found that this technique predicts the performance of four commercial thermoelectric modules with fair to good accuracy. The characteristics of the TEGs were represented using the normalized charts constructed by formulating the parameters as a fraction of over the maximum parameters. The normalized charts would be universal for any given TEG module once the thermoelectric material is known.

  17. Nanostructured oxide materials and modules for high temperature power generation from waste heat

    Van Nong, Ngo; Pryds, Nini

    2013-01-01

    A large amount of thermal energy that emitted from many industrial processes is available as waste heat. Thermoelectric power generators that convert heat directly into electricity can offer a very promising way for waste heat recovery. However, the requirements for this task place in the materials...

  18. Simulations for the Development of Thermoelectric Measurements

    Zabrocki, Knud; Ziolkowski, Pawel; Dasgupta, Titas; de Boor, Johannes; Müller, Eckhard

    2013-07-01

    In thermoelectricity, continuum theoretical equations are usually used for the calculation of the characteristics and performance of thermoelectric elements, modules or devices as a function of external parameters (material, geometry, temperatures, current, flow, load, etc.). An increasing number of commercial software packages aimed at applications, such as COMSOL and ANSYS, contain vkernels using direct thermoelectric coupling. Application of these numerical tools also allows analysis of physical measurement conditions and can lead to specifically adapted methods for developing special test equipment required for the determination of TE material and module properties. System-theoretical and simulation-based considerations of favorable geometries are taken into account to create draft sketches in the development of such measurement systems. Particular consideration is given to the development of transient measurement methods, which have great advantages compared with the conventional static methods in terms of the measurement duration required. In this paper the benefits of using numerical tools in designing measurement facilities are shown using two examples. The first is the determination of geometric correction factors in four-point probe measurement of electrical conductivity, whereas the second example is focused on the so-called combined thermoelectric measurement (CTEM) system, where all thermoelectric material properties (Seebeck coefficient, electrical and thermal conductivity, and Harman measurement of zT) are measured in a combined way. Here, we want to highlight especially the measurement of thermal conductivity in a transient mode. Factors influencing the measurement results such as coupling to the environment due to radiation, heat losses via the mounting of the probe head, as well as contact resistance between the sample and sample holder are illustrated, analyzed, and discussed. By employing the results of the simulations, we have developed an

  19. Probing the mechanical properties and microstructure of WSi{sub 2}/Si{sub x}Ge{sub 1−x} multiphase thermoelectric material by nanoindentation, electron and focused ion beam microscopy methods

    Solá, F., E-mail: francisco.sola-lopez@nasa.gov; Dynys, F.W.

    2015-06-05

    Highlights: • WSi{sub 2} phases were incorporated in SiGe matrix by directional solidification process. • Quantitative nanoindentation data of hardness, modulus and toughness is included. • WSi{sub 2} phase showed the highest fracture toughness. • Serial sectioning SEM/FIB of crack formation below the surface is included. • TEM cross sectional analysis provided information of deformation process. - Abstract: Thermoelectric (TE) materials such as silicon germanium (SiGe) alloys have been traditionally used in radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG) NASA applications. Beyond traditional RTG applications, we are exploring other applications in the energy harvesting arena. There is still a need to increment the TE figure of merit (ZT) of SiGe based TE alloys and we have been working on ways to improve it by incorporating tungsten di-silicide (WSi{sub 2}) phases into the matrix by directional solidification (DS) process. Considerable efforts have been focused until now in microstructural engineering methods that lead to ZT improvement by microstructure optimization of TE materials. Although critical for the previous mentioned applications, work pertinent to the mechanical integrity of this type of WSi{sub 2}/SiGe based TE materials is lacking. In this work, we explored for the first time the local mechanical properties and microstructure of WSi{sub 2}/Si{sub x}Ge{sub 1−x} multiphase thermoelectric material by nanoindentation, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), focused ion beam (FIB) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) methods. We report hardness (H), modulus (E) and fracture toughness (k{sub c}) data for all phases. We obtained average H (and E) values (in GPa) of 12.94 (464.95) for the WSi{sub 2} phase, 19.49 (214.52) for the matrix, 14.95 (142.84) for the Si rich phase, and 13.98 (138.56) for the Ge rich phase respectively; while average k{sub c} values (in MPa m{sup 0.5}) were 1.37 for theWSi{sub 2}, 0.52 for the matrix, 0.36 for the Si rich

  20. The design of Cu-doped ZnO thermoelectric module (simulation study)

    Hadi, Syamsul; Suratwan, Agus; Kurniawan, Agus; Budiana, Eko Prasetya; Suyitno

    2016-03-01

    The p-type semiconductor of Cu-doped ZnO-based thermoelectric material has already been synthesized and studied as an energy harvester. The next challenge is manufacturing the thermoelectric module in the development of thermoelectric as an eco-friendly material in the future. This research aims to investigate the effect of thermoelectric geometric design on the electrical output power and voltage and to recommend the most appropriate thermoelectric geometric design. The design of thermoelectric generator (TEG) includes the determinations of dimension (width, length, and height), number of modules, and semiconductor materials. The simulation used the coupled-field analysis of ANSYS APDL 14.5 in the steady state condition. The p- and n- type thermoelectric material used Cu-doped ZnO and Al-doped ZnO, respectively. The width of element and the number of thermoelectric module were varied to obtain a thermoelectric design, which produces the largest current, power, and voltage. The result of research shows that the t hermoelectric generator with the element widths of 0.94 mm, 1.125 mm, 1.05 mm, and 1.2 mm generates the largest power output and voltage, namely: 0.32 W and 0.89 V, 0.38 W and 0.98 V, 0.45 W and 1.06 V, and 0.52 W and 1.13 V, respectively.

  1. Ion beam irradiation effect on thermoelectric properties of Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} thin films

    Fu, Gaosheng [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794 (United States); Zuo, Lei, E-mail: leizuo@vt.edu [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794 (United States); Department of Mechanical Engineering, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States); Lian, Jie [Department of Mechanical, Aerospace & Nuclear Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY 12180 (United States); Wang, Yongqiang [Materials Science & Technology Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87544 (United States); Chen, Jie [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States); Longtin, Jon [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794 (United States); Xiao, Zhigang [Department of Electrical Engineering, Alabama A& M University, Normal, AL 35762 (United States)

    2015-09-01

    Thermoelectric energy harvesting is a very promising application in nuclear power plants for self-maintained wireless sensors. However, the effects of intensive radiation on the performance of thermoelectric materials under relevant reactor environments such as energetic neutrons are not fully understood. In this work, radiation effects of bismuth telluride (Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) and antimony telluride (Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) thermoelectric thin film samples prepared by E-beam evaporation are investigated using Ne{sup 2+} ion irradiations at different fluences of 5 × 10{sup 14}, 10{sup 15}, 5 × 10{sup 15} and 10{sup 16} ions/cm{sup 2} with the focus on the transport and structural properties. Electrical conductivities, Seebeck coefficients and power factors are characterized as ion fluence changes. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) of the samples are obtained to assess how phase and microstructure influence the transport properties. Carrier concentration and Hall mobility are obtained from Hall effect measurements, which provide further insight into the electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient mechanisms. Positive effects of ion irradiations from Ne{sup 2+} on thermoelectric material property are observed to increase the power factor to 208% for Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and 337% for Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} materials between fluence of 1 and 5 × 10{sup 15} cm{sup 2}, due to the increasing of the electrical conductivity as a result of ionization radiation-enhanced crystallinity. However, under a higher fluence, 5 × 10{sup 15} cm{sup 2} in this case{sub ,} the power factor starts to decrease accordingly, limiting the enhancements of thermoelectric materials properties under intensive radiation environment.

  2. Resonant Thermoelectric Nanophotonics

    Mauser, Kelly W; Kim, Seyoon; Fleischman, Dagny; Atwater, Harry A

    2016-01-01

    Photodetectors are typically based on photocurrent generation from electron-hole pairs in semiconductor structures and on bolometry for wavelengths that are below bandgap absorption. In both cases, resonant plasmonic and nanophotonic structures have been successfully used to enhance performance. In this work, we demonstrate subwavelength thermoelectric nanostructures designed for resonant spectrally selective absorption, which creates large enough localized temperature gradients to generate easily measureable thermoelectric voltages. We show that such structures are tunable and are capable of highly wavelength specific detection, with an input power responsivity of up to 119 V/W (referenced to incident illumination), and response times of nearly 3 kHz, by combining resonant absorption and thermoelectric junctions within a single structure, yielding a bandgap-independent photodetection mechanism. We report results for both resonant nanophotonic bismuth telluride-antimony telluride structures and chromel-alumel...

  3. Thermoelectric Power of Insulators and Reconsideration of Kelvin's Relations at Low Temperatures

    Saso, T.

    2003-01-01

    Thermoelectric effects in Kondo insulators are attracting interests because of the emerging possibility of developping better thermoelectric materials for a portable refrigerator without liquid coolant. In this article, the theory of thermoelectric effects are reinvestigated for insulators or semiconductors at low temperatures. It is found that the famous relations established by Lord Kelvin for metals in 1851 must be modified for insulators in order to be consistent with the third law of the...

  4. Thermal potential of ion-exchange membranes and its application to thermoelectric power generation

    Jokinen, Miikka; Manzanares Andreu, Jose; Kontturi, Kyösti; Murtomäki, Lasse

    2016-01-01

    The low efficiency and high price of thermoelectric semiconductors has generated interest in unconventional forms of thermoelectric materials. In this article, ionic thermoelectricity has been studied with commercial ion-exchange membranes for different aqueous 1:1 electrolytes. The theory of thermal membrane potential has been derived taking into account the ionic heats of transport, the non-isothermal Donnan potentials, the temperature polarization, and the thermally-induced concentration p...

  5. CuFe2 O4 -CuO Nanocomposites as Promising Materials for Solar Hydrogen Generation

    Razavi, Mehdi; Amrollahi, Pouya; Yazdimamaghani, Mostafa; Tayebi, Lobat; Vashaee, Daryoosh

    2014-03-01

    Currently, hydrogen is produced, almost exclusively, by waterelectrolysis. This method can take advantage of economies of scale and most established techniques of producing hydrogen. We developed a nanocomposite material system composed of CuFe2O4 and CuO semiconductor particles to produce hydrogen by electrolysis of water. The nanocomposite powder was prepared using the sol-gel method. Techniques of X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy and UV diffuse reflectance analysis were employed to characterize the synthesized products.The results confirmed the formation of CuFe2O4-CuO nanocomposite powder. The hydrogen evolution was successfully observed over the new hetero-system of CuFe2O4-CuO. The electrolysis activity depended on the concentration of CuO in the system. In order to enhance the hydrogen production, we further optimized the composite material versus the concentration of the compounds.

  6. Tuning Thermoelectric Properties of Chirality Selected Single Wall Carbon Nanotubes

    Yanagi, Kazuhiro; Oshima, Yuki; Kitamura, Yoshimasa; Maniwa, Yutaka

    Thermoelectrics are a very important technology for efficiently converting waste heat into electric power. Hicks and Dresselhaus proposed an important approach to innovate the performance of thermoelectric devices, which involves using one-dimensional materials and properly tuning their Fermi level (PRB 1993). Therefore, understanding the relationship between the thermoelectric performance and the Fermi level of one-dimensional materials is of great importance to maximize their thermoelectric performance. Single wall carbon nanotube (SWCNT) is an ideal model for one-dimensional materials. Previously we reported continuous p-type and n-type control over the Seebeck coefficients of semiconducting SWCNT networks with diameter of 1.4 nm through an electric double layer transistor setup using an ionic liquid as the electrolyte (Yanagi et al., Nano Lett. 14, 6437 2014). We clarified the thermoelectric properties of semiconducting SWCNTs with diameter of 1.4 nm as a function of Fermi level. In this study, we investigated how the chiralities or electronic structures of SWCNTs influence on the thermoelectric properties. We found the significant difference in the line-shape of Seebeck coefficient as a function of gate voltage between the different electronic structures of SWCNTs.

  7. Facile general route toward tunable Magnéli nanostructures and their use as thermoelectric metal oxide/carbon nanocomposites.

