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Seebeck coefficient (thermoelectric power) measurements

The ProboStat can be used to measure Seebeck coefficient in many ways. The standard method is to suspend a bar sample between two thermocouple tips and measure temperatures at both ends and then the sample voltage between the + or - leads of the thermocouples, or use separate electrodes for sample voltage measurement as in the picture.

Temperature gradient over the sample is either naturally occurring furnace gradient or one induced by small internal heater placed above the spring load top plate. This method can also be used in combination with 4-point conductivity measurement.

This method can be be done from ambient temperature up to 1600ºC, from vacuum to high pressure (high pressure option), with any type of gas atmosphere.

Best results are achieved with bar sample of 3-4 cm length. Sample may be of arbitary shape but it is easier to mount if the sample is bar shaped with longer length than cross section.Disc and thin film samples are not mounted as easily as bars and the electrode contacts may have to be glued (with Pt ink) to the side (since the film only covers the side and not the ends of the sample).

There is no clear limit how small samples can be measured, but as the sizes go smaller the mounting gets harder and more importantly the ratio between signal and error gets less favourable.

This method involves reading two thermocouple voltages and the sample voltage, converting the thermocouple voltages to temperatures, calculating the temperature difference and plotting the sample voltage against the temperature difference. This can be performaed by the user or automatically with the Omega software. NorECs can provide with full system (including ProboStat sample holder, furnace, Omega software, multimeter and power supply for the internal heater) that can automatically perform all the tasks needed for determining Seebeck coefficient at various temperatures.

ProboStat and Omega offer well proven and repeatable way of measuring Seebeck coefficients but also allows user great freedom to alter the setup to match for the specific qualities and challenges each individual sample has. This freedom and control over every aspect is the key to reach accurate result164 and is missing in 'turn-key' systems.

It is possible to combine this method with four point resistance measurement by adding two additional electrodes on the sample, see combined Seebeck coefficient and conductivity measurement

Seebsys - Combined Seebeck coefficient and resistance measurement system

 

These articles refer to ProboStat or other NorECs products, filtered with keywords: 'Seebeck, Thermoelectricity, Thermoelectric '  
ID=449

The Band Gap of BaPrO3 Studied by Optical and Electrical Methods

Authors Matthias Schrade, Anna Magrasó, Augustinas Galeckas, Terje J. Finstad, and Truls Norby
Source
Journal of the American Ceramic Society
Volume: 99, Issue: 2, Pages: 492–498
Time of Publication: 2016
Abstract We report on measurements of the electrical and optical properties of BaPrO3. The temperature dependences of the electrical conductivity σ and the Seebeck coefficient α of polycrystalline samples were studied over a wide temperature range (300°C–1050°C). At lower temperatures, the observed charge transport can be described as thermally activated hopping of electron-based small polarons with an activation energy of 0.37 eV. An observed change in temperature dependence of both σ and α around 700°C was observed and interpreted as a transition from extrinsic to intrinsic carrier transport. The intrinsic conduction can be modeled with an apparent electrical band gap of ~2 eV. Optical absorption and emission spectroscopy in the UV–VIS–NIR range revealed a series of characteristic absorption thresholds and the type of optical transitions was identified by combining transmittance and diffuse-reflectance spectroscopy methods. An absorption edge of indirect type with onset at 0.6 eV is attributed to small polaron effects. The higher lying absorption thresholds of direct origin positioned at around 1.8 and 3.8 eV are correlated with thermal activation parameters from electrical measurements and discussed in terms of the band gap of BaPrO3.
Remark DOI: 10.1111/jace.13961
Link
ID=446

Enhanced Flexible Thermoelectric Generators Based on Oxide–Metal Composite Materials

