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Issue 1, 2020
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High-performance thermoelectric silver selenide thin films cation exchanged from a copper selenide template

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Abstract

Over the past decade, Ag2Se has attracted increasing attention due to its potentially excellent thermoelectric (TE) performance as an n-type semiconductor. It has been considered a promising alternative to Bi–Te alloys and other commonly used yet toxic and/or expensive TE materials. To optimize the TE performance of Ag2Se, recent research has focused on fabricating nanosized Ag2Se. However, synthesizing Ag2Se nanoparticles involves energy-intensive and time-consuming techniques with poor yield of final product. In this work, we report a low-cost, solution-processed approach that enables the formation of Ag2Se thin films from Cu2−xSe template films via cation exchange at room temperature. Our simple two-step method involves fabricating Cu2−xSe thin films by the thiol-amine dissolution of bulk Cu2Se, followed by soaking Cu2−xSe films in AgNO3 solution and annealing to form Ag2Se. We report an average power factor (PF) of 617 ± 82 μW m−1 K−2 and a corresponding ZT value of 0.35 at room temperature. We obtained a maximum PF of 825 μW m−1 K−2 and a ZT value of 0.46 at room temperature for our best-performing Ag2Se thin-film after soaking for 5 minutes. These high PFs have been achieved via full solution processing without hot-pressing.

Graphical abstract: High-performance thermoelectric silver selenide thin films cation exchanged from a copper selenide template

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
25 Sep 2019
Accepted
02 Dec 2019
First published
03 Dec 2019

This article is Open Access

Nanoscale Adv., 2020,2, 368-376
Article type
Paper

High-performance thermoelectric silver selenide thin films cation exchanged from a copper selenide template

N. Chen, M. R. Scimeca, S. J. Paul, S. B. Hafiz, Z. Yang, X. Liu, F. Yang, D. Ko and A. Sahu, Nanoscale Adv., 2020, 2, 368
DOI: 10.1039/C9NA00605B

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