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Open AccessArticle

The Effect of the MEMS Measurement Platform Design on the Seebeck Coefficient Measurement of a Single Nanowire

Laboratory for Design of Microsystems, IMTEK, 79110 Freiburg, Germany
Novel Materials Group, Physics Department, Humboldt University, 10099 Berlin, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: Department of Microsystem Engineering-IMTEK, University of Freiburg, Georges-Koehler-Allee 102, 79110 Freiburg, Germany.
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(4), 219;
Received: 9 February 2018 / Revised: 22 March 2018 / Accepted: 30 March 2018 / Published: 5 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Synthesis and Characterization of Nanowires)
PDF [3501 KB, uploaded 3 May 2018]


In order to study the thermoelectric properties of individual nanowires, a thermoelectric nanowire characterization platform (TNCP) has been previously developed and used in our chair. Here, we report on a redesigned platform aiming to optimize performance, mechanical stability and usability. We compare both platforms for electrical conductivity and the Seebeck coefficient for an individual Ag nanowire of the previously-used batch and for comparable measurement conditions. By this, the measurement performance of both designs can be investigated. As a result, whereas the electrical conductivity is comparable, the Seebeck coefficient shows a 50% deviation with respect to the previous studies. We discuss the possible effects of the platform design on the thermoelectric measurements. One reason for the deviation of the Seebeck coefficient is the design of the platform leading to temperature gradients along the bond pads. We further analyze the effect of bonding materials Au and Pt, as well as the effect of temperature distributions along the bond pads used for the thermovoltage acquisition. Another major reason for the variation of the measurement results is the non-homogeneous temperature distribution along the thermometer. We conclude that for the measurement of small Seebeck coefficients, an isothermal positioning of voltage-probing bond pads, as well as a constant temperature profile at the measurement zone are essential. View Full-Text
Keywords: thermoelectricity; Seebeck coefficient measurement; MEMS platform; nanowire characterization thermoelectricity; Seebeck coefficient measurement; MEMS platform; nanowire characterization

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Moosavi, S.H.; Kojda, D.; Kockert, M.; Fischer, S.F.; Kroener, M.; Woias, P. The Effect of the MEMS Measurement Platform Design on the Seebeck Coefficient Measurement of a Single Nanowire. Nanomaterials 2018, 8, 219.

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