Self-compensation induced vacancies for significant phonon scattering in InSb

Jun Mao, Jennifer L. Niedziela, Yumei Wang, Yi Xia, Binghui Ge, Zihang Liu, Jiawei Zhou, Zhensong Ren, Weishu Liu, Maria K.Y. Chan, Gang Chen, Olivier Delaire, Qian Zhang*, Zhifeng Ren

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

Phonon scattering by point defects via mass differences and strain fluctuations could effectively reduce the lattice thermal conductivity. The atomic mass difference can be maximized by introducing the vacancies thus leading to a significant phonon scattering. Usually, the vacancies are introduced by tuning the stoichiometry or forming solid solution with certain compound that contains intrinsically high concentration of vacancies. In this work, we demonstrate that vacancies can be effectively induced by the self-compensation effect via chemical doping. Indium (In) vacancies in InSb were induced by Te-doping and a substantial reduction in thermal conductivity was observed. Room temperature lattice thermal conductivity of the melted and then hot-pressed InSb (without In vacancies) is ~ 14.5 W m−1 K−1 but only ~ 3.8 W m−1 K−1 for InSb0.96Te0.04 (with In vacancies), a reduction of ~ 74%. The advantage of using this strategy for phonon engineering lies in the fact that a substantial reduction in thermal conductivity can be achieved even when the dopant concentration is rather low. Since the self-compensation effect is widely observed in different compounds, it indicates that the vacancy engineering strategy used here is also applicable to a variety of other materials to effectively reduce the lattice thermal conductivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-196
Number of pages8
JournalNano Energy
Volume48
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2018

Keywords

  • InSb
  • Phonon engineering
  • Point-defect scattering
  • Self-compensation effect
  • Thermal conductivity
  • Vacancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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