    Portehault, David; Maneeratana, Vasana; Candolfi, Christophe; Oeschler, Niels; Veremchuk, Igor; Grin, Yuri; Sanchez, Clément; Antonietti, Markus

    2011-11-22

    Engineering nanoscale interfaces is a requisite for harnessing electrical and thermal transports within nanostructured materials, especially those destined for thermoelectric applications requiring an unusual combination of low thermal conductivity and electrical resistivity. Nanocomposites open up possibilities in this area, but are still bound to a very narrow range of materials. Here, we report a new approach combining the sol-gel process toward hybrid materials with spark plasma sintering (SPS) to yield functional nanocomposites based on substoichiometric titanium oxides Ti(n)O(2n-1), so-called Magnéli phases. The potential of this new approach is demonstrated by three results. First, multiple Ti(n)O(2n-1) compounds (n = 3, 4, 5, 6, 8) are obtained for the first time as sole nano-Magnéli crystalline phases with controlled specific surface areas from 55 to 300 m(2)·g(-1), classified as potential thermoelectric n-type metal oxides and paving the way toward advanced systems for energy-harvesting devices and optoelectronics. Second, this work combines the use of sol-gel and SPS processes to yield percolated nanocomposites based on metal oxide nanoparticles embedded in a carbon matrix with low electrical resistivity (2 × 10(-4) Ω·m for a Ti(4)O(7) compound) and reduced thermal conductivity (1 W·m(-1)·K(-1)) with respect to bulk phases. Finally, the discovered materials are reliable with thermoelectric figures of merit (ZT = 0.08) relatively high for n-type Ti-O-based systems and metal oxides. Thereby this study represents a proof of concept for the development of promising, cheaper, and more efficient thermoelectric conversion devices.

  8. Turning Waste into Value: Nanosized Natural Plant Materials of Solanum incanum L. and Pterocarpus erinaceus Poir with Promising Antimicrobial Activities

    Sharoon Griffin

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Numerous plants are known to exhibit considerable biological activities in the fields of medicine and agriculture, yet access to their active ingredients is often complicated, cumbersome and expensive. As a consequence, many plants harbouring potential drugs or green phyto-protectants go largely unnoticed, especially in poorer countries which, at the same time, are in desperate need of antimicrobial agents. As in the case of plants such as the Jericho tomato, Solanum incanum, and the common African tree Pterocarpus erinaceus, nanosizing of original plant materials may provide an interesting alternative to extensive extraction and isolation procedures. Indeed, it is straightforward to obtain considerable amounts of such common, often weed-like plants, and to mill the dried material to more or less uniform particles of microscopic and nanoscopic size. These particles exhibit activity against Steinernema feltiae or Escherichia coli, which is comparable to the ones seen for processed extracts of the same, respective plants. As S. feltiae is used as a model nematode indicative of possible phyto-protective uses in the agricultural arena, these findings also showcase the potential of nanosizing of crude “waste” plant materials for specific practical applications, especially—but not exclusively—in developing countries lacking a more sophisticated industrial infrastructure.

  9. The thermodynamics of reversible thermoelectric nanomaterials

    Humphrey, Tammy; Linke, Heiner

    2005-03-01

    Irreversible effects in thermoelectric materials limit their efficiency and economy for applications in power generation and refrigeration. While electron transport is unavoidably irreversible in bulk materials, here we derive conditions under which reversible diffusive electron transport can be achieved in nanostructured thermoelectric materials via the same physical mechanism utilized in the three-level amplifier (thermally pumped laser) and idealized thermophotovoltaic and thermionic devices. From a broader physical perspective, the most interesting aspect of this work is that it suggests that all of the above-mentioned solid-state devices may be unified as a single `type' of heat engine which achieves reversibility when heat transfer via particle exchange between reservoirs is isentropic (but non-isothermal), in contrast to heat engines such as Carnot, Otto or Brayton cycles, which achieve reversibility when heat transfer between the working gas and heat reservoirs is isothermal.

  10. Driving Perpendicular Heat Flow: (p×n)-Type Transverse Thermoelectrics for Microscale and Cryogenic Peltier Cooling

    Zhou, Chuanle; Birner, S.; Tang, Yang; Heinselman, K.; Grayson, M.

    2013-05-01

    Whereas thermoelectric performance is normally limited by the figure of merit ZT, transverse thermoelectrics can achieve arbitrarily large temperature differences in a single leg even with inferior ZT by being geometrically tapered. We introduce a band-engineered transverse thermoelectric with p-type Seebeck in one direction and n-type orthogonal, resulting in off-diagonal terms that drive heat flow transverse to electrical current. Such materials are advantageous for microscale devices and cryogenic temperatures—exactly the regimes where standard longitudinal thermoelectrics fail. InAs/GaSb type II superlattices are shown to have the appropriate band structure for use as a transverse thermoelectric.

  11. A MoO2 sheet as a promising electrode material: ultrafast Li-diffusion and astonishing Li-storage capacity

    Zhou, Yungang; Geng, Cheng

    2017-03-01

    The potential of MoO2 crystal as an electrode material is reported, and nanostructural MoO2 systems, including nanoparticles, nanospheres, nanobelts and nanowires, were synthesized and proved to be advanced electrode materials. A two-dimensional (2D) geometric structure represents an extreme of surface-to-volume ratio, and thus is more suitable as an electrode material in general. Stimulated by the recent fabrication of 2D MoO2, we adopted an ab initio molecular dynamics simulation and density functional theory calculation to study the stability and electrochemical properties of a MoO2 sheet. Identified by a phonon dispersion curve and potential energy curve calculations, the MoO2 sheet proved to be dynamically and thermally stable. After lithiation, similar to most promising 2D structures, we found that a Li atom can strongly adsorb on a MoO2 sheet, and the lithiated MoO2 sheet presented excellent metallic properties. Note that, compared with most promising 2D structures, we unexpectedly revealed that the diffusion barrier of the Li atom on the MoO2 sheet was much lower and the storage capacity of the MoO2 sheet was much larger. The calculated energy barrier for the diffusion of Li on the MoO2 sheet was only 75 meV, and, due to multilayer adsorption, the theoretical capacity of the MoO2 sheet can reach up to 2513 mA h g‑1. Benefiting from general properties, such as strong Li-binding and excellent conductivity, and unique phenomena, such as ultrafast diffusion capacity and astonishing storage capacity, we highlight a new promising electrode material for the Li-ion battery.

  12. Thermoelectric transport in rare-earth compounds

    Koehler, Ulrike

    2007-07-01

    This work focuses on the thermoelectric transport in rare-earth compounds. The measurements of the thermal conductivity, thermopower, and Nernst coefficient are supplemented by investigations of other quantities as magnetic susceptibility and specific heat. Chapter 2 provides an introduction to the relevant physical concepts. Section 1 of that chapter summarizes the characteristic properties of rare-earth systems; section 2 gives an overview on thermoelectric transport processes in magnetic fields. The applied experimental techniques as well as the new experimental setup are described in detail in Chapter 3. The experimental results are presented in Chapter 4-6, of which each concentrates on a different subject. In Chapter 4, various Eu clathrates and the skutterudite-like Ce{sub 3}Rh{sub 4}Sn{sub 13} are presented, which have been investigated as potential thermoelectric materials for applications. Chapter 5 focusses on the study of the energy scales in the heavy-fermion series Lu{sub 1-x}Yb{sub x}Rh{sub 2}Si{sub 2} and Ce{sub x}La{sub 1-x}Ni{sub 2}Ge{sub 2} by means of thermopower investigations. Chapter 6 is dedicated to the thermoelectric transport properties of the correlated semimetal CeNiSn with special emphasis on the Nernst coefficient of this compound. (orig.)

  13. Thermoelectric Effects under Adiabatic Conditions

    George Levy

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates not fully explained voltage offsets observed by several researchers during the measurement of the Seebeck coefficient of high Z materials. These offsets, traditionally attributed to faulty laboratory procedures, have proven to have an irreducible component that cannot be fully eliminated in spite of careful laboratory procedures. In fact, these offsets are commonly observed and routinely subtracted out of commercially available Seebeck measurement systems. This paper offers a possible explanation based on the spontaneous formation of an adiabatic temperature gradient in the presence of a force field. The diffusion-diffusion heat transport mechanism is formulated and applied to predict two new thermoelectric effects. The first is the existence of a temperature gradient across a potential barrier in a semiconductor and the second is the Onsager reciprocal of the first, that is, the presence of a measureable voltage that arises across a junction when the temperature gradient is forced to zero by a thermal clamp. Suggested future research includes strategies for utilizing the new thermoelectric effects.

  14. High temperature experimental characterization of microscale thermoelectric effects

    Favaloro, Tela

    Thermoelectric devices have been employed for many years as a reliable energy conversion technology for applications ranging from the cooling of sensors or charge coupled devices to the direct conversion of heat into electricity for remote power generation. However, its relatively low conversion efficiency has limited the implementation of thermoelectric materials for large scale cooling and waste heat recovery applications. Recent advances in semiconductor growth technology have enabled the precise and selective engineering of material properties to improve the thermoelectric figure of merit and thus the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Accurate characterization at the intended operational temperature of novel thermoelectric materials is a crucial component of the optimization process in order to fundamentally understand material behavior and evaluate performance. The objective of this work is to provide the tools necessary to characterize high efficiency bulk and thin-film materials for thermoelectric energy conversion. The techniques developed here are not bound to specific material or devices, but can be generalized to any material system. Thermoreflectance imaging microscopy has proven to be invaluable for device thermometry owing to its high spatial and temporal resolutions. It has been utilized in this work to create two-dimensional temperature profiles of thermoelectric devices during operation used for performance analysis of novel materials, identification of defects, and visualization of high speed transients in a high-temperature imaging thermostat. We report the development of a high temperature imaging thermostat capable of high speed transient thermoelectric characterization. In addition, we present a noninvasive method for thermoreflectance coefficient calibration ideally suited for vacuum and thus high temperature employment. This is the first analysis of the thermoreflectance coefficient of commonly used metals at high-temperatures. High

  15. Hydrophobic dipeptide crystals: a promising Ag-free class of ultramicroporous materials showing argon/oxygen adsorption selectivity.

    Afonso, R; Mendes, A; Gales, L

    2014-09-28

    The adsorption isotherms of nitrogen, oxygen and argon in four VA-class hydrophobic dipeptides are presented. Isotherms were determined at 5, 20 and 35 °C, for a pressure range of 0-6 bar. Under these conditions, adsorption is still in the Henry region. For all materials and temperatures, the sequence of preferential adsorption is Ar > O2 > N2, a highly abnormal result. At 5 °C, the dipeptide with the smallest pores, VI, has Ar/O2 adsorption equilibrium selectivities up to 1.30, the highest ever measured in Ag-free adsorbents. Gas uptakes, at 1 bar and 20 °C, are ∼0.05 mol kg(-1), very low relative values that are partially explained by the low porosity of the solids (materials for the process of O2 generation by pressure swing adsorption (PSA) is discussed. The results indicate some of the structural and chemical properties that prospective Ag-free adsorbents should have in order to have Ar/O2 selectivity, hydrophobic pores, less than 0.5 nm-wide, and porosity of, at least, 20%.

  16. Processed Lignin as a Byproduct of the Generation of 5-(Chloromethyl)furfural from Biomass: A Promising New Mesoporous Material.

    Budarin, Vitaliy L; Clark, James H; Henschen, Jonatan; Farmer, Thomas J; Macquarrie, Duncan J; Mascal, Mark; Nagaraja, Gundibasappa K; Petchey, Tabitha H M

    2015-12-21

    The lignin by-product of the conversion of lignocellulosic biomass to 5-(chloromethyl)furfural (CMF) has been characterised by thermogravimetric analysis, N2 physisorption porosimetry, attenuated internal reflectance IR spectroscopy, elemental analysis and solid-state NMR spectroscopy. The lignin (LCMF) has a moderate level of mesoporosity before thermal treatment and a surface area of 63 m(2)  g(-1) , which increases dramatically on pyrolysis at temperatures above 400 °C. An assessment of the functionality and textural properties of the material was achieved by analysing LCMF treated thermally over a range of pyrolysis temperatures. Samples were sulfonated to test their potential as heterogeneous acid catalysts in the esterification of levulinic acid. It was shown that unpyrolysed catalysts gave the highest ester yields of up to 93 %. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first example of mesoporous lignin with an appreciable surface area that is produced directly from a bio-refinery process and with further textural modification of the material demonstrated.