Authors Benjamin Geppert, Artur Brittner, Lailah Helmich, Michael Bittner, Armin Feldhoff
Source
Journal of Electronic Materials
Volume: 46, Issue: 4, Pages: 2356–2365
Time of Publication: 2017
Abstract The thermoelectric performance of flexible thermoelectric generator stripes was investigated in terms of different material combinations. The thermoelectric generators were constructed using Cu-Ni-Mn alloy as n-type legs while varying the p-type leg material by including a metallic silver phase and an oxidic copper phase. For the synthesis of Ca3Co4O9/CuO/Ag ceramic-based composite materials, silver and the copper were added to the sol–gel batches in the form of nitrates. For both additional elements, the isothermal specific electronic conductivity increases with increasing amounts of Ag and CuO in the samples. The amounts for Ag and Cu were 0 mol.%, 2 mol.%, 5 mol.%, 10 mol.%, and 20 mol.%. The phases were confirmed by x-ray diffraction. Furthermore, secondary electron microscopy including energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy were processed in the scanning electron microscope and the transmission electron microscope. For each p-type material, the data for the thermoelectric parameters, isothermal specific electronic conductivity σ and the Seebeck coefficient α, were determined. The p-type material with a content of 5 mol.% Ag and Cu exhibited a local maximum of the power factor and led to the generator with the highest electric power output Pel.
Remark Link
ID=427

Influence of processing on stability, microstructure and thermoelectric properties of Ca3Co4 − xO9 + δ

Authors Nikola Kanasac Sathy, Prakash Singh, Magnus Rotan, Mohsin Saleemi, Michael Bittner, Armin Feldhoff, Truls Norby, Kjell Wiika, Tor Grande, Mari-Ann Einarsrud
Source
Journal of the European Ceramic Society
Time of Publication: 2017
Abstract Due to high figure of merit, Ca3Co4 − xO9 + δ (CCO) has potential as p-type material for high-temperature thermoelectrics. Here, the influence of processing including solid state sintering, spark plasma sintering and post-calcination on stability, microstructure and thermoelectric properties is reported. By a new post-calcination approach, single-phase materials were obtained from precursors to final dense ceramics in one step. The highest zT of 0.11 was recorded at 800 °C for CCO with 98 and 72% relative densities. In situ high-temperature X-ray diffraction in air and oxygen revealed a higher stability of CCO in oxygen (∼970 °C) than in air (∼930 °C), with formation of Ca3Co2O6 which also showed high stability in oxygen, even at 1125 °C. Since achievement of phase pure high density CCO by post-calcination method in air is challenging, the phase stability of CCO in oxygen is important for understanding and further improvement of the method.
Keywords Ca3Co4 − xO9 + δ, Post calcination, Phase stability, Microstructure, Thermoelectric performance
Remark Available online 6 November 2017, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jeurceramsoc.2017.11.011
Link
ID=421

Defect chemistry and electrical properties of BiFeO3

Authors Matthias Schrade, Nahum Masó, Antonio Perejón, Luis A. Pérez-Maqueda and Anthony R. West
Source
Journal of Materials Chemistry C
Issue: 38 Time of Publication: 2017
Abstract BiFeO3 attracts considerable attention for its rich functional properties, including room temperature coexistence of magnetic order and ferroelectricity and more recently, the discovery of conduction pathways along ferroelectric domain walls. Here, insights into the defect chemistry and electrical properties of BiFeO3 are obtained by in situ measurements of electrical conductivity, σ, and Seebeck coefficient, α, of undoped, cation-stoichiometric BiFeO3 and acceptor-doped Bi1−xCaxFeO3−δ ceramics as a function of temperature and oxygen partial pressure pO2. Bi1−xCaxFeO3−δ exhibits p-type conduction; the dependencies of σ and α on pO2 show that Ca dopants are compensated mainly by oxygen vacancies. By contrast, undoped BiFeO3 shows a simultaneous increase of σ and α with increasing pO2, indicating intrinsic behavior with electrons and holes as the main defect species in almost equal concentrations. The pO2-dependency of σ and α cannot be described by a single point defect model but instead, is quantitatively described by a combination of intrinsic and acceptor-doped characteristics attributable to parallel conduction pathways through undoped grains and defect-containing domain walls; both contribute to the total charge transport in BiFeO3. Based on this model, we discuss the charge transport mechanism and carrier mobilities of BiFeO3 and show that several previous experimental findings can readily be explained within the proposed model.
Remark Link
ID=417

