Thermoelectric Microscope Theory
Scanning tunneling microscopes (STMs) image the nanoworld by measuring the current flowing through a sample. In response to an applied temperature difference, current flows until a voltage is built up to oppose the flow. The ratio of the voltage to the temperature difference is a measurable quantity known as the thermopower. Although thermoelectric devices are important for a variety of heating and cooling applications, we propose that the thermopower is also of interest as a microscopic observable because it is a probe of the second moment of the transport. In this work, we derive the theory necessary to describe this new microscopic technique. We also simulate several images produced by a scanning thermopower probe (SThM) and discuss the implications of the technique.
Mueller, Daniel, "Thermoelectric Microscope Theory" (2020). Physics. 4.