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Sample records for thermoelectric generator mmrtg

  1. Radiation Environments and Exposure Considerations for the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kelly, William M.; Low, Nora M.; Zillmer, Andrew; Johnson, Gregory A.; Normand, Eugene

    2006-01-01

    The Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) is the next generation (RTG) being developed by DOE to provide reliable, long-life electric power for NASA's planetary exploration programs. The MMRTG is being developed by Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne and Teledyne Energy Systems Incorporated (TESI) for use on currently planned and projected flyby, orbital and planet landing missions. This is a significant departure from the design philosophy of the past which was to match specific mission requirements to RTG design capabilities. Undefined mission requirements provide a challenge to system designers by forcing them to put a design envelope around 'all possible missions'. These multi-mission requirements include internal and external radiation sources. Internal sources include the particles ejected by decaying Pu-238 and its daughters plus particles resulting from the interaction of these particles with other MMRTG materials. External sources include the full spectrum of charged particle radiation surrounding planets with magnetic fields and the surfaces of extraterrestrial objects not shielded by magnetic fields. The paper presents the results of investigations into the environments outlined above and the impact of radiation exposure on potential materials to be used on MMRTG and ground support personnel. Mission requirements were also reviewed to evaluate total integrated dose and to project potential shielding requirements for materials. Much of the information on mission shielding requirements was provided by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The primary result is an ionizing radiation design curve which indicates the limits to which a particular mission can take the MMRTG in terms of ionizing radiation exposure. Estimates of personnel radiation exposure during ground handling are also provided

  2. Solar thermoelectric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toberer, Eric S.; Baranowski, Lauryn L.; Warren, Emily L.

    2016-05-03

    Solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) are solid state heat engines that generate electricity from concentrated sunlight. A novel detailed balance model for STEGs is provided and applied to both state-of-the-art and idealized materials. STEGs can produce electricity by using sunlight to heat one side of a thermoelectric generator. While concentrated sunlight can be used to achieve extremely high temperatures (and thus improved generator efficiency), the solar absorber also emits a significant amount of black body radiation. This emitted light is the dominant loss mechanism in these generators. In this invention, we propose a solution to this problem that eliminates virtually all of the emitted black body radiation. This enables solar thermoelectric generators to operate at higher efficiency and achieve said efficient with lower levels of optical concentration. The solution is suitable for both single and dual axis solar thermoelectric generators.

  3. Thermoelectric generators: A review of applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Champier, Daniel

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • This paper reviews the state of the art of thermoelectric generators. • The latest thermoelectric modules are introduced. • Waste heat recovery in transport and industry with thermoelectric generators. • Domestic and industrial applications of thermoelectric generators. • Thermoelectric generators in space, micro-generation and solar conversion. - Abstract: In past centuries, men have mainly looked to increase their production of energy in order to develop their industry, means of transport and quality of life. Since the recent energy crisis, researchers and industrials have looked mainly to manage energy in a better way, especially by increasing energy system efficiency. This context explains the growing interest for thermoelectric generators. Today, thermoelectric generators allow lost thermal energy to be recovered, energy to be produced in extreme environments, electric power to be generated in remote areas and microsensors to be powered. Direct solar thermal energy can also be used to produce electricity. This review begins with the basic principles of thermoelectricity and a presentation of existing and future materials. Design and optimization of generators are addressed. Finally in this paper, we developed an exhaustive presentation of thermoelectric generation applications covering electricity generation in extreme environments, waste heat recovery in transport and industry, domestic production in developing and developed countries, micro-generation for sensors and microelectronics and solar thermoelectric generators. Many recent applications are presented, as well as the future applications which are currently being studied in research laboratories or in industry. The main purpose of this paper is to clearly demonstrate that, almost anywhere in industry or in domestic uses, it is worth checking whether a TEG can be added whenever heat is moving from a hot source to a cold source.

  4. Thermoelectric generator cooling system and method of control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior, Gregory P; Meisner, Gregory P; Glassford, Daniel B

    2012-10-16

    An apparatus is provided that includes a thermoelectric generator and an exhaust gas system operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to heat a portion of the thermoelectric generator with exhaust gas flow through the thermoelectric generator. A coolant system is operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to cool another portion of the thermoelectric generator with coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator. At least one valve is controllable to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in a direction that opposes a direction of the exhaust gas flow under a first set of operating conditions and to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in the direction of exhaust gas flow under a second set of operating conditions.

  5. Compatibility of Segments of Thermoelectric Generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Ursell, Tristan

    2009-01-01

    A method of calculating (usually for the purpose of maximizing) the power-conversion efficiency of a segmented thermoelectric generator is based on equations derived from the fundamental equations of thermoelectricity. Because it is directly traceable to first principles, the method provides physical explanations in addition to predictions of phenomena involved in segmentation. In comparison with the finite-element method used heretofore to predict (without being able to explain) the behavior of a segmented thermoelectric generator, this method is much simpler to implement in practice: in particular, the efficiency of a segmented thermoelectric generator can be estimated by evaluating equations using only hand-held calculator with this method. In addition, the method provides for determination of cascading ratios. The concept of cascading is illustrated in the figure and the definition of the cascading ratio is defined in the figure caption. An important aspect of the method is its approach to the issue of compatibility among segments, in combination with introduction of the concept of compatibility within a segment. Prior approaches involved the use of only averaged material properties. Two materials in direct contact could be examined for compatibility with each other, but there was no general framework for analysis of compatibility. The present method establishes such a framework. The mathematical derivation of the method begins with the definition of reduced efficiency of a thermoelectric generator as the ratio between (1) its thermal-to-electric power-conversion efficiency and (2) its Carnot efficiency (the maximum efficiency theoretically attainable, given its hot- and cold-side temperatures). The derivation involves calculation of the reduced efficiency of a model thermoelectric generator for which the hot-side temperature is only infinitesimally greater than the cold-side temperature. The derivation includes consideration of the ratio (u) between the

  6. Apparatus, System, and Method for On-Chip Thermoelectricity Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa

    2012-01-26

    An apparatus, system, and method for a thermoelectric generator. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric generator comprises a first thermoelectric region and a second thermoelectric region, where the second thermoelectric region may be coupled to the first thermoelectric region by a first conductor. In some embodiments, a second conductor may be coupled to the first thermoelectric region and a third conductor may be coupled to the second thermoelectric region. In some embodiments, the first conductor may be in a first plane, the first thermoelectric region and the second thermoelectric region may be in a second plane, and the second conductor and the third conductor may be in a third plane.

  7. Apparatus, System, and Method for On-Chip Thermoelectricity Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa; Fahad, Hossain M.; Rojas, Jhonathan Prieto

    2012-01-01

    An apparatus, system, and method for a thermoelectric generator. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric generator comprises a first thermoelectric region and a second thermoelectric region, where the second thermoelectric region may be coupled to the first thermoelectric region by a first conductor. In some embodiments, a second conductor may be coupled to the first thermoelectric region and a third conductor may be coupled to the second thermoelectric region. In some embodiments, the first conductor may be in a first plane, the first thermoelectric region and the second thermoelectric region may be in a second plane, and the second conductor and the third conductor may be in a third plane.

  8. Modeling and Experimentation of New Thermoelectric Cooler–Thermoelectric Generator Module

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khaled Teffah

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In this work, a modeling and experimental study of a new thermoelectric cooler–thermoelectric generator (TEC-TEG module is investigated. The studied module is composed of TEC, TEG and total system heatsink, all connected thermally in series. An input voltage (1–5 V passes through the TEC where the electrons by means of Peltier effect entrain the heat from the upper side of the module to the lower one creating temperature difference; TEG plays the role of a partial heatsink for the TEC by transferring this waste heat to the total system heatsink and converting an amount of this heat into electricity by a phenomenon called Seebeck effect, of the thermoelectric modules. The performance of the TEG as partial heatsink of TEC at different input voltages is demonstrated theoretically using the modeling software COMSOL Multiphysics. Moreover, the experiment validates the simulation result which smooths the path for a new manufacturing thermoelectric cascade model for the cooling and the immediate electric power generation.

  9. Thermoelectric power generator with intermediate loop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Lon E; Crane, Douglas Todd

    2013-05-21

    A thermoelectric power generator is disclosed for use to generate electrical power from heat, typically waste heat. An intermediate heat transfer loop forms a part of the system to permit added control and adjustability in the system. This allows the thermoelectric power generator to more effectively and efficiently generate power in the face of dynamically varying temperatures and heat flux conditions, such as where the heat source is the exhaust of an automobile, or any other heat source with dynamic temperature and heat flux conditions.

  10. Portable Thermoelectric Power Generator Coupled with Phase Change Material

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lim Chong C.

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Solar is the intermittent source of renewable energy and all thermal solar systems having a setback on non-functioning during the night and cloudy environment. This paper presents alternative solution for power generation using thermoelectric which is the direct conversion of temperature gradient of hot side and cold side of thermoelectric material to electric voltage. Phase change material with latent heat effect would help to prolong the temperature gradient across thermoelectric material for power generation. Besides, the concept of portability will enable different power source like solar, wasted heat from air conditioner, refrigerator, stove etc, i.e. to create temperature different on thermoelectric material for power generation. Furthermore, thermoelectric will generate direct current which is used by all the gadgets like Smartphone, tablet, laptop etc. The portable concept of renewable energy will encourage the direct usage of renewable energy for portable gadgets. The working principle and design of portable thermoelectric power generator coupled with phase change material is presented in this paper.

  11. Apparatuses And Systems For Embedded Thermoelectric Generators

    KAUST Repository

    Hussain, Muhammad M.; Inayat, Salman Bin; Smith, Casey Eben

    2013-01-01

    An apparatus and a system for embedded thermoelectric generators are disclosed. In one embodiment, the apparatus is embedded in an interface where the ambient temperatures on two sides of the interface are different. In one embodiment, the apparatus is fabricated with the interface in integrity as a unitary piece. In one embodiment, the apparatus includes a first thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The apparatus further includes a second thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The first thermoelectric material is electrically coupled to the second thermoelectric material. In one embodiment, the apparatus further includes an output structure coupled to the first thermoelectric material and the second thermoelectric material and configured to output a voltage.

  12. Apparatuses And Systems For Embedded Thermoelectric Generators

    KAUST Repository

    Hussain, Muhammad M.

    2013-08-08

    An apparatus and a system for embedded thermoelectric generators are disclosed. In one embodiment, the apparatus is embedded in an interface where the ambient temperatures on two sides of the interface are different. In one embodiment, the apparatus is fabricated with the interface in integrity as a unitary piece. In one embodiment, the apparatus includes a first thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The apparatus further includes a second thermoelectric material embedded through the interface. The first thermoelectric material is electrically coupled to the second thermoelectric material. In one embodiment, the apparatus further includes an output structure coupled to the first thermoelectric material and the second thermoelectric material and configured to output a voltage.

  13. Potency of Thermoelectric Generator for Hybrid Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nandy Putra

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric Generator (TEG has been known as electricity generation for many years. If the temperature difference occurred between two difference semi conductor materials, the current will flow in the material and produced difference voltage. This principle is known as Seebeck effect that is the opposite of Peltier effect Thermoelectric Cooling (TEC. This research was conducted to test the potential of electric source from twelve peltier modules. Then, these thermoelectric generators were applied in hybrid car by using waste heat from the combustion engine. The experiment has been conducted with variations of peltier module arrangements (series and parallels and heater as heat source for the thermoelectric generator, with variations of heater voltage input (110V and 220V applied. The experimental result showed that twelve of peltier modules arranged in series and heater voltage of 220V generated power output of 8.11 Watts with average temperature difference of 42.82°C. This result shows that TEG has a bright prospect as alternative electric source.

  14. Microwatt thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goslee, D.E.

    1976-01-01

    A microwatt thermoelectric generator suitable for implanting in the body is described. The disclosed generator utilizes a nuclear energy source. Provision is made for temporary electrical connection to the generator for testing purposes, and for ensuring that the heat generated by the nuclear source does not bypass the pile. Also disclosed is a getter which is resistant to shrinkage during sintering, and a foil configuration for controlling the radiation of heat from the nuclear source to the hot plate of the pile

  15. Microwatt thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goslee, D.E.; Bustard, T.S.

    1976-01-01

    A microwatt thermoelectric generator suitable for implanting in the body is described. The generator utilizes a nuclear energy source. Provision is made for temporary electrical connection to the generator for testing purposes, and for ensuring that the heat generated by the nuclear source does not bypass the pile. Also disclosed is a getter which is resistant to shrinkage during sintering, and a foil configuration for controlling the radiation of heat from the nuclear source to the hot plate of the pile

  16. Method of operating a thermoelectric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Michael G; Cowgill, Joshua D

    2013-11-05

    A method for operating a thermoelectric generator supplying a variable-load component includes commanding the variable-load component to operate at a first output and determining a first load current and a first load voltage to the variable-load component while operating at the commanded first output. The method also includes commanding the variable-load component to operate at a second output and determining a second load current and a second load voltage to the variable-load component while operating at the commanded second output. The method includes calculating a maximum power output of the thermoelectric generator from the determined first load current and voltage and the determined second load current and voltage, and commanding the variable-load component to operate at a third output. The commanded third output is configured to draw the calculated maximum power output from the thermoelectric generator.

  17. Microwatt thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hittman, F.; Bustard, T.S.

    1976-01-01

    A microwatt thermoelectric generator suitable for implanting in the body is described. The generator utilizes a nuclear energy source. Provision is made for temporary electrical connection to the generator for testing purposes, and for ensuring that the heat generated by the nuclear source does not bypass the pile. Also disclosed is a getter which is resistant to shrinkage during sintering, and a foil configuration for controlling the radiation of heat from the nuclear source to the hot plate of the pile. 2 claims, 4 drawing figures

  18. Microwatt thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barr, H.N.

    1978-01-01

    A microwatt thermoelectric generator suitable for implanting in the body is described. The disclosed generator utilizes a nuclear energy source. Provision is made for temporary electrical connection to the generator for testing purposes, and for ensuring that the heat generated by the nuclear source does not bypass the pile. Also disclosed is a getter which is resistant to shrinkage during sintering, and a foil configuration for controlling the radiation of heat from the nuclear source to the hot plate of the pile. 4 claims, 4 figures

  19. AUTOMATIC BIOMASS BOILER WITH AN EXTERNAL THERMOELECTRIC GENERATOR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marian Brázdil

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the design and test results of an external thermoelectric generator that utilizes the waste heat from a small-scale domestic biomass boiler with nominal rated heat output of 25 kW. The low-temperature Bi2Te3 generator based on thermoelectric modules has the potential to recover waste heat from gas combustion products as effective energy. The small-scale generator is constructed from independent segments. Measurements have shown that up to 11 W of electricity can be generated by one segment. Higher output power can be achieved by linking thermoelectric segments. The maximum output power is given by the dew point of the flue gas. The electrical energy that is generated can be used, e.g., for power supply or for charging batteries. In the near future, thermoelectric generators could completely eliminate the dependence an automated domestic boiler system on the power supply from the electricity grid, and could ensure comfortable operation in the event of an unexpected power grid failure.

  20. Thermoelectric generation coupling methanol steam reforming characteristic in microreactor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Feng; Cao, Yiding; Wang, Guoqiang

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric (TE) generator converts heat to electric energy by thermoelectric material. However, heat removal on the cold side of the generator represents a serious challenge. To address this problem and for improved energy conversion, a thermoelectric generation process coupled with methanol steam reforming (SR) for hydrogen production is designed and analyzed in this paper. Experimental study on the cold spot character in a micro-reactor with monolayer catalyst bed is first carried out to understand the endothermic nature of the reforming as the thermoelectric cold side. A novel methanol steam reforming micro-reactor heated by waste heat or methanol catalytic combustion for hydrogen production coupled with a thermoelectric generation module is then simulated. Results show that the cold spot effect exists in the catalyst bed under all conditions, and the associated temperature difference first increases and then decreases with the inlet temperature. In the micro-reactor, the temperature difference between the reforming and heating channel outlets decreases rapidly with an increase in thermoelectric material's conductivity coefficient. However, methanol conversion at the reforming outlet is mainly affected by the reactor inlet temperature; while at the combustion outlet, it is mainly affected by the reactor inlet velocity. Due to the strong endothermic effect of the methanol steam reforming, heat supply of both kinds cannot balance the heat needed at reactor local areas, resulting in the cold spot at the reactor inlet. When the temperature difference between the thermoelectric module's hot and cold sides is 22 K, the generator can achieve an output voltage of 55 mV. The corresponding molar fraction of hydrogen can reach about 62.6%, which corresponds to methanol conversion rate of 72.6%. - Highlights: • Cold spot character of methanol steam reforming was studied through experiment. • Thermoelectric generation Coupling MSR process has been

  1. Graphite moderated reactor for thermoelectric generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akazawa, Issei; Yamada, Akira; Mizogami, Yorikata

    1998-01-01

    Fuel rods filled with cladded fuel particles distributed and filled are buried each at a predetermined distance in graphite blocks situated in a reactor core. Perforation channels for helium gas as coolants are formed to the periphery thereof passing through vertically. An alkali metal thermoelectric power generation module is disposed to the upper lid of a reactor container while being supported by a securing receptacle. Helium gas in the coolant channels in the graphite blocks in the reactor core absorbs nuclear reaction heat, to be heated to a high temperature, rises upwardly by the reduction of the specific gravity, and then flows into an upper space above the laminated graphite block layer. Then the gas collides against a ceiling and turns, and flows down in a circular gap around the circumference of the alkali metal thermoelectric generation module. In this case, it transfers heat to the alkali metal thermoelectric generation module. (I.N.)

  2. Thermoelectric Generation Of Current - Theoretical And Experimental Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruciński, Adam; Rusowicz, Artur

    2017-12-01

    This paper provides some information about thermoelectric technology. Some new materials with improved figures of merit are presented. These materials in Peltier modules make it possible to generate electric current thanks to a temperature difference. The paper indicates possible applications of thermoelectric modules as interesting tools for using various waste heat sources. Some zero-dimensional equations describing the conditions of electric power generation are given. Also, operating parameters of Peltier modules, such as voltage and electric current, are analyzed. The paper shows chosen characteristics of power generation parameters. Then, an experimental stand for ongoing research and experimental measurements are described. The authors consider the resistance of a receiver placed in the electric circuit with thermoelectric elements. Finally, both the analysis of experimental results and conclusions drawn from theoretical findings are presented. Voltage generation of about 1.5 to 2.5 V for the temperature difference from 65 to 85 K was observed when a bismuth telluride thermoelectric couple (traditionally used in cooling technology) was used.

  3. Study of thermoelectric systems applied to electric power generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodriguez, A.; Vian, J.G.; Astrain, D.; Martinez, A.

    2009-01-01

    A computational model has been developed in order to simulate the thermal and electric behavior of thermoelectric generators. This model solves the nonlinear system of equations of the thermoelectric and heat transfer equations. The inputs of the program are the thermoelectric parameters as a function of temperature and the boundary conditions, (room temperature and residual heat flux). The outputs are the temperature values of all the elements forming the thermoelectric generator, (performance, electric power, voltage and electric current generated). The model solves the equation system using the finite difference method and semi-empirical expressions for the convection coefficients. A thermoelectric electric power generation test bench has been built in order to validate and determine the accuracy of the computational model, which maximum error is lower than 5%. The objective of this study is to create a design tool that allows us to solve the system of equations involved in the electric generation process without needing to impose boundary conditions that are not known in the design phase, such as the temperature of the Peltier modules. With the computational model, we study the influence of the heat flux supplied as well as the room temperature on the electric power generated.

  4. A 3D TCAD simulation of a thermoelectric module configured for thermoelectric power generation, cooling and heating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gould, C. A.; Shammas, N. Y. A.; Grainger, S.; Taylor, I.; Simpson, K.

    2012-06-01

    This paper documents the 3D modeling and simulation of a three couple thermoelectric module using the Synopsys Technology Computer Aided Design (TCAD) semiconductor simulation software. Simulation results are presented for thermoelectric power generation, cooling and heating, and successfully demonstrate the basic thermoelectric principles. The 3D TCAD simulation model of a three couple thermoelectric module can be used in the future to evaluate different thermoelectric materials, device structures, and improve the efficiency and performance of thermoelectric modules.

  5. Review—Organic Materials for Thermoelectric Energy Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Cowen, Lewis M.; Atoyo, Jonathan; Carnie, Matthew J.; Baran, Derya; Schroeder, Bob C.

    2017-01-01

    Organic semiconductor materials have been promising alternatives to their inorganic counterparts in several electronic applications such as solar cells, light emitting diodes, field effect transistors as well as thermoelectric generators. Their low cost, light weight and flexibility make them appealing in future applications such as foldable electronics and wearable circuits using printing techniques. In this report, we present a mini-review on the organic materials that have been used for thermoelectric energy generation.

  6. Review—Organic Materials for Thermoelectric Energy Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Cowen, Lewis M.

    2017-01-29

    Organic semiconductor materials have been promising alternatives to their inorganic counterparts in several electronic applications such as solar cells, light emitting diodes, field effect transistors as well as thermoelectric generators. Their low cost, light weight and flexibility make them appealing in future applications such as foldable electronics and wearable circuits using printing techniques. In this report, we present a mini-review on the organic materials that have been used for thermoelectric energy generation.

  7. AUTOMATIC BIOMASS BOILER WITH AN EXTERNAL THERMOELECTRIC GENERATOR

    OpenAIRE

    Marian Brázdil; Ladislav Šnajdárek; Petr Kracík; Jirí Pospíšil

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents the design and test results of an external thermoelectric generator that utilizes the waste heat from a small-scale domestic biomass boiler with nominal rated heat output of 25 kW. The low-temperature Bi2Te3 generator based on thermoelectric modules has the potential to recover waste heat from gas combustion products as effective energy. The small-scale generator is constructed from independent segments. Measurements have shown that up to 11 W of electricity can be generat...

  8. A Flue Gas Tube for Thermoelectric Generator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2013-01-01

    The invention relates to a flue gas tube (FGT) (1) for generation of thermoelectric power having thermoelectric elements (8) that are integrated in the tube. The FTG may be used in combined heat and power (CHP) system (13) to produce directly electricity from waste heat from, e.g. a biomass boiler...

  9. Passive flow heat exchanger simulation for power generation from solar pond using thermoelectric generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baharin, Nuraida'Aadilia; Arzami, Amir Afiq; Singh, Baljit; Remeli, Muhammad Fairuz; Tan, Lippong; Oberoi, Amandeep

    2017-04-01

    In this study, a thermoelectric generator heat exchanger system was designed and simulated for electricity generation from solar pond. A thermoelectric generator heat exchanger was studied by using Computational Fluid Dynamics to simulate flow and heat transfer. A thermoelectric generator heat exchanger designed for passive in-pond flow used in solar pond for electrical power generation. A simple analysis simulation was developed to obtain the amount of electricity generated at different conditions for hot temperatures of a solar pond at different flow rates. Results indicated that the system is capable of producing electricity. This study and design provides an alternative way to generate electricity from solar pond in tropical countries like Malaysia for possible renewable energy applications.

  10. Optimization of the Heat Exchangers of a Thermoelectric Generation System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, A.; Vián, J. G.; Astrain, D.; Rodríguez, A.; Berrio, I.

    2010-09-01

    The thermal resistances of the heat exchangers have a strong influence on the electric power produced by a thermoelectric generator. In this work, the heat exchangers of a thermoelectric generator have been optimized in order to maximize the electric power generated. This thermoelectric generator harnesses heat from the exhaust gas of a domestic gas boiler. Statistical design of experiments was used to assess the influence of five factors on both the electric power generated and the pressure drop in the chimney: height of the generator, number of modules per meter of generator height, length of the fins of the hot-side heat exchanger (HSHE), length of the gap between fins of the HSHE, and base thickness of the HSHE. The electric power has been calculated using a computational model, whereas Fluent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) has been used to obtain the thermal resistances of the heat exchangers and the pressure drop. Finally, the thermoelectric generator has been optimized, taking into account the restrictions on the pressure drop.

  11. Design Methodology of Large-scale Thermoelectric Generation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Min; Gao, Junling; Zhu, Junpeng

    2011-01-01

    A thermoelectric generation system (TEGS) consists of not only thermoelectric modules (TEMs), but also the external load circuitry and the fluidic heat sources. In this paper, a system-level model is proposed in the SPICE-compatible environment to seamlessly integrate the complete fluid-thermal-e......A thermoelectric generation system (TEGS) consists of not only thermoelectric modules (TEMs), but also the external load circuitry and the fluidic heat sources. In this paper, a system-level model is proposed in the SPICE-compatible environment to seamlessly integrate the complete fluid......-thermal-electric-circuit multiphysics behaviors. Firstly, a quasi one-dimension numerical model for the thermal fluids and their non-uniform temperature distribution as the boundary condition for TEMs is implemented in SPICE using electrothermal analogy. Secondly, the electric field calculation of the previously proposed device......-level SPICE model is upgraded to reflect the resistive behaviors of thermoelements, so that the electric connections among spatially distributed TEMs and the load circuitry can be freely combined in the simulation. Thirdly, a hierarchical and TEM-object oriented strategy is developed to make the system...

