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Materials 2018, 11(12), 2483; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122483

Solid-Liquid Interdiffusion (SLID) Bonding of p-Type Skutterudite Thermoelectric Material Using Al-Ni Interlayers

1
European Thermodynamics Ltd., 8 Priory Business Park, Leicester, LE8 0RX, UK
2
Politecnico di Torino, Department of Applied Science and Technology, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 10129, Turin, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 October 2018 / Revised: 22 November 2018 / Accepted: 4 December 2018 / Published: 6 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Glasses, Composites and Ceramics for High Growth Industries)
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Abstract

Over the past few years, significant progress towards implementation of environmentally sustainable and cost-effective thermoelectric power generation has been made. However, the reliability and high-temperature stability challenges of incorporating thermoelectric materials into modules still represent a key bottleneck. Here, we demonstrate an implementation of the Solid-Liquid Interdiffusion technique used for bonding Mmy(Fe,Co)4Sb12 p-type thermoelectric material to metallic interconnect using a novel aluminium–nickel multi-layered system. It was found that the diffusion reaction-controlled process leads to the formation of two distinct intermetallic compounds (IMCs), Al3Ni and Al3Ni2, with a theoretical melting point higher than the initial bonding temperature. Different manufacturing parameters have also been investigated and their influence on electrical, mechanical and microstructural features of bonded components are reported here. The resulting electrical contact resistances and apparent shear strengths for components with residual aluminium were measured to be (2.8 ± 0.4) × 10−5 Ω∙cm2 and 5.1 ± 0.5 MPa and with aluminium completely transformed into Al3Ni and Al3Ni2 IMCs were (4.8 ± 0.3) × 10−5 Ω∙cm2 and 4.5 ± 0.5 MPa respectively. The behaviour and microstructural changes in the joining material have been evaluated through isothermal annealing at hot-leg working temperature to investigate the stability and evolution of the contact.
Keywords: solid-liquid interdiffusion (SLID) bonding; transient-liquid phase bonding (TLPB); skutterudite; high-temperature thermoelectric material; joining solid-liquid interdiffusion (SLID) bonding; transient-liquid phase bonding (TLPB); skutterudite; high-temperature thermoelectric material; joining
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Placha, K.; Tuley, R.S.; Salvo, M.; Casalegno, V.; Simpson, K. Solid-Liquid Interdiffusion (SLID) Bonding of p-Type Skutterudite Thermoelectric Material Using Al-Ni Interlayers. Materials 2018, 11, 2483.

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