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Chin. Phys. B, 2018, Vol. 27(11): 118105    DOI: 10.1088/1674-1056/27/11/118105

Excellent thermal stability and thermoelectric properties of Pnma-phase SnSe in middle temperature aerobic environment

Yu Tang(唐语)1, Decong Li(李德聪)1,2, Zhong Chen(陈钟)1, Shuping Deng(邓书平)1, Luqi Sun(孙璐琪)1, Wenting Liu(刘文婷)1, Lanxian Shen(申兰先)1, Shukang Deng(邓书康)1
1 Education Ministry Key Laboratory of Renewable Energy Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technology, Yunnan Normal University, Kunming 650500, China;
2 Photoelectric Engineering College, Yunnan Open University, Kunming 650500, China

SnSe is considered to be a promising thermoelectric material due to a high ZT value and abundant and non-toxic composition elements. However, the thermal stability is an important issue for commercial application. In particular, thermoelectric materials are in the high temperature for a long time due to the working condition. The present work investigates the thermal stability and oxidation resistance of single crystal SnSe thermoelectric materials. The scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) results show that the internal of SnSe crystal is not easily oxidized, while the x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) results indicate that the surface of SnSe is slight oxidized to SnO2. Even if the surface is oxidized, the SnSe crystal still exhibits stable thermoelectric properties. Meanwhile, the crystallization quality of SnSe samples can be improved after the appropriate heat treatment in the air, which is in favor of the carrier mobility and can improve the electrical conduction properties of SnSe. Moreover, the decrease of defect density after heat treatment can further improve the Seebeck coefficient and electrical transport properties of SnSe. The density functional theory (DFT) calculation verifies the important role of defect on the electrical conductivity and electron configuration. In summary, appropriate temperature annealing is an effective way to improve the transmission properties of SnSe single crystal thermoelectric materials.

Keywords:  SnSe      thermal stability      annealing      electrical transport properties      density functional theory  
Received:  03 July 2018      Revised:  10 August 2018      Published:  05 November 2018
PACS:  81.05.Hd (Other semiconductors)  
  72.20.Pa (Thermoelectric and thermomagnetic effects)  
  81.40.Ef (Cold working, work hardening; annealing, post-deformation annealing, quenching, tempering recovery, and crystallization) (Applications of density-functional theory (e.g., to electronic structure and stability; defect formation; dielectric properties, susceptibilities; viscoelastic coefficients; Rydberg transition frequencies))  

Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61864012).

Corresponding Authors:  Shukang Deng     E-mail:

Cite this article: 

Yu Tang(唐语), Decong Li(李德聪), Zhong Chen(陈钟), Shuping Deng(邓书平), Luqi Sun(孙璐琪), Wenting Liu(刘文婷), Lanxian Shen(申兰先), Shukang Deng(邓书康) Excellent thermal stability and thermoelectric properties of Pnma-phase SnSe in middle temperature aerobic environment 2018 Chin. Phys. B 27 118105

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