  12. Thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Purdy, D.L.

    1978-01-01

    The main components of a thermoelectric generator are housed in an evacuated cylindrical vessel. In the middle of it there is the radioactive heat source, e.g. 90 Sr or 238 Pu, enclosed by a gamma radiation shield. This one is surrounded by a heat-insulating screen from getter material or indicidual sheets of titanium. In the bottom of the screen there are arranged several thermocouples on a circle. The thermocouples themselves are contained within casings sealed gas-tight and filled with an inert gas, e.g. argon. By separating the internal space of the generator vessel from the thermocouple casings, made of e.g. n- respectively p-doped lead telluride cylinders, for both the optimal gas state may be obtained. (DG) [de

  13. Thermoelectric coolers as power generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burke, E.J.; Buist, R.J.

    1984-01-01

    There are many applications where thermoelectric (TE) coolers can be used effectively as power generators. The literature available on this subject is scarce and very limited in scope. This paper describes the configuration, capability, limitations and performance of TE coolers to be used as power generators. Also presented are performance curves enabling the user to design the optimum TE module for any given power generation application

  14. Thermoelectric power generator for variable thermal power source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Lon E; Crane, Douglas Todd

    2015-04-14

    Traditional power generation systems using thermoelectric power generators are designed to operate most efficiently for a single operating condition. The present invention provides a power generation system in which the characteristics of the thermoelectrics, the flow of the thermal power, and the operational characteristics of the power generator are monitored and controlled such that higher operation efficiencies and/or higher output powers can be maintained with variably thermal power input. Such a system is particularly beneficial in variable thermal power source systems, such as recovering power from the waste heat generated in the exhaust of combustion engines.

  15. Critical review of thermoelectrics in modern power generation applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saqr Khalid M.

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric complementary effects have been discovered in the nineteenth century. However, their role in engineering applications has been very limited until the first half of the twentieth century, the beginning of space exploration era. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators have been the actual motive for the research community to develop efficient, reliable and advanced thermoelectrics. The efficiency of thermoelectric materials has been doubled several times during the past three decades. Nevertheless, there are numerous challenges to be resolved in order to develop thermoelectric systems for our modern applications. This paper discusses the recent advances in thermoelectric power systems and sheds the light on the main problematic concerns which confront contemporary research efforts in that field.

  16. Analysis of a sandwich-type generator with self-heating thermoelectric elements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Mikyung; Yang, Hyein; Wee, Daehyun

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A novel and unique type of thermoelectric generators is proposed. • Heat source is combined in thermoelectric elements, reducing heat transfer problems. • Embedding radioactive isotopes is proposed as a way to implement the new design. • Conversion efficiency and power density are estimated for the proposed design. - Abstract: A novel and unique design of thermoelectric generators, in which a heat source is combined with thermoelectric elements, is proposed. By placing heat-generating radioactive isotopes inside the thermoelectric elements, the heat transfer limitation between the generator and the heat source can be eliminated, ensuring simplicity. The inner electrode is sandwiched between identical thermoelectric elements, which naturally allows the inner core to act as the hot side. Analysis shows that conversion efficiency and power density increase as the heat density inside the thermoelectric elements increases and as the thermoelectric performance of the material improves. The theoretical maximum efficiency is shown to be 50%. However, realistic performance under practical constraint is much worse. In realistic cases, the efficiency would be about 3% at best. The power density of the proposed design exhibits a much more reasonable value as high as 3000 W/m 2 . Although the efficiency is low, the simplicity of the proposed design combined with its reasonable power density may result in some, albeit limited, potential applications. Further investigation must be performed in order to realize such potential

  17. Thermoelectric Generation Of Current – Theoretical And Experimental Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruciński Adam

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides some information about thermoelectric technology. Some new materials with improved figures of merit are presented. These materials in Peltier modules make it possible to generate electric current thanks to a temperature difference. The paper indicates possible applications of thermoelectric modules as interesting tools for using various waste heat sources. Some zero-dimensional equations describing the conditions of electric power generation are given. Also, operating parameters of Peltier modules, such as voltage and electric current, are analyzed. The paper shows chosen characteristics of power generation parameters. Then, an experimental stand for ongoing research and experimental measurements are described. The authors consider the resistance of a receiver placed in the electric circuit with thermoelectric elements. Finally, both the analysis of experimental results and conclusions drawn from theoretical findings are presented. Voltage generation of about 1.5 to 2.5 V for the temperature difference from 65 to 85 K was observed when a bismuth telluride thermoelectric couple (traditionally used in cooling technology was used.

  18. Power generation enhancement in a salinity-gradient solar pond power plant using thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ziapour, Behrooz M.; Saadat, Mohammad; Palideh, Vahid; Afzal, Sadegh

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Thermoelectric generator was used and simulated within a salinity-gradient solar pond power plant. • Results showed that the thermoelectric generator can be able to enhance the power plant efficiency. • Results showed that the presented models can be able to produce generation even in the cold months. • The optimum size of area of solar pond based on its effect on efficiency is 50,000 m 2 . - Abstract: Salinity-gradient solar pond (SGSP) has been a reliable supply of heat source for power generation when it has been integrated with low temperature thermodynamics cycles like organic Rankine cycle (ORC). Also, thermoelectric generator (TEG) plays a critical role in the production of electricity from renewable energy sources. This paper investigates the potential of thermoelectric generator as a power generation system using heat from SGSP. In this work, thermoelectric generator was used instead of condenser of ORC with the purpose of improving the performance of system. Two new models of SGSP have been presented as: (1) SGSP using TEG in condenser of ORC without heat exchanger and (2) SGSP using TEG in condenser of ORC with heat exchanger. These proposed systems was evaluated through computer simulations. The ambient conditions were collected from beach of Urmia lake in IRAN. Simulation results indicated that, for identical conditions, the model 1 has higher performance than other model 2. For models 1 and 2 in T LCZ = 90 °C, the overall thermal efficiency of the solar pond power plant, were obtained 0.21% and 0.2% more than ORC without TEG, respectively.

  19. Numerical analysis of the performance prediction for a thermoelectric generator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Chang Nyung [Kyung Hee University, Yongin (Korea, Republic of)

    2015-09-15

    The present study develops a two-dimensional numerical code that can predict the performance of a thermoelectric generator module including a p-leg/n-leg pair and top and bottom electrodes. The present code can simulate the detailed thermoelectric phenomena including the heat flow, electric current, Joule heating, Peltier heating, and Thomson heating, together with the efficiency of the modules whose properties depend on the temperature. The present numerical code can be used for the design optimization of a thermoelectric power generator.

  20. Detailed Modeling and Irreversible Transfer Process Analysis of a Multi-Element Thermoelectric Generator System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Heng; Gou, Xiaolong; Yang, Suwen

    2011-05-01

    Thermoelectric (TE) power generation technology, due to its several advantages, is becoming a noteworthy research direction. Many researchers conduct their performance analysis and optimization of TE devices and related applications based on the generalized thermoelectric energy balance equations. These generalized TE equations involve the internal irreversibility of Joule heating inside the thermoelectric device and heat leakage through the thermoelectric couple leg. However, it is assumed that the thermoelectric generator (TEG) is thermally isolated from the surroundings except for the heat flows at the cold and hot junctions. Since the thermoelectric generator is a multi-element device in practice, being composed of many fundamental TE couple legs, the effect of heat transfer between the TE couple leg and the ambient environment is not negligible. In this paper, based on basic theories of thermoelectric power generation and thermal science, detailed modeling of a thermoelectric generator taking account of the phenomenon of energy loss from the TE couple leg is reported. The revised generalized thermoelectric energy balance equations considering the effect of heat transfer between the TE couple leg and the ambient environment have been derived. Furthermore, characteristics of a multi-element thermoelectric generator with irreversibility have been investigated on the basis of the new derived TE equations. In the present investigation, second-law-based thermodynamic analysis (exergy analysis) has been applied to the irreversible heat transfer process in particular. It is found that the existence of the irreversible heat convection process causes a large loss of heat exergy in the TEG system, and using thermoelectric generators for low-grade waste heat recovery has promising potential. The results of irreversibility analysis, especially irreversible effects on generator system performance, based on the system model established in detail have guiding significance for

  1. Modeling passive power generation in a temporally-varying temperature environment via thermoelectrics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bomberger, Cory C.; Attia, Peter M.; Prasad, Ajay K.; Zide, Joshua M.O.

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a model to predict the power generation of a thermoelectric generator in a temporally-varying temperature environment. The model employs a thermoelectric plate sandwiched between two different heat exchangers to convert a temporal temperature gradient in the environment to a spatial temperature gradient within the device suitable for thermoelectric power generation. The two heat exchangers are designed such that their temperatures respond to a change in the environment's temperature at different rates which sets up a temperature differential across the thermoelectric and results in power generation. In this model, radiative and convective heat transfer between the device and its surroundings, and heat flow between the two heat exchangers across the thermoelectric plate are considered. The model is simulated for power generation in Death Valley, CA during the summer using the diurnal variation of air temperature and radiative exchange with the sun and night sky as heat sources and sinks. The optimization of power generation via scaling the device size is discussed. Additional applications of this device are considered. -- Highlights: • Thermoelectric power generation with time-varying temperature is modeled. • The ability to generate power without a natural spatial gradient is demonstrated. • Time dependent heat-transfer and differential heat flow rates are considered. • Optimization of power generation via scaling the device size is discussed

  2. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators for implanted pacemakers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pustovalov, A.A.; Bovin, A.V.; Fedorets, V.I.; Shapovalov, V.P.

    1986-08-01

    This paper discusses the development and application of long-life lithium batteries and the problems associated with miniature radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RITEG) with service lives of 10 years or longer. On eof the main problems encountered when devising a radioisotope heat source (RHS) for an RITEG is to obtain biomedical /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ with a specific neutron yield of 3.10/sup 3/-4.10/sup 3/ (g /SUP ./ sec)/sup -1/, equivalent to metallic Pu 238, and with a content of gamma impurities sufficient to ensure a permissible exposure a permissible exposure does rate (EDR) of a mixture of neutron and gamma radiation. After carrying out the isotope exchange and purifying the initial sample of its gamma impurity elements, the authors obtain biomedical Pu 238 satisfying the indicated requirements king suitable for use in the power packs of medical devices. Taking the indicated specifications into account, the Ritm-1o and gamma radioisotope heat sources were designed, built, tested in models and under natural conditions, and then into production as radioisotope thermoelectric generators designed to power the electronic circuits of implanted pacemakers. The Ritm-MT and Gemma radioisotope thermoelectric generators described are basic units, which can be used as self-contained power supplies for electronic equipment with power requirements in the micromilliwatt range.

  3. Double quantum dot as a minimal thermoelectric generator

    OpenAIRE

    Donsa, S.; Andergassen, S.; Held, K.

    2014-01-01

    Based on numerical renormalization group calculations, we demonstrate that experimentally realized double quantum dots constitute a minimal thermoelectric generator. In the Kondo regime, one quantum dot acts as an n-type and the other one as a p-type thermoelectric device. Properly connected the double quantum dot provides a miniature power supply utilizing the thermal energy of the environment.

  4. Portable Thermoelectric Power Generator Coupled with Phase Change Material

    OpenAIRE

    Lim Chong C.; Al-Kayiem Hussain H.; Sing Chin Y.

    2014-01-01

    Solar is the intermittent source of renewable energy and all thermal solar systems having a setback on non-functioning during the night and cloudy environment. This paper presents alternative solution for power generation using thermoelectric which is the direct conversion of temperature gradient of hot side and cold side of thermoelectric material to electric voltage. Phase change material with latent heat effect would help to prolong the temperature gradient across thermoelectric material f...

  5. High-Temperature High-Efficiency Solar Thermoelectric Generators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baranowski, LL; Warren, EL; Toberer, ES

    2014-03-01

    Inspired by recent high-efficiency thermoelectric modules, we consider thermoelectrics for terrestrial applications in concentrated solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs). The STEG is modeled as two subsystems: a TEG, and a solar absorber that efficiently captures the concentrated sunlight and limits radiative losses from the system. The TEG subsystem is modeled using thermoelectric compatibility theory; this model does not constrain the material properties to be constant with temperature. Considering a three-stage TEG based on current record modules, this model suggests that 18% efficiency could be experimentally expected with a temperature gradient of 1000A degrees C to 100A degrees C. Achieving 15% overall STEG efficiency thus requires an absorber efficiency above 85%, and we consider two methods to achieve this: solar-selective absorbers and thermally insulating cavities. When the TEG and absorber subsystem models are combined, we expect that the STEG modeled here could achieve 15% efficiency with optical concentration between 250 and 300 suns.

  6. Modeling a Thermoelectric Generator Applied to Diesel Automotive Heat Recovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Espinosa, N.; Lazard, M.; Aixala, L.; Scherrer, H.

    2010-09-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are outstanding devices for automotive waste heat recovery. Their packaging, lack of moving parts, and direct heat to electrical conversion are the main benefits. Usually, TEGs are modeled with a constant hot-source temperature. However, energy in exhaust gases is limited, thus leading to a temperature decrease as heat is recovered. Therefore thermoelectric properties change along the TEG, affecting performance. A thermoelectric generator composed of Mg2Si/Zn4Sb3 for high temperatures followed by Bi2Te3 for low temperatures has been modeled using engineering equation solver (EES) software. The model uses the finite-difference method with a strip-fins convective heat transfer coefficient. It has been validated on a commercial module with well-known properties. The thermoelectric connection and the number of thermoelements have been addressed as well as the optimum proportion of high-temperature material for a given thermoelectric heat exchanger. TEG output power has been estimated for a typical commercial vehicle at 90°C coolant temperature.

  7. Flexible Thermoelectric Generators on Silicon Fabric

    KAUST Repository

    Sevilla, Galo T.

    2012-01-01

    In this work, the development of a Thermoelectric Generator on Flexible Silicon Fabric is explored to extend silicon electronics for flexible platforms. Low cost, easily deployable plastic based flexible electronics are of great interest for smart

  8. Simultaneous power generation and heat recovery using a heat pipe assisted thermoelectric generator system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Remeli, Muhammad Fairuz; Tan, Lippong; Date, Abhijit; Singh, Baljit; Akbarzadeh, Aliakbar

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • A new passive power cogeneration system using industrial waste heat was introduced. • Heat pipes and thermoelectrics were used for recovering waste heat and electricity. • Theoretical model predicted the 2 kW test rig could recover 1.345 kW thermal power. • 10.39 W electrical power was produced equivalent to 0.77% conversion efficiency. - Abstract: This research explores a new method of recovering waste heat and electricity using a combination of heat pipes and thermoelectric generators (HP-TEG). The HP-TEG system consists of Bismuth Telluride (Bi 2 Te 3 ) based thermoelectric generators (TEGs), which are sandwiched between two finned heat pipes to achieve a temperature gradient across the TEG for thermoelectricity generation. A theoretical model was developed to predict the waste heat recovery and electricity conversion performances of the HP-TEG system under different parametric conditions. The modelling results show that the HP-TEG system has the capability of recovering 1.345 kW of waste heat and generating 10.39 W of electrical power using 8 installed TEGs. An experimental test bench for the HP-TEG system is under development and will be discussed in this paper

  9. Heat shrink formation of a corrugated thin film thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sun, Tianlei; Peavey, Jennifer L.; David Shelby, M.; Ferguson, Scott; O’Connor, Brendan T.

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Demonstrate and characterize a thermoelectric generator with a corrugated geometry. • Employ a novel heat shrink fabrication approach compatible with low-cost processing. • Use thermal impedance modeling to explore design potential. • Corrugated design shown to be advantageous for low heat-flux density applications. - Abstract: A thin film thermoelectric (TE) generator with a corrugated architecture is demonstrated formed using a heat-shrink fabrication approach. Fabrication of the corrugated TE structure consists of depositing thin film thermoelectric elements onto a planar non-shrink polyimide substrate that is then sandwiched between two uniaxial stretch-oriented co-polyester (PET) films. The heat shrink PET films are adhered to the polyimide in select locations, such that when the structure is placed in a high temperature environment, the outer films shrink resulting in a corrugated core film and thermoelectric elements spanning between the outer PET films. The module has a cross-plane heat transfer architecture similar to a conventional bulk TE module, but with heat transfer in the plane of the thin film thermoelectric elements, which assists in maintaining a significant temperature difference across the thermoelectric junctions. In this demonstration, Ag and Ni films are used as the thermoelectric elements and a Seebeck coefficient of 14 μV K −1 is measured with a maximum power output of 0.22 nW per couple at a temperature difference of 7.0 K. We then theoretically consider the performance of this device architecture with high performance thermoelectric materials in the heat sink limited regime. The results show that the heat-shrink approach is a simple fabrication method that may be advantageous in large-area, low power density applications. The fabrication method is also compatible with simple geometric modification to achieve various form factors and power densities to customize the TE generator for a range of applications

  10. Parametric optimization of thermoelectric elements footprint for maximum power generation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rezania, A.; Rosendahl, Lasse; Yin, Hao

    2014-01-01

    The development studies in thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems are mostly disconnected to parametric optimization of the module components. In this study, optimum footprint ratio of n- and p-type thermoelectric (TE) elements is explored to achieve maximum power generation, maximum cost......-performance, and variation of efficiency in the uni-couple over a wide range of the heat transfer coefficient on the cold junction. The three-dimensional (3D) governing equations of the thermoelectricity and the heat transfer are solved using the finite element method (FEM) for temperature dependent properties of TE...... materials. The results, which are in good agreement with the previous computational studies, show that the maximum power generation and the maximum cost-performance in the module occur at An/Ap

  11. Analytical and numerical investigation on a new compact thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ming, Tingzhen; Yang, Wei; Huang, Xiaoming; Wu, Yongjia; Li, Xiaohua; Liu, Jun

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • The mathematical model of maximum efficiency of TEG is deduced. • A new design method of compact TEG is presented. • The dimensional optimization of TEG is presented. • Comparison on the overall performance of three different TEGs is presented. - Abstract: In order to improve the performance and maximize the efficiency of energy conversion of thermoelectric generator (TEG), a mathematical model to predict the maximum energy conversion efficiency of TEG is developed. Then, a new compact thermoelectric generator (C-TEG) and a dimensional optimized TEG (DO-TEG) are proposed in this article. The compact thermoelectric generator is designed via logical intersection angle selection and layout, thus to improve the electric performance per unit volume. Finally, we compared the output electric performance of C-TEG and traditional thermoelectric generator (T-TEG) and that of DO-TEG under design and off-design conditions via numerical simulations. The results indicate that C-TEG has an excellent electric performance whose voltage, power, and efficiency decrease slightly whereas the output voltage, work, and efficiency compared with that of T-TEG have been significantly improved, with the amplitude increasing with the increase of resistant value of external loads.

  12. A holistic 3D finite element simulation model for thermoelectric power generator element

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Guangxi; Yu, Xiong

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Development of a holistic simulation model for the thermoelectric energy harvester. • Account for delta Seebeck coefficient and carrier charge densities variations. • Solution of thermo-electric coupling problem with finite element method. • Model capable of predicting phenomena not captured by traditional models. • A simulation tool for design of innovative TEM materials and structures. - Abstract: Harvesting the thermal energy stored in the ambient environment provides a potential sustainable energy source. Thermoelectric power generators have advantages of having no moving parts, being durable, and light-weighted. These unique features are advantageous for many applications (i.e., carry-on medical devices, embedded infrastructure sensors, aerospace, transportation, etc.). To ensure the efficient applications of thermoelectric energy harvesting system, the behaviors of such systems need to be fully understood. Finite element simulations provide important tools for such purpose. Although modeling the performance of thermoelectric modules has been conducted by many researchers, due to the complexity in solving the coupled problem, the influences of the effective Seebeck coefficient and carrier density variations on the performance of thermoelectric system are generally neglected. This results in an overestimation of the power generator performance under strong-ionization temperature region. This paper presents an advanced simulation model for thermoelectric elements that considers the effects of both factors. The mathematical basis of this model is firstly presented. Finite element simulations are then implemented on a thermoelectric power generator unit. The characteristics of the thermoelectric power generator and their relationship to its performance are discussed under different working temperature regions. The internal physics processes of the TEM harvester are analyzed from the results of computational simulations. The new model

  13. Lead telluride with increased mechanical stability for cylindrical thermoelectric generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schmitz, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this work is to improve the mechanical stability of lead telluride (PbTe), trying to vary its mechanical properties independently from its thermoelectric properties. Thus the influence of material preparation as well as different dopants on the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of lead telluride is being analysed. When using appropriately set process parameters, milling and sintering of lead telluride increases the material's hardness. With sintering temperatures exceeding 300 C stable material of high relative density can be achieved. Milling lead telluride generates lattice defects leading to a reduction of the material's charge carrier density. These defects can be reduced by increased sintering temperatures. Contamination of the powder due to the milling process leads to bloating during thermal cycling and thus reduced density of the sintered material. In addition to that, evaporation of tellurium at elevated temperatures causes instability of the material's thermoelectric properties. Based on the experimental results obtained in this work, the best thermoelectric and mechanical properties can be obtained by sintering coarse powders at around 400 C. Within this work a concept was developed to vary the mechanical properties of lead telluride via synthesis of PbTe with electrically nondoping elements, which thus may keep the thermoelectric properties unchanged. Therefore, the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of Pb 1-x Ca x Te were investigated. Doping pure PbTe with calcium causes a significant increase of the material's hardness while only slightly decreasing the charge carrier density and thus keeping the thermoelectric properties apart from a slight reduction of the electrical conductivity nearly unchanged. The abovementioned concept is proven using sodium doped lead telluride, as it is used for thermoelectric generators: The additional doping with calcium again increases the material's hardness while its thermoelectric properties

  14. Semiconductor thermoelectric generators

    CERN Document Server

    Fahrner, Wolfgang R

    2009-01-01

    It is well-known that fossil fuels are being rapidly depleted, and that atomic power is rejected by many people. As a consequence, there is a strong trend towards alternative sources such as wind, photovoltaics, solar heat and biomass. Strangely enough, quite another power source is generally neglected: namely, the thermoelectric generator (a device which converts heat, i.e. thermal energy, directly into electrical energy). The reason for this neglect is probably the low conversion efficiency, which is of the order of a few percent at most. However, there are two arguments in favor of the ther

  15. Thermo-electrical systems for the generation of electricity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bitschi, A.; Froehlich, K.

    2010-01-01

    This article takes a look at theoretical models concerning thermo-electrical systems for the generation of electricity and demonstrations of technology actually realised. The potentials available and developments are discussed. The efficient use of energy along the whole generation and supply chain, as well as the use of renewable energy sources are considered as being two decisive factors in the attainment of a sustainable energy supply system. The large amount of unused waste heat available today in energy generation, industrial processes, transport systems and public buildings is commented on. Thermo-electric conversion systems are discussed and work being done on the subject at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich is discussed. The findings are discussed and results are presented in graphical form

  16. Characteristics and parametric analysis of a novel flexible ink-based thermoelectric generator for human body sensor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Qing, Shaowei; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse Aistrup

    2018-01-01

    Flexible thermoelectric generator became an attractive technology for its wide use especially for curved surfaces applications. This study proposes design of a flexible thermoelectric generator, which is part of a sensor and supplies required electrical power for human body application...... elements thickness and thermoelectric module row number in a proper range can significantly enhance thermoelectric generator performance. The maximum output power can reach 0.2 μW/cm2, which indicates the proposed design is promising for supplying human body sensors. In addition, the basic optimal design....... The thermoelectric generator module has ink-based thermoelements which are made of nano-carbon bismuth telluride materials. Flexible fins conduct the body heat to the thermoelectric uni-couples, extended fins exchange the heat from the cold side of the thermoelectric generator to the ambient. A fully developed one...

