Zintl phases for thermoelectric devices

Susan M. Kauzlarich*, Shawna R. Brown, G. Jeffrey Snyder

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

346 Scopus citations

Abstract

By converting waste heat into electricity and improving the efficiency of refrigeration systems, thermoelectric devices could play a significant role in solving today's energy problems. Increasing the thermoelectric efficiency (as measured by the thermoelectric material's figure-of-merit, zT) is critical to the development of this technology. Complex Zintl phases, in particular, make ideal candidates for thermoelectric materials because the necessary "electron-crystal, phonon-glass" properties can be engineered with an understanding of the Zintl chemistry. A recent example is the discovery that Yb14MnSb11, a transition metal Zintl compound, has twice the zT as the material currently in use at NASA. This perspective outlines a strategy to discover new high zT materials in Zintl phases, and presents results pointing towards the success of this approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2099-2107
Number of pages9
JournalDalton Transactions
Issue number21
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry

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