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Title: Power and efficiency analysis of a realistic resonant tunneling diode thermoelectric

Low-dimensional systems with sharp features in the density of states have been proposed as a means for improving the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Quantum dot systems, which offer the sharpest density of states achievable, however, suffer from low power outputs while bulk (3-D) thermoelectrics, while displaying high power outputs, offer very low efficiencies. Here, we analyze the use of a resonant tunneling diode structure that combines the best of both aspects, that is, density of states distortion with a finite bandwidth due to confinement that aids the efficiency and a large number of current carrying transverse modes that enhances the total power output. We show that this device can achieve a high power output (∼0.3 MW∕m{sup 2}) at efficiencies of ∼40% of the Carnot efficiency due to the contribution from these transverse momentum states at a finite bandwidth of kT∕2. We then provide a detailed analysis of the physics of charge and heat transport with insights on parasitic currents that reduce the efficiency. Finally, a comparison between the resonant tunneling diode and a quantum dot device with comparable bandwidth reveals that a similar performance requires ultra-dense areal quantum dot densities of ∼10{sup 12}/cm{sup 2}.
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Centre of Excellence in Nanoelectronics, Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Powai, Mumbai-400076 (India)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22303949
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 105; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; CONFINEMENT; CURRENTS; DENSITY; EFFICIENCY; EQUIPMENT; HEAT TRANSFER; QUANTUM DOTS; THERMOELASTICITY; TRANSVERSE MOMENTUM; TUNNEL DIODES