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  1. Abstract Materials with tunable thermal properties enable on-demand control of temperature and heat flow, which is an integral component in the development of solid-state refrigeration, energy scavenging, and thermal circuits. Although gap-based and liquid-based thermal switches that work on the basis of mechanical movements have been an effective approach to control the flow of heat in the devices, their complex mechanisms impose considerable costs in latency, expense, and power consumption. As a consequence, materials that have multiple solid-state phases with distinct thermal properties are appealing for thermal management due to their simplicity, fast switching, and compactness. Thus, an ideal thermal switch should operate near or above room temperature, have a simple trigger mechanism, and offer a quick and large on/off switching ratio. In this study, we experimentally demonstrate that manipulating phonon scattering rates can switch the thermal conductivity of antiferroelectric PbZrO 3 bidirectionally by −10% and +25% upon applying electrical and thermal excitation, respectively. Our approach takes advantage of two separate phase transformations in PbZrO 3 that alter the phonon scattering rate in different manners. In this study, we demonstrate that PbZrO 3 can serve as a fast (<1 second), repeatable, simple trigger, and reliable thermal switch with a net switchingmore »ratio of nearly 38% from ~1.20 to ~1.65 W m −1 K −1 .« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  2. Low-dimensional materials with chain-like (one-dimensional) or layered (two-dimensional) structures are of significant interest due to their anisotropic electrical, optical, and thermal properties. One material with a chain-like structure, BaTiS3 (BTS), was recently shown to possess giant in-plane optical anisotropy and glass-like thermal conductivity. To understand the origin of these effects, it is necessary to fully characterize the optical, thermal, and electronic anisotropy of BTS. To this end, BTS crystals with different orientations (a- and c-axis orientations) were grown by chemical vapor transport. X-ray absorption spectroscopy was used to characterize the local structure and electronic anisotropy of BTS. Fourier transform infrared reflection/transmission spectra show a large in-plane optical anisotropy in the a-oriented crystals, while the c-axis oriented crystals were nearly isotropic in-plane. BTS platelet crystals are promising uniaxial materials for infrared optics with their optic axis parallel to the c-axis. The thermal conductivity measurements revealed a thermal anisotropy of ∼4.5 between the c- and a-axis. Time-domain Brillouin scattering showed that the longitudinal sound speed along the two axes is nearly the same, suggesting that the thermal anisotropy is a result of different phonon scattering rates.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  3. This work presents an energy efficient technique for fabricating flexible thermoelectric generators while using printable ink. We have fabricated thermoelectric composite thick films using two different mesh sizes of n-type bismuth particles, various binder to thermoelectric material weight ratios, and two different pressures, 200 MPa and 300 MPa, in order to optimize the thermoelectric properties of the composite films. The use of chitosan dissolved in dimethylsulfoxide with less than 0.2 wt. % of chitosan, the first time chitosan has been used in this process, was sufficient for fabricating TE inks and composite films. Low temperature curing processes, along with uniaxial pressure, were used to evaporate the solvent from the drop-casted inks. This combination reduced the temperature needed compared to traditional curing processes while simultaneously increasing the packing density of the film by removing the pores and voids in the chitosan-bismuth composite film. Microstructural analysis of the composite films reveals low amounts of voids and pores when pressed at sufficiently high pressures. The highest performing composite film was obtained with the weight ratio of 1:2000 binder to bismuth, 100-mesh particle size, and 300 MPa of pressure. The best performing bismuth chitosan composite film that was pressed at 300 MPa had amore »power factor of 4009 ± 391 μW/m K2 with high electrical conductivity of 7337 ± 522 S/cm. The measured thermal conductivity of this same sample was 4.4 ± 0.8 W/m K and the corresponding figure of merit was 0.27 at room temperature.« less