  17. Validation, Optimization and Simulation of a Solar Thermoelectric Generator Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madkhali, Hadi Ali; Hamil, Ali; Lee, HoSung

    2017-12-01

    This study explores thermoelectrics as a viable option for small-scale solar thermal applications. Thermoelectric technology is based on the Seebeck effect, which states that a voltage is induced when a temperature gradient is applied to the junctions of two differing materials. This research proposes to analyze, validate, simulate, and optimize a prototype solar thermoelectric generator (STEG) model in order to increase efficiency. The intent is to further develop STEGs as a viable and productive energy source that limits pollution and reduces the cost of energy production. An empirical study (Kraemer et al. in Nat Mater 10:532, 2011) on the solar thermoelectric generator reported a high efficiency performance of 4.6%. The system had a vacuum glass enclosure, a flat panel (absorber), thermoelectric generator and water circulation for the cold side. The theoretical and numerical approach of this current study validated the experimental results from Kraemer's study to a high degree. The numerical simulation process utilizes a two-stage approach in ANSYS software for Fluent and Thermal-Electric Systems. The solar load model technique uses solar radiation under AM 1.5G conditions in Fluent. This analytical model applies Dr. Ho Sung Lee's theory of optimal design to improve the performance of the STEG system by using dimensionless parameters. Applying this theory, using two cover glasses and radiation shields, the STEG model can achieve a highest efficiency of 7%.

  18. Evaluation of high step-up power electronics stages in thermoelectric generator systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sun, Kai; Ni, Longxian; Chen, Min

    2013-01-01

    To develop practical thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems, especially radioisotope thermoelectric power supplies for deep-space exploration, a power conditioning stage with high step-up gain is indispensable. This stage is used to step up the low output voltage of thermoelectric generators...... to the required high level. Furthermore, maximum power point tracking control for TEG modules needs to be implemented into the power electronics stages. In this paper, the temperature-dependent electrical characteristics of a thermoelectric generator are analyzed in depth. Three typical high step-up power...... converters suitable for TEG applications are discussed: an interleaved boost converter, a boost converter with a coupled inductor and an interleaved boost converter with an auxiliary transformer. A general comparison of the three high step-up converters is conducted to study the step-up gain, conversion...

  19. Thermoelectric Generator Emulator for MPPT Testing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Man, Elena Anamaria; Sera, Dezso; Máthé, Lászlo

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a novel approach to use a DC power supply as a thermoelectric generator (TEG) emulator to perform static and dynamic maximum power point tracking (MPPT). First, the electrical characterization of a calcium-manganese-oxide module is performed on a TEG test rig. Afterwards...

  20. Tegen - an onedimensional program to calculate a thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosa, M.A.P.; Ferreira, P.A.; Castro Lobo, P.D. de.

    1990-01-01

    A computer program for the solution of the one-dimensional, steady-state temperature equation in the arms of a thermoelectric generator. The discretized equations obtained through a finite difference scheme are solved by Gaussian Elimination. Due to nonlinearities caused by the temperature dependence of the coefficients of such equations, an iterative procedure is used to obtain the temperature distribution in the arms. Such distributions are used in the calculation of the efficiency, electric power, load voltage and other relevant parameters for the design of a thermoelectric generator. (author)

  1. Exhaust energy conversion by thermoelectric generator: Two case studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karri, M.A.; Thacher, E.F.; Helenbrook, B.T.

    2011-01-01

    This study reports predictions of the power and fuel savings produced by thermoelectric generators (TEG) placed in the exhaust stream of a sports utility vehicle (SUV) and a stationary, compressed-natural-gas-fueled engine generator set (CNG). Results are obtained for generators using either commercially-available bismuth telluride (Bi 2 Te 3 ) or quantum-well (QW) thermoelectric material. The simulated tests are at constant speed in the SUV case and at constant AC power load in the CNG case. The simulations make use of the capabilities of ADVISOR 2002, the vehicle modeling system, supplemented with code to describe the thermoelectric generator system. The increase in power between the QW- and Bi 2 Te 3 -based generators was about three times for the SUV and seven times for the CNG generator under the same simulation conditions. The relative fuel savings for the SUV averaged around -0.2% using Bi 2 Te 3 and 1.25% using QW generators. For the CNG case the fuel savings was around 0.4% using Bi 2 Te 3 and around 3% using QW generators. The negative fuel gains in the SUV were caused by parasitic losses. The power to transport the TEG system weight was the dominant parasitic loss for the SUV but was absent in the CNG generator. The lack of space constraint and the absence of parasitic loss from the TEG system weight in the CNG case allowed an increase in the TEG system size to generate more power.

  2. A Thermoelectric Generator Replacing Radiator for Internal Combustion Engine Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shiho Kim

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available We have proposed and developed a low temperature thermoelectric generator (TEG using engine water coolant of light-duty vehicles. Experimental results from test vehicle, of which engine size is about 2.0 liters, show that fabricated prototype Thermoelectric Generator generates more than 75W for driving condition of 80 km/hour, and output power is about 28W during idle condition. The proposed TEG can replace conventional radiator without additional water pumps or mechanical devices except for basic components of legacy water cooling system of radiator.

  3. All dispenser printed flexible 3D structured thermoelectric generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Z.; Shi, J. J.; Torah, R. N.; Tudor, M. J.; Beeby, S. P.

    2015-12-01

    This work presents a vertically fabricated 3D thermoelectric generator (TEG) by dispenser printing on flexible polyimide substrate. This direct-write technology only involves printing of electrodes, thermoelectric active materials and structure material, which needs no masks to transfer the patterns onto the substrate. The dimension for single thermoelectric element is 2 mm × 2 mm × 0.5 mm while the distance between adjacent cubes is 1.2 mm. The polymer structure layer was used to support the electrodes which are printed to connect the top ends of the thermoelectric material and ensure the flexibility as well. The advantages and the limitations of the dispenser printed 3D TEGs will also be evaluated in this paper. The proposed method is potential to be a low-cost and scalable fabrication solution for TEGs.

  4. Design of segmented thermoelectric generator based on cost-effective and light-weight thermoelectric alloys

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Hee Seok; Kikuchi, Keiko; Itoh, Takashi; Iida, Tsutomu; Taya, Minoru

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Segmented thermoelectric (TE) module operating at 500 °C for combustion engine system. • Si based light-weight TE generator increases the specific power density [W/kg]. • Study of contact resistance at the bonding interfaces maximizing output power. • Accurate agreement of the theoretical predictions with experimental results. - Abstract: A segmented thermoelectric (TE) generator was designed with higher temperature segments composed of n-type Mg 2 Si and p-type higher manganese silicide (HMS) and lower temperature segments composed of n- and p-type Bi–Te based compounds. Since magnesium and silicon based TE alloys have low densities, they produce a TE module with a high specific power density that is suitable for airborne applications. A two-pair segmented π-shaped TE generator was assembled with low contact resistance materials across bonding interfaces. The peak specific power density of this generator was measured at 42.9 W/kg under a 498 °C temperature difference, which has a good agreement with analytical predictions

  5. New Technology for Microfabrication and Testing of a Thermoelectric Device for Generating Mobile Electrical Power

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasad, Narasimha S.; Taylor, Patrick J.; Trivedi, Sudhir B.; Kutcher, Susan

    2012-01-01

    Thermoelectric (TE) power generation is an increasingly important power generation technology. Major advantages include: no moving parts, low-weight, modularity, covertness/silence, high power density, low amortized cost, and long service life with minimum or no required maintenance. Despite low efficiency of power generation, there are many specialized needs for electrical power that TE technologies can uniquely and successfully address. Recent advances in thermoelectric materials technology have rekindled acute interest in thermoelectric power generation. We have developed single crystalline n- and p- type PbTe crystals and are also, developing PbTe bulk nanocomposites using PbTe nano powders and emerging filed assisted sintering technology (FAST). We will discuss the materials requirements for efficient thermoelectric power generation using waste heat at intermediate temperature range (6500 to 8500 K). We will present our recent results on production of n- and p- type PbTe crystals and their thermoelectric characterization. Relative characteristics and performance of PbTe bulk single crystals and nano composites for thermoelectric power generation will be discussed.

  6. Thermal and stress analyses in thermoelectric generator with tapered and rectangular pin configurations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yilbas, Bekir Sami; Akhtar, S.S.; Sahin, A.Z.

    2016-01-01

    Thermal stress developed in thermoelectric generators is critical for long service applications. High temperature gradients, due to a large temperature difference across the junctions, causes excessive stress levels developed in the device pins and electrodes at the interfaces. In the present study, a thermoelectric generator with horizontal pin configuration is considered and thermal stress analysis in the device is presented. Ceramic wafer is considered to resemble the high temperature plate and copper electrodes are introduced at the pin junctions to reduce the electrical resistance between the pins and the high and low temperature junction plates during the operation. Finite element code is used to simulate temperature and stress fields in the thermoelectric generator. In the simulations, convection and radiation losses from the thermoelectric pins are considered and bismuth telluride pin material with and without tapering is incorporated. It is found that von Mises stress attains high values at the interface between the hot and cold junctions and the copper electrodes. Thermal stress developed in tapered pin configuration attains lower values than that of rectangular pin cross-section. - Highlights: • Different cold junction temperatures improves thermoelectric generator performance. • von Mises stress remains high across copper electrodes and hot junction ceramics. • von Mises stress reduces along pin length towards cold junction. • Pin tapering lowers stress levels in thermoelectric generator.

  7. Experimental Study of a Thermoelectric Generation System

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhu, Junpeng; Gao, Junling; Chen, Min

    2011-01-01

    . System-level simulation is carried out using a quasi-one-dimensional numerical model that enables direct comparison with experimental results. The results of both experiment and simulation will provide a foundation to improve and optimize complex thermoelectric generation systems....

  8. Americium-241 radioisotope thermoelectric generator development for space applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ambrosi, Richard; Williams, Hugo; Samara-Ratna, Piyal

    2013-01-01

    Space nuclear power systems are under development in the UK in collaboration with European partners as part of a European Space Agency (ESA) programme. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG) are an important element of this new capability in Europe. RTG systems being developed in Europe are targeting the 10 W electric to 50 W electric power generation range adopting a modular scalable approach to the design. Radiogenic decay heat from radioisotopes can be converted to electrical power by using appropriate semiconductor based thermoelectric materials. The plan for Europe is to develop radioisotope space nuclear power systems based on both thermoelectric and Stirling power conversion systems. Although primarily focused on delivering up to 50 W of electrical power, the European radioisotope thermoelectric system development programme is targeting americium-241 as a fuel source and is maximizing the use of commercially available thermoelectric manufacturing processes in order to accelerate the development of power conversion systems. The use of americium provides an economic solution at high isotopic purity and is product of a separation process from stored plutonium produced during the reprocessing of civil nuclear fuel. A laboratory prototype that uses electrical heating as a substitute for the radioisotope was developed to validate the designs. This prototype has now been tested. This paper outlines the requirements for a European americium-241 fuelled RTG, describes the most recent updates in system design and provides further insight into recent laboratory prototype test campaigns. (author)

  9. Americium-241 radioisotope thermoelectric generator development for space applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ambrosi, Richard; Williams, Hugo; Samara-Ratna, Piyal, E-mail: rma8@le.ac.uk [University of Leicester, (United Kingdom); and others

    2013-07-01

    Space nuclear power systems are under development in the UK in collaboration with European partners as part of a European Space Agency (ESA) programme. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG) are an important element of this new capability in Europe. RTG systems being developed in Europe are targeting the 10 W electric to 50 W electric power generation range adopting a modular scalable approach to the design. Radiogenic decay heat from radioisotopes can be converted to electrical power by using appropriate semiconductor based thermoelectric materials. The plan for Europe is to develop radioisotope space nuclear power systems based on both thermoelectric and Stirling power conversion systems. Although primarily focused on delivering up to 50 W of electrical power, the European radioisotope thermoelectric system development programme is targeting americium-241 as a fuel source and is maximizing the use of commercially available thermoelectric manufacturing processes in order to accelerate the development of power conversion systems. The use of americium provides an economic solution at high isotopic purity and is product of a separation process from stored plutonium produced during the reprocessing of civil nuclear fuel. A laboratory prototype that uses electrical heating as a substitute for the radioisotope was developed to validate the designs. This prototype has now been tested. This paper outlines the requirements for a European americium-241 fuelled RTG, describes the most recent updates in system design and provides further insight into recent laboratory prototype test campaigns. (author)

  10. Performance of the 1 kW thermoelectric generator for diesel engines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bass, J.C.; Elsner, N.B.; Leavitt, F.A.

    1994-01-01

    Hi-Z Technology, Inc. (Hi-Z) has been developing a 1 kW thermoelectric generator for class eight Diesel truck engines under U.S. Department of Energy and California Energy Commission funding since 1992. The purpose of this generator is to replace the currently used shaft-driven alternator by converting part of the waste heat in the engine's exhaust directly to electricity. The preliminary design of this generator was reported at the 1992 meeting of the XI-ICT in Arlington, Texas. This paper will report on the final mechanical, thermal and thermoelectric design of this generator. The generator uses seventy-two of Hi-Z's 13 Watt bismuth-telluride thermoelectric modules for energy conversion. The number of modules and their arrangement has remained constant through the program. The 1 kW generator was tested on several engines during the development process. Many of the design features were changed during this development as more information was obtained. We have only recently reached our design goal of 1 kW output. The output parameters of the generator are reported. copyright 1995 American Institute of Physics

  11. Stretchable Helical Architecture Inorganic-Organic Hetero Thermoelectric Generator

    KAUST Repository

    Rojas, Jhonathan Prieto; Singh, Devendra; Conchouso Gonzalez, David; Carreno, Armando Arpys Arevalo; Foulds, Ian G.; Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa

    2016-01-01

    To achieve higher power output from a thermoelectric generator (TEG), one needs to maintain a larger temperature difference between hot and cold end. In that regard, a stretchable TEG can be interesting to adaptively control the temperature difference. Here we show, the development of simple yet versatile and highly stretchable thermoelectric generators (TEGs), by combining well-known inorganic thermoelectric materials Bismuth Telluride and Antimony Telluride (Bi2Te3 and Sb2Te3) with organic substrates (Off-Stoichiometry Thiol-Enes polymer platform – OSTE, polyimide or paper) and novel helical architecture (double-arm spirals) to achieve over 100% stretchability. First, an OSTE-based TEG design demonstrates higher open circuit voltage generation at 100% strain than at rest, although it exhibits high internal resistance and a relatively complex fabrication process. The second, simpler TEG design, achieves a significant resistance reduction and two different structural substrates (PI and paper) are compared. The paper-based TEG generates 17 nW (ΔT = 75 °C) at 60% strain, which represents more than twice the power generation while at rest (zero strain). On the other hand, polyimide produces more conductive TE films and higher power (~35 nW at ΔT = 75 °C) but due to its higher thermal conductivity, power does not increase at stretch. In conclusion, highly stretchable TEGs can lead to higher temperature gradients (thus higher power generation), given that thermal conductivity of the structural material is low enough. Furthermore, either horizontal or vertical displacement can be achieved with double-arm helical architecture, hence allowing to extend the device to any nearby and mobile heat sink for continuous, effectively higher power generation.

  12. Stretchable Helical Architecture Inorganic-Organic Hetero Thermoelectric Generator

    KAUST Repository

    Rojas, Jhonathan Prieto

    2016-10-26

    To achieve higher power output from a thermoelectric generator (TEG), one needs to maintain a larger temperature difference between hot and cold end. In that regard, a stretchable TEG can be interesting to adaptively control the temperature difference. Here we show, the development of simple yet versatile and highly stretchable thermoelectric generators (TEGs), by combining well-known inorganic thermoelectric materials Bismuth Telluride and Antimony Telluride (Bi2Te3 and Sb2Te3) with organic substrates (Off-Stoichiometry Thiol-Enes polymer platform – OSTE, polyimide or paper) and novel helical architecture (double-arm spirals) to achieve over 100% stretchability. First, an OSTE-based TEG design demonstrates higher open circuit voltage generation at 100% strain than at rest, although it exhibits high internal resistance and a relatively complex fabrication process. The second, simpler TEG design, achieves a significant resistance reduction and two different structural substrates (PI and paper) are compared. The paper-based TEG generates 17 nW (ΔT = 75 °C) at 60% strain, which represents more than twice the power generation while at rest (zero strain). On the other hand, polyimide produces more conductive TE films and higher power (~35 nW at ΔT = 75 °C) but due to its higher thermal conductivity, power does not increase at stretch. In conclusion, highly stretchable TEGs can lead to higher temperature gradients (thus higher power generation), given that thermal conductivity of the structural material is low enough. Furthermore, either horizontal or vertical displacement can be achieved with double-arm helical architecture, hence allowing to extend the device to any nearby and mobile heat sink for continuous, effectively higher power generation.

  13. Exhaust energy conversion by thermoelectric generator: Two case studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karri, M.A.; Thacher, E.F.; Helenbrook, B.T. [Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, PO Box 5725, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY 13699 (United States)

    2011-03-15

    This study reports predictions of the power and fuel savings produced by thermoelectric generators (TEG) placed in the exhaust stream of a sports utility vehicle (SUV) and a stationary, compressed-natural-gas-fueled engine generator set (CNG). Results are obtained for generators using either commercially-available bismuth telluride (Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) or quantum-well (QW) thermoelectric material. The simulated tests are at constant speed in the SUV case and at constant AC power load in the CNG case. The simulations make use of the capabilities of ADVISOR 2002, the vehicle modeling system, supplemented with code to describe the thermoelectric generator system. The increase in power between the QW- and Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}-based generators was about three times for the SUV and seven times for the CNG generator under the same simulation conditions. The relative fuel savings for the SUV averaged around -0.2% using Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and 1.25% using QW generators. For the CNG case the fuel savings was around 0.4% using Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and around 3% using QW generators. The negative fuel gains in the SUV were caused by parasitic losses. The power to transport the TEG system weight was the dominant parasitic loss for the SUV but was absent in the CNG generator. The lack of space constraint and the absence of parasitic loss from the TEG system weight in the CNG case allowed an increase in the TEG system size to generate more power. (author)

  14. A study on heat transfer enhancement using flow channel inserts for thermoelectric power generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lesage, Frédéric J.; Sempels, Éric V.; Lalande-Bertrand, Nathaniel

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • Thermal enhancement in a thermoelectric liquid generator is tested. • Thermal enhancement is brought upon by flow impeding inserts. • CFD simulations attribute thermal enhancement to velocity field alterations. • Thermoelectric power enhancement is measured and discussed. • Power enhancement relative to adverse pressure drop is investigated. - Abstract: Thermoelectric power production has many potential applications that range from microelectronics heat management to large scale industrial waste-heat recovery. A low thermoelectric conversion efficiency of the current state of the art prevents wide spread use of thermoelectric modules. The difficulties lie in material conversion efficiency, module design, and thermal system management. The present study investigates thermoelectric power improvement due to heat transfer enhancement at the channel walls of a liquid-to-liquid thermoelectric generator brought upon by flow turbulating inserts. Care is taken to measure the adverse pressure drop due to the presence of flow impeding obstacles in order to measure the net thermoelectric power enhancement relative to an absence of inserts. The results illustrate the power enhancement performance of three different geometric forms fitted into the channels of a thermoelectric generator. Spiral inserts are shown to offer a minimal improvement in thermoelectric power production whereas inserts with protruding panels are shown to be the most effective. Measurements of the thermal enhancement factor which represents the ratio of heat flux into heat flux out of a channel and numerical simulations of the internal flow velocity field attribute the thermal enhancement resulting in the thermoelectric power improvement to thermal and velocity field synergy

  15. A test system and supervisory control and data acquisition application with programmable logic controller for thermoelectric generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahiska, Rasit; Mamur, Hayati

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► A new TEG test measurement system with the PLC has been carried out. ► A new SCADA program has been written and tested for the test measurement system. ► An operator panel has been used for monitoring to the instant TEG data. ► All of the measurement data of TEG have been aggregated in the system. - Abstract: In this study, a new test measurement system and supervisory control and data acquisition application with programmable logic controller has been carried out to be enable the collection of the data of thermoelectric generator for the usage of thermoelectric modules as thermoelectric generator. During the production of the electric energy from the thermoelectric generator, the temperatures of the surfaces of the thermoelectric generator, current–voltage values obtained from output of the thermoelectric generator, hot and cold flows have been measured by the newly established system instantly. All these data have been monitored continuously from the computer and recorded by a supervisory control and data acquisition program. At the same time, in environments where there was no computer, an operator panel with the ability to communicate with the programmable logic controller has been added for the monitoring of the instant thermoelectric generator data. All of the measurement data of the thermoelectric generator have been aggregated in the new test measurement and supervisory control and data acquisition system. The setup test measurement system has been implemented on the thermoelectric generator system with about 10 W. Thermoelectric generators, Altec-GM-1 brand-coded have been examined by the new proposed test measurement system and the values of maximum power and thermoelectric generator efficiency were calculated by the programmable logic controller. When the obtained results were compared with the datasheets, the relative error for the maximum power was around 4% and the value for efficiency was below 3%.

  16. Thermal characteristics of combined thermoelectric generator and refrigeration cycle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yilbas, Bekir S.; Sahin, Ahmet Z.

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • TEM location in between the evaporator and condenser results in low coefficient of performance. • TEM location in between condenser and its ambient improves coefficient of performance of the combined system. • High temperature ratio enhances coefficient of performance of combined system. • Certain values of parameters enhance combined system performance. - Abstract: A combined thermal system consisting of a thermoelectric generator and a refrigerator is considered and the effect of location of the thermoelectric generator, in the refrigeration cycle, on the performance characteristics of the combined system is investigated. The operating conditions and their influence on coefficient of performance of the combined system are examined through introducing the dimensionless parameters, such as λ(λ = Q HTE /Q H , where Q HTE is heat transfer to the thermoelectric generator from the condenser, Q H is the total heat transfer from the condenser to its ambient), temperature ratio (θ L = T L /T H , where T L is the evaporator temperature and T H is the condenser temperature), r C (r C = C L /C H , where C L is the thermal capacitance due to heat transfer to evaporator and C H , is the thermal capacitance due to heat rejected from the condenser), θ W (θ W = T W /T H , where T W is the ambient temperature), θ C (θ C = T C /T H , where T C is the cold space temperature). It is found that the location of the thermoelectric generator in between the condenser and the evaporator decreases coefficient of performance of the combined system. Alternatively, the location of thermoelectric device in between the condenser and its ambient enhances coefficient of performance of the combined system. The operating parameters has significant effect on the performance characteristics of the combined system; in which case temperature ratio (θ L ) within the range of 0.68–0.70, r C = 2.5, θ W = 0.85, and θ C = 0.8 improve coefficient of performance of the

  17. Thermoelectric cooling of microelectronic circuits and waste heat electrical power generation in a desktop personal computer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gould, C.A.; Shammas, N.Y.A.; Grainger, S.; Taylor, I.

    2011-01-01

    Thermoelectric cooling and micro-power generation from waste heat within a standard desktop computer has been demonstrated. A thermoelectric test system has been designed and constructed, with typical test results presented for thermoelectric cooling and micro-power generation when the computer is executing a number of different applications. A thermoelectric module, operating as a heat pump, can lower the operating temperature of the computer's microprocessor and graphics processor to temperatures below ambient conditions. A small amount of electrical power, typically in the micro-watt or milli-watt range, can be generated by a thermoelectric module attached to the outside of the computer's standard heat sink assembly, when a secondary heat sink is attached to the other side of the thermoelectric module. Maximum electrical power can be generated by the thermoelectric module when a water cooled heat sink is used as the secondary heat sink, as this produces the greatest temperature difference between both sides of the module.

  18. The thermoelectric generators use for waste heat utilization from cement plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sztekler Karol

    2017-01-01

    Production often entails the formation of by-product which is waste heat. One of the equipment processing heat into electricity is a thermoelectric generator. Its operation is based on the principle of thermoelectric phenomenon, which is known as a Seebeck phenomenon. The simplicity of thermoelectric phenomena allows its use in various industries, in which the main waste product is in the form of heat with the temperature of several hundred degrees. The study analyses the possibility of the thermoelectric systems use for the waste heat utilization resulting in the cement production at the cement plant. The location and design of the thermoelectric system that could be implemented in cement plant is chosen. The analysis has been prepared in the IPSEpro software.

  19. Applications of nuclear-powered thermoelectric generators in space

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rowe, D.M.

