A further reduction of the thermal conductivity (κ) of silicon-germanium (SiGe) alloys is indispensable for their use as thermoelectric materials. Thus far, heteroatom-doped and nanostructured SiGe systems have been mainly synthesized and tested. This work presents a possibility of reducing the κ of SiGe by alloying with tin (Sn). Our molecular dynamics simulations predict that the κ of ternary SiGeSn alloys can be 40% lower than those of binary SiGe and GeSn alloys due mainly to increased mass disorder scattering of phonons. Our findings provide insight into the mechanism of κ suppression in multielement alloys and guidance on how to design them for thermoelectric applications.
|Journal||Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics|
|State||Published - 14 Nov 2017|
- Non-equilibrium molecular dynamics
- Ternary Si-Ge-Sn alloy
- Thermal conductivity