Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 6, pp 4788–4797 | Cite as

Attaining reduced lattice thermal conductivity and enhanced electrical conductivity in as-sintered pure n-type Bi2Te3 alloy

  • Xiao-yu Wang
  • Hui-juan Wang
  • Bo Xiang
  • Hong-jing Shang
  • Bin Zhu
  • Yuan Yu
  • Hui Jin
  • Run-fei Zhao
  • Zhong-yue Huang
  • Lan-jun LiuEmail author
  • Fang-qiu ZuEmail author
  • Zhi-gang Chen
Electronic materials


Undoped n-type Bi2Te3 bulks were prepared via the liquid state manipulation (LSM) with subsequent ball milling and spark plasma sintering processes. The sample with LSM obtains higher carrier concentration and larger effective mass compared with that without LSM, exhibiting favourable electrical transport properties. More importantly, a much reduced lattice thermal conductivity ~ 0.47 W m−1 K−1 (decreased by 43%) is obtained, due to the enhanced multiscale phonon scattering from hierarchical microstructures, including boundaries, nanograins and lattice dislocations. Additionally, due to the increased carrier concentration and enlarged band gap, the bipolar effect is effectively suppressed in sample BT-LSM. Consequently, zTmax ~ 0.66 is achieved in the sample with LSM at higher temperature of 475 K, almost 22% improvement compared with that of the contrast.



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 51371073), the Natural Science Foundation of Anhui Province (Grant No. 1808085ME108) and Australian Research Council.

Author contributions

Dr. Fang Qiu Zu and Dr. Lan Jun Liu conceived and supervised this study. Xiao Yu Wang designed and carried out the thermoelectric experiments. Xiao Yu Wang and Jin Hui carried out the SPS experiment. Xiao Yu Wang, Bo Xiang and Hong Jing Shang analysed the electrical transport data. Xiao Yu Wang, Dr. Bin Zhu and Dr. Zhong Yue Huang analysed the thermal transport data. Dr. Yuan Yu prepared the TEM specimens. Hui Juan Wang carried out the TEM experiment. Xiao Yu Wang and Hui Juan Wang analysed the TEM data. Dr. Bin Zhu and Run Fei Zhao carried out the Hall measurement experiment. Xiao Yu Wang and Dr. Yuan Yu analysed the Hall data. Xiao Yu Wang, Dr. Fang Qiu Zu and Dr. Zhi Gang Chen wrote the manuscript. All authors have reviewed, discussed and approved the results and conclusions of this article.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

10853_2018_3172_MOESM1_ESM.docx (4.3 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 4391 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Liquid/Solid Metal Processing Institute, School of Materials Science and EngineeringHefei University of TechnologyHefeiChina
  2. 2.Experimental Centre of Engineering and Material SciencesUniversity of Science and Technology of ChinaHefeiChina
  3. 3.Key Laboratory of Advanced Functional Materials and Devices of Anhui ProvinceHefeiChina
  4. 4.Institute of Electrical EngineeringChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  5. 5.Centre for Future MaterialsUniversity of Southern QueenslandSpringfieldAustralia
  6. 6.Materials EngineeringThe University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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