  17. Enhancement in figure-of-merit with superlattices structures for thin-film thermoelectric devices

    Venkatasubramanian, R.; Colpitts, T.

    1997-07-01

    Thin-film superlattice (SL) structures in thermoelectric materials are shown to be a promising approach to obtaining an enhanced figure-of-merit, ZT, compared to conventional, state-of-the-art bulk alloyed materials. In this paper the authors describe experimental results on Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}/Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and Si/Ge SL structures, relevant to thermoelectric cooling and power conversion, respectively. The short-period Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and Si/Ge SL structures appear to indicate reduced thermal conductivities compared to alloys of these materials. From the observed behavior of thermal conductivity values in the Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}/Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} SL structures, a distinction is made where certain types of periodic structures may correspond to an ordered alloy rather than an SL, and therefore, do not offer a significant reduction in thermal conductivity values. The study also indicates that SL structures, with little or weak quantum-confinement, also offer an improvement in thermoelectric power factor over conventional alloys. They present power factor and electrical transport data in the plane of the SL interfaces to provide preliminary support for the arguments on reduced alloy scattering and impurity scattering in Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}/Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and Si/Ge SL structures. These results, though tentative due to the possible role of the substrate and the developmental nature of the 3-{omega} method used to determine thermal conductivity values, suggest that the short-period SL structures potentially offer factorial improvements in the three-dimensional figure-of-merit (ZT3D) compared to current state-of-the-art bulk alloys. An approach to a thin-film thermoelectric device called a Bipolarity-Assembled, Series-Inter-Connected Thin-Film Thermoelectric Device (BASIC-TFTD) is introduced to take advantage of these thin-film SL structures.

  18. Bottom-up processing of thermoelectric nanocomposites from colloidal nanocrystal building blocks: the case of Ag{sub 2}Te-PbTe

    Cadavid, Doris [Catalonia Institute for Energy Research, IREC (Spain); Ibanez, Maria [Universitat de Barcelona, Departament d' Electronica (Spain); Gorsse, Stephane [Universite de Bordeaux, ICMCB, CNRS (France); Lopez, Antonio M. [Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Departament d' Enginyeria Electronica (Spain); Cirera, Albert [Universitat de Barcelona, Departament d' Electronica (Spain); Morante, Joan Ramon; Cabot, Andreu, E-mail: acabot@irec.cat [Catalonia Institute for Energy Research, IREC (Spain)

    2012-12-15

    Nanocomposites are highly promising materials to enhance the efficiency of current thermoelectric devices. A straightforward and at the same time highly versatile and controllable approach to produce nanocomposites is the assembly of solution-processed nanocrystal building blocks. The convenience of this bottom-up approach to produce nanocomposites with homogeneous phase distributions and adjustable composition is demonstrated here by blending Ag{sub 2}Te and PbTe colloidal nanocrystals to form Ag{sub 2}Te-PbTe bulk nanocomposites. The thermoelectric properties of these nanocomposites are analyzed in the temperature range from 300 to 700 K. The evolution of their electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient is discussed in terms of the blend composition and the characteristics of the constituent materials.

  19. Potential for Usage of Thermoelectric Generators on Ships

    Kristiansen, Nils; Nielsen, H.K.

    2010-01-01

    The useful waste heat potential for a bulk carrier has been evaluated as a preliminary step towards developing a thermoelectric generator (TEG) waste heat recovery system for ships. A medium-sized bulk carrier produces 6.2 MW of waste heat, and the most promising usable sources for the TEG...

  20. Production and exploitation of thermoelectric air conditioning systems for vehicles

    Dudnik, Vladimir [Conditioner Ltd, Gagarin (Russian Federation); Skipidarov, Sergey [SCTB NORD, Moskau (Russian Federation); Rapp, Axel [Quick-Ohm Kupper und Co. GmbH, Wuppertal-Cronenberg (Germany)

    2011-07-01

    In the paper more than 10-year experience of thermoelectric devices batch manufacturing is described for the field of their obvious advantages. This field of application includes thermoelectric air conditioning systems which have shown their competitive advantage when used in vehicles of elevated vibration where compressor equipment application is difficult because of leakage of refrigerant. Energy characteristics of air conditioners for tractors, excavators, tanks, locomotive driver's cabins and cranes are described. Thermoelectric (TE) air conditioners mechanical test data as well as operation experience in vehicles are presented. It is shown that consumption of tellurium, which is a strategic component for thermoelectric materials manufacturing, may be lowered to 40 grams per 1 kW of cooling. (orig.)

  1. The system of thermoelectric air conditioning based on permeable thermoelements

    Cherkez R. G.

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available There is thermoelectric air conditioner unit on the basis of permeable cooling thermoelements presented. In thermoelectric air conditioner unit the thermoelectric effects and the Joule–Thomson effect have been used for the air stream cooling. There have been described the method of temperature distribution analysis, the determinations of energy conversion power characteristics and design style of permeable thermoelement with maximum coefficient of performance described. The results of computer analysis concerning the application of the thermoelement legs material on the basis of Bi2Te3 have shown the possibility of coefficient of performance increase by a factor of 1,6—1,7 as compared with conventional thermoelectric systems.

  2. Disodium edetate as a promising interfacial material for inverted organic solar cells and the device performance optimization.

    Li, Xiaodong; Zhang, Wenjun; Wang, Xueyan; Gao, Feng; Fang, Junfeng

    2014-12-10

    Disodium edetate (EDTA-Na), a popular hexadentate ligand in analytical chemistry, was successfully introduced in organic solar cells (OSCs) as cathode interfacial layer. The inverted OSCs with EDTA-Na showed superior performance both in power conversion efficiency and devices stability compared with conventional devices. Interestingly, we found that the performance of devices with EDTA-Na could be optimized through external bias treatment. After optimization, the efficiency of inverted OSCs with device structure of ITO/EDTA-Na/polymer thieno[3,4-b]thiophene/benzodithiophene (PTB7):PC71BM/MoO3/Al was significantly increased to 8.33% from an initial value of 6.75%. This work introduces a new class of interlayer materials, small molecule electrolytes, for organic solar cells.

  3. Transition metal substituted SrTiO3 perovskite oxides as promising functional materials for oxygen sensor

    Misra, Sunasira

    2012-07-01

    Modern industries employ several gases as process fluids. Leakage of these gases in the operating area could lead to undesirable consequences. Even in chemical industries, which use large quantities of inert gases in confined areas, accidental leakage of these process gases would result in the reduction of oxygen partial pressure in atmospheric air. For instance, large amounts of gaseous nitrogen and argon are used in pharmaceutical industries, gas filling/bottling plants, operating area of Fast Breeder reactors, etc. Fall of concentration of oxygen in air below 17% could lead to life risk (Asphyxiation) of the working personnel that has to be checked well in advance. Further, when the leaking gas is of explosive nature, its damage potential would be very high if its concentration level in air increases beyond its lower explosive limit. Surveillance of the ambient within these industries at the critical areas and also in the environment around them for oxygen therefore becomes highly essential. Sensitive and selective gas sensors made of advanced materials are required to meet this demand of monitoring environmental pollution. The perovskite class of oxides (ABO3) is chemically stable even at high temperatures and can tolerate large levels of dopants without phase transformations. The electronic properties of this parent functional material can be tailored by adding appropriate dopants that exhibit different valence states. Aliovalent transition metal substituted SrTiO3 perovskites are good mixed ionic and electronic conductors and potential candidates for sensing oxygen at percentage level exploiting their oxygen pressure dependent electrical conductivity. This paper presents the preparation, study of electrical conductivity and oxygen-sensing characteristics of iron and cobalt substituted SrTiO3.

  4. Pr4Ni3O10+δ: A new promising oxygen electrode material for solid oxide fuel cells

    Vibhu, Vaibhav; Rougier, Aline; Nicollet, Clément; Flura, Aurélien; Fourcade, Sébastien; Penin, Nicolas; Grenier, Jean-Claude; Bassat, Jean-Marc

    2016-06-01

    The present work is focused on the study of Pr4Ni3O10+δ as a new cathode material for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs). The structural study leads to an indexation in orthorhombic structure with Fmmm space group, this structure being thermally stable throughout the temperature range up to 1000 °C under air and oxygen. The variation of oxygen content (10+δ) as a function of temperature under different atmospheres show that Pr4Ni3O10+δ is always oxygen over-stoichiometric, which further suggests its MIEC properties. The polarization resistance (Rp) of Pr4Ni3O10+δ electrode is measured for GDC/co-sintered and two-step sintered half cells. The Rp for co-sintered sample is found to be 0.16 Ω cm2 at 600 °C under air, which is as low as the one of highest performing Pr2NiO4+δ nickelate (Rp = 0.15 Ω cm2 at 600 °C). Moreover, an anode supported (Ni-YSZ//YSZ) single cell including GDC//Pr4Ni3O10+δ co-sintered electrode shows a maximum power density of 1.60 W cm-2 at 800 °C and 0.68 W cm-2 at 700 °C. Here, the work is emphasized on the very close electrochemical performance of Pr4Ni3O10+δ compared to the one of Pr2NiO4+δ with higher chemical stability, which gives great interests to consider this material as a very interesting oxygen-electrode for SOFCs.

  5. Rapid Microwave Preparation of Thermoelectric TiNiSn and TiCoSb Half-Heusler Compounds

    Birkel, Christina S.; Zeier, Wolfgang G.; Douglas, Jason E.; Lettiere, Bethany R.; Mills, Carolyn E.; Seward, Gareth; Birkel, Alexander; Snedaker, Matthew L.; Zhang, Yichi; Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Pollock, Tresa M.; Seshadri, Ram; Stucky, Galen D. (CIT); (UCSB)

    2012-10-25

    The 18-electron ternary intermetallic systems TiNiSn and TiCoSb are promising for applications as high-temperature thermoelectrics and comprise earth-abundant, and relatively nontoxic elements. Heusler and half-Heusler compounds are usually prepared by conventional solid state methods involving arc-melting and annealing at high temperatures for an extended period of time. Here, we report an energy-saving preparation route using a domestic microwave oven, reducing the reaction time significantly from more than a week to one minute. A microwave susceptor material rapidly heats the elemental starting materials inside an evacuated quartz tube resulting in near single phase compounds. The initial preparation is followed by a densification step involving hot-pressing, which reduces the amount of secondary phases, as verified by synchrotron X-ray diffraction, leading to the desired half-Heusler compounds, demonstrating that hot-pressing should be treated as part of the preparative process. For TiNiSn, high thermoelectric power factors of 2 mW/mK{sup 2} at temperatures in the 700 to 800 K range, and zT values of around 0.4 are found, with the microwave-prepared sample displaying somewhat superior properties to conventionally prepared half-Heuslers due to lower thermal conductivity. The TiCoSb sample shows a lower thermoelectric figure of merit when prepared using microwave methods because of a metallic second phase.

  6. Decreasing the Effective Thermal Conductivity in Glass Supported Thermoelectric Layers.

    Bethke, Kevin; Andrei, Virgil; Rademann, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    As thermoelectric devices begin to make their way into commercial applications, the emphasis is put on decreasing the thermal conductivity. In this purely theoretical study, finite element analysis is used to determine the effect of a supporting material on the thermal conductivity of a thermoelectric module. The simulations illustrate the heat transfer along a sample, consisting from Cu, Cu2O and PbTe thermoelectric layers on a 1 mm thick Pyrex glass substrate. The influence of two different types of heating, at a constant temperature and at a constant heat flux, is also investigated. It is revealed that the presence of a supporting material plays an important role on lowering the effective thermal conductivity of the layer-substrate ensemble. By using thinner thermoelectric layers the effective thermal conductivity is further reduced, almost down to the value of the glass substrate. As a result, the temperature gradient becomes steeper for a fixed heating temperature, which allows the production of devices with improved performance under certain conditions. Based on the simulation results, we also propose a model for a robust thin film thermoelectric device. With this suggestion, we invite the thermoelectric community to prove the applicability of the presented concept for practical purposes.

