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Boron Doping of SWCNTs as a Way to Enhance the Thermoelectric Properties of Melt-Mixed Polypropylene/SWCNT Composites

Leibniz-Institut für Polymerforschung Dresden e.V. (IPF), Hohe Str. 6, 01069 Dresden, Germany
Institute for Materials Science and Max Bergmann Center for Biomaterials, TU Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
Life Science Inkubator Sachsen GmbH & Co. KG, Tatzberg 47, 01307 Dresden, Germany
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2020, 13(2), 394;
Received: 18 December 2019 / Revised: 8 January 2020 / Accepted: 10 January 2020 / Published: 13 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Thermoelectric Energy Harvesting and Power Generation)
Composites based on the matrix polymer polypropylene (PP) filled with single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) and boron-doped SWCNTs (B-SWCNTs) were prepared by melt-mixing to analyze the influence of boron doping of SWCNTs on the thermoelectric properties of these nanocomposites. It was found that besides a significantly higher Seebeck coefficient of B-SWCNT films and powder packages, the values for B-SWCNT incorporated in PP were higher than those for SWCNTs. Due to the higher electrical conductivity and the higher Seebeck coefficients of B-SWCNTs, the power factor (PF) and the figure of merit (ZT) were also higher for the PP/B-SWCNT composites. The highest value achieved in this study was a Seebeck coefficient of 59.7 µV/K for PP with 0.5 wt% B-SWCNT compared to 47.9 µV/K for SWCNTs at the same filling level. The highest PF was 0.78 µW/(m·K2) for PP with 7.5 wt% B-SWCNT. SWCNT macro- and microdispersions were found to be similar in both composite types, as was the very low electrical percolation threshold between 0.075 and 0.1 wt% SWCNT. At loadings between 0.5 and 2.0 wt%, B-SWCNT-based composites have one order of magnitude higher electrical conductivity than those based on SWCNT. The crystallization behavior of PP is more strongly influenced by B-SWCNTs since their composites have higher crystallization temperatures than composites with SWCNTs at a comparable degree of crystallinity. Boron doping of SWCNTs is therefore a suitable way to improve the electrical and thermoelectric properties of composites.
Keywords: polypropylene; boron doping; carbon nanotube; thermoelectric polypropylene; boron doping; carbon nanotube; thermoelectric
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MDPI and ACS Style

Krause, B.; Bezugly, V.; Khavrus, V.; Ye, L.; Cuniberti, G.; Pötschke, P. Boron Doping of SWCNTs as a Way to Enhance the Thermoelectric Properties of Melt-Mixed Polypropylene/SWCNT Composites. Energies 2020, 13, 394.

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