Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics;
JAN 14 2021.
Web of Science Citations:
Efficient ab initio computational methods for the calculation of the thermoelectric transport properties of materials are of great interest for energy harvesting technologies. The constant relaxation time approximation (CRTA) has been largely used to efficiently calculate thermoelectric coefficients. However, CRTA usually does not hold for real materials. Here we go beyond the CRTA by incorporating realistic k-dependent relaxation time models of the temperature dependence of the main scattering processes, namely, screened polar and nonpolar scattering by optical phonons, scattering by acoustic phonons, and scattering by ionized impurities with screening. Our relaxation time models are based on a smooth Fourier interpolation of Kohn-Sham eigenvalues and its derivatives, taking into account non-parabolicity (beyond the parabolic or Kane models), degeneracy and multiplicity of the energy bands on the same footing, within very low computational cost. In order to test our methodology, we calculated the anisotropic thermoelectric transport properties of the low temperature phase (Pnma) of intrinsic p-type and hole-doped tin selenide (SnSe). Our results are in quantitative agreement with experimental data, regarding the evolution of the anisotropic thermoelectric coefficients with both temperature and chemical potential. Hence, from this picture, we also obtained the evolution and understanding of the main scattering processes of the overall thermoelectric transport in p-type SnSe. (AU)