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Issue 26, 2019
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Nanostructured SnSe integrated with Se quantum dots with ultrahigh power factor and thermoelectric performance from magnetic field-assisted hydrothermal synthesis

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Abstract

Thermoelectric materials that can directly convert thermal energy into electrical energy have great potential in solving the present energy crisis. SnSe has emerged as one of the most intriguing new thermoelectric materials since the discovery of the excellent thermoelectric properties of its single crystals. Here, we develop a new solution synthesized method (in situ magnetic field-assisted hydrothermal synthesis) for achieving new nanostructured SnSe integrated with Se quantum dots. The critical nucleation energy reduces and the nucleation rate increases during the hydrothermal synthesis process as a high magnetic field is applied, which leads to the presence of the homogeneous distribution of Se quantum dots and smaller nano grains. Enhanced density of states and the energy filtering effect contribute towards a significant enhancement in the Seebeck coefficient and power factor (PF) due to the Se quantum dots and smaller nano grains. The enhanced density of states was directly identified by ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopic measurements. With the aid of a high magnetic field in solution chemistry, these materials maintain low thermal conductivity due to the Se quantum dots, smaller nano grains and nanoprecipitates. Benefiting from the enhanced power factor and reduced thermal conductivity, a high figure of merit (ZT) of ∼2.0 at 873 K was achieved in a Se quantum dot/Sn0.99Pb0.01Se nanocomposite. This work paves the way for the design of prospective thermoelectric materials by applying an external high magnetic field.

Graphical abstract: Nanostructured SnSe integrated with Se quantum dots with ultrahigh power factor and thermoelectric performance from magnetic field-assisted hydrothermal synthesis

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Apr 2019, accepted on 03 Jun 2019 and first published on 03 Jun 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C9TA03967H
J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019,7, 15757-15765

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    Nanostructured SnSe integrated with Se quantum dots with ultrahigh power factor and thermoelectric performance from magnetic field-assisted hydrothermal synthesis

    R. Xu, L. Huang, J. Zhang, D. Li, J. Liu, J. Liu, J. Fang, M. Wang and G. Tang, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019, 7, 15757
    DOI: 10.1039/C9TA03967H

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