Measuring thermoelectric transport properties of materials

Kasper A. Borup, Johannes De Boor, Heng Wang, Fivos Drymiotis, Franck Gascoin, Xun Shi, Lidong Chen, Mikhail I. Fedorov, Eckhard Müller, Bo B. Iversen, G. Jeffrey Snyder*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

220 Scopus citations


In this review we discuss considerations regarding the common techniques used for measuring thermoelectric transport properties necessary for calculating the thermoelectric figure of merit, zT. Advice for improving the data quality in Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity, and thermal conductivity (from flash diffusivity and heat capacity) measurements are given together with methods for identifying possible erroneous data. Measurement of the Hall coefficient and calculation of the charge carrier concentration and mobility is also included due to its importance for understanding materials. It is not intended to be a complete record or comparison of all the different techniques employed in thermoelectrics. Rather, by providing an overview of common techniques and their inherent difficulties it is an aid to new researchers or students in the field. The focus is mainly on high temperature measurements but low temperature techniques are also briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)423-435
Number of pages13
JournalEnergy and Environmental Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Pollution


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