Transparent-flexible thermoelectric module from In/Ga co-doped ZnO thin films

Athorn Vora-ud*, Anh Tuan Thanh Pham, Dai Cao Truong, Somporn Thoawankeaw, Hoa Thi Lai, Thu Bao Nguyen Le, Nhat Minh Quang Tran, Mekhala Insawang, Pennapa Muthitamongkol, Mati Horprathum, Manish Kumar, Sungkyun Park, Gerald Jeffrey Snyder, Tosawat Seetawan, Thang Bach Phan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Transparent-flexible thermoelectric thin films have immense potential as power supplies for future small-sized consumer electronics, the internet of things, and wearable devices. Here, we report the thermoelectric properties of dual Ga and In doped ZnO films (IGZO) deposited on a polyimide substrate with post-thermal treatment in vacuum along with fabricating 4-unileg flexible IGZO thermoelectric devices. All the as-deposited and annealed IGZO films are the preferred (0 0 2) orientation and under tensile stress. The post-thermal treatment controls the dopant substitution/diffusion in the host ZnO lattice affecting the film crystallinity, residual stress, and thermoelectric properties. Among the films, the IGZO film annealed at 250 °C has the best power factor of 16.9 μWm−1K−2 with the largest crystal size, lowest tensile stress, highest carrier concentration, and lowest density-of-state effective mass. The practical application of flexible IGZO films was also reported via a 4-unileg-IGZO films thermoelectric module, which achieved an output power about 3.2 nW at ΔT = 120 K.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number142954
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
StatePublished - Jun 1 2023


  • Flexible-transparent thermoelectric
  • Seebeck coefficient
  • Thermal sensors
  • Thermopower factor
  • ZnO thin films

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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