We report a new spark erosion technique for producing high-quality thermoelectric nanoparticles at a remarkably high rate and with enhanced thermoelectric properties. The technique was utilized to synthesize p-type Bi 0.5Sb 1.5Te 3 nanoparticles with a production rate as high as 135gh 1, using a relatively small laboratory apparatus and low energy consumption. The compacted nanocomposite samples made from these nanoparticles exhibit a well-defined, 20-50nm size nanograin microstructure, and show an enhanced figure of merit, ZT, of 1.36 at 360K. Such a technique is essential for providing inexpensive, oxidation-free nanoparticles which are required for the fabrication of high performance thermoelectric devices for power generation from waste heat, and for refrigeration.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering