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Design, Synthesis and Characterization of Nanostructured Thermoelectric Materials

Time: Fri 2021-10-15 10.00

Location: BioX Library, Albanova Universitetscentrum, Roslagstullsbacken 21, Stockholm och via zoom, Stockholm (English)

Subject area: Material and Nano Physics Physics

Doctoral student: PhD Bejan Hamawandi , Biomedicinsk fysik och röntgenfysik, Nanochemistry

Opponent: Professor MARISOL Martin Gonzalez, Instituto de Micro y Nanotechnologica, IMN CSI, Spanien

Supervisor: Professor Muhammet Toprak, Material- och nanofysik

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The demand for energy is rapidly increasing, triggering more carbon emission and global warming. Alternative green energy sources are essential to secure the future generation from the effect of pollution and global warming. During the last few decades, thermoelectric (TE) materials gained interest, due to their capability of directly interconverting between heat and power, which can be used to convert waste heat to electricity.  One of the strategic TE adaptation approaches is to develop high efficiency TE materials from earth-abundant and non-toxic components. Not only the TE materials’ composition, but also the synthesis method, has to be environment friendly in order to create a green transition, with minimum adverse environmental impacts. Bottom-up microwave (MW) assisted synthesis routes, using water and polyalcohol as green solvents were demonstrated feasible to generate binary and ternary compositions of Bi2-xSbxTe3, which were effective in room temperature. A more earth abundant and environment friendly material composition, copper selenide (Cu2-XSe), effective at intermediate temperature regime (200-600 °C), was synthesized by MW-assisted thermolysis. The synthesized materials were characterized in terms of structure, microstructure, surface chemistry and TE transport properties, and showed significant improvement of TE performance compared to materials synthesized using conventional methods - mainly attributed to the preservation of nanostructure. Significant results have been achieved with improved material characteristics, while the time and the energy investment were substantially reduced. The developed processes with reduced time and carbon footprint offer excellent sustainable synthesis routes for large-scale synthesis of high-performance nanostructured TE materials as strategic energy materials.