  7. MI 4010 Thermoelectric Modules.

    The report covers the design justification, physical specification and characterization of the MI 4010 module . The purpose of the contract was to...demonstrate the capability to fabricate pieceparts, process into assemblies, and test thermoelectric modules equivalent to the module used in the Hand...Held Thermal Viewer. The completed modules were also subjected to limited demonstration tests of reliability and useful life.

  8. MI 6040 Thermoelectric Modules.

    The report covers the design justification, physical specification and characterization of the MI 6040 module . The purpose of the thermoelectric... modules is the cooling of infrared detector arrays to temperature of 170K or colder. The completed modules were also subjected to limited demonstration tests of reliability and useful life.

  9. Thermoelectric Cooler Design

    1992-12-01

    coefficient of performance which is the term to the left of the brackets in equation (36) Egli (Ref. 4: p. 31] and Tipler [Ref. 5:pp 575-576]. H. CASCADED...Thermoelectricity, John Wiley and Sons Inc., 1960. 5. Tipler , P. A., Physics for Scientists and Engineers, 3rd ed., Worth Publishers, 1991. 70 BIBLIOGRAPHY 1

  10. Growth and characterization studies of sodium Di(L-Malato) borate bulk single crystal: A promising nonlinear optical material

    Senthil, A.; Loganayaki, M.; Lenin, M.; Ramasamy, P.

    2012-06-01

    A semi-organic nonlinear optical material, sodium di(L-malato) borate (NaDMB) has been synthesized. Optically good quality bulk single crystal of NaDMB was successfully grown by slow evaporation solution technique (SEST) and Sankaranarayanan-Ramasamy (SR) method at 36 °C. Transparent, colourless crystal of size 22 mm X 8 mm X 6 mm with well defined morphology was grown by SEST and oriented unidirectional bulk single crystal of size 48 mm length and 16 mm diameter was grown by SR method. The grown crystals were subjected to single crystal X-ray diffraction studies. The crystal belongs to monoclinic structure with space group P21. The grown crystals were characterized by UV-vis studies. The structural perfection of the grown crystal has been analyzed by high-resolution X-ray diffraction (HRXRD) rocking curve measurements. The differential thermal (DTA) and thermogravimetric (TG) analysis traces reveal the thermal stability of the sample. The second-harmonic generation efficiency was estimated by Kurtz and Perry powder technique.

  11. 一种测量热电材料塞贝克系数的新方法%A New Method for Measuring the Seebeck Coefficient of Thermoelectric Materials

    缪婷婷; 马维刚; 李震; 张兴

    2011-01-01

    本文提出了一种新颖、可靠的测量微纳米尺度热电转换材料塞贝克系数的2ω自加热法.给被测样品通一频率为ω的交变电流,焦耳效应会在样品上产生一个频率为2ω的温度振荡.对于热电材料,由于塞贝克效应,将会产生频率为2ω的塞贝克电压.获取2ω电压信号,同时理论求解得到2ω的温度振荡量,将可得到被测热电材料的塞贝克系数.通过直径为25.4μm K型热电偶塞贝克系数的测试实验,验证了该方法的有效性.%A novel and reliable self-heating 2w method has been proposed to measure the Seebeck coefficient of the micro/nano scale thermoelectric materials. Feeding an ac electric current at the frequency of lw into the specimen creates a temperature fluctuation at the frequency of 2w, and according to the Seebeck effect, a Seebeck voltage fluctuation is generated at 2w. Combining the measured 2w voltage and the theoretical analysis of the transient heat-conduction equation, the Seebeck coefficient of the thermoelectric material can be obtained. This approach has been applied to a 25.4 μm thick K-type thermocouple and the measured Seebeck coefficient corresponds well with the nominal value.

  12. Fabrication and Characterization of Brush-Printed p-Type Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 Thick Films for Thermoelectric Cooling Devices

    Wu, Han; Liu, Xing; Wei, Ping; Zhou, Hong-Yu; Mu, Xin; He, Dan-Qi; Zhu, Wan-Ting; Nie, Xiao-Lei; Zhao, Wen-Yu; Zhang, Qing-Jie

    2016-11-01

    Bismuth telluride alloys are promising thermoelectric materials used for portable and wearable cooling devices due to their excellent thermoelectric properties near the ambient temperature. Here, a simple and cost-effective brush-printing technique, together with a subsequent annealing treatment, has been used to prepare Bi2Te3-based thick films and prototype devices. The composition, microstructure, and electrical properties of the brush-printed p-type Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 thick films at different annealing temperatures are investigated. It is found that annealing temperature plays an important role in promoting densification and preventing the film from cracking, hence improving the electrical transport properties. The maximum power factor of the brush-printed thick films is 0.15 mW K-2 m-1 when annealed at 673 K for 4 h. A prototype thermoelectric device is manufactured by connecting the brush-printed p-type Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 and n-type Bi2Te2.7Se0.3 thick films with Cu thick-film electrodes on an Al2O3 substrate. The cooling performance of the thermoelectric device is evaluated by measuring the temperature difference produced under applied currents.

  13. Spectacular enhancement of thermoelectric phenomena in chemically synthesized graphene nanoribbons with substitution atoms.

    Zberecki, K; Swirkowicz, R; Wierzbicki, M; Barnaś, J

    2016-07-21

    We analyze theoretically the transport and thermoelectric properties of graphene nanoribbons of a specific geometry, which have been synthesized recently from polymers [Cai, et al., Nature, 2011, 466, 470]. When such nanoribbons are modified at one of the two edges by Al or N substitutions, they acquire a ferromagnetic moment localized at the modified edge. We present numerical results on the electronic structure and thermoelectric properties (including also spin thermoelectricity) of the modified nanoribbons. The results show that such nanoribbons can display large thermoelectric efficiency in certain regions of chemical potential, where the corresponding electric and spin figures of merit achieve unusually large values. The enhancement of thermoelectric efficiency follows from a reduced phonon heat conductance of the nanoribbons and from their peculiar electronic band structure. Thus, such nanoribbons are promising for practical applications in nanoelectronic and spintronic devices.

  14. Thin Film Thermoelectric Metal-Organic Framework with High Seebeck Coefficient and Low Thermal Conductivity. Supporting Information

    2015-04-28

    Framework with High Seebeck Coefficient and Low Thermal Conductivity A new thermoelectric material with high Seebeck coefficient and low thermal conductivity ...MONITORING AGENCY NAME(S) AND ADDRESS (ES) U.S. Army Research Office P.O. Box 12211 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2211 thermal conductivity ...Thermoelectric Metal-Organic Framework with High Seebeck Coefficient and Low Thermal Conductivity Report Title A new thermoelectric material with high Seebeck

  15. Network theory for inhomogeneous thermoelectrics

    Angst, Sebastian; Wolf, Dietrich E.

    2016-04-01

    The Onsager-de Groot-Callen transport theory, implemented as a network model, is used to simulate the transient Harman method, which is widely used experimentally to determine all thermoelectric transport coefficients in a single measurement setup. It is shown that this method systematically overestimates the Seebeck coefficient for samples composed of two different materials. As a consequence, the figure of merit is also overestimated, if the thermal coupling of the measurement setup to the environment is weak. For a mixture of metal and semiconductor particles near metal percolation the figure of merit obtained by the Harman method is more than 100% too large. For a correct interpretation of the experimental data, information on composition and microstructure of the sample are indispensable.

  16. High-performance flat-panel solar thermoelectric generators with high thermal concentration.

    Kraemer, Daniel; Poudel, Bed; Feng, Hsien-Ping; Caylor, J Christopher; Yu, Bo; Yan, Xiao; Ma, Yi; Wang, Xiaowei; Wang, Dezhi; Muto, Andrew; McEnaney, Kenneth; Chiesa, Matteo; Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Gang

    2011-05-01

    The conversion of sunlight into electricity has been dominated by photovoltaic and solar thermal power generation. Photovoltaic cells are deployed widely, mostly as flat panels, whereas solar thermal electricity generation relying on optical concentrators and mechanical heat engines is only seen in large-scale power plants. Here we demonstrate a promising flat-panel solar thermal to electric power conversion technology based on the Seebeck effect and high thermal concentration, thus enabling wider applications. The developed solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) achieved a peak efficiency of 4.6% under AM1.5G (1 kW m(-2)) conditions. The efficiency is 7-8 times higher than the previously reported best value for a flat-panel STEG, and is enabled by the use of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric materials and spectrally-selective solar absorbers in an innovative design that exploits high thermal concentration in an evacuated environment. Our work opens up a promising new approach which has the potential to achieve cost-effective conversion of solar energy into electricity.

  17. Expanding the reduced-current approach for thermoelectric generators to achieve higher volumetric power density

    Wijesooriyage, Waruna Dissanayaka; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectrics are candidate niche electrical generator devices for energy management. At present, scientists are more focused on thermoelectric (TE) material development, but the TE module design procedure is still in a relatively virgin state. One of the most well-known methods is the reduced...

  18. Cooling power of transverse thermoelectrics for cryogenic cooling

    Tang, Yang; Ma, Ming; Grayson, M.

    2016-05-01

    Transverse Peltier coolers have been experimentally and theoretically studied since 1960s due to their capability of achieving cooling in a single-leg geometry. Recently proposed pxn-type transverse thermoelectrics reveal the possibility of intrinsic or undoped transverse coolers that can, in principle, function at cryogenic temperatures, which has drawn more attention to the performance of such transverse coolers. However, unlike longitudinal thermoelectrics, the equations for transverse thermoelectrics cannot be solved analytically. In this study, we therefore calculate the thermoelectric transport in transverse coolers numerically, and introduce a normalized notation, which reduces the independent parameters in the governing equations to a normalized electric field E* and a hot-side transverse figure of merit zTh, only. A numerical study of the maximum cooling temperature difference and cooling power reveals the superior performance of transverse thermoelectric coolers compared to longitudinal coolers with the same figure of merit, providing another motivation in the search for new transverse thermoelectric materials with large figure of merit.

  19. Thermoelectric properties of hole- and electron-doped ambipolar polymers

    Glaudell, Anne; Perry, Erin; Schlitz, Ruth; Chabinyc, Michael

    2015-03-01

    The library of possible materials, both p- and n-type, for organic thermoelectric devices has been steadily growing with the continuous improvement in electrical properties and stability. Maximizing the thermoelectric power factor in these materials requires the simultaneous optimization of both electrical conductivity and thermopower. The challenge remains that charge transport is not well understood in organic materials due to energetic disorder from crystalline and non-crystalline domains. We have performed temperature-dependent measurements of both thermopower and electrical conductivity to uncover the relationship between microstructure and thermoelectric performance. These measurements were complemented by techniques such as electronic paramagnetic resonance (EPR) that help provide the carrier concentration to give a more complete picture of the competing charge transport mechanisms and structure-property relationships. We will present results on p- and n-type doping of ambipolar polymers that reveal the difference in thermopower for electrons and holes in the same material. An ideal thermoelectric device has n- and p-type legs with similar mechanical and thermoelectric properties, a balance more easily realized using the same polymer for each leg.

  20. Thermoelectric Powered High Temperature Wireless Sensing

    Kucukkomurler, Ahmet

    This study describes use of a thermoelectric power converter to transform waste heat into electrical energy to power an RF receiver and transmitter, for use in harsh environment wireless temperature sensing and telemetry. The sensing and transmitting module employs a DS-1820 low power digital temperature sensor to perform temperature to voltage conversion, an ATX-34 RF transmitter, an ARX-34 RF receiver module, and a PIC16f84A microcontroller to synchronize data communication between them. The unit has been tested in a laboratory environment, and promising results have been obtained for an actual automotive wireless under hood temperature sensing and telemetry implementation.

