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J Am Chem Soc. 2012 Dec 19;134(50):20294-7. doi: 10.1021/ja3102049. Epub 2012 Dec 11.

Atomically thick bismuth selenide freestanding single layers achieving enhanced thermoelectric energy harvesting.

Author information

1
Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at the Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230026, PR China.

Abstract

Thermoelectric materials can realize significant energy savings by generating electricity from untapped waste heat. However, the coupling of the thermoelectric parameters unfortunately limits their efficiency and practical applications. Here, a single-layer-based (SLB) composite fabricated from atomically thick single layers was proposed to optimize the thermoelectric parameters fully. Freestanding five-atom-thick Bi(2)Se(3) single layers were first synthesized via a scalable interaction/exfoliation strategy. As revealed by X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy and first-principles calculations, surface distortion gives them excellent structural stability and a much increased density of states, resulting in a 2-fold higher electrical conductivity relative to the bulk material. Also, the surface disorder and numerous interfaces in the Bi(2)Se(3) SLB composite allow for effective phonon scattering and decreased thermal conductivity, while the 2D electron gas and energy filtering effect increase the Seebeck coefficient, resulting in an 8-fold higher figure of merit (ZT) relative to the bulk material. This work develops a facile strategy for synthesizing atomically thick single layers and demonstrates their superior ability to optimize the thermoelectric energy harvesting.

PMID:
23214984
DOI:
10.1021/ja3102049
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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