On the formation of phases and their influence on the thermal stability and thermoelectric properties of nanostructured zinc antimonide

Authors Priyadarshini Balasubramanian, Manjusha Battabyal, Duraiswamy Sivaprahasam and Raghavan Gopalan
Source
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Volume: 50, Issue: 1 Time of Publication: 2016-11
Abstract To investigate the thermal reliability of the structure and thermoelectric properties of the zinc antimony compounds, undoped (Zn4Sb3) and doped (Zn4Sb2.95Sn0.05 and Co0.05Zn3.95Sb3) zinc antimonide samples were processed using the powder metallurgy route. It was observed that the as-prepared undoped sample contains a pure β-Zn4Sb3 phase, whereas the doped samples consist of Ω-ZnSb as the major phase and β-Zn4Sb3 as the minor phase. Differential scanning calorimetry analysis confirms the stability of the β-Zn4Sb3 phase up to 600 K. X-ray diffraction data of the undoped and doped samples show that the nanocrystallinity of the as-prepared samples is retained after one thermal cycle. The thermal bandgap, thermopower and thermal conductivity are not affected by the thermal cycle for the doped samples. A maximum power factor of 0.6 mW m−1 K−2 was achieved in the Sn-doped sample (Zn4Sb2.95Sn0.05). This is enhanced to 0.72 mW m−1 K−2 after one thermal cycle at 650 K under Ar atmosphere and slightly decreases after the third thermal cycle. In the case of the Co-doped sample (Co0.05Zn3.95Sb3), the power factor increases from 0.4 mW m−1 K−2 to 0.7 mW m−1 K−2 after the third thermal cycle. A figure of merit of ~0.3 is achieved at 573 K in the Zn4Sb2.95Sn0.05 sample. The results from the nanoindentation experiment show that Youngs modulus of the Sn-doped sample (Zn4Sb2.95Sn0.05) after the thermal cycle is enhanced (96 GPa) compared to the as-prepared sample (~76 GPa). These important findings on the thermal stability of the thermoelectric and mechanical properties of Sn-doped samples (Zn4Sb2.95Sn0.05) confirm that Sn-doped zinc antimonide samples can be used as efficient thermoelectric materials for device applications.
Keywords Seebsys
Remark Link
ID=416

The effect of Cu2O nanoparticle dispersion on the thermoelectric properties of n-type skutterudites

Authors M Battabyal, B Priyadarshini, D Sivaprahasam, N S Karthiselva, R Gopalan
Source
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Volume: 48, Issue: 45 Publisher: IOP Publishing Ltd, Time of Publication: 2015-11
Abstract We report the thermoelectric properties of Ba0.4Co4Sb12 and Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb12 skutterudites dispersed with Cu2O nanoparticles. The samples were synthesized by ball milling and consolidated by spark plasma sintering. Dispersion of Cu2O is found to significantly influence the electrical resistivity and thermopower at high temperatures with a more pronounced effect on the electrical resistivity due to the energy filtering effect at the interface between Cu2O nanoparticles and a Ba0.4Co4Sb12 and Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb12 matrix. At 573 K, the electrical resistivity of Ba0.4Co4Sb12 decreases from 5.01  ×  10−5 Ohmm to 2.98  ×  10−5 Ohmm upon dispersion of Cu2O. The dispersion of Cu2O reduces the thermal conductivity of the samples from 300 K and above by increasing the phonon scattering. The lowest observed thermal conductivity at 573 K is found to be 2.001 W mK−1 in Cu2O dispersed Ba0.4Co4Sb12 while it is 2.91 W mK−1 in the Ba0.4Co4Sb12 sample without Cu2O dispersion. Hence Cu2O dispersion plays a significant role in the thermoelectric properties and a maximum figure of merit (ZT ) ~ 0.92 is achieved in Cu2O dispersed Ba0.4Co4Sb12 at 573 K which is more than 200% compared to the pure Ba0.4Co4Sb12 sample. The results from nanoindentation experiments show that the Cu2O dispersed sample (Cu2O  +  Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb11.6) has a higher reduced Youngs modulus (~139 GPa) than the pure Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb11.6 sample (~128 GPa).
Keywords Seebsys
Remark Link
ID=410