  1. Nanostructured Oxides and Sulfides for Thermoelectrics

    Koumoto, Kunihito

    2011-03-01

    Thermoelectric power generation can be applied to various heat sources, both waste heat and renewable energy, to harvest electricity. Even though each heat source is of a small scale, it would lead to a great deal of energy saving if they are combined and collected, and it would greatly contribute to reducing carbon dioxide emission. We have been engaged in developing novel thermoelectric materials to be used for energy saving and environmental protection and are currently developing nanostructured ceramics for thermoelectric conversion. We have demonstrated a quantum confinement effect giving rise to two dimensional electron gas (2DEG) in a 2D superlattice, STO/STO:Nb (STO: strontium titanate), which could generate giant thermopower while keeping high electrical conductivity. One unit-cell thick Nb-doped well layer was estimated to show ZT=2.4 at 300K. Then, a ``synergistic nanostructuring'' concept incorporating 2DEG grain boundaries as well as nanosizing of grains has been applied to our STO material and 3D superlattice ceramics was designed and proposed. It was verified by numerical simulation that this 3D superlattice ceramics should be capable of showing ZT=1.0 at 300K which is comparable to or even higher than that of conventional bismuth telluride-based thermoelectrics. We have recently proposed titanium disulfide-based misfit-layered compounds as novel TE materials. Insertion of misfit-layers into the van der Waals gaps in layer-structured titanium disulfide thus forming a natural superlattice gives rise to internal nanointerfaces and dramatically reduces its lattice thermal conductivity. ZT value reaches 0.37 at 673 K even without optimization of electronic properties. Our challenge to further increase ZT by controlling their electronic system and superlattice structures will be presented.

  2. Recent Advance in Thermoelectric Devices for Electronics Cooling

    Wang, Peng

    Thermal management of on-chip hot spot, with a heat flux of around 1000 W/cm2, has become one of the major challenges in the development of next-generation microprocessors. Solid state thermoelectric cooler (TEC) offers great promise for hot spot thermal management because of their compact structure, fast response, high reliability, localized cooling, and high flux removal capability. To date TEC has received great attentions in electronics cooling community as one of the potential hot spot cooling solutions. In this paper, recent development and application of hot spot cooling strategies based on micro thermoelectric technologies will be reviewed and discussed, three hot spot cooling concepts, including thinfilm thermoelectric cooling, mini-contact cooling, and semiconductor selfcooling in silicon substrate and germanium substrate will be discussed. The advantages and disadvantages of these on-chip cooling solutions for high flux hot spots will be evaluated.

  3. Encapsulated Thermoelectric Modules for Advanced Thermoelectric Systems

    Kambe, Mitsuru; Jinushi, Takahiro; Ishijima, Zenzo

    2014-06-01

    An encapsulated thermoelectric (TE) module consists of a vacuum-tight stainless-steel container in which an SiGe or BiTe TE module is encapsulated. This construction enables maximum performance and durability because: the thermal expansion mismatch between the hot and cold sides of the container can be accommodated by a sliding sheet in the container; the TE module inside is always kept in a vacuum environment, therefore no oxidation can occur; and the pressure difference between the inside and outside of the container reduces thermal contact resistance inside the container. Our encapsulated SiGe module features higher operating temperature—up to 650°C for both hot and cold sides. Other high-temperature modules and conventional BiTe modules, including both-sides and one-side skeleton types, have been encapsulated. Several variants of the encapsulated module are available. Encapsulated thermoelectric modules with integrated coolers contain cooling panels through which water can pass. If the module hot side is heated by a radiating heat source (radiation coupling) or convection of a hot gas or fluid (convection coupling), no pressing force on the module is necessary. It therefore features minimum contact resistance with the cooling duct, because no pressure is applied, maximum TE power, and minimum installation cost. Another, larger, variant is a quadruple flexible container in which four modules (each of maximum size 40 mm × 40 mm) are encapsulated. These encapsulated modules were used in a powder metallurgy furnace and were in use for more than 3000 h. Application to cryogenic temperatures simulating the liquid nitrogen gas vaporizer has been also attempted.

  4. Convergence of electronic bands for high performance bulk thermoelectrics.

    Pei, Yanzhong; Shi, Xiaoya; LaLonde, Aaron; Wang, Heng; Chen, Lidong; Snyder, G Jeffrey

    2011-05-01

    Thermoelectric generators, which directly convert heat into electricity, have long been relegated to use in space-based or other niche applications, but are now being actively considered for a variety of practical waste heat recovery systems-such as the conversion of car exhaust heat into electricity. Although these devices can be very reliable and compact, the thermoelectric materials themselves are relatively inefficient: to facilitate widespread application, it will be desirable to identify or develop materials that have an intensive thermoelectric materials figure of merit, zT, above 1.5 (ref. 1). Many different concepts have been used in the search for new materials with high thermoelectric efficiency, such as the use of nanostructuring to reduce phonon thermal conductivity, which has led to the investigation of a variety of complex material systems. In this vein, it is well known that a high valley degeneracy (typically ≤6 for known thermoelectrics) in the electronic bands is conducive to high zT, and this in turn has stimulated attempts to engineer such degeneracy by adopting low-dimensional nanostructures. Here we demonstrate that it is possible to direct the convergence of many valleys in a bulk material by tuning the doping and composition. By this route, we achieve a convergence of at least 12 valleys in doped PbTe(1-x)Se(x) alloys, leading to an extraordinary zT value of 1.8 at about 850 kelvin. Band engineering to converge the valence (or conduction) bands to achieve high valley degeneracy should be a general strategy in the search for and improvement of bulk thermoelectric materials, because it simultaneously leads to a high Seebeck coefficient and high electrical conductivity.

  5. Optimization of Thermoelectric Properties by Cu Substitution in LaCoO3 Ceramics

    Choudhary, K. K.; Kaurav, N.; Ghosh, S. K.

    2014-02-01

    The thermoelectric properties of LaCo1-xCuxO3-δ ceramics are theoretically analyzed, it is observed that thermoelectric figure of merit ZT ( = S2σT/κ) is maximized by Cu substitution in LaCo1-xCux O3-δ at x = 0.15. The lattice thermal conductivity (κph) and phonon drag thermoelectric power (S ph drag) were estimated by the scattering of phonons with defects, grain boundaries, electrons and phonon umklapp scattering to evaluate the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT. The Mott expression is used to estimate the electron diffusive thermoelectric power (Se diff) using Fermi energy as electron free parameter, Se diff shows linear temperature dependence. The electron contribution to thermal conductivity (κe) is estimated using temperature-dependent electron relaxation time. We found that Cu substitution increases the phonon scattering with grain boundaries and defects which significantly decrease the thermal conductivity and subsequently increase the thermoelectric power. The present numerical analysis of thermoelectric properties will help in designing more efficient thermoelectric materials for thermoelectric applications.

  6. Nanostructured Bulk Thermoelectric Generator for Efficient Power Harvesting for Self-powered Sensor Networks

    Zhang, Yanliang [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Butt, Darryl [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Agarwal, Vivek [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2015-07-01

    The objective of this Nuclear Energy Enabling Technology research project is to develop high-efficiency and reliable thermoelectric generators for self-powered wireless sensors nodes utilizing thermal energy from nuclear plant or fuel cycle. The power harvesting technology has crosscutting significance to address critical technology gaps in monitoring nuclear plants and fuel cycle. The outcomes of the project will lead to significant advancement in sensors and instrumentation technology, reducing cost, improving monitoring reliability and therefore enhancing safety. The self-powered wireless sensor networks could support the long-term safe and economical operation of all the reactor designs and fuel cycle concepts, as well as spent fuel storage and many other nuclear science and engineering applications. The research is based on recent breakthroughs in high-performance nanostructured bulk (nanobulk) thermoelectric materials that enable high-efficiency direct heat-to-electricity conversion over a wide temperature range. The nanobulk thermoelectric materials that the research team at Boise State University and University of Houston has developed yield up to a 50% increase in the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, compared with state-of-the-art bulk counterparts. This report focuses on the selection of optimal thermoelectric materials for this project. The team has performed extensive study on two thermoelectric materials systems, i.e. the half-Heusler materials, and the Bismuth-Telluride materials. The report contains our recent research results on the fabrication, characterization and thermoelectric property measurements of these two materials.

  7. Research Update: Phonon engineering of nanocrystalline silicon thermoelectrics

    Junichiro Shiomi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Nanocrystalline silicon thermoelectrics can be a solution to improve the cost-effectiveness of thermoelectric technology from both material and integration viewpoints. While their figure-of-merit is still developing, recent advances in theoretical/numerical calculations, property measurements, and structural synthesis/fabrication have opened up possibilities to develop the materials based on fundamental physics of phonon transport. Here, this is demonstrated by reviewing a series of works on nanocrystalline silicon materials using calculations of multiscale phonon transport, measurements of interfacial heat conduction, and synthesis from nanoparticles. Integration of these approaches allows us to engineer phonon transport to improve the thermoelectric performance by introducing local silicon-oxide structures.

  8. High-performance and flexible thermoelectric films by screen printing solution-processed nanoplate crystals.

    Varghese, Tony; Hollar, Courtney; Richardson, Joseph; Kempf, Nicholas; Han, Chao; Gamarachchi, Pasindu; Estrada, David; Mehta, Rutvik J; Zhang, Yanliang

    2016-09-12

    Screen printing allows for direct conversion of thermoelectric nanocrystals into flexible energy harvesters and coolers. However, obtaining flexible thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit ZT through printing is an exacting challenge due to the difficulties to synthesize high-performance thermoelectric inks and the poor density and electrical conductivity of the printed films. Here, we demonstrate high-performance flexible films and devices by screen printing bismuth telluride based nanocrystal inks synthesized using a microwave-stimulated wet-chemical method. Thermoelectric films of several tens of microns thickness were screen printed onto a flexible polyimide substrate followed by cold compaction and sintering. The n-type films demonstrate a peak ZT of 0.43 along with superior flexibility, which is among the highest reported ZT values in flexible thermoelectric materials. A flexible thermoelectric device fabricated using the printed films produces a high power density of 4.1 mW/cm(2) with 60 °C temperature difference between the hot side and cold side. The highly scalable and low cost process to fabricate flexible thermoelectric materials and devices demonstrated here opens up many opportunities to transform thermoelectric energy harvesting and cooling applications.

  9. High-performance and flexible thermoelectric films by screen printing solution-processed nanoplate crystals

    Varghese, Tony; Hollar, Courtney; Richardson, Joseph; Kempf, Nicholas; Han, Chao; Gamarachchi, Pasindu; Estrada, David; Mehta, Rutvik J.; Zhang, Yanliang

    2016-01-01

    Screen printing allows for direct conversion of thermoelectric nanocrystals into flexible energy harvesters and coolers. However, obtaining flexible thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit ZT through printing is an exacting challenge due to the difficulties to synthesize high-performance thermoelectric inks and the poor density and electrical conductivity of the printed films. Here, we demonstrate high-performance flexible films and devices by screen printing bismuth telluride based nanocrystal inks synthesized using a microwave-stimulated wet-chemical method. Thermoelectric films of several tens of microns thickness were screen printed onto a flexible polyimide substrate followed by cold compaction and sintering. The n-type films demonstrate a peak ZT of 0.43 along with superior flexibility, which is among the highest reported ZT values in flexible thermoelectric materials. A flexible thermoelectric device fabricated using the printed films produces a high power density of 4.1 mW/cm2 with 60 °C temperature difference between the hot side and cold side. The highly scalable and low cost process to fabricate flexible thermoelectric materials and devices demonstrated here opens up many opportunities to transform thermoelectric energy harvesting and cooling applications. PMID:27615036

  10. High-performance and flexible thermoelectric films by screen printing solution-processed nanoplate crystals

    Varghese, Tony; Hollar, Courtney; Richardson, Joseph; Kempf, Nicholas; Han, Chao; Gamarachchi, Pasindu; Estrada, David; Mehta, Rutvik J.; Zhang, Yanliang

    2016-09-01

    Screen printing allows for direct conversion of thermoelectric nanocrystals into flexible energy harvesters and coolers. However, obtaining flexible thermoelectric materials with high figure of merit ZT through printing is an exacting challenge due to the difficulties to synthesize high-performance thermoelectric inks and the poor density and electrical conductivity of the printed films. Here, we demonstrate high-performance flexible films and devices by screen printing bismuth telluride based nanocrystal inks synthesized using a microwave-stimulated wet-chemical method. Thermoelectric films of several tens of microns thickness were screen printed onto a flexible polyimide substrate followed by cold compaction and sintering. The n-type films demonstrate a peak ZT of 0.43 along with superior flexibility, which is among the highest reported ZT values in flexible thermoelectric materials. A flexible thermoelectric device fabricated using the printed films produces a high power density of 4.1 mW/cm2 with 60 °C temperature difference between the hot side and cold side. The highly scalable and low cost process to fabricate flexible thermoelectric materials and devices demonstrated here opens up many opportunities to transform thermoelectric energy harvesting and cooling applications.

