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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2013, Article ID 502150, 7 pages
Research Article

Electronic and Thermal Transport Properties of Complex Structured Cu-Bi-Se Thermoelectric Compound with Low Lattice Thermal Conductivity

1Center for Integrated Nanostructure Physics, Institute for Basic Science (IBS), Daejeon 305-701, Republic of Korea
2Department of Energy Science, Department of Physics, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 440-746, Republic of Korea
3Materials R&D Center, Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, Samsung Electronics, Yongin 446-712, Republic of Korea
4Powder and Ceramics Division, Powder Technology Department, Korea Institute of Materials Science, Changwon 642-831, Republic of Korea

Received 22 June 2013; Revised 20 July 2013; Accepted 5 August 2013

Academic Editor: Hyung-Ho Park

Copyright © 2013 Jae-Yeol Hwang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Monoclinic Cux+yBi5−ySe8 structure has multiple disorders, such as randomly distributed substitutional and interstitial disorders by Cu as well as asymmetrical disorders by Se. Herein, we report the correlation of electronic and thermal properties with the structural complexities of Cux+yBi5−ySe8. It is found that the interstitial Cu site plays an important role not only to increase the electrical conductivity due to the generation of electron carriers but also to reduce the thermal conductivity mainly due to the phonon scattering by mass fluctuation. With impurity doping at the interstitial Cu site, an extremely low lattice thermal conductivity of 0.32 Wm−1K−1 was achieved at 560 K. These synergetic effects result in the enhanced dimensionless figure of merit (ZT).