    1991-01-01

    The source of electrical power which enables information to be transmitted from the space crafts Voyager 1 and 2 back to Earth after a time period of more than a decade and at a distance of more than a billion miles is known as an RTG (radioisotope thermoelectric generator). It utilises the Seebeck effect in producing electricity from heat. In essence it consists of a large number of semiconductor thermocouples connected electrically in series and thermally in parallel. A temperature difference is maintained across the thermocouples by providing a heat source, which in the case of an RTG is a radioactive isotope, and the heat sink is space. The combination of an energy-conversion system, free of moving parts and a long-life, high energy-density heat source, provides a supply of electrical power typically in the range of tens to hundred of watts and which operates reliably over extended periods of time. An electric power source, based upon thermoelectric conversion by which utilises a nuclear reactor as a heat source, has also been deployed in space and a 100-kW system is being developed to provide electrical power to a variety of commercial and military projects including SDI. Developments in thermoelectrics that have taken place in the western world during the past 30 years are primarily due to United States interest and involvement in the exploration of space. This paper reviews US applications of nuclear-powered thermoelectric generators in space. (author)

  20. Radioisotope thermoelectric generator licensed hardware package and certification tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goldmann, L.H.; Averette, H.S.

    1994-01-01

    This paper presents the Licensed Hardware package and the Certification Test portions of the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System. This package has been designed to meet those portions of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR 71) relating to ''Type B'' shipments of radioactive materials. The detailed information for the anticipated license is presented in the safety analysis report for packaging, which is now in process and undergoing necessary reviews. As part of the licensing process, a full-size Certification Test Article unit, which has modifications slightly different than the Licensed Hardware or production shipping units, is used for testing. Dimensional checks of the Certification Test Article were made at the manufacturing facility. Leak testing and drop testing were done at the 300 Area of the US Department of Energy's Hanford Site near Richland, Washington. The hardware includes independent double containments to prevent the environmental spread of 238 Pu, impact limiting devices to protect portions of the package from impacts, and thermal insulation to protect the seal areas from excess heat during accident conditions. The package also features electronic feed-throughs to monitor the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator's temperature inside the containment during the shipment cycle. This package is designed to safely dissipate the typical 4500 thermal watts produced in the largest Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators. The package also contains provisions to ensure leak tightness when radioactive materials, such as a Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator for the Cassini Mission, planned for 1997 by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, are being prepared for shipment. These provisions include test ports used in conjunction with helium mass spectrometers to determine seal leakage rates of each containment during the assembly process

  1. Analysis Of Power Characteristics Of Model Thermoelectric Generator TEG Small Modular

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kisman H. Mahmud

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectrically Generator TEG can generate electricity from the temperature difference between hot and cold at the junction thermoelectric module with two different semiconductor materials there will be a flow of current through the junction so as to produce a voltage. This principle uses the Seebeck effect thermoelectric generator as a base. By using these principles this research was conducted to determine the potential of the electric energy of the two peltier modules which would be an alternative source for mobile charger using heat from source of methylated. The focus in this research is the testing of the model TEG Thermoelectric Generator Small Modular to generate power with a variety of different materials of 4 namely Bi2Te3 Bismuth Telluride PbTe-Bite CMO and CMO Cascade-32-62S-32-62S Calcium Mangan oxide to use the cold side heat sink and a fan to simulate heat aluminum plate attached to the hot side of the TEG modules with heat source of methylated. Test results on the TEG Small Modular Model for mobile charger output voltage obtained from 2 pieces Bi2Te3 module Bismuth Telluride Peltier strung together a series of 3.01 Volt with amp916T of 22.7 C which produce power of 0.091 Watt.

  2. Performance evaluation of an automotive thermoelectric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubitsky, Andrei O.

    Around 40% of the total fuel energy in typical internal combustion engines (ICEs) is rejected to the environment in the form of exhaust gas waste heat. Efficient recovery of this waste heat in automobiles can promise a fuel economy improvement of 5%. The thermal energy can be harvested through thermoelectric generators (TEGs) utilizing the Seebeck effect. In the present work, a versatile test bench has been designed and built in order to simulate conditions found on test vehicles. This allows experimental performance evaluation and model validation of automotive thermoelectric generators. An electrically heated exhaust gas circuit and a circulator based coolant loop enable integrated system testing of hot and cold side heat exchangers, thermoelectric modules (TEMs), and thermal interface materials at various scales. A transient thermal model of the coolant loop was created in order to design a system which can maintain constant coolant temperature under variable heat input. Additionally, as electrical heaters cannot match the transient response of an ICE, modelling was completed in order to design a relaxed exhaust flow and temperature history utilizing the system thermal lag. This profile reduced required heating power and gas flow rates by over 50%. The test bench was used to evaluate a DOE/GM initial prototype automotive TEG and validate analytical performance models. The maximum electrical power generation was found to be 54 W with a thermal conversion efficiency of 1.8%. It has been found that thermal interface management is critical for achieving maximum system performance, with novel designs being considered for further improvement.

  3. Wearable thermoelectric generators for body-powered devices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leonov, V.; Vullers, R.J.M.

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a discussion on energy scavenging for wearable devices in conjunction with human body properties. Motivation, analysis of the relevant properties of the human body, and results of optimization of a thermopile and a thermoelectric generator for wearable and portable devices are

  4. An oxide-based thermoelectric generator: Transversal thermoelectric strip-device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teichert, S.; Bochmann, A.; Reimann, T.; Schulz, T.; Dreßler, C.; Töpfer, J.

    2015-07-01

    A special design of an oxide-based transversal thermoelectric device utilizing thermoelectric oxides in combination with a ceramic multilayer technology is proposed. Metal strips within the ceramic matrix replace the tilted stack of alternating layers used in artificial anisotropic transversal thermoelectric devices. Numerical three-dimensional simulations of both device types reveal better thermoelectric performance data for the device with metal stripes. A monolithic transversal strip-device based on the material combination La1.97Sr0.03CuO4/Ag6Pd1 was prepared and electrically characterized. A maximum power output of 4.0 mW was determined at ΔT = 225 K for the monolithic device. The observed results are in remarkable agreement with three-dimensional numerical simulations utilizing the transport parameters of the two materials and the geometry data of the device.

  5. Optimal operation of thermoelectric cooler driven by solar thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khattab, N.M.; El Shenawy, E.T.

    2006-01-01

    The possibility of using a solar thermoelectric generator (TEG) to drive a small thermoelectric cooler (TEC) is studied in the present work. The study includes the theory of both the TEG and the TEC, giving special consideration to determination of the number of TEG modules required to power the TEC to achieve the best performance of the TEG-TEC system all year round. Commercially available thermoelectric modules (TE) are used in the system. The TEG contains 49 thermocouples and the TEC contains 127 thermocouples. A simple arrangement of plane reflectors that are designed to receive maximum solar energy during noon time is used to heat the TEG. Performance tests are conducted to determine both the physical properties and the performance curves of the available TE modules. Also, empirical relations describing the performance of the TEG and TEC modules have been established. These relations are used to develop a mathematical model simulating the TEG-TEC system to predict its performance all year round under the actual climatic conditions of Cairo, Egypt (30 deg. N latitude). The model results are used to determine the number of TEG modules required to drive a single TEC module at maximum cooling capacity. The results show that five thermocouples of the TEG can drive one thermocouple of the TEC, which coincides with the previous theory of the TEG-TEC. This means that 10 of the used TEG modules are required to power the used TEC at optimum performance most times of the year

  6. Use of thermoelectric generators for improve power dependability over grid power

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Archer, Jack [Global Thermoelectric, Calgary (Canada)

    2005-07-01

    A natural gas transportation company was experiencing extensive pipeline corrosion on some sections of their pipeline protected by impressed current using grid power and rectifiers. After determining that grid power was being interrupted on the affected sections, the gas transporter began looking for a more dependable power supply and chose thermoelectric generators. Since installing thermoelectric generators in 2002, the pipeline potentials have stabilized and transporter was able to experience 100% operational time on affected sections. (author)

  7. Performance analysis of a waste heat recovery thermoelectric generation system for automotive application

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, X.; Deng, Y.D.; Li, Z.; Su, C.Q.

    2015-01-01

    Graphical abstract: A new automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generator and its “four-TEGs” system are constructed, and the performance characteristics of system are discussed through road test and revolving drum test. - Highlights: • The automotive thermoelectric generator system was constructed and studied. • Road test and revolving drum test were used to measure the output power. • A performance of 201.7 V (open circuit voltage)/944 W obtained. - Abstract: Thermoelectric power generators are one of the promising green energy sources. In this case study, an energy-harvesting system which extracts heat from an automotive exhaust pipe and turns the heat into electricity by using thermoelectric power generators (TEGs) has been constructed. The test bench is developed to analysis the performance of TEG system characteristics, which are undertaken to assess the feasibility of automotive applications. Based on the test bench, a new system called “four-TEGs” system is designed and assembled into prototype vehicle called “Warrior”, through the road test and revolving drum test table, characteristics of the system such as hot-side temperature, cold-side temperature, open circuit voltage and power output are studied, and a maximum power of 944 W was obtained, which completely meets the automotive application. The present study shows the promising potential of using this kind of thermoelectric generator for low-temperature waste heat recovery vehicle

  8. Prototype Combined Heater/Thermoelectric Power Generator for Remote Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Champier, D.; Favarel, C.; Bédécarrats, J. P.; Kousksou, T.; Rozis, J. F.

    2013-07-01

    This study presents a prototype thermoelectric generator (TEG) developed for remote applications in villages that are not connected to the electrical power grid. For ecological and economic reasons, there is growing interest in harvesting waste heat from biomass stoves to produce some electricity. Because regular maintenance is not required, TEGs are an attractive choice for small-scale power generation in inaccessible areas. The prototype developed in our laboratory is especially designed to be implemented in stoves that are also used for domestic hot water heating. The aim of this system is to provide a few watts to householders, so they have the ability to charge cellular phones and radios, and to get some light at night. A complete prototype TEG using commercial (bismuth telluride) thermoelectric modules has been built, including system integration with an electric DC/DC converter. The DC/DC converter has a maximum power point tracker (MPPT) driven by an MC9SO8 microcontroller, which optimizes the electrical energy stored in a valve-regulated lead-acid battery. Physical models were used to study the behavior of the thermoelectric system and to optimize the performance of the MPPT. Experiments using a hot gas generator to simulate the exhaust of the combustion chamber of a stove are used to evaluate the system. Additionally, potential uses of such generators are presented.

  9. From Modules to a Generator: An Integrated Heat Exchanger Concept for Car Applications of a Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosch, Henry

    2016-03-01

    A heat exchanger concept for a thermoelectric generator with integrated planar modules for passenger car applications is introduced. The module housings, made of deep drawn stainless steel sheet metal, are brazed onto the exhaust gas channel to achieve an optimal heat transfer on the hot side of the modules. The cooling side consists of winding fluid channels, which are mounted directly onto the cold side of the modules. Only a thin foil separates the cooling media from the modules for an almost direct heat contact on the cooling side. Thermoelectric generators with up to 20 modules made of PbTe and Bi2Te3, respectively, are manufactured and tested on a hot gas generator to investigate electrical power output and performance of the thermoelectric generator. The proof of concept of the light weight heat exchanger design made of sheet metal with integrated modules is positively accomplished.

  10. The effect of Cr buffer layer thickness on voltage generation of thin-film thermoelectric modules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mizoshiri, Mizue; Mikami, Masashi; Ozaki, Kimihiro

    2013-01-01

    The effect of Cr buffer layer thickness on the open-circuit voltage generated by thin-film thermoelectric modules of Bi 0.5 Sb 1.5 Te 3 (p-type) and Bi 2 Te 2.7 Se 0.3 (n-type) materials was investigated. A Cr buffer layer, whose thickness generally needs to be optimized to improve adhesion depending on the substrate surface condition, such as roughness, was deposited between thermoelectric thin films and glass substrates. When the Cr buffer layer was 1 nm thick, the Seebeck coefficients and electrical conductivity of 1 µm thermoelectric thin films with the buffer layers were approximately equal to those of the thermoelectric films without the buffer layers. When the thickness of the Cr buffer layer was 1 µm, the same as the thermoelectric films, the Seebeck coefficients of the bilayer films were reduced by an electrical current flowing inside the Cr buffer layer and the generation of Cr 2 Te 3 . The open-circuit voltage of the thin-film thermoelectric modules decreased with an increase in the thickness of the Cr buffer layer, which was primarily induced by the electrical current flow. The reduction caused by the Cr 2 Te 3 generation was less than 10% of the total voltage generation of the modules without the Cr buffer layers. The voltage generation of thin-film thermoelectric modules could be controlled by the Cr buffer layer thickness. (paper)

  11. Performance Investigation of an Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator for Military SUV Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Quan

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available To analyze the thermoelectric power generation for sports utility vehicle (SUV application, a novel thermoelectric generator (TEG based on low-temperature Bi2Te3 thermoelectric modules (TEMs and a chaos-shaped brass heat exchanger is constructed. The temperature distribution of the TEG is analyzed based on an experimental setup, and the temperature uniformity optimization method is performed by chipping peak off and filling valley is taken to validate the improved output power. An automobile exhaust thermoelectric generator (AETEG using four TEGs connected thermally in parallel and electrically in series is assembled into a prototype military SUV, its temperature distribution, output voltage, output power, system efficiency, inner resistance, and backpressure is analyzed, and several important influencing factors such as vehicle speed, clamping pressure, engine coolant flow rate, and ambient temperature on its output performance are tested. Experimental results demonstrate that higher vehicle speed, larger clamping pressure, faster engine coolant flow rate and lower ambient temperature can enhance the overall output performance, but the ambient temperature and coolant flow rate are less significant. The maximum output power of AETEG is 646.26 W, the corresponding conversion efficiency is 1.03%, and the increased backpressure changes from 1681 Pa to 1807 Pa when the highest vehicle speed is 125 km/h.

  12. End-on radioisotope thermoelectric generator impact tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reimus, M.A.H.; Hhinckley, J.E.

    1997-01-01

    The General-Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) provides power for space missions by transmitting the heat of [sup 238]Pu decay to an array of thermoelectric elements in a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG). The modular GPHS design was developed to address both survivability during launch abort and return from orbit. The first two RTG Impact Tests were designed to provide information on the response of a fully loaded RTG to end-on impact against a concrete target. The results of these tests indicated that at impact velocities up to 57 m/s the converter shell and internal components protect the GPHS capsules from excessive deformation. At higher velocities, some of the internal components of the RTG interact with the GPHS capsules to cause excessive localized deformation and failure

  13. Simple engineering design for complex thermoelectric generators based on reduced current approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wijesooriyage, Waruna Dissanayaka; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are niche candidate for the field of energy management as electrical generator devices. Generally, comprehensive and accurate design techniques for TEGs (thermoelectric generators), such as reduced current approach (RCA), are complex and time consuming processes....... This study develops a simple, comprehensive and accurate TEG designing technique based on RCA. The proposed method can predict the most efficient TEG architecture with more than 97% accuracy comparing to the RCA over wide range of possible temperature and zT for present TEG applications. Moreover...

  14. Thermoelectric Power Generation Utilizing the Waste Heat from a Biomass Boiler

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazdil, Marian; Pospisil, Jiri

    2013-07-01

    The objective of the presented work is to test the possibility of using thermoelectric power to convert flue gas waste heat from a small-scale domestic pellet boiler, and to assess the influence of a thermoelectric generator on its function. A prototype of the generator, able to be connected to an existing device, was designed, constructed, and tested. The performance of the generator as well as the impact of the generator on the operation of the boiler was investigated under various operating conditions. The boiler gained auxiliary power and could become a combined heat and power unit allowing self-sufficient operation. The created unit represents an independent source of electricity with effective use of fuel.

  15. Modeling, experiments and optimization of an on-pipe thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Jie; Zuo, Lei; Wu, Yongjia; Klein, Jackson

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • A novel design of on-pipe thermoelectric generator using heat pipe. • A heat pipe is used and increases power output by more than 6 times. • Detailed system level modeling on the heat transfer and energy conversion. • Lab-based experiments shows that system can harvest more than 2 W of energy. • An optimization towards the design indicates further improvement can be achieved. - Abstract: A thermoelectric energy harvester composed of two thermoelectric modules, a wicked copper-water heat pipe, and finned heat sinks has been designed, modeled, and tested. The harvester is proposed to power sensor nodes on heating/cooling, steam, or exhaust pipes like these in power stations, chemical plants and vehicle systems. A model to analyze the heat transfer and thermoelectric performance of the energy harvesting system has been developed and validated against experiments. The results show that the model predicts the system power output and temperature response with reasonable accuracy. The model developed in this paper can be adapted for use with general heat sink, heat pipe, and thermoelectric systems. The design, incorporating a heat pipe and two 1.1″ by 1.1″ Bi_2Te_3 modules generates 2.25 W ± 0.13 W power output with a temperature difference of 128 °C ± 1.12 °C and source temperature of 246 °C ± 1.9 °C, which is more than enough to operate wireless sensors or some actuators. The use of a heat pipe in this design increased the power output by 6 times over conventional designs. Based on the model, further improvement of the power output and energy harvesting efficiency of the system has been suggested by optimizing the number of thermoelectric modules.

  16. Automotive Thermoelectric Generator impact on the efficiency of a drive system with a combustion engine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziolkowski Andrzej

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Increasing the combustion engine drive systems efficiency is currently being achieved by structural changes in internal combustion engines and its equipment, which are geared towards limiting mechanical, thermal and outlet losses. For this reason, downsizing. In addition to these changes, all manner of exhaust gas energy recovery systems are being investigated and implemented, including turbocompound, turbogenerators and thermoelectric generators. The article presents the author’s idea of a thermoelectric generator system of automotive applications ATEG (Automotive Thermoelectric Generator and the study of the recovery of exhaust gas energy stream. The ATEG consists of a heat exchanger, thermoelectric modules and a cooling system. In this solution, 24 commercial thermoelectric modules based on Bi2Te3 (bismuth telluride were used. Measurements were made at two engine test sites on which SI and CI engines were installed. The exhaust gas parameters (temperature and mass flow rate, fuel consumption and operating parameters of the ATEG – the intensity and the voltage generated by the thermoelectric modules and the temperature on the walls of the heat exchanger – were all measured in the experiments. Based on the obtained results, the exhaust gas energy flow and the power of the ATEG were determined as well as its effect on the diesel engine drive system efficiency.

  17. Estimating capacity of solar thermoelectric generator (STEG) panels

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kokhova, I.I.; Malevskii, Yu.N.; Tsvetkov, A.I.

    1979-01-01

    Energy characteristics of a solar thermoelectric generator (STEG) panel without solar-flux concentration are considered. The design of such devices is no simple task. Several fully justified assumptions have been introduced in an attempt to obtain a solution convenient for engineering calculations

  18. High-efficiency photovoltaic technology including thermoelectric generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisac, Miguel; Villasevil, Francesc X.; López, Antonio M.

    2014-04-01

    Nowadays, photovoltaic solar energy is a clean and reliable source for producing electric power. Most photovoltaic systems have been designed and built up for use in applications with low power requirements. The efficiency of solar cells is quite low, obtaining best results in monocrystalline silicon structures, with an efficiency of about 18%. When temperature rises, photovoltaic cell efficiency decreases, given that the short-circuit current is slightly increased, and the open-circuit voltage, fill factor and power output are reduced. To ensure that this does not affect performance, this paper describes how to interconnect photovoltaic and thermoelectric technology into a single structure. The temperature gradient in the solar panel is used to supply thermoelectric cells, which generate electricity, achieving a positive contribution to the total balance of the complete system.

  19. Flexible Thermoelectric Generators on Silicon Fabric

    KAUST Repository

    Sevilla, Galo T.

    2012-11-01

    In this work, the development of a Thermoelectric Generator on Flexible Silicon Fabric is explored to extend silicon electronics for flexible platforms. Low cost, easily deployable plastic based flexible electronics are of great interest for smart textile, wearable electronics and many other exciting applications. However, low thermal budget processing and fundamentally limited electron mobility hinders its potential to be competitive with well established and highly developed silicon technology. The use of silicon in flexible electronics involve expensive and abrasive materials and processes. In this work, high performance flexible thermoelectric energy harvesters are demonstrated from low cost bulk silicon (100) wafers. The fabrication of the micro- harvesters was done using existing silicon processes on silicon (100) and then peeled them off from the original substrate leaving it for reuse. Peeled off silicon has 3.6% thickness of bulk silicon reducing the thermal loss significantly and generating nearly 30% more output power than unpeeled harvesters. The demonstrated generic batch processing shows a pragmatic way of peeling off a whole silicon circuitry after conventional fabrication on bulk silicon wafers for extremely deformable high performance integrated electronics. In summary, by using a novel, low cost process, this work has successfully integrated existing and highly developed fabrication techniques to introduce a flexible energy harvester for sustainable applications.

  20. Modeling of a Thermoelectric Generator for Thermal Energy Regeneration in Automobiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tatarinov, Dimitri; Koppers, M.; Bastian, G.; Schramm, D.

    2013-07-01

    In the field of passenger transportation a reduction of the consumption of fossil fuels has to be achieved by any measures. Advanced designs of internal combustion engine have the potential to reduce CO2 emissions, but still suffer from low efficiencies in the range from 33% to 44%. Recuperation of waste heat can be achieved with thermoelectric generators (TEGs) that convert heat directly into electric energy, thus offering a less complicated setup as compared with thermodynamic cycle processes. During a specific driving cycle of a car, the heat currents and temperature levels of the exhaust gas are dynamic quantities. To optimize a thermoelectric recuperation system fully, various parameters have to be tested, for example, the electric and thermal conductivities of the TEG and consequently the heat absorbed and rejected from the system, the generated electrical power, and the system efficiency. A Simulink model consisting of a package for dynamic calculation of energy management in a vehicle, coupled with a model of the thermoelectric generator system placed on the exhaust system, determines the drive-cycle-dependent efficiency of the heat recovery system, thus calculating the efficiency gain of the vehicle. The simulation also shows the temperature drop at the heat exchanger along the direction of the exhaust flow and hence the variation of the voltage drop of consecutively arranged TEG modules. The connection between the temperature distribution and the optimal electrical circuitry of the TEG modules constituting the entire thermoelectric recuperation system can then be examined. The simulation results are compared with data obtained from laboratory experiments. We discuss error bars and the accuracy of the simulation results for practical thermoelectric systems embedded in cars.

  1. Energy Optimization for a Weak Hybrid Power System of an Automobile Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Wei; Quan, Shuhai; Xie, Changjun; Tang, Xinfeng; Ran, Bin; Jiao, Yatian

    2017-11-01

    An integrated starter generator (ISG)-type hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) scheme is proposed based on the automobile exhaust thermoelectric generator (AETEG). An eddy current dynamometer is used to simulate the vehicle's dynamic cycle. A weak ISG hybrid bench test system is constructed to test the 48 V output from the power supply system, which is based on engine exhaust-based heat power generation. The thermoelectric power generation-based system must ultimately be tested when integrated into the ISG weak hybrid mixed power system. The test process is divided into two steps: comprehensive simulation and vehicle-based testing. The system's dynamic process is simulated for both conventional and thermoelectric powers, and the dynamic running process comprises four stages: starting, acceleration, cruising and braking. The quantity of fuel available and battery pack energy, which are used as target vehicle energy functions for comparison with conventional systems, are simplified into a single energy target function, and the battery pack's output current is used as the control variable in the thermoelectric hybrid energy optimization model. The system's optimal battery pack output current function is resolved when its dynamic operating process is considered as part of the hybrid thermoelectric power generation system. In the experiments, the system bench is tested using conventional power and hybrid thermoelectric power for the four dynamic operation stages. The optimal battery pack curve is calculated by functional analysis. In the vehicle, a power control unit is used to control the battery pack's output current and minimize energy consumption. Data analysis shows that the fuel economy of the hybrid power system under European Driving Cycle conditions is improved by 14.7% when compared with conventional systems.

  2. Power generation from thermoelectric system-embedded Plexiglas for green building technology

    KAUST Repository

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2012-06-09

    Thermoelectric materials embedded through or inside exterior glass windows can act as a viable source of supplemental power in geographic locations where hot weather dominates. This thermoelectricity is generated because of the thermal difference between the high temperature outside and the relatively cold temperature inside. Using physical vapor deposition process, we experimentally verify this concept by embedding bismuth telluride and antimony telluride through the 5 mm Plexiglas to demonstrate 10 nW of thermopower generation with a temperature gradient of 21 °C. Albeit tiny at this point with non-optimized design and development, this concept can be extended for relatively large-scale power generation as an additional power supply for green building technology.