Relating defect chemistry and electronic transport in the double perovskite Ba1−xGd0.8La0.2+xCo2O6−δ (BGLC)

Authors Einar Vřllestad, Matthias Schrade, Julie Segalini, Ragnar Strandbakke, and Truls Norby
Source
Journal of Materials Chemistry A
Volume: 5, Pages: 15743-15751
Time of Publication: 2017
Abstract Rare earth double perovskites comprise a class of functional oxides with interesting physiochemical properties both for low- and high-temperature applications. However, little can be found relating electrical properties with equilibrium thermodynamics of non-stoichiometry and defects. In the present work, a comprehensive and generally applicable defect chemical model is developed to form the link between the defect chemistry and electronic structure of partially substituted BGLC (Ba1−xGd0.8La0.2+xCo2O6−δ, 0 ≤ x ≤ 0.5). The equilibrium oxygen content of 4 different compositions is determined as a function of pO2 and temperature by thermogravimetric analysis, and combined with defect chemical modelling to obtain defect concentrations and thermodynamic parameters. Oxidation enthalpies determined by TG-DSC become increasingly exothermic (−50 to −120 kJ mol−1) with increased temperature and oxygen non-stoichiometry for all compositions, in excellent agreement with the thermodynamic parameters obtained from the defect chemical model. All compositions display high electrical conductivities (500 to 1000 S cm−1) with shallow pO2-dependencies and small and positive Seebeck coefficients (3 to 15 μV K−1), indicating high degree of degeneracy of the electronic charge carriers. The complex electrical properties of BGLC at elevated temperatures is rationalized by a two-band conduction model where highly mobile p-type charge carriers are transported within the valence band, whereas less mobile “n-type” charge carriers are located in narrow Co 3d band.
Remark DOI: 10.1039/C7TA02659E
Link
ID=331

The effect of Cu2O nanoparticle dispersion on the thermoelectric properties of n-type skutterudites

Authors M Battabyal, B Priyadarshini, D Sivaprahasam, N S Karthiselva and R Gopalan
Source
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Volume: 48, Issue: 45 Time of Publication: 2015
Abstract We report the thermoelectric properties of Ba0.4Co4Sb12 and Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb12 skutterudites dispersed with Cu2O nanoparticles. The samples were synthesized by ball milling and consolidated by spark plasma sintering. Dispersion of Cu2O is found to significantly influence the electrical resistivity and thermopower at high temperatures with a more pronounced effect on the electrical resistivity due to the energy filtering effect at the interface between Cu2O nanoparticles and a Ba0.4Co4Sb12 and Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb12 matrix. At 573 K, the electrical resistivity of Ba0.4Co4Sb12 decreases from 5.01  ×  10−5 Ωm to 2.98  ×  10−5 Ωm upon dispersion of Cu2O. The dispersion of Cu2O reduces the thermal conductivity of the samples from 300 K and above by increasing the phonon scattering. The lowest observed thermal conductivity at 573 K is found to be 2.001 W mK−1 in Cu2O dispersed Ba0.4Co4Sb12 while it is 2.91 W mK−1 in the Ba0.4Co4Sb12 sample without Cu2O dispersion. Hence Cu2O dispersion plays a significant role in the thermoelectric properties and a maximum figure of merit (ZT ) ~ 0.92 is achieved in Cu2O dispersed Ba0.4Co4Sb12 at 573 K which is more than 200% compared to the pure Ba0.4Co4Sb12 sample. The results from nanoindentation experiments show that the Cu2O dispersed sample (Cu2O  +  Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb11.6) has a higher reduced Youngs modulus (~139 GPa) than the pure Sn0.4Ba0.4Co4Sb11.6 sample (~128 GPa).
Remark Link
ID=319

