Thermoelectric Properties of Bismuth Telluride Thin Films Electrodeposited from a Nonaqueous Solution

Cicvarić, Katarina, Meng, Lingcong, Newbrook, Daniel W. , Huang, Ruomeng, Ye, Sheng, Zhang, Wenjian, Hector, Andrew L., Reid, Gillian, Bartlett, Philip N. and de Groot, C. H. Kees (2020) Thermoelectric Properties of Bismuth Telluride Thin Films Electrodeposited from a Nonaqueous Solution. ACS Omega, 5 (24). pp. 14679-14688. ISSN 2470-1343

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We report the thermoelectric properties of Bi2Te3 thin films electrodeposited from the weakly coordinating solvent dichloromethane (CH2Cl2). It was found that the oxidation of porous films is significant, causing the degradation of its thermoelectric properties. We show that the morphology of the film can be improved drastically by applying a short initial nucleation pulse, which generates a large number of nuclei, and then growing the nuclei by pulsed electrodeposition at a much lower overpotential. This significantly reduces the oxidation of the films as smooth films have a smaller surface-to-volume ratio and are less prone to oxidation. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) shows that those films with Te(O) termination show a complete absence of oxygen below the surface layer. A thin film transfer process was developed using polystyrene as a carrier polymer to transfer the films from the conductive TiN to an insulating layer for thermoelectrical characterization. Temperature-dependent Seebeck measurements revealed a room-temperature coefficient of −51.7 μV/K growing to nearly −100 μV/K at 520 °C. The corresponding power factor reaches a value of 88.2 μW/mK2 at that temperature.

Keywords:Thin films, Anions, Deposition, Electrodeposition, Nucleation
Divisions:College of Science > School of Chemistry
ID Code:47280
Deposited On:18 Nov 2021 10:54

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