Special Issue "Thermoelectric Nanomaterials"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2017).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Ilaria Zardo
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Physics, University of Basel, Klingelbergstrasse 82, 4056 Basel, Switzerland
Interests: nanophononics; lattice dynamics and phonon transport; thermoelectrics; spectroscopy and inelastic light scattering; novel material development and characterization
Dr. Stefano Roddaro

Guest Editor
Department of Physics, University of Pisa, 56127 Pisa, Italy
CNR-Istituto Nanoscienze, Piazza San Silvestro 12, 56127 Pisa, Italy
Interests: quantum transport in nanowire and graphene devices; thermoelectric physics in nanostructures

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Thermoelectric devices can impact the energy issue because they can be used to convert waste heat into useful electrical energy. Thermoelectrics for energy harvesting necessitates the discovery of materials with high power factor S2σ and low thermal conductivity κ. But, these two properties are usually interdependent and difficult to tune separately. Nanostructured materials are key for future thermoelectric devices because they may make it possible to decouple these parameters. The electron confinement and, consequently, the quantization of the carrier energy in one or more directions are predicted to enhance the power factor of 2D and 1D structures due to the modification of the electron density of states that has asymmetric shape near the Fermi energy. Simultaneously, a decrease of the lattice component of thermal conductivity with respect to the bulk material is expected due to the increased phonon-boundary scattering.

This Special Issue will present comprehensive research outlining progress on the synthesis of nanostructured and nanoscale materials to improve the thermoelectric performance and on the development in of methods for the investigation of the thermoelectric properties at the nanoscale.

We invite authors to contribute original research articles and review articles covering the current progress on nanostructured thermoelectric materials. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Thin films and thin film superlattices for thermoelectric applications

  • One-dimensional thermoelectric nanomaterials

  • Nanocomposite Thermoelectric Materials

  • Phonon transport in nanostructures

  • Doping optimization

  • Nanoscale thermoelectric devices

Prof. Dr. Ilaria Zardo
Dr. Stefano Roddaro
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • nanomaterials

  • nanostructures

  • thermoelectrics

  • thermal conduction

  • power factor

  • power generation

  • ZT

  • thermoelectric efficiency

  • seebeck effect

  • band engineering

  • phonon engineering

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Heavily Boron-Doped Silicon Layer for the Fabrication of Nanoscale Thermoelectric Devices
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(2), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8020077 - 30 Jan 2018
Cited by 3
Abstract
Heavily boron-doped silicon layers and boron etch-stop techniques have been widely used in the fabrication of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). This paper provides an introduction to the fabrication process of nanoscale silicon thermoelectric devices. Low-dimensional structures such as silicon nanowire (SiNW) have been considered [...] Read more.
Heavily boron-doped silicon layers and boron etch-stop techniques have been widely used in the fabrication of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). This paper provides an introduction to the fabrication process of nanoscale silicon thermoelectric devices. Low-dimensional structures such as silicon nanowire (SiNW) have been considered as a promising alternative for thermoelectric applications in order to achieve a higher thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) than bulk silicon. Here, heavily boron-doped silicon layers and boron etch-stop processes for the fabrication of suspended SiNWs will be discussed in detail, including boron diffusion, electron beam lithography, inductively coupled plasma (ICP) etching and tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH) etch-stop processes. A 7 μm long nanowire structure with a height of 280 nm and a width of 55 nm was achieved, indicating that the proposed technique is useful for nanoscale fabrication. Furthermore, a SiNW thermoelectric device has also been demonstrated, and its performance shows an obvious reduction in thermal conductivity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thermoelectric Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle
Colloidal Synthesis and Thermoelectric Properties of CuFeSe2 Nanocrystals
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010008 - 26 Dec 2017
Cited by 7
Abstract
Copper-based chalcogenides that contain abundant, low-cost and environmentally-friendly elements, are excellent materials for numerous energy conversion applications, such as photocatalysis, photovoltaics, photoelectricity and thermoelectrics (TE). Here, we present a high-yield and upscalable colloidal synthesis route for the production of monodisperse ternary I-III-VI2 [...] Read more.
Copper-based chalcogenides that contain abundant, low-cost and environmentally-friendly elements, are excellent materials for numerous energy conversion applications, such as photocatalysis, photovoltaics, photoelectricity and thermoelectrics (TE). Here, we present a high-yield and upscalable colloidal synthesis route for the production of monodisperse ternary I-III-VI2 chalcogenides nanocrystals (NCs), particularly stannite CuFeSe2, with uniform shape and narrow size distributions by using selenium powder as the anion precursor and CuCl2·2H2O and FeCl3 as the cationic precursors. The composition, the state of valence, size and morphology of the CuFeSe2 materials were examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), scanning electron microscope (SEM), transmission electron microscope (TEM) and high resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM), respectively. Furthermore, the TE properties characterization of these dense nanomaterials compacted from monodisperse CuFeSe2 NCs by hot press at 623 K were preliminarily studied after ligand removal by means of hydrazine and hexane solution. The TE performances of the sintered CuFeSe2 pellets were characterized in the temperature range from room temperature to 653 K. Finally, the dimensionless TE figure of merit (ZT) of this Earth-abundant and intrinsic p-type CuFeSe2 NCs is significantly increased to 0.22 at 653 K in this work, which is demonstrated to show a promising TE materialand makes it a possible p-type candidate for medium-temperature TE applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thermoelectric Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle
Thermoelectric and Transport Properties of Delafossite CuCrO2:Mg Thin Films Prepared by RF Magnetron Sputtering
Nanomaterials 2017, 7(7), 157; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano7070157 - 27 Jun 2017
Cited by 18Correction
Abstract
P-type Mg doped CuCrO2 thin films have been deposited on fused silica substrates by Radio-Frequency (RF) magnetron sputtering. The as-deposited CuCrO2:Mg thin films have been annealed at different temperatures (from 450 to 650 °C) under primary vacuum to obtain the [...] Read more.
P-type Mg doped CuCrO2 thin films have been deposited on fused silica substrates by Radio-Frequency (RF) magnetron sputtering. The as-deposited CuCrO2:Mg thin films have been annealed at different temperatures (from 450 to 650 °C) under primary vacuum to obtain the delafossite phase. The annealed samples exhibit 3R delafossite structure. Electrical conductivity σ and Seebeck coefficient S of all annealed films have been measured from 40 to 220 °C. The optimized properties have been obtained for CuCrO2:Mg thin film annealed at 550 °C. At a measurement temperature of 40 °C, this sample exhibited the highest electrical conductivity of 0.60 S·cm−1 with a Seebeck coefficient of +329 µV·K−1. The calculated power factor (PF = σS²) was 6 µW·m−1·K−2 at 40 °C and due to the constant Seebeck coefficient and the increasing electrical conductivity with measurement temperature, it reached 38 µW·m−1·K−2 at 220 °C. Moreover, according to measurement of the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity in temperature, we confirmed that CuCrO2:Mg exhibits hopping conduction and degenerates semiconductor behavior. Carrier concentration, Fermi level, and hole effective mass have been discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thermoelectric Nanomaterials)
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