Semimetal to semiconductor transition and thermoelectric properties of bismuth nanotubes

Zhou, G.; Li, L.; Li, G. H.
June 2011
Journal of Applied Physics;Jun2011, Vol. 109 Issue 11, p114311
Academic Journal
We have theoretically investigated the electronic subband structures and thermoelectric transport properties of Bi nanotubes. The calculated semimetal to semiconductor transition in Bi nanotubes is in good agreement with experiment results. The expressions for Seebeck coefficient and the optimized carrier concentration are first derived, and have been used to explain the calculated and experimental results. The effects of thickness, diameter, and growth direction of Bi nanotubes and carrier concentration on the thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) are discussed. It was found that the Bi nanotube oriented along the trigonal direction has the highest ZT, and the optimized carrier concentration is found to be in a range from 1018 cm-3 to 4.0 × 1018 cm-3. The predicted enhancement in ZT is important for the anticipated applications of Bi nanotubes for thermoelectric devices.


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