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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Electrodeposition of Ni and Te-doped Cobalt Triantimonide in Citrate Solutions

  • Author(s): Vidu, R
  • Perez-Page, M
  • Quach, DV
  • Chen, XY
  • Stroeve, P
  • et al.

© 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. Skutterudite compounds form a new class of potential candidates for thermoelectric applications. Cobalt triantimonide (CoSb3) shows good thermoelectric properties at medium and high temperatures. Doping this system with substitution elements, for either Co or Sb or both, may result in an increase of the thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT). This work focused on the electrochemical doping and characterization of films and nanowires of Co-Sb system in citrate solutions using gold-coated PCTE templates. The electrodeposition was performed on gold surface that was pre-treated electrochemically to ensure reproducible results. The electrochemical treatment acted as an annealing process for the surface, which resulted in an increase in Au(111) as demonstrated by XRD. Detailed electrochemical studies including deposition-stripping experiments was performed in order to develop a better understanding of the co-deposition kinetics and a better control over the composition of doped Co-Sb system. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM/EDS) helped study the morphology and the composition of the doped and undoped Co-Sb system. Co-deposition of Co-Sb showed that the amount of Co is higher in nanowires than in film or mushroom caps due to the slow Sb deposition rate dictated by slow Sb(III) complex diffusion. Doped nanowires have been also obtained. Both Ni and Te electrochemical doping of the Co-Sb system affected the composition of the deposit but there was no effect on nanowire morphology.

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