Zeitschrift für Kristallographie - Crystalline Materials
Editor-in-Chief: Pöttgen, Rainer
Ed. by Antipov, Evgeny / Bismayer, Ulrich / Boldyreva, Elena V. / Huppertz, Hubert / Petrícek, Václav / Tiekink, E. R. T.
12 Issues per year
IMPACT FACTOR 2016: 3.179
CiteScore 2016: 3.30
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Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 2.592
From phase-change materials to thermoelectrics?
Metastable tellurides play an important role as phase-change materials in data storage media and non-vol atile RAM devices. The corresponding crystalline phases with very simple basic structures are not stable as bulk materials at ambient conditions, however, for a broad range of compositions they represent stable high-temperature phases. In the system Ge/Sb/Te, rocksalt-type high-temperature phases are characterized by a large number of vacancies randomly distributed over the cation position, which order as 2D vacancy layers upon cooling. Short-range order in quenched samples produces pronounced nanostructures by the formation of twin domains and finite intersecting vacancy layers. As phase-change materials are usually semimetals or small-bandgap semiconductors and efficient data storage requires low thermal conductivity, bulk materials with similar compositions and properties can be expected to exhibit promising thermoelectric characteristics. Nanostructuring by phase transitions that involve partial vacany ordering may enhance the efficiency of such thermoelectrics. We have shown that germanium antimony tellurides with compositions close to those used as phase-change materials in rewritable Blu-Ray Discs, e.g. (GeTe)12Sb2Te3, exhibit thermoelectric figures of merit of up to ZT = 1.3 at 450 °C if a nanodomain structure is induced by rapidly quenching the cubic high-temperature phase. Structural changes have been elucidated by X-ray diffraction and high-resolution electron microscopy.
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