With aggravating environment crisis and increasing demand for energy, improving efficiency becomes one of the key points. Thermoelectric materials are functional materials that can convert heat into electricity and vice versa by using the Seebeck and Peltier effects. It has potential to be applied in the fields of waste heat recovery and refrigeration to improve efficiency. Recently, SnSe-based thermoelectric materials were paid great attentions because of earth-abundant elements, environmentally-friendly and out-standing thermoelectric performance. Here, the relationship between structure and high thermoelectric performance was analyzed. Then, the recent advance in SnSe-based thermoelectric materials was reviewed, including foreign atomic doping (n and p-type) for single crystal and the methods to enhance power factor (foreign atomic doping and tuning of texture) and reduce lattice thermal conductivity (e.g., nanostructured phase, point defects and nanopores) for polycrystalline. Finally, the challenges and possible solutions to further improve thermoelectric performance were discussed to give guidance for future research.
ASJC Scopus subject areas