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Materials 2018, 11(1), 99; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11010099

Compatibility between Co-Metallized PbTe Thermoelectric Legs and an Ag–Cu–In Brazing Alloy

1
Unit of Energy Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva 84105, Israel
2
Department of Materials Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva 84105, Israel
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 November 2017 / Revised: 5 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 January 2018 / Published: 10 January 2018
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Abstract

In thermoelectric (TE) generators, maximizing the efficiency of conversion of direct heat to electricity requires the reduction of any thermal and electrical contact resistances between the TE legs and the metallic contacts. This requirement is especially challenging in the development of intermediate to high-temperature TE generators. PbTe-based TE materials are known to be highly efficient up to temperatures of around 500 °C; however, only a few practical TE generators based on these materials are currently commercially available. One reason for that is the insufficient bonding techniques between the TE legs and the hot-side metallic contacts. The current research is focused on the interaction between cobalt-metallized n-type 9.104 × 10−3 mol % PbI2-doped PbTe TE legs and the Ag0.32Cu0.43In0.25 brazing alloy, which is free of volatile species. Clear and fine interfaces without any noticeable formation of adverse brittle intermetallic compounds were observed following prolonged thermal treatment testing. Moreover, a reasonable electrical contact resistance of ~2.25 mΩmm2 was observed upon brazing at 600 °C, highlighting the potential of such contacts while developing practical PbTe-based TE generators. View Full-Text
Keywords: thermoelectrics; PbTe; bonding; metallic contacts; brazing thermoelectrics; PbTe; bonding; metallic contacts; brazing
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Ben-Ayoun, D.; Sadia, Y.; Gelbstein, Y. Compatibility between Co-Metallized PbTe Thermoelectric Legs and an Ag–Cu–In Brazing Alloy. Materials 2018, 11, 99.

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