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Combinatorial Approach for Thermoelectric Materials through Bulk Composition-Spreads and Diffusion Multiples

  • Atsushi Yamamoto (a1), Teruo Noguchi (a2), Haruhiko Obara (a3), Kazuo Ueno (a4), Satoaki Ikeuchi (a5), Tooru Sugawara (a6), Kenji Shimada (a7), Youichi Takasaki (a8) and Yoshikazu Ishii (a9)...


In this paper we describe a new attempt of high-throughput screening of thermoelectric materials by combining the use of the “bulk composition-spread (CS)” or “bulk diffusion multiples (DM)” and the “scanning thermal probe microanalyzer (STPM).” The (Bi2Te3)1-x(Sb2Te3)x (0<x<1) and Ni1-xCux (0<x<1) bulk CS samples were prepared by conventional powder metallurgy method by using mechanical alloying and spark plasma sintering process. The Ni-Cu-X (X=Sn, In, Bi.) DM sample was prepared by post-heating of the CS samples in a molten metal. The two dimensional distributions of Seebeck coefficient and the thermal conductivity of the cross section of the CS and DM samples which composed of graded composition were visualized by using STPM at room temperature. The composition variation was checked by EDX. The relationship between composition and the thermoelectric properties was successfully determined by using the mapping results. The time required for mapping out the 100x100 pixel image was 8 to 11 hours. The total time required for this set of the screening experiment, from sample preparation to the final conclusion, was within 24 hours. For samples Ni-Cu-X DM the diffusion length of the elements at the interface can be large as 1mm and it was found that STPM is applicable to visualize the thermoelectric properties at the region of interest.



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