Tetragonal tungsten bronzes Nb8−xW9+xO47−δ: optimization strategies and transport properties of a new n-type thermoelectric oxide

Authors Christophe P. Heinrich, Matthias Schrade, Giacomo Cerretti, Ingo Lieberwirth, Patrick Leidich, Andreas Schmitz, Harald Fjeld, Eckhard Mueller, Terje G. Finstad, Truls Norby and Wolfgang Tremel
Source
Materials Horizons
Issue: 5, Pages: 519-527
Time of Publication: 2015
Abstract Engineering of nanoscaled structures may help controlling the electrical and thermal transport in solids, in particular for thermoelectric applications that require the combination of low thermal conductivity and low electrical resistivity. The tetragonal tungsten bronzes Nb8−xW9+xO47 (TTB) allow a continuous variation of the charge carrier concentration while fulfilling at the same time the concept of a “phonon-glass electron-crystal” through a layered nanostructure defined by intrinsic crystallographic shear planes. The thermoelectric properties of the tetragonal tungsten bronzes Nb8−xW9+xO47−δ (0 < x < 2) were studied in the temperature range from 373 to 973 K. Structural defects and the thermal stability under various oxygen partial pressure pO2 were investigated by means of thermogravimetry, HR-TEM, and XRD. Nb8W9O47−δ was found stable at 973 K and a pO2 of ≈10−15 atm. The oxygen nonstoichiometry δ can reach up to 0.3, depending on the applied atmosphere. By increasing the substitution level x, the electrical resistivity ρ and the Seebeck coefficient S decreased. For x = 2, ρ reached 20 mΩ cm at 973 K, combined with a Seebeck coefficient of approximately −120 μV K−1. The thermal conductivity was low for all samples, ranging from 1.6 to 2.0 W K−1 m−1, attributed to the complex crystal structure. The best thermoelectric figure of merit zT of the investigated samples was 0.043, obtained for x = 2 at 973 K, but it is expected to increase significantly upon a further increase of x. The control of the oxygen non-stoichiometry δ opens a second independent optimization strategy for tetragonal tungsten bronzes.
Remark DOI: 10.1039/C5MH00033E
Link
ID=300

Electrical conductivity and thermopower of (1 − x) BiFeO3 – xBi0.5K0.5TiO3 (x = 0.1, 0.2) ceramics near the ferroelectric to paraelectric phase transition

Authors E. T. Wefring, M.-A. Einarsrud and T. Grande
Source
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
Volume: 17, Issue: 14, Pages: 9420-9428
Time of Publication: 2015
Abstract Ferroelectric BiFeO3 has attractive properties such as high strain and polarization, but a wide range of applications of bulk BiFeO3 are hindered due to high leakage currents and a high coercive electric field. Here, we report on the thermal behaviour of the electrical conductivity and thermopower of BiFeO3 substituted with 10 and 20 mol% Bi0.5K0.5TiO3. A change from p-type to n-type conductivity in these semi-conducting materials was demonstrated by the change in the sign of the Seebeck coefficient and the change in the slope of the isothermal conductivity versus partial pressure of O. A minimum in the isothermal conductivity was observed at [similar]10−2 bar O2 partial pressure for both solid solutions. The strong dependence of the conductivity on the partial pressure of O2 was rationalized by a point defect model describing qualitatively the conductivity involving oxidation/reduction of Fe3+, the dominating oxidation state of Fe in stoichiometric BiFeO3. The ferroelectric to paraelectric phase transition of 80 and 90 mol% BiFeO3 was observed at 648 ± 15 and 723 ± 15 °C respectively by differential thermal analysis and confirmed by dielectric spectroscopy and high temperature powder X-ray diffraction.
Remark DOI: 10.1039/C5CP00266D
Link
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