Thermoelectric Properties of Epitaxial β-FeSi2 Thin Films on Si(111) and Approach for Their Enhancement

Tatsuhiko Taniguchi, Shunya Sakane, Shunsuke Aoki, Ryo Okuhata, Takafumi Ishibe, Kentaro Watanabe, Takeyuki Suzuki, Takeshi Fujita, Kentarou Sawano, Yoshiaki Nakamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


We have investigated the intrinsic thermoelectric properties of epitaxial β-FeSi2 thin films and the impact of phosphorus (P) doping. Epitaxial β-FeSi2 thin films with single phase were grown on Si(111) substrates by two different techniques in an ultrahigh-vacuum molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) system: solid-phase epitaxy (SPE), where iron silicide films formed by codeposition of Fe and Si at room temperature were recrystallized by annealing at 530°C to form epitaxial β-FeSi2 thin films on Si(111) substrates, and MBE of β-FeSi2 thin films on epitaxial β-FeSi2 templates formed on Si(111) by reactive deposition epitaxy (RDE) at 530°C (RDE + MBE). Epitaxial SPE thin films based on codeposition had a flatter surface and more abrupt β-FeSi2/Si(111) interface than epitaxial RDE + MBE thin films. We investigated the intrinsic thermoelectric properties of the epitaxial β-FeSi2 thin films on Si(111), revealing lower thermal conductivity and higher electrical conductivity compared with bulk β-FeSi2. We also investigated the impact of doping on the Seebeck coefficient of bulk and thin-film β-FeSi2. A route to enhance the thermoelectric performance of β-FeSi2 is proposed, based on (1) fabrication of thin-film structures for high electrical conductivity and low thermal conductivity, and (2) proper choice of doping for high Seebeck coefficient.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3235-3241
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electronic Materials
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2017 May 1


  • Si
  • heteroepitaxial growth
  • thermal conductivity
  • thermoelectric properties
  • thin films
  • β-FeSi

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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