High Thermoelectric Performance in Sulfide-Type Argyrodites Compound Ag8Sn(S1− xSex)6 Enabled by Ultralow Lattice Thermal Conductivity and Extended Cubic Phase Regime

Xingchen Shen, Yi Xia, Chun Chuen Yang, Zhao Zhang, Shulong Li, Yung Hsiang Tung, Allen Benton, Xiao Zhang, Xu Lu, Guoyu Wang, Jian He, Xiaoyuan Zhou

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Abstract

Argyrodites with a general chemical formula of A8BC6 are known for complex phase transitions, ultralow lattice thermal conductivity, and mixed electronic and ionic conduction. The coexistence of ionic conduction and promising thermoelectric performance have recently been reported in selenide and telluride argyrodites, but scarcely in sulfide argyrodites. Here, the thermoelectric properties of Ag8Sn(S1− xSex)6 are reported. Specifically, Ag8SnS6 exhibits intrinsically ultralow lattice thermal conductivities of 0.61–0.31 W m−1 K−1 over the whole temperature range from 32 to 773 K due to distorted local crystal structure, relatively weak chemical bonding, rattler-like Ag atoms, low-lying optical modes, and dynamic disorder of Ag ions at high temperatures. Se doping shifts the orthorhombic–cubic phase transition from 457 K at x = 0 to 430 K at x = 0.10, thereby expanding the temperature range of the thermoelectrically favored cubic phase. A figure of merit zT value ≈ 0.80 is achieved at 773 K in Ag8Sn(S1− xSex)6 (x = 0.03), the highest zT value reported in sulfide argyrodites. These results fill a knowledge gap of the thermoelectric study of argyrodites and contribute to a comprehensive understanding of the chemical bonding, lattice dynamics, and thermal transport of argyrodites.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2000526
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Volume30
Issue number21
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2020

Keywords

  • AgSnS
  • lattice dynamics
  • phase transition
  • thermal transport
  • thermoelectric

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