Phase separation and nanostructuring in the thermoelectric material PbTe1-x Sx studied using the atomic pair distribution function technique

He Lin, E. S. Božin, S. J L Billinge, J. Androulakis, C. D. Malliakas, C. H. Lin, Mercouri G Kanatzidis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The average and local structures of the (PbTe) 1-x (PbS) x system of thermoelectric materials has been studied using the Rietveld and atomic pair distribution function methods. Samples with 0.25≤x are macroscopically phase separated. Phase separation was suppressed in a quenched x=0.5 sample which, nonetheless, exhibited a partial spinodal decomposition. The promising thermoelectric material with x=0.16 showed intermediate behavior. Combining TEM and bulk scattering data suggests that the sample is a mixture of PbTe-rich material and a partially spinodally decomposed phase similar to the quenched 50% sample. This confirms that, in the bulk, this sample is inhomogeneous on a nanometer length scale, which may account for its enhanced thermoelectric figure of merit.

Original languageEnglish
Article number045204
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Volume80
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 6 2009

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thermoelectric materials
Phase separation
Distribution functions
distribution functions
Spinodal decomposition
Scattering
Transmission electron microscopy
figure of merit
decomposition
transmission electron microscopy
scattering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials

Cite this

Phase separation and nanostructuring in the thermoelectric material PbTe1-x Sx studied using the atomic pair distribution function technique. / Lin, He; Božin, E. S.; Billinge, S. J L; Androulakis, J.; Malliakas, C. D.; Lin, C. H.; Kanatzidis, Mercouri G.

In: Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics, Vol. 80, No. 4, 045204, 06.08.2009.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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