Development of n-type cobaltocene-encapsulated carbon nanotubes with remarkable thermoelectric property

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The Paper of Prof. Naotoshi Nakashima (Department of Applied Chemistry, Faculty of Engineering, Kyushu University / Principal Investigator, Fuel Cell Research DivisionI²CNER), Assoc. Prof. Tsuyohiko Fujigaya and his collaborators was published in “Scientific Reports” on January 22, 2015.


■ Summary

Direct conversion from heat to electricity is one of the important technologies for a sustainable society since large quantities of energy are wasted as heat. We report the development of a single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT)-based high conversion efficiency, air-stable and flexible thermoelectric material. We prepared cobaltocene-encapsulated SWNTs (denoted CoCp2@SWNTs) and revealed that the material showed a negative-type (n-type) semiconducting behaviour (Seebeck coefficient: −41.8 μV K−1 at 320 K). The CoCp2@SWNT film was found to show a high electrical conductivity (43,200 S m−1 at 320 K) and large power factor (75.4 μW m−1 K−2) and the performance was remarkably stable under atmospheric conditions over a wide range of temperatures. The thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) value of the CoCp2@SWNT film (0.157 at 320 K) was highest among the reported n-type organic thermoelectric materials due to the large power factor and low thermal conductivity (0.15 W m−1 K−1). These characteristics of the n-type CoCp2@SWNTs allowed us to fabricate a p-n type thermoelectric device by combination with an empty SWNT-based p-type film. The fabricated device exhibited a highly efficient power generation close to the calculated values even without any air-protective coating due to the high stability of the SWNT-based materials under atmospheric conditions.


■ Paper

Title: Development of n-type cobaltocene-encapsulated carbon nanotubes with remarkable thermoelectric property

Authors: Takahiro FukumaruTsuyohiko Fujigaya and Naotoshi Nakashima

DOI: 10.1038/srep07951

Publication Date (Online):  January 22, 2015