Thermoelectric properties of the SmCoO3 and NdCoO3 cobalt oxides

Dudnikov, V. A.; Fedorov, A. S.; Orlov, Yu S.; Solovyov, L. A.; Vereshchagin, S. N.; et al. Ceramics International. DOI: 10.1016/j.ceramint.2020.04.113

The thermoelectric properties of the NdCoO3 and SmCoO3 rare-earth cobalt oxides with a perovskite structure have been investigated in a wide temperature range. It is shown that, in the low-temperature region, the thermal conductivity of the compounds has a sharp maximum and the electrical conductivity of the samples increases with temperature, whereas the Seebeck coefficient behaves nonmonotonically with increasing temperature. The SmCoO3 oxide is characterized by the positive thermopower over the entire investigated range with a sharp growth in the low-temperature region, attaining the maximum value (S approximate to 1000 mu V/K) near room temperature, and a further decrease. It has been established that, in the NdCoO3 oxide, the Seebeck coefficient changes its sign, which was rarely observed in the La-based compounds and is atypical of the undoped rare-earth cobalt oxides. The thermopower maximum obtained at a temperature of 450 K is 400 mu V/K. The regions of the fastest growth of the thermoelectric power factor correspond to the anomalies caused by the spin transition of Co3+ ions and the dielectric-metal transition.