  3. Development and optimization of a stove-powered thermoelectric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mastbergen, Dan

    Almost a third of the world's population still lacks access to electricity. Most of these people use biomass stoves for cooking which produce significant amounts of wasted thermal energy, but no electricity. Less than 1% of this energy in the form of electricity would be adequate for basic tasks such as lighting and communications. However, an affordable and reliable means of accomplishing this is currently nonexistent. The goal of this work is to develop a thermoelectric generator to convert a small amount of wasted heat into electricity. Although this concept has been around for decades, previous attempts have failed due to insufficient analysis of the system as a whole, leading to ineffective and costly designs. In this work, a complete design process is undertaken including concept generation, prototype testing, field testing, and redesign/optimization. Detailed component models are constructed and integrated to create a full system model. The model encompasses the stove operation, thermoelectric module, heat sinks, charging system and battery. A 3000 cycle endurance test was also conducted to evaluate the effects of operating temperature, module quality, and thermal interface quality on the generator's reliability, lifetime and cost effectiveness. The results from this testing are integrated into the system model to determine the lowest system cost in $/Watt over a five year period. Through this work the concept of a stove-based thermoelectric generator is shown to be technologically and economically feasible. In addition, a methodology is developed for optimizing the system for specific regional stove usage habits.

  4. Application of Thermoelectric Devices to Fuel Cell Power Generation: Demonstration and Evaluation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Huston, John; Wyatt, Chris; Nichols, Chris; Binder, Michael J; Holcomb, Franklin H

    2004-01-01

    The Department of Defense (DOD) is concerned with reliable and cost-effective power generation of on-site power generators as well as minimizing the environment impact of these generators. Thermoelectric (TE...

  5. Independent Power Generation in a Modern Electrical Substation Based on Thermoelectric Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Z. M.; Zhao, Y. Q.; Liu, W.; Wei, B.; Qiu, M.; Lai, X. K.

    2017-05-01

    Because of many types of electrical equipment with high power in substations, the potentiality of energy conservation is quite large. From this viewpoint, thermoelectric materials may be chosen to produce electrical energy using the waste heat produced in substations. Hence, a thermoelectric generation system which can recycle the waste heat from electric transformers was proposed to improve the energy efficiency and reduce the burden of the oil cooling system. An experimental prototype was fabricated to perform the experiment and to verify the feasibility. The experimental results showed that the output power could achieve 16 W from waste heat of 900 W, and that the power conversion efficiency was approximately 1.8%. Therefore, power generation is feasible by using the waste heat from the transformers based on thermoelectric technology.

  6. Radioisotope thermoelectric generator/thin fragment impact test

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reimus, M.A.H.; Hinckley, J.E.

    1998-01-01

    The General-Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) provides power for space missions by transmitting the heat of 238 Pu decay to an array of thermoelectric elements in a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG). Because the potential for a launch abort or return from orbit exists for any space mission, the heat source response to credible accident scenarios is being evaluated. This test was designed to provide information on the response of a loaded RTG to impact by a fragment similar to the type of fragment produced by breakup of the spacecraft propulsion module system (PMS). The results of this test indicated that impact of the RTG by a thin aluminum fragment traveling at 306 m/s may result in significant damage to the convertor housing, failure of one fueled clad, and release of a small quantity of fuel

  7. Potential for Usage of Thermoelectric Generators on Ships

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristiansen, Nils; Nielsen, H.K.

    2010-01-01

    The useful waste heat potential for a bulk carrier has been evaluated as a preliminary step towards developing a thermoelectric generator (TEG) waste heat recovery system for ships. A medium-sized bulk carrier produces 6.2 MW of waste heat, and the most promising usable sources for the TEG...

  8. Thermoelectric generator hidden in a shirt with a fabric radiator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leonov, V.; Vullers, R.J.M.; Hoof, C.V.

    2012-01-01

    Integration of thermopiles in garments has been performed in this work in different ways. It is shown that textile has a minor effect on power generation, which enables completely hidden and unobtrusive energy harvester. A one-milliwatt thermoelectric generator is then integrated between two layers

  9. NASA RPS Program Overview: A Focus on RPS Users

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamley, John A.; Sutliff, Thomas J.; Sandifer, Carl E., II; Zakrajsek, June F.

    2016-01-01

    The goal of NASA's Radioisotope Power Systems (RPS) Program is to make RPS ready and available to support the exploration of the solar system in environments where the use of conventional solar or chemical power generation is impractical or impossible to meet the needs of the missions. To meet this goal, the RPS Program, working closely with the Department of Energy, performs mission and system studies (such as the recently released Nuclear Power Assessment Study), assesses the readiness of promising technologies to infuse in future generators, assesses the sustainment of key RPS capabilities and knowledge, forecasts and tracks the Programs budgetary needs, and disseminates current information about RPS to the community of potential users. This process has been refined and used to determine the current content of the RPS Programs portfolio. This portfolio currently includes an effort to mature advanced thermoelectric technology for possible integration into an enhanced Multi-Mission Radioisotope Generator (eMMRTG), sustainment and production of the currently deployed MMRTG, and technology investments that could lead to a future Stirling Radioisotope Generator (SRG). This paper describes the program planning processes that have been used, the currently available MMRTG, and one of the potential future systems, the eMMRTG.

  10. Vulnerability of US thermoelectric power generation to climate change when incorporating state-level environmental regulations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Lu; Hejazi, Mohamad; Li, Hongyi; Forman, Barton; Zhang, Xiao

    2017-07-10

    This study explores the interactions between climate and thermoelectric generation in the U.S. by coupling an Earth System Model with a thermoelectric power generation model. We validated model simulations of power production for selected power plants (~44% of existing thermoelectric capacity) against reported values. In addition, we projected future usable capacity for existing power plants under two different climate change scenarios. Results indicate that climate change alone may reduce average thermoelectric generating capacity by 2%-3% by the 2060s. Reductions up to 12% are expected if environmental requirements are enforced without waivers for thermal variation. This study concludes that the impact of climate change on the U.S. thermoelectric power system is less than previous estimates due to an inclusion of a spatially-disaggregated representation of environmental regulations and provisional variances that temporarily relieve power plants from permit requirements. This work highlights the significance of accounting for legal constructs in which the operation of power plants are managed, and underscores the effects of provisional variances in addition to environmental requirements.

  11. Using high thermal stability flexible thin film thermoelectric generator at moderate temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Zhuang-Hao; Luo, Jing-Ting; Chen, Tian-Bao; Zhang, Xiang-Hua; Liang, Guang-Xing; Fan, Ping

    2018-04-01

    Flexible thin film thermoelectric devices are extensively used in the microscale industry for powering wearable electronics. In this study, comprehensive optimization was conducted in materials and connection design for fabricating a high thermal stability flexible thin film thermoelectric generator. First, the thin films in the generator, including the electrodes, were prepared by magnetron sputtering deposition. The "NiCu-Cu-NiCu" multilayer electrode structure was applied to ensure the thermal stability of the device used at moderate temperature in an air atmosphere. A design with metal layer bonding and series accordant connection was then employed. The maximum efficiency of a single PN thermocouple generator is >11%, and the output power loss of the generator is <10% after integration.

  12. Experimental Study of Thermoelectric Generator as Electrical Source of Impressed Current Cathodic Protection for Ship Hull

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adi Kurniawan

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Impressed Current Cathodic Protection (ICCP is a method to protect metallic material such as ship hull from corrosion by using electric current. In this research, a prototype of thermoelectric generator is developed in order to supply the ICCP system. This thermoelectric generator is planned to utilize the exhaust gas from main engine of the ship. Method carried in this research is assembling the prototype of thermoelectric generator followed by conducted experiment to observe the potential energy of the prototype. After that, the required number of thermoelectric generator is calculated to supply the ICCP system to protect the ship from corrosion. The object in this research is live fish carrier “Wellboat” which has 396.08 m2 wetted area. The required voltage and current to protect the ship from corrosion for three years are 16.67 Volt and 2.66 Ampere. Based on the experiment, a prototype of thermoelectric generator can generate 0.34 Ampere and 4.43 Volt, causing the need of 8 series and 4 parallels connection. It can be concluded that the corrosion rate on the ship hull can be decelerated by using impressed current cathodic protection method without needing additional cost or fuel consumption to produce electric energy.  

  13. Thermoelectric generators incorporating phase-change materials for waste heat recovery from engine exhaust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meisner, Gregory P; Yang, Jihui

    2014-02-11

    Thermoelectric devices, intended for placement in the exhaust of a hydrocarbon fuelled combustion device and particularly suited for use in the exhaust gas stream of an internal combustion engine propelling a vehicle, are described. Exhaust gas passing through the device is in thermal communication with one side of a thermoelectric module while the other side of the thermoelectric module is in thermal communication with a lower temperature environment. The heat extracted from the exhaust gasses is converted to electrical energy by the thermoelectric module. The performance of the generator is enhanced by thermally coupling the hot and cold junctions of the thermoelectric modules to phase-change materials which transform at a temperature compatible with the preferred operating temperatures of the thermoelectric modules. In a second embodiment, a plurality of thermoelectric modules, each with a preferred operating temperature and each with a uniquely-matched phase-change material may be used to compensate for the progressive lowering of the exhaust gas temperature as it traverses the length of the exhaust pipe.

  14. Performance of cryogenic thermoelectric generators in LNG cold energy utilization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sun Wei; Hu Peng; Chen Zeshao; Jia Lei

    2005-01-01

    The cold energy of liquefied natural gas (LNG) is generally wasted when the LNG is extracted for utilization. This paper proposes cryogenic thermoelectric generators to recover this cold energy. The theoretical performance of the generator has been analyzed. An analytical method and numerical method of calculation of the optimum parameters of the generator have been demonstrated

  15. Flexible thermoelectric generator using bulk legs and liquid metal interconnects for wearable electronics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suarez, Francisco; Parekh, Dishit P.; Ladd, Collin; Vashaee, Daryoosh; Dickey, Michael D.; Öztürk, Mehmet C.

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: •Flexible thermoelectric generator (TEG) with bulk legs. •Flexible thermoelectric generator with liquid metal interconnects. •Flexible TEG with potential to match the performance of rigid TEGs. •Flexible TEG for wearable electronics. -- Abstract: Interest in wearable electronics for continuous, long-term health and performance monitoring is rapidly increasing. The reduction in power levels consumed by sensors and electronic circuits accompanied by the advances in energy harvesting methods allows for the realization of self-powered monitoring systems that do not have to rely on batteries. For wearable electronics, thermoelectric generators (TEGs) offer the unique ability to continuously convert body heat into usable energy. For body harvesting, it is preferable to have TEGs that are thin, soft and flexible. Unfortunately, the performances of flexible modules reported to date have been far behind those of their rigid counterparts. This is largely due to lower efficiencies of the thermoelectric materials, electrical or thermal parasitic losses and limitations on leg dimensions posed by the synthesis techniques. In this work, we present an entirely new approach and explore the possibility of using standard bulk legs in a flexible package. Bulk thermoelectric legs cut from solid ingots are far superior to thermoelectric materials synthesized using other techniques. A key enabler of the proposed technology is the use of EGaIn liquid metal interconnects, which not only provide extremely low interconnect resistance but also stretchability with self-healing, both of which are essential for flexible TE modules. The results suggest that this novel approach can finally produce flexible TEGs that have the potential to challenge the rigid TEGs and provide a pathway for the realization of self-powered wearable electronics.

  16. Design and optimization of automotive thermoelectric generators for maximum fuel efficiency improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kempf, Nicholas; Zhang, Yanliang

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • A three-dimensional automotive thermoelectric generator (TEG) model is developed. • Heat exchanger design and TEG configuration are optimized for maximum fuel efficiency increase. • Heat exchanger conductivity has a strong influence on maximum fuel efficiency increase. • TEG aspect ratio and fin height increase with heat exchanger thermal conductivity. • A 2.5% fuel efficiency increase is attainable with nanostructured half-Heusler modules. - Abstract: Automotive fuel efficiency can be increased by thermoelectric power generation using exhaust waste heat. A high-temperature thermoelectric generator (TEG) that converts engine exhaust waste heat into electricity is simulated based on a light-duty passenger vehicle with a 4-cylinder gasoline engine. Strategies to optimize TEG configuration and heat exchanger design for maximum fuel efficiency improvement are provided. Through comparison of stainless steel and silicon carbide heat exchangers, it is found that both the optimal TEG design and the maximum fuel efficiency increase are highly dependent on the thermal conductivity of the heat exchanger material. Significantly higher fuel efficiency increase can be obtained using silicon carbide heat exchangers at taller fins and a longer TEG along the exhaust flow direction when compared to stainless steel heat exchangers. Accounting for major parasitic losses, a maximum fuel efficiency increase of 2.5% is achievable using newly developed nanostructured bulk half-Heusler thermoelectric modules.

  17. Development of thermoelectric power generation system utilizing heat of combustible solid waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kajikawa, T.; Ito, M.; Katsube, I.; Shibuya, E.

    1994-01-01

    The paper presents the development of thermoelectric power generation system utilizing heat of municipal solid waste. The systematic classification and design guideline are proposed in consideration of the characteristics of solid waste processing system. The conceptual design of thermoelectric power generation system is carried out for a typical middle scale incinerator system (200 ton/day) by the local model. Totally the recovered electricity is 926.5 kWe by 445 units (569,600 couples). In order to achieve detailed design, one dimensional steady state model taking account of temperature dependency of the heat transfer performance and thermoelectric properties is developed. Moreover, small scale on-site experiment on 60 W class module installed in the real incinerator is carried out to extract various levels of technological problems. In parallel with the system development, high temperature thermoelectric elements such as Mn-Si and so on are developed aiming the optimization of ternary compound and high performance due to controlled fine-grain boundary effect. The manganese silicide made by shrinking-rate controlled sintering method performs 5 (μW/cm K2) in power factor at 800 K. copyright 1995 American Institute of Physics

  18. Efficient p-n junction-based thermoelectric generator that can operate at extreme temperature conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chavez, Ruben; Angst, Sebastian; Hall, Joseph

    2017-01-01

    In many industrial processes a large proportion of energy is lost in the form of heat. Thermoelectric generators can convert this waste heat into electricity by means of the Seebeck effect. However, the use of thermoelectric generators in practical applications on an industrial scale is limited...... in part because electrical, thermal, and mechanical bonding contacts between the semiconductor materials and the metal electrodes in current designs are not capable of withstanding thermal-mechanical stress and alloying of the metal-semiconductor interface when exposed to the high temperatures occurring...... in many real-world applications. Here we demonstrate a concept for thermoelectric generators that can address this issue by replacing the metallization and electrode bonding on the hot side of the device by a p-n junction between the two semiconductor materials, making the device robust against...

  19. Experimental Study on Effect of Operating Conditions on Thermoelectric Power Generation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mahmoudi Nezhad, Sajjad; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse Aistrup

    2017-01-01

    Effect of boundary conditions of thermal reservoirs on power generation of thermoelectric modules (TEMs) is examined experimentally. To realize the characteristics of the power generation by the TEMs, the system performance is studied over various volumetric flow rates and flow temperatures...

  20. Optimal Design of an Automotive Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagehi, Hassan; Attar, Alaa; Lee, Hosung

    2018-07-01

    The consumption of energy continues to increase at an exponential rate, especially in terms of conventional automobiles. Approximately 40% of the applied fuel into a vehicle is lost as waste exhausted to the environment. The desire for improved fuel efficiency by recovering the exhaust waste heat in automobiles has become an important subject. A thermoelectric generator (TEG) has the potential to convert exhaust waste heat into electricity as long as it is improving fuel economy. The remarkable amount of research being conducted on TEGs indicates that this technology will have a bright future in terms of power generation. The current study discusses the optimal design of the automotive exhaust TEG. An experimental study has been conducted to verify the model that used the ideal (standard) equations along with effective material properties. The model is reasonably verified by experimental work, mainly due to the utilization of the effective material properties. Hence, the thermoelectric module that was used in the experiment was optimized by using a developed optimal design theory (dimensionless analysis technique).

  1. A Thermoelectric Generator Using Porous Si Thermal Isolation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanouel Hourdakis

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we report on a thermoelectric generator (TEG using thermal isolation provided by a thick porous Si layer locally formed on the Si wafer and thermocouples composed of p-doped polycrystalline Si/Al. The “hot” contacts of the thermocouples lie on the porous Si layer, while the “cold” contacts lie on bulk crystalline Si. A housing was also designed and fabricated in order to transfer any external temperature change on the “hot” contacts of the thermocouples, the “cold” contacts being isolated from the “hot” contacts by a thick resist layer. The fabrication of the sensing element (Si die is fully compatible with batch Si processing. The output power of the thermoelectric generator depends on the porous Si isolation layer thickness, porosity, structure and morphology. For a mesoporous Si layer of 60% porosity and a macroscopic temperature differential of 10 K, an output power of 0.39 μW/cm2 was measured for a 50 μm thick porous Si layer.

  2. A Thermoelectric Generator Using Porous Si Thermal Isolation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hourdakis, Emmanouel; Nassiopoulou, Androula G.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we report on a thermoelectric generator (TEG) using thermal isolation provided by a thick porous Si layer locally formed on the Si wafer and thermocouples composed of p-doped polycrystalline Si/Al. The “hot” contacts of the thermocouples lie on the porous Si layer, while the “cold” contacts lie on bulk crystalline Si. A housing was also designed and fabricated in order to transfer any external temperature change on the “hot” contacts of the thermocouples, the “cold” contacts being isolated from the “hot” contacts by a thick resist layer. The fabrication of the sensing element (Si die) is fully compatible with batch Si processing. The output power of the thermoelectric generator depends on the porous Si isolation layer thickness, porosity, structure and morphology. For a mesoporous Si layer of 60% porosity and a macroscopic temperature differential of 10 K, an output power of 0.39 μW/cm2 was measured for a 50 μm thick porous Si layer. PMID:24152923

  3. Optimal Design of an Automotive Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagehi, Hassan; Attar, Alaa; Lee, Hosung

    2018-04-01

    The consumption of energy continues to increase at an exponential rate, especially in terms of conventional automobiles. Approximately 40% of the applied fuel into a vehicle is lost as waste exhausted to the environment. The desire for improved fuel efficiency by recovering the exhaust waste heat in automobiles has become an important subject. A thermoelectric generator (TEG) has the potential to convert exhaust waste heat into electricity as long as it is improving fuel economy. The remarkable amount of research being conducted on TEGs indicates that this technology will have a bright future in terms of power generation. The current study discusses the optimal design of the automotive exhaust TEG. An experimental study has been conducted to verify the model that used the ideal (standard) equations along with effective material properties. The model is reasonably verified by experimental work, mainly due to the utilization of the effective material properties. Hence, the thermoelectric module that was used in the experiment was optimized by using a developed optimal design theory (dimensionless analysis technique).

  4. Superlattice design for optimal thermoelectric generator performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priyadarshi, Pankaj; Sharma, Abhishek; Mukherjee, Swarnadip; Muralidharan, Bhaskaran

    2018-05-01

    We consider the design of an optimal superlattice thermoelectric generator via the energy bandpass filter approach. Various configurations of superlattice structures are explored to obtain a bandpass transmission spectrum that approaches the ideal ‘boxcar’ form, which is now well known to manifest the largest efficiency at a given output power in the ballistic limit. Using the coherent non-equilibrium Green’s function formalism coupled self-consistently with the Poisson’s equation, we identify such an ideal structure and also demonstrate that it is almost immune to the deleterious effect of self-consistent charging and device variability. Analyzing various superlattice designs, we conclude that superlattice with a Gaussian distribution of the barrier thickness offers the best thermoelectric efficiency at maximum power. It is observed that the best operating regime of this device design provides a maximum power in the range of 0.32–0.46 MW/m 2 at efficiencies between 54%–43% of Carnot efficiency. We also analyze our device designs with the conventional figure of merit approach to counter support the results so obtained. We note a high zT el   =  6 value in the case of Gaussian distribution of the barrier thickness. With the existing advanced thin-film growth technology, the suggested superlattice structures can be achieved, and such optimized thermoelectric performances can be realized.

  5. Experimental and computational study on thermoelectric generators using thermosyphons with phase change as heat exchangers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Araiz, M.; Martínez, A.; Astrain, D.; Aranguren, P.

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Thermosyphon with phase change heat exchanger computational model. • Construction and experimentation of a prototype. • ±9% of maximum deviation from experimental values of the main outputs. • Influence of the auxiliary equipment on the net power generation. - Abstract: An important issue in thermoelectric generators is the thermal design of the heat exchangers since it can improve their performance by increasing the heat absorbed or dissipated by the thermoelectric modules. Due to its several advantages, compared to conventional dissipation systems, a thermosyphon heat exchanger with phase change is proposed to be placed on the cold side of thermoelectric generators. Some of these advantages are: high heat-transfer rates; absence of moving parts and lack of auxiliary consumption (because fans or pumps are not required); and the fact that these systems are wickless. A computational model is developed to design and predict the behaviour of this heat exchangers. Furthermore, a prototype has been built and tested in order to demonstrate its performance and validate the computational model. The model predicts the thermal resistance of the heat exchanger with a relative error in the interval [−8.09; 7.83] in the 95% of the cases. Finally, the use of thermosyphons with phase change in thermoelectric generators has been studied in a waste-heat recovery application, stating that including them on the cold side of the generators improves the net thermoelectric production by 36% compared to that obtained with finned dissipators under forced convection.

  6. Expanding the reduced-current approach for thermoelectric generators to achieve higher volumetric power density

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wijesooriyage, Waruna Dissanayaka; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectrics are candidate niche electrical generator devices for energy management. At present, scientists are more focused on thermoelectric (TE) material development, but the TE module design procedure is still in a relatively virgin state. One of the most well-known methods is the reduced ...

  7. Manufacturing of Thermoelectric Nanomaterials (Bi 0.4 Sb 1.6 Te 3 /Bi 1.75 Te 3.25 ) and Integration into Window Glasses for Thermoelectricity Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2014-02-26

    We embed thermoelectric nanomaterials into window glass to generate thermoelectricity from the temperature gradient between the solar-heated outdoors and the relatively cold indoor temperature. Until now thermoelectric generators have been built on a single side of a substrate, therefore requiring the two temperature environments to exist on the same side of the substrate. For this application, substantially thick window glass (>5 mm) serves as the interface for which the hot side is on the exterior side of the window and the cold side on the interior side. We demonstrate thermopiles made of nanomaterials integrated through the glass. With meticulous engineering, 300 W of power can be generated from a 9 m(2) window for a temperature gradient of 20 degrees C, which is typical in hot climates, such as the desert areas in the Middle East and African Sahara. A thermoelectric window can be a supplementary power source for waste heat recovery in green building technology.

  8. Experimental study of a sustainable hybrid system for thermoelectric generation and freshwater production

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Souza, Gabriel Fernandes; Tan, Lippong; Singh, Baljit; Ding, Lai Chet; Date, Abhijit

    2017-04-01

    The paper presents a sustainable hybrid system, which is capable of generating electricity and producing freshwater from seawater using low grade heat source. This proposed system uses low grade heat that can be supplied from solar radiation, industrial waste heat or any other waste heat sources where the temperature is less than 150°C. The concept behind this system uses the Seebeck effect for thermoelectricity generation via incorporating the low boiling point of seawater under sub-atmospheric ambient pressure. A lab-test prototype of the proposed system was built and experimentally tested in RMIT University. The prototype utilised four commercial available thermoelectric generators (Bi2Te3) and a vacuum vessel to achieve the simultaneous production of electricity and freshwater. The temperature profiles, thermoelectric powers and freshwater productions were determined at several levels of salinity to study the influence of different salt concentrations. The theoretical description of system design and experimental results were analysed and discussed in detailed. The experiment results showed that 0.75W of thermoelectricity and 404g of freshwater were produced using inputs of 150W of simulated waste heat and 500g of 3% saline water. The proposed hybrid concept has demonstrated the potential to become the future sustainable system for electricity and freshwater productions.

