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/content/aip/journal/adva/5/12/10.1063/1.4938565
2015-12-18
2016-12-11

Abstract

We investigated the thermoelectricproperties of PbTe/AgTe bulk composites, synthesized by hand milling, mixing, and hot press sintering. From x-ray diffraction and energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy measurements, we observed AgTe phase separation in the PbTe matrix without Ag atom diffusion. In comparison with previously reported pseudo-binary (PbTe)(AgTe) composites, synthesized by high temperature phase separation, the PbTe/AgTe bulk composites fabricated with a low temperature phase mixing process give rise to -type conduction of carriers with significantly decreased electrical conductivity. This indicates that Ag atom diffusion in the PbTe matrix changes the sign of the Seebeck coefficient to -type and also increases the carrier concentration. Effective -type doping with low temperature phase separation by mixing and hot press sintering can enhance the thermoelectric performance of PbTe/AgTe bulk composites, which can be used as a -type counterpart of -type (PbTe)(AgTe) bulk composites.

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