  11. Thermoelectric properties of SnSe compound

    Guan, Xinhong [State Key Laboratory of Information Photonics and Optical Communications, Ministry of Education, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, P.O. Box 72, Beijing 100876 (China); Lu, Pengfei, E-mail: photon@bupt.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory of Information Photonics and Optical Communications, Ministry of Education, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, P.O. Box 72, Beijing 100876 (China); Wu, Liyuan; Han, Lihong [State Key Laboratory of Information Photonics and Optical Communications, Ministry of Education, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, P.O. Box 72, Beijing 100876 (China); Liu, Gang [School of Electronic Engineering, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, Beijing 100876 (China); Song, Yuxin [State Key Laboratory of Functional Materials for Informatics, Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200050 (China); Wang, Shumin [State Key Laboratory of Functional Materials for Informatics, Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200050 (China); Photonics Laboratory, Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience, Chalmers University of Technology, 41296 Gothenburg (Sweden)

    2015-09-15

    Highlights: • The electronic and thermoelectric properties of SnSe bulk material are studied. • The ZT can reach as high as 1.87 along yy and 1.6 along zz direction at 800k. • SnSe is an indirect-band material, and SOC has little effect on the band structure. • The high ZT can be attributed to the intrinsically ultralow thermal conductivity. - Abstract: A first-principles study and Boltzmann transport theory have been performed to evaluate the electronic structure and thermoelectric properties of SnSe compound. The energy band structure and density of states are studied in detail. The electronic transport coefficients are then calculated as a function of chemical potential or temperature within the assumption of the constant relaxation time. The figure of merit ZT is obtained with the use of calculated thermoelectric properties and can reach as high as 1.87 along yy and 1.6 along zz direction at 800 K. Our theoretical result agrees well with previous experimental data.

  12. Facile synthesis of monodisperse Cu{sub 3}SbSe{sub 4} nanoparticles and thermoelectric performance of Cu{sub 3}SbSe{sub 4} nanoparticle-based materials

    Wu, Yimin; Qiao, Xvsheng; Fan, Xianping, E-mail: fanxp@zju.edu.cn [Zhejiang University, State Key Laboratory of Silicon Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering (China); Zhang, Xianghua [CNRS-Université de Rennes I, Laboratory of Glasses and Ceramics, Institute of Chemistry (France); Cui, Shuo; Wan, Jun [Zhejiang University, State Key Laboratory of Silicon Materials, Department of Materials Science and Engineering (China)

    2015-07-15

    In this study, large-scale synthesis of Cu{sub 3}SbSe{sub 4} and Cu{sub 3}Sb{sub 0.98}Sn{sub 0.02}Se{sub 4} nanoparticles with a narrow size distribution was achieved through a rapid-injection route. These nanoparticles showed a monodisperse and quasi-spherical morphology. The Cu{sub 3}SbSe{sub 4} and Cu{sub 3}Sb{sub 0.98}Sn{sub 0.02}Se{sub 4} nanoparticle-based bulk materials were then prepared by hot-pressed sinter of the nanoparticles, and their thermoelectric performances were systematically studied. Due to the reduced lattice thermal conductivity from enhanced phonon scattering at the grain interfaces of the bulk materials, the maximum ZT value of the Cu{sub 3}Sb{sub 0.98}Sn{sub 0.02}Se{sub 4} bulk materials reached 0.50 at 575 K.

  13. In situ X-ray diffraction characterization of NiSe2 as a promising anode material for sodium ion batteries

    Ou, Xing; Li, Jiao; Zheng, Fenghua; Wu, Peng; Pan, Qichang; Xiong, Xunhui; Yang, Chenghao; Liu, Meilin

    2017-03-01

    Reduced graphene oxide (rGO) homogenously wrapped nickel diselenide (NiSe2/rGO) hybrid has been prepared by a facile one-spot hydrothermal method. When investigated as anode material for sodium ion batteries (SIBs), NiSe2/rGO hybrid delivers a high reversible capacity (433 mAh g-1 at 100 mA g-1), superior rate performance (406, 386, 366, 347 and 318 mAh g-1 at 200, 500, 1000, 2000 and 5000 mA g-1, respectively) and excellent cycling stability (a capacity retention of 346 mAh g-1 after 1000 cycles at 1000 mA g-1) within the 0.4-3.0 V voltage range. In situ XRD analysis and ex situ SEM/TEM measurement reveal that the high capacity of NiSe2/rGO is originated from the combined Na+ intercalation and conversion reactions. These results validate the impact of voltage range on electrochemical property, providing a new route to rationalize the limiting factors that affect the performance of NiSe2 anode material. The facile synthesis and superior electrochemical performance of the NiSe2/rGO hybrid render it a promising anode material for SIBs.

  14. Penta-graphene: A Promising Anode Material as the Li/Na-Ion Battery with Both Extremely High Theoretical Capacity and Fast Charge/Discharge Rate.

    Xiao, Bo; Li, Yan-Chun; Yu, Xue-Fang; Cheng, Jian-Bo

    2016-12-28

    Recently, a new two-dimensional (2D) carbon allotrope named penta-graphene was theoretically proposed ( Zhang , S. ; et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2015 , 112 , 2372 ) and has been predicted to be the promising candidate for broad applications due to its intriguing properties. In this work, by using first-principles simulation, we have further extended the potential application of penta-graphene as the anode material for a Li/Na-ion battery. Our results show that the theoretical capacity of Li/Na ions on penta-graphene reaches up to 1489 mAh·g(-1), which is much higher than that of most of the previously reported 2D anode materials. Meanwhile, the calculated low open-circuit voltages (from 0.24 to 0.60 V), in combination with the low diffusion barriers (≤0.33 eV) and the high electronic conductivity during the whole Li/Na ions intercalation processes, further show the advantages of penta-graphene as the anode material. Particularly, molecular dynamics simulation (300 K) reveals that Li ion could freely diffuse on the surface of penta-graphene, and thus the ultrafast Li ion diffusivity is expected. Superior performance of penta-graphene is further confirmed by comparing with the other 2D anode materials. The light weight and unique atomic arrangement (with isotropic furrow paths on the surface) of penta-graphene are found to be mainly responsible for the high Li/Na ions storage capacity and fast diffusivity. In this regard, except penta-graphene, many other recently proposed 2D metal-free materials with pentagonal Cairo-tiled structures may be the potential candidates as the Li/Na-ion battery anodes.

  15. A single-source precursor route to anisotropic halogen-doped zinc oxide particles as a promising candidate for new transparent conducting oxide materials

    Daniela Lehr

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Numerous applications in optoelectronics require electrically conducting materials with high optical transparency over the entire visible light range. A solid solution of indium oxide and substantial amounts of tin oxide for electronic doping (ITO is currently the most prominent example for the class of so-called TCOs (transparent conducting oxides. Due to the limited, natural occurrence of indium and its steadily increasing price, it is highly desired to identify materials alternatives containing highly abundant chemical elements. The doping of other metal oxides (e.g., zinc oxide, ZnO is a promising approach, but two problems can be identified. Phase separation might occur at the required high concentration of the doping element, and for successful electronic modification it is mandatory that the introduced heteroelement occupies a defined position in the lattice of the host material. In the case of ZnO, most attention has been attributed so far to n-doping via substitution of Zn2+ by other metals (e.g., Al3+. Here, we present first steps towards n-doped ZnO-based TCO materials via substitution in the anion lattice (O2− versus halogenides. A special approach is presented, using novel single-source precursors containing a potential excerpt of the target lattice 'HalZn·Zn3O3' preorganized on the molecular scale (Hal = I, Br, Cl. We report about the synthesis of the precursors, their transformation into halogene-containing ZnO materials, and finally structural, optical and electronic properties are investigated using a combination of techniques including FT-Raman, low-T photoluminescence, impedance and THz spectroscopies.

  16. Na/Cu双掺杂对Ca3Co4O9热电材料性能的影响%Effect of Na/Cu Double Doping on the Thermoelectric Properties of Ca3Co4O9 Thermoelectric Material

    李佳书; 胡志强; 郝洪顺; 秦艺颖; 李亚玮

    2016-01-01

    利用溶胶-凝胶法制备掺Na/Cu的Ca3CO4O9热电材料,通过XRD、SEM、气孔率对样品进行表征,研究Na/Cu的掺量对试样的电阻率、塞贝克系数和功率因子的影响。结果表明,双掺之后的XRD图谱与标准JCPDS图谱保持一致,没有引进新的杂质;通过双掺样品的致密性提高,电阻率大幅降低;随着温度增加,电阻率随之降低,Seebeck系数增大,功率因子增大,热电性能得到提高,在1050 K时,(Na0.1Ca0.9)3(Co0.9Cu0.1)4O9试样的功率因子最高达到448μW/mK2。%Ca3Co4O9 thermoelectric material doped with Na/Cu were prepared by the sol-gel method. The samples were characterized by XRD, SEM and porosity measurement. The effects of Na/Cu dosage on the resistivity, Seebeck coefficient and power factor of samples were explored. The results showed that the XRD patterns of double-doped samples were consistent with the standard JCPDS pattern, and no impurities were found. The density of the double doped samples was improved, and their resistivity was greatly reduced. With the temperature increasing, the resistivity decreased, Seebeck coefifcient and the power factor increased, and the thermoelectric performance improved; at 1050 K, the power factor of the (Na0.1Ca0.9)3(Co0.9Cu0.1)4O9 sample reached 448 μW/mK2.

  17. Preparation of P-type Bi2Te3 based thermoelectric material by hot pressing%热压法制备P型Bi2Te3基温差电材料研究

    葛晓丽; 杨文昭; 张丽丽

    2012-01-01

    In this article,with the p-type pseudo-binary thermoelectric material Bi2Te3-Sb2Te3 as the precursor,the samples were prepared with vacuum hot pressing technology,and their properties were measured before and after the hot pressing.The results indicate that the hot pressing samples have higher density and mechanical strength,which improves the phenomenon of splitting along the cleavage plane.Meanwhile,the hot pressing method changes the crystal structure and carrier concentration in the materials,which lead to the decrease of electric conductivity and the change of Seebeck coefficient,and then results in the decrease of thermal conductivity.For comprehensive consideration,the thermoelectric figure of merit of the hot pressing material is basically equivalent to that of zone-melting samples,but the mechanical properties of the former are much better than the later,which will provide a great advantage in practical application.%以P型赝二元Bi2Te3-Sb2Te3体系温差电材料区熔晶棒为前驱体,采用真空热压烧结法制备材料样品.测试热压前后材料样品性能,测试结果表明:热压样品较区熔材料具有更高的致密度和机械强度,改善了Bi2Te3基温差电材料易沿解理面发生劈裂的现象;同时,热压工艺促使了材料内部晶体结构和载流子浓度的变化,引起材料电导率的降低和塞贝克系数的改变,导致材料热导率显著降低.综合考虑材料各项性能参数,热压材料的热电优值基本与区熔材料相当,但前者的力学强度明显优于后者,在实际使用中将占有明显的优势.

