Origins of the enhanced thermoelectric performance for p-type Ge1-xPbxTe alloys

T. Parashchuk, A. Shabaldin, O. Cherniushok, P. Konstantinov, I. Horichok, A. Burkov, Z. Dashevsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


GeTe crystallizes with a strong deviation from the stoichiometric composition (in the direction of Te excess), which results in a growth of free carrier concentration (holes) up to p ~ 1021 cm−3. Such concentration is too high from the viewpoint of thermoelectric applications (maximum value of the figure of merit Z). The work demonstrates the possibility of increasing the thermoelectric efficiency of the GeTe-based material, used for the p-type leg of the thermoelectric couple over the temperature range of 600–825 K. The samples were prepared using Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS) technique. A systematic analysis of thermoelectric properties for Ge1-xPbxTe alloys (x up to 5 at.%) has been performed. An increase in the lead content in Ge1-xPbxTe alloys creates two parallel processes. The first process is a decrease of the lattice thermal conductivity κlat, which acts up to T ≈ 550 K, when the lead content in Ge1-xPbxTe alloys increases up to 5 at. %. However, the main process is to reduce deviation from the stoichiometric composition, which consequently leads to lower hole concentration p. Therefore, at a high temperature of T ≥ 550 K Fermi level EF is approaching the edge of the valence band Ev. As a result, the thermoelectric dimensionless figure of merit ZT increases up to 1.1 at the temperature of 825 K.

Original languageEnglish
Article number412397
JournalPhysica B: Condensed Matter
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2020


  • Carrier concentration
  • Germanium telluride
  • Thermal conductivity
  • Thermoelectric efficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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