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Issue 36, 2017
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Thermoelectric and piezoelectric properties of the predicted AlxIn1−xN composites based on ab initio calculations

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Abstract

Theoretical investigations of the thermoelectric and piezoelectric characteristics in the AlxIn1−xN system have been carried out based on a first principles approach in combination with the semi-classical Boltzmann transport concept and density functional perturbation theory. Based on our previous work, herein, the study specimens Al5InN6, Al6In2N8, Al4In2N6, Al3In3N6, Al2In4N6, and AlIn7N8 have been predicted to be stable phases. These novel phases intrinsically exhibit moderate positive Seebeck curves (199.1–284.6 μV K−1) and a ZT close to unity that varies marginally over a broad temperature range of 200–800 K, demonstrating the sign of good bipolar effect tolerance. Addition of heftier elements, such as In, results in lower thermal conductivity, which in turn generates a high power factor (0.019–0.345 W m−1 K−2) in these alloys. While hole doping enhances the peak Seebeck coefficient of each phase, the electrical conductivity has been greatly compromised, resulting in a lower power factor. These composites also exhibit large piezoelectric constants, in which their respective largest piezoelectric tensor is several orders higher than that of quartz. The decomposition process shows that In and N are the main contributors of the internal piezoelectric term. Overall results indicate that AlxIn1−xN show bright prospects in thermoelectric and piezoelectric applications.

Graphical abstract: Thermoelectric and piezoelectric properties of the predicted AlxIn1−xN composites based on ab initio calculations

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Publication details

The article was received on 04 Jun 2017, accepted on 18 Aug 2017 and first published on 18 Aug 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7CP03749J
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2017,19, 24613-24625
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    Thermoelectric and piezoelectric properties of the predicted AlxIn1−xN composites based on ab initio calculations

    Y. H. R. Chang, T. L. Yoon, T. L. Lim, M. H. Tuh and E. S. Goh, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2017, 19, 24613
    DOI: 10.1039/C7CP03749J

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