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Thermoelectric Properties of Bi2Te3 and Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 Thin Films and Their Energy Generating Performance

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We report on the influence of post-annealing on the crystalline structures, chemical position, and thermoelectric (TE) properties—including Seebeck coefficient, electric resistivity, power factor, and thermal conductivity—of both n-type Bi2Te3 (n-BT) and p-type Bi0.5Sb2Te3 (p-BST) thin films with a thickness of 300 nm, which are prepared by radio-frequency (RF) sputtering. For this study, the samples are annealed at temperatures of 20, 100, 200, and 300 °C under Ar atmosphere. From the measured TE properties, both n-BT and p-BST thin films annealed at 200 °C exhibit the highest TE performance. The samples reveal resistivities of 2.2 × 10–4 Ωcm and 7.7 × 10–3 Ωcm, Seebeck coefficients of –45 μV/K and 190 μV/K, and power factors of 9.6 × 10–4 W/K2m and 4.7 × 10–4 W/K2m for 200 °C annealed n-BT and p-BST thin films, respectively. In addition, we obtain that the average thermal conductivities of the annealed n-BT and p-BST thin films to be ∼0.2–0.6 W/(m·K) and ∼0.3–0.5 W/(m·K) at room temperature using the 3-ω method, respectively, indicating a slight increase with increasing annealing temperatures. Furthermore, the TE performance of a thin-film-based TE energy generator consisting of n-BT and p-BST thin film legs on Si substrate is demonstrated. The output voltage of the TE generator is determined to be ∼4.3 mV from a temperature difference of 50 K.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2016

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  • Science of Advanced Materials (SAM) is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal consolidating research activities in all aspects of advanced materials in the fields of science, engineering and medicine into a single and unique reference source. SAM provides the means for materials scientists, chemists, physicists, biologists, engineers, ceramicists, metallurgists, theoreticians and technocrats to publish original research articles as reviews with author's photo and short biography, full research articles and communications of important new scientific and technological findings, encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all latest aspects of advanced materials.
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