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Seebeck coefficient

About: Seebeck coefficient is a(n) research topic. Over the lifetime, 19844 publication(s) have been published within this topic receiving 414702 citation(s). The topic is also known as: thermopower & thermoelectric power. more


Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1126/SCIENCE.1156446
Bed Poudel1, Qing Hao2, Yi Ma1, Yucheng Lan1  +11 moreInstitutions (3)
02 May 2008-Science
Abstract: The dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) in bismuth antimony telluride (BiSbTe) bulk alloys has remained around 1 for more than 50 years. We show that a peak ZT of 1.4 at 100°C can be achieved in a p-type nanocrystalline BiSbTe bulk alloy. These nanocrystalline bulk materials were made by hot pressing nanopowders that were ball-milled from crystalline ingots under inert conditions. Electrical transport measurements, coupled with microstructure studies and modeling, show that the ZT improvement is the result of low thermal conductivity caused by the increased phonon scattering by grain boundaries and defects. More importantly, ZT is about 1.2 at room temperature and 0.8 at 250°C, which makes these materials useful for cooling and power generation. Cooling devices that use these materials have produced high-temperature differences of 86°, 106°, and 119°C with hot-side temperatures set at 50°, 100°, and 150°C, respectively. This discovery sets the stage for use of a new nanocomposite approach in developing high-performance low-cost bulk thermoelectric materials. more

Topics: Bismuth telluride (63%), Thermoelectric materials (63%), Antimony telluride (61%) more

4,218 Citations

Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1038/NATURE06381
10 Jan 2008-Nature
Abstract: 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. more

Topics: Thermoelectric materials (70%), Thermoelectric effect (66%), Seebeck coefficient (65%) more

3,446 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1103/PHYSREVLETT.87.215502
Philip Kim1, Li Shi1, Arun Majumdar1, Paul L. McEuen2  +1 moreInstitutions (2)
Abstract: The thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power of a single carbon nanotube were measured using a microfabricated suspended device. The observed thermal conductivity is more than 3000 W/K m at room temperature, which is 2 orders of magnitude higher than the estimation from previous experiments that used macroscopic mat samples. The temperature dependence of the thermal conductivity of nanotubes exhibits a peak at 320 K due to the onset of umklapp phonon scattering. The measured thermoelectric power shows linear temperature dependence with a value of 80 microV/K at room temperature. more

Topics: Thermal conduction (60%), Thermal conductivity (57%), Thermal contact conductance (56%) more

2,960 Citations

Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1126/SCIENCE.1159725
25 Jul 2008-Science
Abstract: The efficiency of thermoelectric energy converters is limited by the material thermoelectric figure of merit (zT). The recent advances in zT based on nanostructures limiting the phonon heat conduction is nearing a fundamental limit: The thermal conductivity cannot be reduced below the amorphous limit. We explored enhancing the Seebeck coefficient through a distortion of the electronic density of states and report a successful implementation through the use of the thallium impurity levels in lead telluride (PbTe). Such band structure engineering results in a doubling of zT in p-type PbTe to above 1.5 at 773 kelvin. Use of this new physical principle in conjunction with nanostructuring to lower the thermal conductivity could further enhance zT and enable more widespread use of thermoelectric systems. more

Topics: Thermoelectric materials (66%), Thermoelectric effect (61%), Seebeck coefficient (61%) more

2,937 Citations

Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1038/NATURE09996
Yanzhong Pei1, Xiaoya Shi2, Aaron D. LaLonde1, Heng Wang1  +2 moreInstitutions (2)
05 May 2011-Nature
Abstract: 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. more

Topics: Thermoelectric materials (62%), Thermoelectric effect (60%), Thermoelectric generator (58%) more

2,553 Citations

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Topic's top 5 most impactful authors

Ctirad Uher

137 papers, 11.8K citations

Ken Kurosaki

124 papers, 6K citations

Lidong Chen

112 papers, 8.1K citations

Terry M. Tritt

88 papers, 4.6K citations

G. Jeffrey Snyder

80 papers, 9.1K citations

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