Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach

Z. F. Ren, B. Poudel, Y. Ma, Qing Hao, Y. C. Lan, A. Minnich, A. Muto, J. Yang, B. Yu, X. Yan, D. Z. Wang, J. M. Liu, M. S. Dresselhaus, G. Chen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The dimensionless thermoelectric figure-of-merit (ZT) in bulk materials has remained about 1 for many years. Here we show that a significant ZT improvement can be achieved in nanocrystalline bulk materials. These nanocrystalline bulk materials were made by hot- pressing nanopowders that are ball-milled from either crystalline ingots or elements. Electrical transport measurements, coupled with microstructure studies and modeling, show that the ZT improvement is the result of low thermal conductivity caused by the increased phonon scattering by grain boundaries and defects. More importantly, the nanostructure approach has been demonstrated in a few thermoelectric material systems, proving its generosity. The approach can be easily scaled up to multiple tons. Thermal stability studies have shown that the nanostructures are stable at the application temperature for an extended period of time. It is expected that such enhanced materials will make the existing cooling and power generation systems more efficient.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMaterials Research Society Symposium Proceedings
Pages83-93
Number of pages11
Volume1166
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event2009 MRS Spring Meeting: Materials and Devices for Thermal-to-Electric Energy Conversion - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Apr 13 2009Apr 17 2009

Other

Other2009 MRS Spring Meeting: Materials and Devices for Thermal-to-Electric Energy Conversion
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA
Period4/13/094/17/09

Fingerprint

figure of merit
Nanostructures
thermoelectric materials
hot pressing
augmentation
ingots
balls
thermal stability
thermal conductivity
grain boundaries
cooling
microstructure
defects
scattering
Phonon scattering
Hot pressing
Ingots
Power generation
Thermal conductivity
Grain boundaries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials

Cite this

Ren, Z. F., Poudel, B., Ma, Y., Hao, Q., Lan, Y. C., Minnich, A., ... Chen, G. (2009). Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach. In Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings (Vol. 1166, pp. 83-93)

Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach. / Ren, Z. F.; Poudel, B.; Ma, Y.; Hao, Qing; Lan, Y. C.; Minnich, A.; Muto, A.; Yang, J.; Yu, B.; Yan, X.; Wang, D. Z.; Liu, J. M.; Dresselhaus, M. S.; Chen, G.

Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings. Vol. 1166 2009. p. 83-93.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Ren, ZF, Poudel, B, Ma, Y, Hao, Q, Lan, YC, Minnich, A, Muto, A, Yang, J, Yu, B, Yan, X, Wang, DZ, Liu, JM, Dresselhaus, MS & Chen, G 2009, Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach. in Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings. vol. 1166, pp. 83-93, 2009 MRS Spring Meeting: Materials and Devices for Thermal-to-Electric Energy Conversion, San Francisco, CA, United States, 4/13/09.
Ren ZF, Poudel B, Ma Y, Hao Q, Lan YC, Minnich A et al. Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach. In Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings. Vol. 1166. 2009. p. 83-93
Ren, Z. F. ; Poudel, B. ; Ma, Y. ; Hao, Qing ; Lan, Y. C. ; Minnich, A. ; Muto, A. ; Yang, J. ; Yu, B. ; Yan, X. ; Wang, D. Z. ; Liu, J. M. ; Dresselhaus, M. S. ; Chen, G. / Enhancement of thermoelectric figure-of-merit by a nanostructure approach. Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings. Vol. 1166 2009. pp. 83-93
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