Entropic stabilization and retrograde solubility in Zn4Sb 3

Gregory S. Pomrehn*, Eric S. Toberer, G. Jeffrey Snyder, Axel Van De Walle

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Zn4Sb3 is shown to be entropically stabilized versus decomposition to Zn and ZnSb through the effects of configurational disorder and phonon free energy. Single-phase stability is predicted for a range of compositions and temperatures. Retrograde solubility of Zn is predicted on the two-phase boundary region between Zn4Sb3 and Zn. The complex temperature-dependent solubility can be used to explain the variety of nanoparticle formation observed in the system: formation of ZnSb on the Sb-rich side, Zn on the far Zn-rich side, and nano-void formation due to Zn precipitates being reabsorbed at lower temperatures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number094106
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number9
StatePublished - Mar 4 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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