  18. Development of Thermoelectric Fibers for Miniature Thermoelectric Devices

    Ren, Fei; Menchhofer, Paul; Kiggans, James; Wang, Hsin

    2016-03-01

    Miniature thermoelectric (TE) devices may be used in a variety of applications such as power sources of small sensors, temperature regulation of precision electronics, etc. Reducing the size of TE elements may also enable design of novel devices with unique form factor and higher device efficiency. Current industrial practice of fabricating TE devices usually involves mechanical removal processes that not only lead to material loss but also limit the geometry of the TE elements. In this project, we explored a powder-processing method for the fabrication of TE fibers with large length-to-area ratio, which could be potentially used for miniature TE devices. Powders were milled from Bi2Te3-based bulk materials and then mixed with a thermoplastic resin dissolved in an organic solvent. Through an extrusion process, flexible, continuous fibers with sub-millimeter diameters were formed. The polymer phase was then removed by sintering. Sintered fibers exhibited similar Seebeck coefficients to the bulk materials. However, their electrical resistivity was much higher, which might be related to the residual porosity and grain boundary contamination. Prototype miniature uni-couples fabricated from these fibers showed a linear I- V behavior and could generate millivolt voltages and output power in the nano-watt range. Further development of these TE fibers requires improvement in their electrical conductivities, which needs a better understanding of the causes that lead to the low conductivity in the sintered fibers.

  19. Parametric optimization of thermoelectric elements footprint for maximum power generation

    Rezania, A.; Rosendahl, Lasse; Yin, Hao

    2014-01-01

    materials. The results, which are in good agreement with the previous computational studies, show that the maximum power generation and the maximum cost-performance in the module occur at An/Ap electrical resistance and heat conductivity of the considered materials.......The development studies in thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems are mostly disconnected to parametric optimization of the module components. In this study, optimum footprint ratio of n- and p-type thermoelectric (TE) elements is explored to achieve maximum power generation, maximum cost...

  20. A Possible Regenerative, Molten-Salt, Thermoelectric Fuel Cell

    Greenberg, Jacob; Thaller, Lawrence H.; Weber, Donald E.

    1964-01-01

    Molten or fused salts have been evaluated as possible thermoelectric materials because of the relatively good values of their figures of merit, their chemical stability, their long liquid range, and their ability to operate in conjunction with a nuclear reactor to produce heat. In general, molten salts are electrolytic conductors; therefore, there will be a transport of materials and subsequent decomposition with the passage of an electric current. It is possible nonetheless to overcome this disadvantage by using the decomposition products of the molten-salt electrolyte in a fuel cell. The combination of a thermoelectric converter and a fuel cell would lead to a regenerative system that may be useful.

  1. Thermoelectric system for an engine

    Mcgilvray, Andrew N.; Vachon, John T.; Moser, William E.

    2010-06-22

    An internal combustion engine that includes a block, a cylinder head having an intake valve port and exhaust valve port formed therein, a piston, and a combustion chamber defined by the block, the piston, and the head. At least one thermoelectric device is positioned within either or both the intake valve port and the exhaust valve port. Each of the valves is configured to move within a respective intake and exhaust valve port thereby causing said valves to engage the thermoelectric devices resulting in heat transfer from the valves to the thermoelectric devices. The intake valve port and exhaust valve port are configured to fluidly direct intake air and exhaust gas, respectively, into the combustion chamber and the thermoelectric device is positioned within the intake valve port, and exhaust valve port, such that the thermoelectric device is in contact with the intake air and exhaust gas.

  2. Promising More Information

    2003-01-01

    When NASA needed a real-time, online database system capable of tracking documentation changes in its propulsion test facilities, engineers at Stennis Space Center joined with ECT International, of Brookfield, Wisconsin, to create a solution. Through NASA's Dual-Use Program, ECT developed Exdata, a software program that works within the company's existing Promise software. Exdata not only satisfied NASA s requirements, but also expanded ECT s commercial product line. Promise, ECT s primary product, is an intelligent software program with specialized functions for designing and documenting electrical control systems. An addon to AutoCAD software, Promis e generates control system schematics, panel layouts, bills of material, wire lists, and terminal plans. The drawing functions include symbol libraries, macros, and automatic line breaking. Primary Promise customers include manufacturing companies, utilities, and other organizations with complex processes to control.

  3. Thermoelectric Response in Single Quintuple Layer Bi2Te3

    Sharma, S.

    2016-10-05

    Because Bi2Te3 belongs to the most important thermoelectric materials, the successful exfoliation of a single quintuple layer has opened access to an interesting two-dimensional material. For this reason, we study the thermoelectric properties of single quintuple layer Bi2Te3 by considering both the electron and phonon transport. On the basis of first-principles density functional theory, the electronic and phononic contributions are calculated by solving Boltzmann transport equations. The dependence of the lattice thermal conductivity on the phonon mean free path is evaluated along with the contributions of the acoustic and optical branches. We find that the thermoelectric response is significantly better for p- than for n-doping. By optimizing the carrier concentration, at 300 K, a ZT value of 0.77 is achieved, which increases to 2.42 at 700 K.

  4. Enhanced thermoelectric properties of graphene oxide patterned by nanoroads.

    Zhou, Si; Guo, Yu; Zhao, Jijun

    2016-04-21

    The thermoelectric properties of two-dimensional (2D) materials are of great interest for both fundamental science and device applications. Graphene oxide (GO), whose physical properties are highly tailorable by chemical and structural modifications, is a potential 2D thermoelectric material. In this report, we pattern nanoroads on GO sheets with epoxide functionalization, and investigate their ballistic thermoelectric transport properties based on density functional theory and the nonequilibrium Green's function method. These graphene oxide nanoroads (GONRDs) are all semiconductors with their band gaps tunable by the road width, edge orientation, and the structure of the GO matrix. These nanostructures show appreciable electrical conductance at certain doping levels and enhanced thermopower of 127-287 μV K(-1), yielding a power factor 4-22 times of the graphene value; meanwhile, the lattice thermal conductance is remarkably reduced to 15-22% of the graphene value; consequently, attaining the figure of merit of 0.05-0.75. Our theoretical results are not only helpful for understanding the thermoelectric properties of graphene and its derivatives, but also would guide the theoretical design and experimental fabrication of graphene-based thermoelectric devices of high performance.

  5. Efficiency of Thermionic and Thermoelectric Converters

    Gerstenmaier, York Christian; Wachutka, Gerhard

    2007-02-01

    Thermoelectric and thermionic converters — also in micro- and nano-meter design — are considered for power generation and cooling applications. The potential of thermionic vacuum gap converters is investigated precisely by a new advanced theory with inclusion of backward currents from the 2nd electrode, losses due to thermal radiation and ohmic resistance in the electrodes, tunneling through the gap, image forces, and space charge effects. The efficiency of nano-meter gap thermionic converters is by far higher than for thermoelectric devices (including nano-structured superlattices) for operating temperatures above 800°K, however, there is no chance of realization with today's technology. For a vacuum gap width of about 1 μm the performance is higher than for hypothetical bulk- thermoelectric generators (TEGs) with ZT = 1 for T > 1000°K and also higher than for hypothetical nano-structured superlattices (ZT = 2.4) for T > 1200°K. A thermionic converter with gap width of 5μm has lower performance than a TEG with ZT = 1, however, also operates at T > 1200°K. Reasonable performance of thermionic converters at T ⩽ 500°K necessitates materials with workfunctions ⩽ 0.5 eV.

  6. Ab initio investigations of the strontium gallium nitride ternaries Sr 3GaN3 and Sr6GaN5: Promising materials for optoelectronic

    Goumri-Said, Souraya

    2013-05-31

    Sr3GaN3 and Sr6GaN5 could be promising potential materials for applications in the microelectronics, optoelectronics and coating materials areas of research. We studied in detail their structural, elastic, electronic, optical as well as the vibrational properties, by means of density functional theory framework. Both of these ternaries are semiconductors, where Sr3GaN3 exhibits a small indirect gap whereas Sr6GaN5 has a large direct gap. Indeed, their optical properties are reported for radiation up to 40 eV. Charge densities contours, Hirshfeld and Mulliken populations, are reported to investigate the role of each element in the bonding. From the mechanical properties calculation, it is found that Sr6GaN5 is harder than Sr3GaN3, and the latter is more anisotropic than the former. The phonon dispersion relation, density of phonon states and the vibrational stability are reported from the density functional perturbation theory calculations. © 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd.

  7. 细晶Bi2Te3块体材料的制备及其热电性能%Preparation and Thermoelectric Properties of Bi2Te3 Fine-grained Bulk Materials

    马旭颐; 张忻; 路清梅; 张久兴

    2012-01-01

    Bismuth and Tellurium nanoparticles were prepared by evaporation-condensation method in argon atmosphere, and n-type Bi2Te3 fine-grained thermoelectric bulk materials were fabricated by spark plasma sintering (SPS) at different temperatures from 663 to 723 K using mechanically alloyed (MA) powders. The phase compositions of powder and bulk samples were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD). The sizes and microscopic structures of nanoparticles and fractured cross section of the bulk samples were observed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), respectively. The thermoelectric transport properties were measured at 323-473 K. The results show that electrical transport properties are almost unchanged but thermal conductivity is reduced significantly from 1.93 W/m-K to 1.29 W/m-K at 423 K for the fine-grained bulks prepared by nanoparticles comparing with coarse-grained materials. The maximum ZT value after SPS at 693 K reaches 0.68 at 423 K.%采用惰性气体保护蒸发-冷凝(IGC)法制备了纳米Bi及Te粉末,结合机械合金化(MA)和放电等离子烧结(SPS)工艺,在不同烧结温度(663~723 K)下制备出了n型Bi2Te3细晶块体材料.利用X射线衍射分析(XRD)确定机械合金化粉末和SPS烧结块体的物相组成,借助TEM观察了粉体的粒度及形貌,SEM观察了块体试样断口显微组织结构.在323~473 K温度范围内测试了烧结块体的电热输运特性.实验结果表明:纳米粉末合成的细晶Bi2Te3与粗晶材料相比,电输运性能变化不大,热导率大幅度降低,在423 K时,热导率由粗晶材料的1.93W/m·K降至1.29W/m·K,并且在693K烧结的细晶块体的无量纲热电优值(ZT)在423K时取得最高ZT值达到0.68.

  8. Semiconductor thermoelectric generators

    Fahrner, Wolfgang R

    2009-01-01

    It is well-known that fossil fuels are being rapidly depleted, and that atomic power is rejected by many people. As a consequence, there is a strong trend towards alternative sources such as wind, photovoltaics, solar heat and biomass. Strangely enough, quite another power source is generally neglected: namely, the thermoelectric generator (a device which converts heat, i.e. thermal energy, directly into electrical energy). The reason for this neglect is probably the low conversion efficiency, which is of the order of a few percent at most. However, there are two arguments in favor of the ther

  9. Thermoelectric efficiency of molecular junctions

    Perroni, C. A.; Ninno, D.; Cataudella, V.

    2016-09-01

    Focus of the review is on experimental set-ups and theoretical proposals aimed to enhance thermoelectric performances of molecular junctions. In addition to charge conductance, the thermoelectric parameter commonly measured in these systems is the thermopower, which is typically rather low. We review recent experimental outcomes relative to several junction configurations used to optimize the thermopower. On the other hand, theoretical calculations provide estimations of all the thermoelectric parameters in the linear and non-linear regime, in particular of the thermoelectric figure of merit and efficiency, completing our knowledge of molecular thermoelectricity. For this reason, the review will mainly focus on theoretical studies analyzing the role of not only electronic, but also of the vibrational degrees of freedom. Theoretical results about thermoelectric phenomena in the coherent regime are reviewed focusing on interference effects which play a significant role in enhancing the figure of merit. Moreover, we review theoretical studies including the effects of molecular many-body interactions, such as electron-vibration couplings, which typically tend to reduce the efficiency. Since a fine tuning of many parameters and coupling strengths is required to optimize the thermoelectric conversion in molecular junctions, new theoretically proposed set-ups are discussed in the conclusions.

  10. Numerical Examination of the Performance of a Thermoelectric Cooler with Peltier Heating and Cooling

    Kim, Chang Nyung; Kim, Jeongho

    2015-10-01

    There has recently been much progress in the development of materials with higher thermoelectric performance, leading to the design of thermoelectric devices for generation of electricity and for heating or cooling. Local heating can be achieved by current flow through an electric resistance, and local heating and cooling can be performed by Peltier heating and cooling. In this study, we developed computer software that can be used to predict the Seebeck and Peltier effects for thermoelectric devices. The temperature, electric potential, heat flow, electric current, and coefficient of performance were determined, with the objective of investigating the Peltier effect in a thermoelectric device. In addition to Peltier heating and cooling, Joule and Thomson heating were quantitatively evaluated for the thermoelectric device.

