Eco-Friendly Cerium–Cobalt Counter-Doped Bi2Se3 Nanoparticulate Semiconductor : Synergistic Doping Effect for Enhanced Thermoelectric Generation

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Original languageEnglish
Article number2738
Journal / PublicationNanomaterials
Issue number20
Online published10 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023



Metal chalcogenides are primarily used for thermoelectric applications due to their enormous potential to convert waste heat into valuable energy. Several studies focused on single or dual aliovalent doping techniques to enhance thermoelectric properties in semiconductor materials; however, these dopants enhance one property while deteriorating others due to the interdependency of these properties or may render the host material toxic. Therefore, a strategic doping approach is vital to harness the full potential of doping to improve the efficiency of thermoelectric generation while restoring the base material eco-friendly. Here, we report a well-designed counter-doped eco-friendly nanomaterial system (~70 nm) using both isovalent (cerium) and aliovalent (cobalt) in a Bi2Se3 system for enhancing energy conversion efficiency. Substituting cerium for bismuth simultaneously enhances the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity via ionized impurity minimization. The boost in the average electronegativity offered by the self-doped transitional metal cobalt leads to an improvement in the degree of delocalization of the valence electrons. Hence, the new energy state around the Fermi energy serving as electron feed to the conduction band coherently improves the density of the state of conducting electrons. The resulting high power factor and low thermal conductivity contributed to the remarkable improvement in the figure of merit (zT = 0.55) at 473 K for an optimized doping concentration of 0.01 at. %. sample, and a significant nanoparticle size reduction from 400 nm to ~70 nm, making the highly performing materials in this study (Bi2−xCexCo2x/3Se3) an excellent thermoelectric generator. The results presented here are higher than several Bi2Se3-based materials already reported. © 2023 by the authors.

Research Area(s)

  • counter–doping, eco-friendly material, energy conversion, nanopartitulate, thermoelectric application

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