Lattice thermal conductivity of nanostructured thermoelectric materials based on PbTe

Yee Kan Koh; Vineis, C. J.; Calawa, S. D.; Walsh, M. P.; Cahill, David G.
April 2009
Applied Physics Letters;4/13/2009, Vol. 94 Issue 15, p153101
Academic Journal
We report the through-thickness lattice thermal conductivity Λl of (PbTe)1-x/(PbSe)x nanodot superlattices (NDSLs) over a wide range of periods 5 nm≤h≤50 nm, compositions 0.15≤x≤0.25, growth temperatures 550 K≤Tg≤620 K, and growth rates 1 μm h-1≤R≤4 μm h-1. All of our measurements approach Λl of bulk homogenous PbTe1-xSex alloys with the same average composition. For 5 nm≤h≤50 nm, Λl is independent of h; a result we attribute to short mean-free paths of phonons in PbTe and small acoustic impedance mismatch between PbTe/PbSe. We alloyed the PbTe layers of four NDSLs with SnTe up to a mole fraction y=18%; Λl is reduced by <25%.


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