Thermoelectric properties of sorted semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotube sheets

<p>Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs), especially their semiconducting type, are promising thermoelectric (TE) materials due to their high Seebeck coefficient. In this study, the in-plane Seebeck coefficient (<i>S</i>), electrical conductivity (<i>σ</i>), and thermal conductivity (<i>κ</i>) of sorted semiconducting SWNT (s-SWNT) free-standing sheets with different s-SWNT purities are measured to determine the figure of merit <i>ZT.</i> We find that the <i>ZT</i> value of the sheets increases with increasing s-SWNT purity, mainly due to an increase in Seebeck coefficient while the thermal conductivity remaining constant, which experimentally proved the superiority of the high purity s-SWNT as TE materials for the first time. In addition, from the comparison between sorted and unsorted SWNT sheets, it is recognized that the difference of <i>ZT</i> between unsorted SWNT and high-purity s-SWNT sheet is not remarkable, which suggests the control of carrier density is necessary to further clarify the superiority of SWNT sorting for TE applications.</p>