  11. Nanoscale Thermoelectrics: A Study of the Absolute Seebeck Coefficient of Thin Films

    Mason, Sarah J.

    The worlds demand for energy is ever increasing. Likewise, the environmental impact of climate change due generating that energy through combustion of fossil fuels is increasingly alarming. Due to these factors new sources of renewable energies are constantly being sought out. Thermoelectric devices have the ability to generate clean, renewable, energy out of waste heat. However promising that is, their inefficiency severely inhibits applicability and practical use. The usefulness of a thermoelectric material increases with the dimensionless quantity, ZT, which depends on the Seebeck coefficient and electrical and thermal conductivity. These characteristic material parameters have interdependent energy transport contributions that classically prohibit the optimization of one with out the detriment of another. Encouraging advancements of ZT have occurred in the past ten years due to the decoupling of the thermal and electrical conductivity. Further advancements are necessary in order to produce applicable devices. One auspicious way of decoupling or tuning energy transport properties, is through size reduction to the nanoscale. However, with reduced dimensions come complications in measuring material properties. Measurements of properties such as the Seebeck coefficient, S, are primarily contingent upon the measurement apparatus. The Seebeck coefficient is defined as the amount of voltage generated by a thermal gradient. Measuring a thermally generated voltage by traditional methods gives, the voltage measured as a linear function of the Seebeck coefficient of the leads and of the material being tested divided by the applied thermal gradient. If accurate values of the Seebeck coefficients of the leads are available, simple subtraction provides the answer. This is rarely the case in nanoscale measurement devices with leads exclusively made from thin film materials that do not have well known bulk-like thermopower values. We have developed a technique to directly

  12. Chemical Precipitation Synthesis and Thermoelectric Properties of Copper Sulfide

    Wu, Sixin; Jiang, Jing; Liang, Yinglin; Yang, Ping; Niu, Yi; Chen, Yide; Xia, Junfeng; Wang, Chao

    2017-04-01

    Earth-abundant copper sulfide compounds have been intensively studied as potential thermoelectric materials due to their high dimensionless figure of merit ZT values. They have a unique phonon-liquid electron-crystal model that helps to achieve high thermoelectric performance. Many methods, such as melting and ball-milling, have been adopted to synthesize this copper sulfide compound, but they both use expensive starting materials with high purity. Here, we develop a simple chemical precipitation approach to synthesize copper sulfide materials through low-cost analytically pure compounds as the starting materials. A high ZT value of 0.93 at 800 K was obtained from the samples annealed at 1273 K. Its power factor is around 8.0 μW cm-1 K-2 that is comparable to the highest record reported by traditional methods. But, the synthesis here has been greatly simplified with reduced cost, which will be of great benefit to the potential mass production of thermoelectric devices. Furthermore, this method can be applied to the synthesis of other sulfur compound thermoelectric materials.

  13. Thermoelectric effect in nano-scaled lanthanides doped ZnO

    Otal, E H; Canepa, H R; Walsoee de Reca, N E [Centro de Investigacion en Solidos, CITEFA, San Juan Bautista de La Salle 4397 (B1603ALO) Villa Martelli, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Schaeuble, N; Aguirre, M H, E-mail: canepa@citefa.gov.a, E-mail: myriam.aguirre@empa.c [Solid State Chemistry and Catalysis, Empa, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research, Ueberlandstrasse 129, CH-8600 Duebendorf (Switzerland)

    2009-05-01

    Start Nano-scaled ZnO with 1% Er doping was prepared by soft chemistry methods. The synthesis was carried out in anhydrous polar solvent to achieve a crystal size of a few nanometers. Resulting particles were processed as precipitates or multi layer films. Structural characterization was evaluated by X-Ray diffraction and transmission and scanning electron microscopy. In the case of films, UV-Vis characterization was made. The thermoelectrical properties of ZnO:Er were evaluated and compared with a typical good thermoelectric material ZnO:Al. Both materials have also shown high Seebeck coefficients and they can be considered as potential compounds for thermoelectric conversion.

  14. Thermoelectric Devices Cool, Power Electronics

    2009-01-01

    Nextreme Thermal Solutions Inc., based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, licensed thermoelectric technology from NASA s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This has allowed the company to develop cutting edge, thin-film thermoelectric coolers that effective remove heat generated by increasingly powerful and tightly packed microchip components. These solid-state coolers are ideal solutions for applications like microprocessors, laser diodes, LEDs, and even potentially for cooling the human body. Nextreme s NASA technology has also enabled the invention of thermoelectric generators capable of powering technologies like medical implants and wireless sensor networks.

  15. Boundary Engineering for the Thermoelectric Performance of Bulk Alloys Based on Bismuth Telluride.

    Mun, Hyeona; Choi, Soon-Mok; Lee, Kyu Hyoung; Kim, Sung Wng

    2015-07-20

    Thermoelectrics, which transports heat for refrigeration or converts heat into electricity directly, is a key technology for renewable energy harvesting and solid-state refrigeration. Despite its importance, the widespread use of thermoelectric devices is constrained because of the low efficiency of thermoelectric bulk alloys. However, boundary engineering has been demonstrated as one of the most effective ways to enhance the thermoelectric performance of conventional thermoelectric materials such as Bi2 Te3 , PbTe, and SiGe alloys because their thermal and electronic transport properties can be manipulated separately by this approach. We review our recent progress on the enhancement of the thermoelectric figure of merit through boundary engineering together with the processing technologies for boundary engineering developed most recently using Bi2 Te3 -based bulk alloys. A brief discussion of the principles and current status of boundary-engineered bulk alloys for the enhancement of the thermoelectric figure of merit is presented. We focus mainly on (1) the reduction of the thermal conductivity by grain boundary engineering and (2) the reduction of thermal conductivity without deterioration of the electrical conductivity by phase boundary engineering. We also discuss the next potential approach using two boundary engineering strategies for a breakthrough in the area of bulk thermoelectric alloys.

  16. PROPERTIES CHARACTERIZATION OF DOPED PbTe MATRIX THERMOELECTRIC MATERIALS VIA POWDER METALLURGY METHOD%掺杂PbTe基热电材料的粉末冶金法制备及其性能研究

    丁夏楠; 蒋阳; 杨奔; 仲洪海; 余大斌

    2012-01-01

    通过溶剂热法制备出立方相PbTe纳米粉末,采用真空封管熔炼法得到PbTe基热电材料Ag0.5 Pb8-xSnxSb0.5Te10的合金锭.通过高能球磨得到合金粉末,采用粉末冶金快速热压工艺制备该材料的块体材料.研究了不同Pb/Sn比在300~700 K范围内对材料热电性能的影响.研究结果表明,当x=4,电导率在300 K时达到1 300 S/cm,在600 K时达到340S/cm.当x=2,Seebeck系数在625 K时达到261 μV/K的最大值.功率因子达到15.9×10-4 Wm-1K-2.%Cubic phase PbTe nanoparticles were synthesized by solvothemal process, and PbTe matrix thermoelectric materials Ag0.5Pb8-xSnxSb0.5Te10 alloys were prepared via vacuum melting in a sealed quartz glass tube. Alloy powders were prepared by high-energy ball milling process, then the Ag0.5Pb8-xSnxSb0.5Te10 bulk alloys were prepared by powder metallurgy rapid hot-pressing sintering method. Effects of different Pb/Sn rate on thermoelectric properties at different temperature (from 300 K to 700 K) were investigated. Result shows that the electrical conductivity reaches the maximum value of 1 300 S/cm at 300 K and 340 S/cm at 600 K as x equals to 4, and the seebeck coefficient and power factor reach the maximum values of 261 μV/K and 15. 9X l0-4Wm-1'K-2 as x equals to 2.

  17. High Volume Manufacturing of NanoEngineered High ZT Thermoelectrics for Multiple Energy Generation Applications Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — SMI has teamed with a leading thermoelectric (TE) research group in order to optimize and convert high-performance TE materials developed in laboratory-scale into...

  18. Proposal for a phase-coherent thermoelectric transistor

    Giazotto, F., E-mail: giazotto@sns.it [NEST, Instituto Nanoscienze-CNR and Scuola Normale Superiore, I-56127 Pisa (Italy); Robinson, J. W. A., E-mail: jjr33@cam.ac.uk [Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge, 27 Charles Babbage Road, Cambridge CB3 0FS (United Kingdom); Moodera, J. S. [Department of Physics and Francis Bitter Magnet Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 (United States); Bergeret, F. S., E-mail: sebastian-bergeret@ehu.es [Centro de Física de Materiales (CFM-MPC), Centro Mixto CSIC-UPV/EHU, Manuel de Lardizabal 4, E-20018 San Sebastián (Spain); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC), Manuel de Lardizabal 5, E-20018 San Sebastián (Spain)

    2014-08-11

    Identifying materials and devices which offer efficient thermoelectric effects at low temperature is a major obstacle for the development of thermal management strategies for low-temperature electronic systems. Superconductors cannot offer a solution since their near perfect electron-hole symmetry leads to a negligible thermoelectric response; however, here we demonstrate theoretically a superconducting thermoelectric transistor which offers unparalleled figures of merit of up to ∼45 and Seebeck coefficients as large as a few mV/K at sub-Kelvin temperatures. The device is also phase-tunable meaning its thermoelectric response for power generation can be precisely controlled with a small magnetic field. Our concept is based on a superconductor-normal metal-superconductor interferometer in which the normal metal weak-link is tunnel coupled to a ferromagnetic insulator and a Zeeman split superconductor. Upon application of an external magnetic flux, the interferometer enables phase-coherent manipulation of thermoelectric properties whilst offering efficiencies which approach the Carnot limit.

  19. Weight Penalty Incurred in Thermoelectric Recovery of Automobile Exhaust Heat

    Rowe, D. M.; Smith, J.; Thomas, G.; Min, G.

    2011-05-01

    Thermoelectric recovery of automobile waste exhaust heat has been identified as having potential for reducing fuel consumption and environmentally unfriendly emissions. Around 35% of combustion energy is discharged as heat through the exhaust system, at temperatures which depend upon the engine's operation and range from 800°C to 900°C at the outlet port to less than 50°C at the tail-pipe. Beneficial reduction in fuel consumption of 5% to 10% is widely quoted in the literature. However, comparison between claims is difficult due to nonuniformity of driving conditions. In this paper the available waste exhaust heat energy produced by a 1.5 L family car when undergoing the new European drive cycle was measured and the potential thermoelectric output estimated. The work required to power the vehicle through the drive cycle was also determined and used to evaluate key parameters. This enabled an estimate to be made of the engine efficiency and additional work required by the engine to meet the load of a thermoelectric generating system. It is concluded that incorporating a thermoelectric generator would attract a penalty of around 12 W/kg. Employing thermoelectric modules fabricated from low-density material such as magnesium silicide would considerably reduce the generator weight penalty.

  20. Modeling a Thermoelectric Generator Applied to Diesel Automotive Heat Recovery

    Espinosa, N.; Lazard, M.; Aixala, L.; Scherrer, H.

    2010-09-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are outstanding devices for automotive waste heat recovery. Their packaging, lack of moving parts, and direct heat to electrical conversion are the main benefits. Usually, TEGs are modeled with a constant hot-source temperature. However, energy in exhaust gases is limited, thus leading to a temperature decrease as heat is recovered. Therefore thermoelectric properties change along the TEG, affecting performance. A thermoelectric generator composed of Mg2Si/Zn4Sb3 for high temperatures followed by Bi2Te3 for low temperatures has been modeled using engineering equation solver (EES) software. The model uses the finite-difference method with a strip-fins convective heat transfer coefficient. It has been validated on a commercial module with well-known properties. The thermoelectric connection and the number of thermoelements have been addressed as well as the optimum proportion of high-temperature material for a given thermoelectric heat exchanger. TEG output power has been estimated for a typical commercial vehicle at 90°C coolant temperature.