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Structural Studies of GeTe-AgSbTe2 Alloys

  • Alan Thompson (a1), Jeff Sharp (a2), C.J Rawn (a3) and B.C. Chackoumakos (a4)


GeTe, a small bandgap semiconductor that has native p-type defects due to Ge vacancies, is an important constituent in the thermoelectric material known as “TAGS” [1]. TAGS is an acronym for alloys of GeTe with AgSbTe2, and compositions are normally designated as TAGS-x, where x is the fraction of GeTe. TAGS-85 is the most important with regard to applications, and there also is commercial interest in TAGS-80. The crystal structure of GeTe1+δ has a composition-dependent phase transformation at a temperature ranging from 430°C (δ = 0) to ∼ 400°C (δ = 0.02) [2]. The high temperature form is cubic. The low temperature form is rhombohedral for δ < 0.01, as is the case for good thermoelectric performance. Addition of AgSbTe2 shifts the phase transformation to lower temperatures, and one of the goals of this work is a systematic study of the dependence of transformation temperature on the parameter x. We present results on phase transformations and associated instabilities in TAGS compositions in the range of 70-85 at.% GeTe.



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11. Skrabek, E. A. and Trimmer, D. S., “Properties of the General TAGS System,” in CRC Handbook of Thermoelectrics, ed. Rowe, D. M. (CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, 1995), pp. 267275.
2Ge-Te phase diagram, in Moffatt's Handbook of Binary Phase Diagrams, ed. Westbrook, J. H. (Genium Publ. Corp., Schenectady, NY, 1995).
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