  9. The development of a thermoelectric power generator dedicated to stove-fireplaces with heat accumulation systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sornek, Krzysztof; Filipowicz, Mariusz; Rzepka, Kamila

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • Application of thermoelectric generators in the stove-fireplace with accumulation. • Construction of the thermoelectric generator is limited by the heat accumulation. • Variants of the heat exchanger’s construction are discussed. • The control method is related on velocity of flue gas and water cooling. • The power limit of 30 W for self-sufficient operation is sufficient. - Abstract: A significant part of the world’s population (about 40%) cooks their meals and provides heating for their homes using wood-burning heating devices. Due to the relatively low cost of fuel and their aesthetic design, solid fuel stoves capable of heat accumulation are convenient and common. The use of dedicated small-scale power generators provides also additional benefits. This paper presents the results of a study conducted to verify the possibility of generating power using stove-fireplaces with heat accumulation systems. In such units, the temperature of the flue gas should be kept at a certain level for the purposes of storing heat, which results from certain limitations of the thermoelectric generators. To verify the possibility of applying thermoelectric modules in such heating devices, a dedicated system with thermoelectric generators was selected from among various microcogeneration systems and implemented. Three types of heat exchangers were studied and the most efficient unit was selected for further testing. Two types of generators, with maximum operating temperatures of 320 and 175 °C, were compared. Subsequently, the characteristics of the latter were determined. The conducted tests allowed to determine the performance and the total efficiency of the generators that were used. It has been demonstrated that the maximum power of the generator would not exceed ca. 30 W e and that there is no economic justification for such a device. However, providing a self-powered and self-sufficient operation of stove-fireplaces with heat accumulation systems

  10. Exact Optimum Design of Segmented Thermoelectric Generators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Zare

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A considerable difference between experimental and theoretical results has been observed in the studies of segmented thermoelectric generators (STEGs. Because of simplicity, the approximate methods are widely used for design and optimization of the STEGs. This study is focused on employment of exact method for design and optimization of STEGs and comparison of exact and approximate results. Thus, using new highly efficient thermoelectric materials, four STEGs are proposed to operate in the temperature range of 300 to 1300 kelvins. The proposed STEGs are optimally designed to achieve maximum efficiency. Design and performance characteristics of the optimized generators including maximum conversion efficiency and length of elements are calculated through both exact and approximate methods. The comparison indicates that the approximate method can cause a difference up to 20% in calculation of some design characteristics despite its appropriate results in efficiency calculation. The results also show that the maximum theoretical efficiency of 23.08% is achievable using the new proposed STEGs. Compatibility factor of the selected materials for the proposed STEGs is also calculated using both exact and approximate methods. The comparison indicates a negligible difference in calculation of compatibility factor, despite the considerable difference in calculation of reduced efficiency (temperature independence efficiency.

  11. Experimental analysis with numerical comparison for different thermoelectric generators configurations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Favarel, Camille; Bédécarrats, Jean-Pierre; Kousksou, Tarik; Champier, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • 3 experimental TE generators are tested and compared to a numerical model. • Different mass flow rates and temperatures ranges were used. • Maximum output electrical power is guaranty by the use of MPPT DC/DC controllers. • The importance of the occupancy rate for the design of TEG is demonstrated. • The importance of the location of the TE modules is shown. - Abstract: Thermoelectric (TE) energy harvesting is a promising perspective to use waste heat. Due to the low efficiency of thermoelectric materials many analytical and numerical optimization studies have been developed. To be validated, an optimization must necessarily be linked to the experience. There are a lot of results on thermoelectric generators (TEG) based on experiments or model validations. Nevertheless, the validated models concern most of the time one TE module but rarely an entire system. Moreover, these models of complete system mainly concern the optimization of fluid flow rates or of heat exchangers. Our choice is to optimize the number of these modules in a whole system point of view. A numerical model using a software for numerical computation, based on multi-physics equations such as heat transfer, fluid mechanics and thermoelectricity was developed to predict both thermal and electrical powers of TEG. This paper aims to present the experimental validation of this model and shows interesting experimental results on the location of the TE modules. In parallel, an experimental set-up was built to compare and validate this model. This set-up is composed of a thermal loop with a hot gas source, a cold fluid, a hot fin exchanger, a cold tubular exchanger and thermoelectric modules. The number and the place of these modules can be changed to study different configurations. A specific maximum power point tracker DC/DC converter charging a battery is added in order to study the electrical power produced by the TEG. The analysis of the influence of the number of

  12. Thermoelectricity Generation and Electron-Magnon Scattering in a Natural Chalcopyrite Mineral from a Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ang, Ran; Khan, Atta Ullah; Tsujii, Naohito; Takai, Ken; Nakamura, Ryuhei; Mori, Takao

    2015-10-26

    Current high-performance thermoelectric materials require elaborate doping and synthesis procedures, particularly in regard to the artificial structure, and the underlying thermoelectric mechanisms are still poorly understood. Here, we report that a natural chalcopyrite mineral, Cu1+x Fe1-x S2 , obtained from a deep-sea hydrothermal vent can directly generate thermoelectricity. The resistivity displayed an excellent semiconducting character, and a large thermoelectric power and high power factor were found in the low x region. Notably, electron-magnon scattering and a large effective mass was detected in this region, thus suggesting that the strong coupling of doped carriers and antiferromagnetic spins resulted in the natural enhancement of thermoelectric properties during mineralization reactions. The present findings demonstrate the feasibility of thermoelectric energy generation and electron/hole carrier modulation with natural materials that are abundant in the Earth's crust. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  13. Development of thermoelectric generators for electrification of isolated rural homes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rinalde, G.F.; Taglialavore, E.; Gortari, S. [CNEA (National Atomic Energy Commission), Centro Atomico Bariloche, 8400 Bariloche (Argentina); Juanico, L.E. [Conicet (National Scientific and Technologic Research Council), Centro Atomico Bariloche, 8400 Bariloche (Argentina); Molina, M.G. [CONICET and Universidad Nacional de San Juan, Av. Libertador San Martin Oeste, 1109, 5400, San Juan (Argentina)

    2010-06-15

    This work presents the experimental development of the first two prototypes of thermoelectric generators intended for initial electrification of rural isolated homes. The microcontroller system designed for these devices is oriented to develop a ''plug and play'' generator that is able to work on firewood home stoves without specialized supervision. (author)

  14. Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transport Trailer System

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ard, K.E.; King, D.A.; Leigh, H.; Satoh, J.A.

    1994-01-01

    The Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) Transportation System, designated as System 100, comprises four major systems. The four major systems are designated as the Packaging System (System 120), Trailer System (System 140), Operations and Ancillary Equipment System system 160), and Shipping and Receiving Facility Transport System (System 180). Packaging System (System 120), including the RTG packaging is licensed (regulatory) hardware; it is certified by the US Department of Energy to be in accordance with Title 10, Code of federal Regulations, Part 71 (10 CFR 71). System 140, System 160, and System 180 are nonlicensed (nonregulatory) hardware

  15. SMORN-1: thermoelectrically generated noise in sheathed thermocouples and in other low level instrumentation cables

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mathieu, F.; Meier, R.; Soenen, M.; Delcon, M.; Nysten, C.

    Starting from the fact that thermoelectric emfs of thermocouples are generated in the thermal gradients and not at the hot junction, it is shown how thermoelectric heterogeneity in conjunction with natural and forced convection phenomena gives rise to unwanted noise called: ''thermoelectric noise'' in the technological sense. A distinction is made between four different types of noise--i.e. uncorrelated noise, correlated noise, spectral noise and thermoelectric noise in the physical sense--each of which has its own characteristics. The experimental results presented reveal that noise amplitudes may be quite embarrassing when dealing with problems of quantitative signal fluctuation analysis. It is however emphasized that thermoelectric noise may also convey useful information which, without noise, might be lost

  16. Modeling and Simulations on the Intramural Thermoelectric Generator of Lower-Re-fluid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zheng; Zheng, Ding; Chen, Yushan

    The thermoelectric conversion with lower Renault number (Re) fluid, such as waste heat from industry boiler, and engine's circled cooling water, which can be designed as intramural generator structure. In this research, a thermoelectric project analysis model and the description of an intensified system are presented, its generator with the aligned or staggered platoon structure has strengthened heat-transfer property, and the heat convection coefficient ratio has increased times than plain tube; For the fluid kinetic energy's loss is influenced by the whirlpool, the pressure difference is several hundred Pa level which changes along with geometric parameters of transform components; what's more, heat transfer area increase distinctly under the same generator volume, which has built the foundation for the enhancement output electric power.

  17. Design of improved controller for thermoelectric generator used in distributed generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Molina, M.G. [CONICET, Instituto de Energia Electrica, Universidad Nacional de San Juan, Av. Libertador San Martin Oeste, 1109, J5400ARL, San Juan (Argentina); Juanico, L.E. [CONICET, Centro Atomico Bariloche, 8400 Bariloche (Argentina); Rinalde, G.F.; Taglialavore, E.; Gortari, S. [Centro Atomico Bariloche, 8400 Bariloche (Argentina)

    2010-06-15

    This paper investigates the application of thermal generation based on solid-state devices such as thermoelectric generators (TEGs) as a novel technological alternative of distributed generation (DG). The full detailed modeling and the dynamic simulation of a three-phase grid-connected TEG used as a dispersed generator is studied. Moreover, a new control scheme of the TEG is proposed, which consists of a multi-level hierarchical structure and incorporates a maximum power point tracker (MPPT) for better use of the thermal resource. In addition, reactive power compensation of the electric grid is included, operating simultaneously and independently of the active power generation. Validation of models and control schemes is performed by using the MATLAB/Simulink environment. Moreover, a small-scale TEG experimental set-up was employed to demonstrate the accuracy of proposed models. (author)

  18. Direct contact thermoelectric generator (DCTEG): A concept for removing the contact resistance between thermoelectric modules and heat source

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Tae Young; Negash, Assmelash; Cho, Gyubaek

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • A design concept of a direct contact thermoelectric generator (DCTEG) is proposed. • Power generation characteristics of the DCTEG on a diesel engine are examined. • Maximum power output of ∼45 W and conversion efficiency of ∼2.0% are obtained. • Effect of clearance on energy conversion of the DCTEG is numerically investigated. • A 132% increase in output power with a flush mounted configuration is obtained. - Abstract: This paper proposes the concept of a direct contact thermoelectric generator (DCTEG) to enhance the practicality and widen the application areas of thermoelectric generators (TEGs). In the DCTEG, one thermoelectric module (TEM) surface is directly exposed to a heat source, and the other surface is in direct contact with a coolant flow. The current direct-contact configuration is beneficial for system fabrication, maintenance, long-term reliability, and maximizing energy usage in cooperation with other energy systems because of its simple configuration and lack of interfaces between the TEMs and heat sources. In order to validate the proposed concept experimentally, a DCTEG was constructed by fabricating customized TEMs and exhaust gas and coolant channels with openings to mount the TEMs. A diesel engine served as a heat source by providing hot exhaust gas into the DCTEG, while the coolant (water–ethylene glycol mixture) was pumped into the coolant channels to remove heat. Based on the experimental results obtained under various engine operating conditions, the power generation of the DCTEG was characterized in the form of current–voltage and power–voltage curves. The maximum output power of 43 W and conversion efficiency of 2.0% were obtained under the highest engine load and rotation speed conditions. A series of numerical simulations was carried out to investigate the effect of the system configuration on the DCTEG power generation performance with the clearance between the TEM surfaces and exhaust gas

  19. Modeling and simulation of thermoelectric device working as a heat pump and an electric generator under Mediterranean climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Nimr, Moh'd A.; Tashtoush, Bourhan M.; Jaradat, Ahmad A.

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a study of a small thermoelectric device used primarily as a heat pump and secondarily as an electricity generator when space heating and cooling are not required and incident solar radiation is sufficient. As a power generator, the thermoelectric device is integrated with an evacuated solar collector to utilize solar power. Performance of the thermoelectric device as a heat pump and as an electric generator is simulated using MATLAB/SIMULINK. The purpose of this study is to estimate the energy savings from using the thermoelectric device in its electricity generation mode. The potential of energy saving because of this electricity generation mode function, has been examined in three different cases. These cases represent the operation of the dual mode thermoelectric system in typical home, school and office buildings in the Mediterranean region. In addition, the effects of different parameters, such as the solar radiation and ambient conditions, on the device performance were investigated for both modes as well as parameters related to the device itself. Furthermore, hours of operation were estimated and the economic feasibility of the device was evaluated. Results of this study include performance curves of the thermoelectric device in both modes as well as the estimation of the payback period for Mediterranean regions. - Highlights: • A thermoelectric device in dual mode integrated with an evacuated tube is studied. • The device is used as a heat pump and as an electricity generator. • Performance curves describing the behavior of the system have been resulted. • Energy saving by the system are calculated and presented for a period of one year. • Economic analysis of the system has been included.

  20. The influence of Thomson effect in the energy and exergy efficiency of an annular thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaushik, S.C.; Manikandan, S.

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Exergy analysis in the annular thermoelectric generator (ATEG) system is proposed. • Analytical expressions for the power output, exergy efficiency of an ATEG is derived. • The effects of S r , R L , and θ in P out and exergy efficiency of an ATEG is studied. • The influence of Thomson effect in P out and exergy efficiency of an ATEG is studied. - Abstract: The exoreversible thermodynamic model of an annular thermoelectric generator (ATEG) considering Thomson effect in conjunction with Peltier, Joule and Fourier heat conduction has been investigated using exergy analysis. New expressions for optimum current at the maximum power output and maximum energy, exergy efficiency conditions, and dimensionless irreversibilities in the ATEG are derived. The modified expression for figure of merit of a thermoelectric generator considering the Thomson effect has also been obtained. The results show that the power output, energy and exergy efficiency of the ATEG is lower than the flat plate thermoelectric generator. The effects of annular shape parameter (S r = r 2 /r 1 ), load resistance (R L ), dimensionless temperature ratio (θ = T h /T c ) and the thermal and electrical contact resistances in power output, energy/exergy efficiency of the ATEG have been studied. It has also been proved that because of the influence of Thomson effect, the power output and energy/exergy efficiency of the ATEG is reduced. This study will help in the designing of the actual annular thermoelectric generation systems

  1. Design and Optimization of Effective Segmented Thermoelectric Generator for Waste Heat Recovery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pham, Hoang Ngan

    ranges of 300 ‒ 700, and 900 – 1100 K are considered. The obtained results reveals that segmented thermoelectric generator comprising of Bi0.6Sb1.4Te3/Ba8Au5.3Ge40.7/PbTe-SrTe/SiGe as p-leg and either segmented Bi2Te3/PbTe/SiGe or Bi2Te3/Ba0.08La0.05Yb0.04Co4Sb12/La3Te4 as n-leg working in 300 – 1100 K...... been focused on material development, realizing high efficient thermoelectric generators from such well-developed materials is still limited. Moreover, no single thermoelectric material could withstand the wide temperature range required to boost efficiency of TEGs. By segmentation of different TE...... materials which operate optimally in each temperature range, this study aims at developing high performance segmented TEGs for medium-high (450 – 850 K) temperature application. The research is focused on the challenges in joining and minimizing the contact resistances between different TE materials...

  2. New Technology for Microfabrication and Testing of a Thermoelectric Device for Generating Mobile Electrical Power

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasad, Narashimha S.; Taylor, Patrick J.; Trivedi, Sudhir B.; Kutcher, Susan

    2010-01-01

    We report the results of fabrication and testing of a thermoelectric power generation module. The module was fabricated using a new "flip-chip" module assembly technique that is scalable and modular. This technique results in a low value of contact resistivity ( surfaces. Under mild testing, a power of 22 mW/sq cm was obtained from small (electrical power of practical and usable magnitude for remote applications using thermoelectric power generation technologies.

  3. Solution synthesis of telluride-based nano-barbell structures coated with PEDOT:PSS for spray-printed thermoelectric generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Eun Jin; Kang, Young Hun; Jang, Kwang-Suk; Lee, Changjin; Cho, Song Yun

    2016-05-01

    Solution-processable telluride-based heterostructures coated with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS) were synthesized through a solution-phase reaction at low temperatures. The water-based synthesis yielded PEDOT:PSS-coated Te-Bi2Te3 nano-barbell structures with a high Seebeck coefficient that can be stably dispersed in water. These hybrid solutions were deposited onto a substrate by the spray-printing method to prepare thermoelectric generators. The thermoelectric properties of the Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS hybrid films were significantly enhanced by a simple acid treatment due to the increased electrical conductivity, and the power factor of those materials can be effectively tuned over a wide range depending on the acid concentration of the treatment. The power factors of the synthesized Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS hybrids were optimized to 60.05 μW m-1 K-2 with a Seebeck coefficient of 93.63 μV K-1 and an electrical conductivity of 69.99 S cm-1. The flexible thermoelectric generator fabricated by spray-printing Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solutions showed an open-circuit voltage of 1.54 mV with six legs at ΔT = 10 °C. This approach presents the potential for realizing printing-processable hybrid thermoelectric materials for application in flexible thermoelectric generators.Solution-processable telluride-based heterostructures coated with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS) were synthesized through a solution-phase reaction at low temperatures. The water-based synthesis yielded PEDOT:PSS-coated Te-Bi2Te3 nano-barbell structures with a high Seebeck coefficient that can be stably dispersed in water. These hybrid solutions were deposited onto a substrate by the spray-printing method to prepare thermoelectric generators. The thermoelectric properties of the Te-Bi2Te3/PEDOT:PSS hybrid films were significantly enhanced by a simple acid treatment due to the increased electrical conductivity, and

  4. Modular Stirling Radioisotope Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, Paul C.; Mason, Lee S.; Schifer, Nicholas A.

    2016-01-01

    power may be slightly lower than the ASRG and similar to the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG). However, the reliability should be significantly increased compared to ASRG.

  5. Optimized Characterization of Thermoelectric Generators for Automotive Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tatarinov, Dimitri; Wallig, Daniel; Bastian, Georg

    2012-06-01

    New developments in the field of thermoelectric materials bring the prospect of consumer devices for recovery of some of the waste heat from internal combustion engines closer to reality. Efficiency improvements are expected due to the development of high-temperature thermoelectric generators (TEG). In contrast to already established radioisotope thermoelectric generators, the temperature difference in automotive systems is not constant, and this imposes a set of specific requirements on the TEG system components. In particular, the behavior of the TEGs and interface materials used to link the heat flow from the heat source through the TEG to the heat sink must be examined. Due to the usage patterns of automobiles, the TEG will be subject to cyclic thermal loads, which leads to module degradation. Additionally, the automotive TEG will be exposed to an inhomogeneous temperature distribution, leading to inhomogeneous mechanical loads and reduced system efficiency. Therefore, a characterization rig is required to allow determination of the electrical, thermal, and mechanical properties of such high-temperature TEG systems. This paper describes a measurement setup using controlled adjustment of cold-side and warm-side temperatures as well as controlled feed-in of electrical power for evaluation of TEGs for application in vehicles with combustion engines. The temperature profile in the setup can be varied to simulate any vehicle usage pattern, such as the European standard driving cycle, allowing the power yield of the TEGs to be evaluated for the chosen cycle. The spatially resolved temperature distribution of a TEG system can be examined by thermal imaging. Hotspots or cracks on thermocouples of the TEGs and the thermal resistance of thermal interface materials can also be examined using this technology. The construction of the setup is briefly explained, followed by detailed discussion of the experimental results.

  6. Thermoelectric generator performance analysis: Influence of pin tapering on the first and second law efficiencies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yilbas, B.S.; Ali, H.

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Double tapering of thermoelectric elements improves first and second law efficiency. • Pin geometric feature maximizing device output work does not maximize thermal efficiency. • Pin geometric feature maximizing first law efficiency slight alters for maximum second law efficiency. • External resistance and operating temperature ratios influence design configuration of thermoelectric generator. - Abstract: Thermoelectric generators are the important candidates for clean energy conversion from the waste heat; however, their low efficiency limits the practical applications of the devices. Tailoring the geometric configuration of the device in line with the operating conditions can improve the device performance. Consequently; in the present study, the influence of the pin geometric configuration on the thermoelectric generator performance is investigated. The dimensionless tapering parameter is introduced and its effect on the first and second law efficiencies is examined for various operating conditions including the external load resistance and the temperature ratio. It is found that the first and second law efficiencies are significantly influenced by the pin geometry. The dimensionless tapering parameter (a), increasing tapering of the thermoelectric pins, within the range of 2 ⩽ a ⩽ 4 results in improved first and second law efficiencies. However, the dimensionless tapering parameter maximizing the first and second law efficiencies does not maximize the device output power. This behavior is associated with the external load resistance which has a considerable influence on the device output power such that increasing external load resistance lowers the device output power

  7. Nanostructured Bulk Thermoelectric Generator for Efficient Power Harvesting for Self-powered Sensor Networks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Yanliang [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Butt, Darryl [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Agarwal, Vivek [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2015-07-01

    The objective of this Nuclear Energy Enabling Technology research project is to develop high-efficiency and reliable thermoelectric generators for self-powered wireless sensors nodes utilizing thermal energy from nuclear plant or fuel cycle. The power harvesting technology has crosscutting significance to address critical technology gaps in monitoring nuclear plants and fuel cycle. The outcomes of the project will lead to significant advancement in sensors and instrumentation technology, reducing cost, improving monitoring reliability and therefore enhancing safety. The self-powered wireless sensor networks could support the long-term safe and economical operation of all the reactor designs and fuel cycle concepts, as well as spent fuel storage and many other nuclear science and engineering applications. The research is based on recent breakthroughs in high-performance nanostructured bulk (nanobulk) thermoelectric materials that enable high-efficiency direct heat-to-electricity conversion over a wide temperature range. The nanobulk thermoelectric materials that the research team at Boise State University and University of Houston has developed yield up to a 50% increase in the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, compared with state-of-the-art bulk counterparts. This report focuses on the selection of optimal thermoelectric materials for this project. The team has performed extensive study on two thermoelectric materials systems, i.e. the half-Heusler materials, and the Bismuth-Telluride materials. The report contains our recent research results on the fabrication, characterization and thermoelectric property measurements of these two materials.

  8. Compliant Interfacial Layers in Thermoelectric Devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firdosy, Samad A. (Inventor); Li, Billy Chun-Yip (Inventor); Ravi, Vilupanur A. (Inventor); Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor); Anjunyan, Harut (Inventor)

    2017-01-01

    A thermoelectric power generation device is disclosed using one or more mechanically compliant and thermally and electrically conductive layers at the thermoelectric material interfaces to accommodate high temperature differentials and stresses induced thereby. The compliant material may be metal foam or metal graphite composite (e.g. using nickel) and is particularly beneficial in high temperature thermoelectric generators employing Zintl thermoelectric materials. The compliant material may be disposed between the thermoelectric segments of the device or between a thermoelectric segment and the hot or cold side interconnect of the device.

  9. Modeling of Thermoelectric Generator Power Characteristics for Motorcycle-Type Engines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osipkov, Alexey; Poshekhonov, Roman; Arutyunyan, Georgy; Basov, Andrey; Safonov, Roman

    2017-10-01

    Thermoelectric generation in vehicles such as motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, and snowmobiles opens the possibility of additional electrical energy generation by means of exhaust heat utilization. This is beneficial because replacing the mechanical generator used in such vehicles with a more powerful one in cases of electrical power deficiency is impossible. This paper proposes a calculation model for the thermoelectric generator (TEG) operational characteristics of the low-capacity internal combustion engines used in these vehicles. Two TEG structures are considered: (1) TEG with air cooling and (2) TEG with water cooling. Modeling consists of two calculation stages. In the first stage, the heat exchange coefficients of the hot and cold exchangers are determined using computational fluid dynamics. In the second stage, the TEG operational characteristics are modeled based on the nonlinear equations of the heat transfer and power balance. On the basis of the modeling results, the dependence of the TEG's major operating characteristics (such as the electrical power generated by the TEG and its efficiency and mass) on operating conditions or design parameters is determined. For example, the electrical power generated by a TEG for a Yamaha WR450F motorcycle engine with a volume of 0.449 × 10-3 m3 was calculated to be as much as 100 W. Use of the TEG arrangements proposed is justified by the additional electrical power generation for small capacity vehicles, without the need for internal combustion engine redesign.

  10. Study of a thermoelectric system equipped with a maximum power point tracker for stand-alone electric generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favarel, C.; Champier, D.; Bédécarrats, J. P.; Kousksou, T.; Strub, F.

    2012-06-01

    According to the International Energy Agency, 1.4 billion people are without electricity in the poorest countries and 2.5 billion people rely on biomass to meet their energy needs for cooking in developing countries. The use of cooking stoves equipped with small thermoelectric generator to provide electricity for basic needs (LED, cell phone and radio charging device) is probably a solution for houses far from the power grid. The cost of connecting every house with a landline is a lot higher than dropping thermoelectric generator in each house. Thermoelectric generators have very low efficiency but for isolated houses, they might become really competitive. Our laboratory works in collaboration with plane`te-bois (a non governmental organization) which has developed energy-efficient multifunction (cooking and hot water) stoves based on traditional stoves designs. A prototype of a thermoelectric generator (Bismuth Telluride) has been designed to convert a small part of the energy heating the sanitary water into electricity. This generator can produce up to 10 watts on an adapted load. Storing this energy in a battery is necessary as the cooking stove only works a few hours each day. As the working point of the stove varies a lot during the use it is also necessary to regulate the electrical power. An electric DC DC converter has been developed with a maximum power point tracker (MPPT) in order to have a good efficiency of the electronic part of the thermoelectric generator. The theoretical efficiency of the MMPT converter is discussed. First results obtained with a hot gas generator simulating the exhaust of the combustion chamber of a cooking stove are presented in the paper.

  11. A thermoelectric power generating heat exchanger: Part I – Experimental realization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørk, Rasmus; Sarhadi, Ali; Pryds, Nini

    2016-01-01

    An experimental realization of a heat exchanger with commercial thermoelectric generators (TEGs) is presented. The power producing capabilities as a function of flow rate and temperature span are characterized for two different commercial heat transfer fluids and for three different thermal...

  12. Strain-Induced Rolled Thin Films for Lightweight Tubular Thermoelectric Generators

    KAUST Repository

    Singh, Devendra

    2017-11-24

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are interesting energy harvesters of otherwise wasted heat. Here, a polymer-assisted generic process and its mechanics to obtain sputtered thermoelectric (TE) telluride material-based 3D tubular structures with unprecedented length (up to seamless 4 cm and further expandable) are shown. This length allows for large temperature differences between the hot and the cold ends, a critical but untapped enabler for high power generation. Compared with a flat slab, better area efficiency is observed for a rolled tube and compared with a solid rod architecture, a rolled tube uses less material (thus making it lightweight and cost effective) and has competitive performance advantage due to a smaller contact area. It is also shown that a tubular architecture thermopile-based TEG is able to generate up to 5 μW of power (eight pairs of p- and n-type thermopiles) through a temperature difference of 60 °C. The demonstrated process can play an important role in transforming 2D atomic crystal structure TE materials into 3D tubular thermopiles for effective TEG application, which can maintain higher temperature differences by longer distances between hot and cold ends.

  13. Radioisotope thermoelectric generator load and unload sequence from the licensed hardware package system and the trailer system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reilly, M.A.

    1995-01-01

    The Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System, designated as System 100, comprises four major systems. The four major systems are designated as the Packaging System (System 120), Trailer System (System 140), Operations and Ancillary Equipment System (System 160), including the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System packaging is licensed (regularoty) hardware, certified by the U.S. Department of Energy to be in accordance with Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 71 (10 CFR 71). System 140, System 160, and System 180 are nonlicensed (nonregulatory) hardware. This paper focuses on the required interfaces and sequencing of events required by these systems and the shipping and receiving facilities in preparation of the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator for space flight. copyright 1995 American Institute of Physics

  14. Study on heat pipe assisted thermoelectric power generation system from exhaust gas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, Ri-Guang; Park, Jong-Chan; Rhi, Seok-Ho; Lee, Kye-Bock

    2017-11-01

    Currently, most fuel consumed by vehicles is released to the environment as thermal energy through the exhaust pipe. Environmentally friendly vehicle technology needs new methods to increase the recycling efficiency of waste exhaust thermal energy. The present study investigated how to improve the maximum power output of a TEG (Thermoelectric generator) system assisted with a heat pipe. Conventionally, the driving energy efficiency of an internal combustion engine is approximately less than 35%. TEG with Seebeck elements is a new idea for recycling waste exhaust heat energy. The TEG system can efficiently utilize low temperature waste heat, such as industrial waste heat and solar energy. In addition, the heat pipe can transfer heat from the automobile's exhaust gas to a TEG. To improve the efficiency of the thermal power generation system with a heat pipe, effects of various parameters, such as inclination angle, charged amount of the heat pipe, condenser temperature, and size of the TEM (thermoelectric element), were investigated. Experimental studies, CFD simulation, and the theoretical approach to thermoelectric modules were carried out, and the TEG system with heat pipe (15-20% charged, 20°-30° inclined configuration) showed the best performance.

  15. Polymer-Derived Silicon Oxycarbide Ceramics as Promising Next-Generation Sustainable Thermoelectrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kousaalya, Adhimoolam Bakthavachalam; Zeng, Xiaoyu; Karakaya, Mehmet; Tritt, Terry; Pilla, Srikanth; Rao, Apparao M

    2018-01-24

    We demonstrate the potential of polymer-derived ceramics (PDC) as next-generation sustainable thermoelectrics. Thermoelectric behavior of polymer-derived silicon oxycarbide (SiOC) ceramics (containing hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) as filler) was studied as a function of measurement temperature. SiOC, sintered at 1300 °C exhibited invariant low thermal conductivity (∼1.5 W/(m·K)) over 30-600 °C, coupled with a small increase in both Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity, with increase in measurement temperature (30-150 °C). SiOC ceramics containing 1 wt % h-BN showed the highest Seebeck coefficient (-33 μV/K) for any PDC thus far.

  16. Co-generation system with a linear concentrator and thermoelectric elements; Senkei shukokei to netsuden henkan soshi wo mochiita netsuden heikyu system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kachi, E; Suzuki, A; Fujibayashi, K [Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Tokyo (Japan)

    1996-10-27

    The co-generation system using a solar cell has the disadvantage that the performance of a cell element deteriorates when the temperature rises. Therefore, the co-generation system in which a BiTe thermoelectric element and linear Fresnel lens are used was constructed. Moreover, the basic characteristics were confirmed and the characteristics of a system model were analyzed. A thermoelectric element area must be reduced to improve the generating efficiency. The generating efficiency depends on the temperature difference between thermoelectric elements rather than the thermoelectric element area. As the thermoelectric area gets lower, the generating efficiency will get higher. This inclination is advantageous on the economic side. The generating efficiency becomes low during operation at high temperature. As a result, the temperature supplied to the thermal load is set to the lower position (100 to 200{degree}C) so as to advance the validity of the system. Even if the co-generation temperature is low, a heat supply capability of 150{degree}C is sufficient for an industrial heat supply system because it holds a large majority of the consumption demand for the whole industry. 3 refs., 8 figs., 3 tabs.

  17. Experimental Investigation of a Temperature-Controlled Car Seat Powered by an Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, H.; Wang, Y. P.; Yuan, X. H.; Deng, Y. D.; Su, C. Q.

    2016-03-01

    To improve the riding comfort and rational utilization of the electrical energy captured by an automotive thermoelectric generator (ATEG), a temperature-controlled car seat was constructed to adjust the temperature of the car seat surface. Powered by the ATEG and the battery, the seat-embedded air conditioner can improve the riding comfort using a thermoelectric device to adjust the surface temperature of the seat, with an air duct to regulate the cold side and hot side of the thermoelectric device. The performance of the thermoelectric cooler (TEC) and theoretical analysis on the optimum state of the TEC device are put forward. To verify the rationality of the air duct design and to ensure sufficient air supply, the velocity field of the air duct system was obtained by means of the finite element method. To validate the reliability of the numerical simulation, the air velocity around the thermoelectric device was measured by a wind speed transmitter. The performance of the temperature-controlled car seat has been validated and is in good agreement with bench tests and real vehicle tests.

  18. High-performance flat-panel solar thermoelectric generators with high thermal concentration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraemer, Daniel; Poudel, Bed; Feng, Hsien-Ping; Caylor, J. Christopher; Yu, Bo; Yan, Xiao; Ma, Yi; Wang, Xiaowei; Wang, Dezhi; Muto, Andrew; McEnaney, Kenneth; Chiesa, Matteo; Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Gang

    2011-07-01

    The conversion of sunlight into electricity has been dominated by photovoltaic and solar thermal power generation. Photovoltaic cells are deployed widely, mostly as flat panels, whereas solar thermal electricity generation relying on optical concentrators and mechanical heat engines is only seen in large-scale power plants. Here we demonstrate a promising flat-panel solar thermal to electric power conversion technology based on the Seebeck effect and high thermal concentration, thus enabling wider applications. The developed solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) achieved a peak efficiency of 4.6% under AM1.5G (1 kW m-2) conditions. The efficiency is 7-8 times higher than the previously reported best value for a flat-panel STEG, and is enabled by the use of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric materials and spectrally-selective solar absorbers in an innovative design that exploits high thermal concentration in an evacuated environment. Our work opens up a promising new approach which has the potential to achieve cost-effective conversion of solar energy into electricity.

  19. High-performance flat-panel solar thermoelectric generators with high thermal concentration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraemer, Daniel; Poudel, Bed; Feng, Hsien-Ping; Caylor, J Christopher; Yu, Bo; Yan, Xiao; Ma, Yi; Wang, Xiaowei; Wang, Dezhi; Muto, Andrew; McEnaney, Kenneth; Chiesa, Matteo; Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Gang

    2011-05-01

    The conversion of sunlight into electricity has been dominated by photovoltaic and solar thermal power generation. Photovoltaic cells are deployed widely, mostly as flat panels, whereas solar thermal electricity generation relying on optical concentrators and mechanical heat engines is only seen in large-scale power plants. Here we demonstrate a promising flat-panel solar thermal to electric power conversion technology based on the Seebeck effect and high thermal concentration, thus enabling wider applications. The developed solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) achieved a peak efficiency of 4.6% under AM1.5G (1 kW m(-2)) conditions. The efficiency is 7-8 times higher than the previously reported best value for a flat-panel STEG, and is enabled by the use of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric materials and spectrally-selective solar absorbers in an innovative design that exploits high thermal concentration in an evacuated environment. Our work opens up a promising new approach which has the potential to achieve cost-effective conversion of solar energy into electricity. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved

  20. Heat transfer enhancement of a modularised thermoelectric power generator for passenger vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Bo; Huang, Kuo; Yan, Yuying; Li, Yong; Twaha, Ssennoga; Zhu, Jie

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: •Shape-adapted thermoelectric module for highly compact heat recovery exchanger assembly. •Heat pipe-assisted heat transfer enhancement method for better power output. •Highest power output ratio to the total volume of heat recovery exchanger. •Cascaded thermoelectric system can be scaled and extended for various power output. •Self-clamping design of thermoelectric module can solve the thermomechanical imbalances. -- Abstract: Transport represents over a quarter of Europe's greenhouse gas emissions and is the leading cause of air pollution in cities. It has not seen the same gradual decline in emissions as other sectors. Recently, the thermoelectric power generation (TEG) technology emerges as an alternative solution to the emission reduction challenge in this area. In this paper, we present an innovative pathway to an improved heat supply into the concentric shape-adapted TEG modules, integrating the heat pipe technologies. It relies on a phase changing approach which enhances the heat flux through the TEG surface. In order to improve the heat transfer for higher efficiency, in our work, the heat pipes are configured in the radial direction of the exhaust streams. The analysis shows that the power output is adequate for the limited space under the chassis of the passenger car. Much effort can also be applied to obtain enhanced convective heat transfer by adjusting the heat pipes at the dual sides of the concentric TEG modules. Heat enhancement at the hot side of the TEG has an effective impact on the total power out of the TEG modules. However, such improvements can be offset by the adjustment made from the coolant side. Predictably, the whole temperature profile of TEG system is subject to the durability and operational limitations of each component. Furthermore, the results highlight the importance of heat transfer versus the TEG power generation under two possible configurations in the passenger car. The highest power output per

  1. Introduction to thermoelectricity

    CERN Document Server

    Goldsmid, H Julian

    2010-01-01

    Introduction to Thermoelectricity is the latest work by Professor Julian Goldsmid drawing on his 55 years experience in the field. The theory of the thermoelectric and related phenomena is presented in sufficient detail to enable researchers to understand their observations and develop improved thermoelectric materials. The methods for the selection of materials and their improvement are discussed. Thermoelectric materials for use in refrigeration and electrical generation are reviewed. Experimental techniques for the measurement of properties and for the production of thermoelements are described. Special emphasis is placed on nanotechnology which promises to yield great improvements in the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Chapters are also devoted to transverse thermoelectric effects and thermionic energy conversion, both techniques offering the promise of important applications in the future.

  2. A research on thermoelectric generator's electrical performance under temperature mismatch conditions for automotive waste heat recovery system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z.B. Tang

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric generators recover useful energy by the function of thermoelectric modules which can convert waste heat energy into electricity from automotive exhaust. In the actual operation, the electrical connected thermoelectric modules are operated under temperature mismatch conditions and then the problem of decreased power output causes due to the inhomogeneous temperature gradient distribution on heat exchanger surface. In this case study, an individual module test system and a test bench have been carried out to test and analyze the impact of thermal imbalance on the output electrical power at module and system level. Variability of the temperature difference and clamping pressure are also tested in the individual module measurement. The system level experimental results clearly describe the phenomenon of thermoelectric generator's decreased power output under mismatched temperature condition and limited working temperature. This situation is improved with thermal insulation on the modules and proved to be effective.

  3. Distributed detection and control of defective thermoelectric generation modules using sensor nodes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Min

    2014-01-01

    are described, respectively. Defective and potentially healing conditions are dynamically monitored by a voltage sensor node and a temperature sensor node, both of which can judge the defective TEM and decide the related switching actions in a nearly independent way. The periodical wireless transmission from......To maximize the energy productivity, effective in-field detection and real-time control of defective thermoelectric modules (TEMs) are critical in constituting a thermoelectric generation system (TEGS). In this paper, autonomous and distributed sensor nodes are designed to implement the wireless...... a considerable power improvement is illustrated with the proposed measuring method and setup....

  4. Freshwater Availability and Constraints on Thermoelectric Power Generation in the Southeast U.S

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feldman, David; Slough, Amanda; Garrett, Gary

    2008-01-01

    There is a myriad of uses to which our country's freshwater supply is currently committed. Together with increasing quantities of consumption, there are growing constraints on water availability. In our future there will be two elements of consumption at the forefront of concern: availability and efficiency. Availability of freshwater is the most important of these and is the subject of this report. To use water efficiently, we must first have it. Efficiency is key to ensuring availability for future needs. As population grows and economic and technology demands increase - especially for thermoelectric power - needs for freshwater will also increase. Thus, using our limited supplies of freshwater must be done as efficiently as possible. Thermoelectric generating industry is the largest user of our nation's water resources, including fresh, surface, ground, and saline water. Saline water use accounts for approximately 30% of thermoelectric use, while the remaining 70% is from freshwater sources. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) estimates that thermoelectric generation accounts for roughly 136,000 million gallons per day (MGD), or 39% of freshwater withdrawals. This ranks slightly behind agricultural irrigation as the top source of freshwater withdrawals in the U.S. in 2000. For Americans to preserve their standard of living and maintain a thriving economy it is essential that greater attention be paid to freshwater availability in efforts to meet energy demands - particularly for electric power. According to projections by the Energy Information Administration's (EIA) Annual Energy Outlook 2006 (AEO 2006) anticipated growth of thermoelectric generating capacity will be 22% between 2005 and 2030. In the 2007 Report, EIA estimates that capacity to grow from approximately 709 GW in 2005 to 862 GW in 20303. These large increases in generating capacity will result in increased water demands by thermoelectric power plants and greater competition over water between the

  5. The influence of inner topology of exhaust heat exchanger and thermoelectric module distribution on the performance of automotive thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Yiping; Li, Shuai; Zhang, Yifeng; Yang, Xue; Deng, Yadong; Su, Chuqi

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • Cylindrical grooves to improve the performance of TEG were proposed. • Mainly thermal resistance in TEG was the heat convection in heat exchanger. • Proper height of heat exchanger can improve the TEG performance. • Keeping heat exchanger partly covered with TEM can make full use of each TEM. - Abstract: The waste heat of automotive exhaust gas would be directly transferred into electricity by thermoelectric modules (TEM) because of the temperature difference between heat exchanger and water tank. For the vehicle thermoelectric generator (TEG), the electrical power generation was deeply influenced by temperature difference, temperature uniformity and topological structure of TEG. In previous works, increasing the difference of temperature would significantly enhance the power generation of TEG and inserted fins were always applied to enhance heat transfer in heat exchanger. However the fins would result in a large unwanted back pressure which went against to the efficiency of the engine. In current studies, in order to enhance heat transfer rates and to avoid back pressure increase, a heat exchanger containing cylindrical grooves (the depth-to-width ratio is 0.25) on the interior surface of heat exchanger was proposed. The cylindrical grooves could increase the heat transfer area and enhance the turbulence intensity, meanwhile there was no additional inserts in the fluid to block the flow. The surface temperatures of water tank and heat exchanger with three internal structures, such as grooved surface, flat surface and inserted fins, were studied by numerical simulation at each row of thermoelectric modules. The results showed that comparing to other structures, heat exchanger with cylindrical grooves could improve the TEG efficiency at a low back pressure. The influence of the channel height on the TEG performance was investigated and the TEG with a channel height of 8 mm showed the best overall performance. It was also found that a portion

  6. Efficient p-n junction-based thermoelectric generator that can operate at extreme temperature conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chavez, Ruben; Angst, Sebastian; Hall, Joseph; Maculewicz, Franziska; Stoetzel, Julia; Wiggers, Hartmut; Thanh Hung, Le; Van Nong, Ngo; Pryds, Nini; Span, Gerhard; Wolf, Dietrich E.; Schmechel, Roland; Schierning, Gabi

    2018-01-01

    In many industrial processes, a large proportion of energy is lost in the form of heat. Thermoelectric generators can convert this waste heat into electricity by means of the Seebeck effect. However, the use of thermoelectric generators in practical applications on an industrial scale is limited in part because electrical, thermal, and mechanical bonding contacts between the semiconductor materials and the metal electrodes in current designs are not capable of withstanding thermal-mechanical stress and alloying of the metal-semiconductor interface when exposed to the high temperatures occurring in many real-world applications. Here we demonstrate a concept for thermoelectric generators that can address this issue by replacing the metallization and electrode bonding on the hot side of the device by a p-n junction between the two semiconductor materials, making the device robust against temperature induced failure. In our proof-of-principle demonstration, a p-n junction device made from nanocrystalline silicon is at least comparable in its efficiency and power output to conventional devices of the same material and fabrication process, but with the advantage of sustaining high hot side temperatures and oxidative atmosphere.

  7. Flexible screen printed thick film thermoelectric generator with reduced material resistivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cao, Z; Koukharenko, E; Torah, R N; Tudor, J; Beeby, S P

    2014-01-01

    This work presents a flexible thick-film Bismuth Tellurium/Antimony Tellurium (BiTe/SbTe) thermoelectric generator (TEG) with reduced material resistivity fabricated by screen printing technology. Cold isostatic pressing (CIP) was introduced to lower the resistivity of the printed thermoelectric materials. The Seebeck coefficient (α) and the resistivity (ρ) of printed materials were measured as a function of applied pressure. A prototype TEG with 8 thermocouples was fabricated on flexible polyimide substrate. The dimension of a single printed element was 20 mm × 2 mm × 78.4 pm. The coiled-up prototype produced a voltage of 36.4 mV and a maximum power of 40.3 nW from a temperature gradient of 20 °C

  8. Fabrication of thin-film thermoelectric generators with ball lenses for conversion of near-infrared solar light

    OpenAIRE

    Ito, Yoshitaka; Mizoshiri, Mizue; Mikami, Masashi; Kondo, Tasuku; Sakurai, Junpei; Hata, Seiichi

    2017-01-01

    We designed and fabricated thin-film thermoelectric generators (TEGs) with ball lenses, which separated visible light and near-infrared (NIR) solar light using a chromatic aberration. The transmitted visible light was used as daylight and the NIR light was used for thermoelectric generation. Solar light was estimated to be separated into the visible light and NIR light by a ray tracing method. 92.7% of the visible light was used as daylight and 9.9% of the NIR light was used for thermoelectri...

  9. Thermoelectric generator based on composites obtained by sintering of detonation nanodiamonds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eidelman, E. D.; Meilakhs, A. P.; Semak, B. V.; Shakhov, F. M.

    2017-11-01

    A model of a thermoelectric generator is proposed, in which composite materials obtained by sintering diamond nanoparticles are used as the main component. To increase the useful conversion of heat into electric current, it is proposed to use the effect of electron drag by ballistic phonons. To reduce the ineffective heat spread, it is proposed to use the effect of thermal resistance of the boundaries between the graphite-like and diamond-like phases of the composite. An experimental confirmation of the existence of an optimal volume ratio between graphite-like and diamond-like phases of the composite is predicted and obtained. The highest achieved value of thermoelectric coefficient in the actual structure is 80 µV K-1 (which means 20 times increase compared to that of composites not of the optimal structure), with a thermal conductivity of 50 W m-1 K-1. These results were obtained with constant electrical conductivity. The combined influence of these two effects in case of the ideal composite structure should result in an increase of the thermoelectric efficiency parameter by three orders of magnitude.

  10. Numerical simulations on the temperature gradient and thermal stress of a thermoelectric power generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Yongjia; Ming, Tingzhen; Li, Xiaohua; Pan, Tao; Peng, Keyuan; Luo, Xiaobing

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • An appropriate ceramic plate thickness is effective in alleviating the thermal stress. • A smaller distance between thermo-pins can help prolong lifecycle of the TE module. • Either a thicker or a thinner copper conducting strip effectively reduces thermal stress. • A suitable tin soldering thickness will alleviate thermal stress intensity and increase thermal efficiency. - Abstract: Thermoelectric generator is a device taking advantage of the temperature difference in thermoelectric material to generate electric power, where the higher the temperature difference of the hot-cold ends, the higher the efficiency will be. However, higher temperature or higher heat flux upon the hot end will cause strong thermal stress which will negatively influence the lifecycle of the thermoelectric module. This phenomenon is very common in industrial applications but seldom has research work been reported. In this paper, numerical analysis on the thermodynamics and thermal stress performance of the thermoelectric module has been performed, considering the variation on the thickness of materials; the influence of high heat flux on thermal efficiency, power output, and thermal stress has been examined. It is found that under high heat flux imposing upon the hot end, the thermal stress is so strong that it has a decisive effect on the life expectation of the device. To improve the module’s working condition, different geometrical configurations are tested and the optimum sizes are achieved. Besides, the side effects on the efficiency, power output, and open circuit voltage output of the thermoelectric module are taken into consideration

  11. An overview of the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McCoy, J.C.; Becker, D.L.

    1996-01-01

    Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTG) convert the heat generated by radioactive decay to electricity using thermocouples. RTGs have a long operating life, are reasonably lightweight, and require little or no maintenance once assembled and tested. These factors make RTGs particularly attractive for use in spacecraft. However, because RTGs contain significant quantities of radioactive materials, normally plutonium-238 and its decay products, they must be transported in packages built in accordance with Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 71. The U.S. Department of Energy assigned the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System (RTGTS) Program to Westinghouse Hanford Company in 1988 to develop a system meeting the regulatory requirements. The program objective was to develop a transportation system that would fully comply with 10 CFR 71 while protecting RTGs from adverse environmental conditions during normal conditions of transport (e.g., shock and heat). The RTGTS is scheduled for completion in December 1996 and will be available to support the National Aeronautics and Space Administration close-quote s Cassini mission to Saturn in October 1997. This paper provides an overview of the RTGTS and discusses the hardware being produced. Additionally, various program management innovations mandated by recent major changes in the U.S. Department of Energy structure and resources will be outlined. copyright 1996 American Institute of Physics

  12. An overview of the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transporation System Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McCoy, J.C.

    1995-10-01

    Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTG) convert the heat generated by radioactive decay to electricity using thermocouples. RTGs have a long operating life, are reasonably lightweight, and require little or no maintenance once assembled and tested. These factors make RTGs particularly attractive for use in spacecraft However, because RTGs contain significant quantities of radioactive materials, normally plutonium-238 and its decay products, they must be transported in packages built in accordance with Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 71. The US Department of Energy assigned the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System (RTGTS) Program to Westinghouse Hanford Company in 1988 to develop a system meeting the regulatory requirements. The program objective was to develop a transportation system that would fully comply with 10 CFR 71 while protecting RTGs from adverse environmental conditions during normal conditions of transport (e.g., shock and heat). The RTGTS is scheduled for completion in December 1996 and will be available to support the National Aeronautics and Space Administrations Cassini mission to Saturn in October 1997. This paper provides an overview of the RTGTS and discusses the hardware being produced. Additionally, various program management innovations mandated by recent ma or changes in the US Department of Energy structure and resources will be outlined

  13. Model Thermoelectric Generator TEG Small Modular As Micro Electricity Plant At Indonesia Part 1 Design And Material

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kisman M. Mahmud

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectrically Generator TEG can generate electricity from the temperature difference between hot and cold at the junction thermoelectric module with two different semiconductor materials there will be a flow of current through the junction so as to produce a voltage. This principle uses the Seebeck effect thermoelectric generator as a base. By using these principles this study was conducted to determine the potential of the electric energy of the two Peltier modules which would be an alternative source for micro electricity plant using heat from methylated. The focus of this research is to design a model TEG Thermoelectric Generator Small Modular to produce the kind of material that is optimum for a TEG on the simulation Computer Aided Design CAD with a variety of four different materials that Bi2Te3 Bismuth Telluride PbTe-BiTe CMO-32 -62S Cascade and CMO-32-62S Calcium Manganese Oxide to its cold side using the heat sink fan and simulating heat aluminum plate attached to the hot side of the TEG modules with heat source of methylated. Model simulation results on TEG Small Modular micro electrical plant material obtained CMO-32-62S Cascade thermal material that has a value greater than 3 other material.

  14. Design and analysis of solar thermoelectric power generation system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vatcharasathien, Narong; Hirunlabh, Jongjit; Khedari, Joseph; Daguenet, Michel

    2005-09-01

    This article reports on the design and performance analysis of a solar thermoelectric power generation plant (STEPG). The system considers both truncated compound parabolic collectors (CPCs) with a flat receiver and conventional flat-plate collectors, thermoelectric (TE) cooling and power generator modules and appropriate connecting pipes and control devices. The design tool uses TRNSYS IIsibat-15 program with a new component we developed for the TE modules. The main input data of the system are the specifications of TE module, the maximum hot side temperature of TE modules, and the desired power output. Examples of the design using truncated CPC and flat-plate collectors are reported and discussed for various slope angle and half-acceptance angle of CPC. To minimize system cost, seasonal adjustment of the slope angle between 0° and 30° was considered, which could give relatively high power output under Bangkok ambient condition. Two small-scale STEPGs were built. One of them uses electrical heater, whereas the other used a CPC with locally made aluminum foil reflector. Measured data showed reasonable agreement with the model outputs. TE cooling modules were found to be more appropriate. Therefore, the TRNSYS software and the developed TE component offer an extremely powerful tool for the design and performance analysis of STEPG plant.

  15. Climate change impacts on thermoelectric-power generation in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, L.

    2015-12-01

    Thermoelectric-power generation accounts for more than 70% of the total electricity generation in the United States, which requires large amounts of water for cooling purposes. Water withdrawals for thermoelectric-power generation accounted for 45% of total water use in the United States in 2010. Across the country, water demand from power plants is increasing due to pressures from growing populations and other needs, and is straining existing water resources. Moreover, temperature exceedance in receiving waters has increasingly caused power plants shut downs across parts of the country. Thermoelectric power is vulnerable to climate change owing to the combined effects of lower summer river flows and higher receiving water temperatures. In addition, the efficiency of production is reduced as air temperature rises, which propagates to more unfulfilled power demand during peak seasons. Therefore, a holistic modeling framework of water-energy-climate for the contiguous U.S. is presented here to quantify thermal output from power plants and estimate water use and energy production fluctuations due to ambient climate as well as environmental regulations. The model is calibrated on a plant-by-plant basis for year 2010 and 2011 using the available power plant inventory from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). Simulations were carried out for years 2012 and 2013, and results show moderate improvements in capturing thermal output variabilities after calibration. Future power plant operations under scenarios featuring different climate and regulatory settings were investigated. Results demonstrate the interplay among water, energy and climate, and that future changes in climate and socioeconomics significantly affect power plant operations, which may provide insights to climate change mitigation considerations and energy decisions.

  16. Heat-Pipe-Associated Localized Thermoelectric Power Generation System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Pan-Jo; Rhi, Seok-Ho; Lee, Kye-Bock; Hwang, Hyun-Chang; Lee, Ji-Su; Jang, Ju-Chan; Lee, Wook-Hyun; Lee, Ki-Woo

    2014-06-01

    The present study focused on how to improve the maximum power output of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) system and move heat to any suitable space using a TEG associated with a loop thermosyphon (loop-type heat pipe). An experimental study was carried out to investigate the power output, the temperature difference of the thermoelectric module (TEM), and the heat transfer performance associated with the characteristic of the researched heat pipe. Currently, internal combustion engines lose more than 35% of their fuel energy as recyclable heat in the exhaust gas, but it is not easy to recycle waste heat using TEGs because of the limited space in vehicles. There are various advantages to use of TEGs over other power sources, such as the absence of moving parts, a long lifetime, and a compact system configuration. The present study presents a novel TEG concept to transfer heat from the heat source to the sink. This technology can transfer waste heat to any location. This simple and novel design for a TEG can be applied to future hybrid cars. The present TEG system with a heat pipe can transfer heat and generate power of around 1.8 V with T TEM = 58°C. The heat transfer performance of a loop-type heat pipe with various working fluids was investigated, with water at high heat flux (90 W) and 0.05% TiO2 nanofluid at low heat flux (30 W to 70 W) showing the best performance in terms of power generation. The heat pipe can transfer the heat to any location where the TEM is installed.

  17. Co-optimized design of microchannel heat exchangers and thermoelectric generators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kolaei, Alireza Rezania; Yazawa, K.; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2013-01-01

    Designs of heat exchangers have mostly been disconnected to the performance of thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems. The development work, mostly focused on thermoelectric materials, required a significant amount of engineering parametric analysis. In this work, a micro plate-fin heat exchanger...... applied to a TEG is investigated and optimized to maximize the output power and the cost performance of generic TEG systems. The cost per performance is counted by a measure of price per power output ($/W). The channel width, channel height, fin thickness of heat exchanger, and fill factor of TEG...... are theoretically optimized for a wide range of pumping power. In conjunction with effective numeric tests, the model discusses the optimum size of the system components’ dimensions at two area sizes of the substrate plate of heat exchanger. Results show that at every pumping power, there are particular values...

  18. Small-Scale Pellet Boiler with Thermoelectric Generator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moser, Wilhelm; Friedl, Guenther; Haslinger, Walter [Austrian Bioenergy Centre GmbH, Wieselburg (Austria); Hofbauer, Hermann [Vienna Univ. of Technology (Austria). Inst. of Chemical Engineering

    2006-07-15

    Pellet burners need auxiliary electrical power to provide CO{sub 2}-balanced heat in a comfortable and environment-friendly way. The idea is to produce this and some extra electricity within the furnace in order to save resources and to gain operation reliability and independency. Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) allow the direct conversion of heat to electrical power to a certain extent. They have the advantages of a maintenance-free long life and soundless operation without moving parts or any working fluid. A novel kind of decentralised small-scale biomass-based combined heat and power generation will be developed. The basic system allows grid-independent operation of automatically running biomass furnaces including fuel delivery from storage and circulating the cooling respectively heating water or air. The advanced system also provides electricity for network supply or for other electrical devices and is an additional benefit.

  19. On the Placement of Thermoelectric Generators in Automobiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korzhuev, M. A.; Katin, I. V.

    2010-09-01

    The placement of thermoelectric generators (TEGs) in vehicles is analyzed, taking into account the interaction of the TEG with the internal combustion engine (ICE). Alternative locations of the TEG directly in the ICE, on the exhaust pipe, and on the cooling system are considered. In all three cases there is a conflict between the two thermal machines, which reduces the total efficiency of the thermodynamic (ICE + TEG) system. It is shown that the cause of the conflict is the low efficiency of the TEG ( η TEG effect in TEG legs are discussed.

  20. NASA: Assessments of Selected Large-Scale Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-01

    REPORT DATE MAR 2011 2. REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED 00-00-2011 to 00-00-2011 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Assessments Of Selected Large-Scale Projects...Volatile EvolutioN MEP Mars Exploration Program MIB Mishap Investigation Board MMRTG Multi Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator MMS Magnetospheric...probes designed to explore the Martian surface, to satellites equipped with advanced sensors to study the earth , to telescopes intended to explore the

  1. High-performance nanostructured thermoelectric generators for micro combined heat and power systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Yanliang; Wang, Xiaowei; Cleary, Martin; Schoensee, Luke; Kempf, Nicholas; Richardson, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • A TEG is fabricated using high-efficiency nanostructured thermoelectric materials. • The TEG produces high power density of 2.1 W/cm"2 with 5.3% electrical efficiency. • A micro-CHP system is demonstrated by integrating the TEG into a gas-fired boiler. - Graphical Abstract: - Abstract: Micro combined heat and power (micro-CHP) systems are promising pathways to increase power generation efficiencies. Here a new class of micro-CHP system without moving parts is experimentally demonstrated by integrating high-temperature thermoelectric generators (TEGs) and residential gas-fired boilers, thus enabling wide applications. The TEGs fabricated using high-efficiency nanostructured bulk half-Heusler alloys generate ultrahigh power density of 2.1 W/cm"2 with 5.3% electrical efficiency under 500 °C temperature differences between the hot and cold sides. The TEG system harnesses the untapped exergy between the combustion gas and water, and converts thermal energy into electric power with 4% heat-to-electricity efficiency based on the total heat input into the TEGs. The high-performance TEGs open lots of opportunities to transform power generation technologies and improve energy efficiency.

  2. Development of low grade waste heat thermoelectric power generator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suvit Punnachaiya

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This research aimed to develop a 50 watt thermoelectric power generator using low grade waste heat as a heat source,in order to recover and utilize the excess heat in cooling systems of industrial processes and high activity radioisotope sources. Electricity generation was based on the reverse operation of a thermoelectric cooling (TEC device. The TEC devices weremodified and assembled into a set of thermal cell modules operating at a temperature less than 100°C. The developed powergenerator consisted of 4 modules, each generating 15 watts. Two cascade modules were connected in parallel. Each modulecomprised of 96 TEC devices, which were connected in series. The hot side of each module was mounted on an aluminumheat transfer pipe with dimensions 12.212.250 cm. Heat sinks were installed on the cold side with cooling fans to provideforced air cooling.To test electricity generation in the experiment, water steam was used as a heat source instead of low grade waste heat.The open-circuit direct current (DC of 250 V and the short-circuit current of 1.2 A was achieved with the following operatingconditions: a hot side temperature of 96°C and a temperature difference between the hot and cold sides of 25°C. The DC poweroutput was inverted to an AC power source of 220 V with 50 Hz frequency, which can continuously supply more than 50 wattsof power to a resistive load as long as the heat source was applied to the system. The system achieved an electrical conversionefficiency of about 0.47 percent with the capital cost of 70 US$/W.

  3. Radioisotope thermoelectric generator transportation system subsystem 143 software development plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    King, D.A.

    1994-01-01

    This plan describes the activities to be performed and the controls to be applied to the process of specifying, developing, and qualifying the data acquisition software for the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) Transportation System Subsystem 143 Instrumentation and Data Acquisition System (IDAS). This plan will serve as a software quality assurance plan, a verification and validation (V and V) plan, and a configuration management plan

  4. Experiments and simulations on heat exchangers in thermoelectric generator for automotive application

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, X.; Deng, Y.D.; Zhang, K.; Xu, M.; Xu, Y.; Su, C.Q.

    2014-01-01

    In this work, an energy-harvesting system which extracts heat from an automotive exhaust pipe and turns the heat into electricity by using thermoelectric power generators (TEGs) was built. Experiments show that the temperature difference in automotive system is not constant, especially the heat exchanger, which cannot provide the thermoelectric modules (TMs) large amount of heat. The thermal performance of different heat exchangers in exhaust-based TEGs is studied in this work, and the thermal characteristics of heat exchangers with different internal structures and thickness are discussed, to obtain higher interface temperature and thermal uniformity. Following computational fluid dynamics simulations, infrared experiments and output power testing system are carried out on a high-performance production engine with a dynamometer. Results show that a plate-shaped heat exchanger with chaos-shaped internal structure and thickness of 5 mm achieves a relatively ideal thermal performance, which is practically useful to enhance the thermal performance of the TEG, and larger total output power can be thus obtained. - Graphical abstract: The thermal and electrical characteristics of different heat exchangers of automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generator are discussed, to obtain higher interface temperature and thermal uniformity. - Highlights: • Different internal structures and thickness of heat exchangers were proposed. • Power output testing system of the two heat exchangers was characterized. • Chaos-shaped heat exchanger (5 mm thickness) shows better performance

  5. Development of a 0.1 kW thermoelectric power generator for military applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Menchen, W.R.

    1986-01-01

    A man-portable thermoelectric power source is being developed for the U.S. Army. Initially used as a dedicated power supply for the XM-21 Chemical Agent Alarm System, the set can also meet a variety of general purpose user requirements. Development of a thermoelectric power conversion device is being undertaken by the U.S. Army LABCOM Electronics Technology and Devices Laboratory to fill a need for a generator that is silent, lightweight, multi-fueled and reliable. The 0.1 kW Power Generator is rectangular in configuration and consists of a power module, electronic control assembly and fuel delivery system housed within a tubular structural frame. The generator operates on military fuels ranging from kerosene to diesel oil. Multi-fuel capability is achieved using an ultrasonic atomizer and regenerative burner developed specifically for this application. This paper provides the first public presentation of results achieved during the Advanced Development Phase of the 0.1 kW Power Generator. The development process is briefly traced with emphasis on a description of the system and test results obtained to date

  6. Clean Diesel Engine Component Improvement Program Diesel Truck Thermoelectric Generator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Elsner, N. B. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Bass, J. C. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Ghamaty, S. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Krommenhoek, D. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Kushch, A. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Snowden, D. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States); Marchetti, S. [Hi-Z Technology, Inc., San Diego, CA (United States)

    2005-03-16

    Hi-Z Technology, Inc. (Hi-Z) is currently developing four different auxiliary generator designs that are used to convert a portion (5 to 20%) of the waste heat from vehicle engines exhaust directly to electricity. The four designs range from 200 Watts to 10 kW. The furthest along is the 1 kW Diesel Truck Thermoelectric Generator (DTTEG) for heavy duty Class 8 Diesel trucks, which, under this program, has been subjected to 543,000 equivalent miles of bouncing and jarring on PACCAR's test track. Test experience on an earlier version of the DTTEG on the same track showed the need for design modifications incorporated in DTTEG Mod 2, such as a heavy duty shock mounting system and reinforcement of the electrical leads mounting system, the thermocouple mounting system and the thermoelectric module restraints. The conclusion of the 543,000 mile test also pointed the way for an upgrading to heavy duty hose or flex connections for the internal coolant connections for the TEG, and consideration of a separate lower temperature cooling loop with its own radiator. Fuel savings of up to $750 per year and a three to five year payback are believed to be possible with the 5 % efficiency modules. The economics are expected to improve considerably to approach a two year payback when the 5 kW to 10 kW generators make it to the market in a few years with a higher efficiency (20%) thermoelectric module system called Quantum Wells, which are currently under development by Hi-Z. Ultimately, as automation takes over to reduce material and labor costs in the high volume production of QW modules, a one year payback for the 5 kW to10 kW generator appears possible. This was one of the stated goals at the beginning of the project. At some future point in time, with the DTTEG becoming standard equipment on all trucks and automobiles, fuel savings from the 25% conversion of exhaust heat to useable electricity nationwide equates to a 10% reduction in the 12 to 15 million barrels per day of

  7. Fabrication of thin-film thermoelectric generators with ball lenses for conversion of near-infrared solar light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Yoshitaka; Mizoshiri, Mizue; Mikami, Masashi; Kondo, Tasuku; Sakurai, Junpei; Hata, Seiichi

    2017-06-01

    We designed and fabricated thin-film thermoelectric generators (TEGs) with ball lenses, which separated visible light and near-infrared (NIR) solar light using a chromatic aberration. The transmitted visible light was used as daylight and the NIR light was used for thermoelectric generation. Solar light was estimated to be separated into the visible light and NIR light by a ray tracing method. 92.7% of the visible light was used as daylight and 9.9% of the NIR light was used for thermoelectric generation. Then, the temperature difference of the pn junctions of the TEG surface was 0.71 K, determined by heat conduction analysis using a finite element method. The thin-film TEGs were fabricated using lithography and deposition processes. When the solar light (A.M. 1.5) was irradiated to the TEGs, the open-circuit voltage and maximum power were 4.5 V/m2 and 51 µW/m2, respectively. These TEGs are expected to be used as an energy supply for Internet of Things sensors.

  8. The maximum theoretical performance of unconcentrated solar photovoltaic and thermoelectric generator systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørk, Rasmus; Nielsen, Kaspar Kirstein

    2017-01-01

    The maximum efficiency for photovoltaic (PV) and thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems without concentration is investigated. Both a combined system where the TEG is mounted directly on the back of the PV and a tandem system where the incoming sunlight is split, and the short wavelength radiation...

  9. Flexo-green Polypyrrole – Silver nanocomposite films for thermoelectric power generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bharti, Meetu; Singh, Ajay; Samanta, Soumen; Debnath, A.K.; Aswal, D.K.; Muthe, K.P.; Gadkari, S.C.

    2017-01-01

    Graphical abstract: Flexible PPy-Ag films prepared via environment friendly photo-polymerization in aqueous medium exhibited a record figure-of-merit of ∼7.4 × 10 −3 at 335 K among reported PPy based composites due to unique combination of high electrical and low thermal conductivity with increasing content of Ag nanoparticles. A proto-type thermoelectric power generator exhibiting output voltage of 6 mV has been demonstrated using these flexible PPy-Ag films. - Highlights: • Polypyrrole-silver (PPy-Ag) nanocomposites films were prepared on flexible BOPET sheet. • Ag particles anchored between PPy chains improve electrical transport but suppress thermal transport. • This work demonstrates highest figure-of-merit (∼7.4 × 10 −3 at 335 K) among PPy based materials. • A prototype thermoelectric power generator exhibiting output voltage of 6 mV has been fabricated using PPy-Ag films. - Abstract: Conducting polymers offer various advantages over inorganic thermoelectric materials such as eco-friendliness, a reduced manufacturing cost, flexibility, low thermal conductivity and amenability to tuning of electrical properties through doping; have recently drawn much attention for conversion of low temperature waste heat (≤150 °C) into electricity. In this study, we investigated the thermoelectric properties of hybrid films of polypyrrole and silver (PPy-Ag). These films were prepared on biaxially oriented polyethylene terephthalate (BOPET) flexible substrates by eco-friendly one pot photo-polymerization method using aqueous solution of silver nitrate (AgNO 3 ) as photo initiator. Detailed characterization of the samples revealed that morphology of composite films reorganized with the change in AgNO 3 concentration during synthesis. Increasing AgNO 3 concentrations resulted in PPy films containing Ag nanoparticles, nanoclusters as well as macroclusters. With alteration in concentration and size of Ag particles in PPy matrix, it has been observed that the

  10. High-temperature and high-power-density nanostructured thermoelectric generator for automotive waste heat recovery

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Yanliang; Cleary, Martin; Wang, Xiaowei; Kempf, Nicholas; Schoensee, Luke; Yang, Jian; Joshi, Giri; Meda, Lakshmikanth

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • A thermoelectric generator (TEG) is fabricated using nanostructured half-Heusler materials. • The TE unicouple devices produce superior power density above 5 W/cm"2. • A TEG system with over 1 kW power output is demonstrated by recovering automotive waste heat. - Abstract: Given increasing energy use as well as decreasing fossil fuel sources worldwide, it is no surprise that interest in promoting energy efficiency through waste heat recovery is also increasing. Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are one of the most promising pathways for waste heat recovery. Despite recent thermoelectric efficiency improvement in nanostructured materials, a variety of challenges have nevertheless resulted in few demonstrations of these materials for large-scale waste heat recovery. Here we demonstrate a high-performance TEG by combining high-efficiency nanostructured bulk materials with a novel direct metal brazing process to increase the device operating temperature. A unicouple device generates a high power density of 5.26 W cm"−"2 with a 500 °C temperature difference between hot and cold sides. A 1 kW TEG system is experimentally demonstrated by recovering the exhaust waste heat from an automotive diesel engine. The TEG system operated with a 2.1% heat-to-electricity efficiency under the average temperature difference of 339 °C between the TEG hot- and cold-side surfaces at a 550 °C exhaust temperature. The high-performance TEG reported here open up opportunities to use TEGs for energy harvesting and power generation applications.

  11. Heat-pipe assisted thermoelectric generators for exhaust gas applications

    OpenAIRE

    Gonçalves, L. M.; Martins, Jorge; Antunes, Joaquim; Rocha, Romeu; Brito, F. P.

    2012-01-01

    Millions of hybrid cars are already running on our roads with the purpose of reducing fossil fuel dependence. One of their main advantages is the recovery of wasted energy, namely by brake recovery. However, there are other sources of wasted energy in a car powered by an internal combustion engine, such as the heat lost through the cooling system, lubrication system (oil coolers) and in the exhaust system. These energies can be recuperated by the use of thermoelectric generators (TEG) based o...

  12. PV-hybrid and thermoelectric collectors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rockendorf, G.; Sillmann, R. [Institut fuer Solarenergieforschung GmbH, Emmerthal (Germany); Podlowski, L.; Litzenburger, B. [SolarWerk GmbH, Teltow (Germany)

    1999-07-01

    Two different principles of thermoelectric cogeneration solar collectors have been realized and investigated. Concerning the first principle, the thermoelectric collector (TEC) delivers electricity indirectly by first producing heat and subsequently generating electricity by means of a thermoelectric generator. Concerning the second principle, the photovoltaic-hybrid collector (PVHC) uses photovoltaic cells, which are cooled by a liquid heat-transfer medium. The characteristics of both collector types are described. Simulation modules have been developed and implemented in TRNSYS 14.1 (1994), in order to simulate their behaviour in typical domestic hot-water systems. The discussion of the results shows that the electric output of the PV-hybrid collector is significantly higher than that of the thermoelectric collector. (author)

  13. Thermoelectric Generator Power Converter System Configurations: A Review

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Man, Elena Anamaria; Schaltz, Erik; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2013-01-01

    In a Thermoelectric Generator (TEG) system, the Thermoelectric (TE) modules can be connected in series, parallel or a combination of both. Independent of the module connection, the power production of the TEG changes with the temperature gradient applied at its input. In consequence, the system...... tracking (MPPT) technique is widely used for TEG systems. The aim of this paper is to create a survey over the existing state-of-the-art TEG system configurations for TE energy harvesting. Depending on the application specifications, a suitable TEG system topology can be designed with the purpose...

  14. Lead telluride with increased mechanical stability for cylindrical thermoelectric generators; Bleitellurid mit erhoehter mechanischer Stabilitaet fuer zylindrische thermoelektrische Generatoren

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmitz, Andreas

    2013-04-30

    The aim of this work is to improve the mechanical stability of lead telluride (PbTe), trying to vary its mechanical properties independently from its thermoelectric properties. Thus the influence of material preparation as well as different dopants on the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of lead telluride is being analysed. When using appropriately set process parameters, milling and sintering of lead telluride increases the material's hardness. With sintering temperatures exceeding 300 C stable material of high relative density can be achieved. Milling lead telluride generates lattice defects leading to a reduction of the material's charge carrier density. These defects can be reduced by increased sintering temperatures. Contamination of the powder due to the milling process leads to bloating during thermal cycling and thus reduced density of the sintered material. In addition to that, evaporation of tellurium at elevated temperatures causes instability of the material's thermoelectric properties. Based on the experimental results obtained in this work, the best thermoelectric and mechanical properties can be obtained by sintering coarse powders at around 400 C. Within this work a concept was developed to vary the mechanical properties of lead telluride via synthesis of PbTe with electrically nondoping elements, which thus may keep the thermoelectric properties unchanged. Therefore, the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of Pb{sub 1-x}Ca{sub x}Te were investigated. Doping pure PbTe with calcium causes a significant increase of the material's hardness while only slightly decreasing the charge carrier density and thus keeping the thermoelectric properties apart from a slight reduction of the electrical conductivity nearly unchanged. The abovementioned concept is proven using sodium doped lead telluride, as it is used for thermoelectric generators: The additional doping with calcium again increases the material's hardness while its thermoelectric

  15. Lead telluride with increased mechanical stability for cylindrical thermoelectric generators; Bleitellurid mit erhoehter mechanischer Stabilitaet fuer zylindrische thermoelektrische Generatoren

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmitz, Andreas

    2013-04-30

    The aim of this work is to improve the mechanical stability of lead telluride (PbTe), trying to vary its mechanical properties independently from its thermoelectric properties. Thus the influence of material preparation as well as different dopants on the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of lead telluride is being analysed. When using appropriately set process parameters, milling and sintering of lead telluride increases the material's hardness. With sintering temperatures exceeding 300 C stable material of high relative density can be achieved. Milling lead telluride generates lattice defects leading to a reduction of the material's charge carrier density. These defects can be reduced by increased sintering temperatures. Contamination of the powder due to the milling process leads to bloating during thermal cycling and thus reduced density of the sintered material. In addition to that, evaporation of tellurium at elevated temperatures causes instability of the material's thermoelectric properties. Based on the experimental results obtained in this work, the best thermoelectric and mechanical properties can be obtained by sintering coarse powders at around 400 C. Within this work a concept was developed to vary the mechanical properties of lead telluride via synthesis of PbTe with electrically nondoping elements, which thus may keep the thermoelectric properties unchanged. Therefore, the mechanical and thermoelectric properties of Pb{sub 1-x}Ca{sub x}Te were investigated. Doping pure PbTe with calcium causes a significant increase of the material's hardness while only slightly decreasing the charge carrier density and thus keeping the thermoelectric properties apart from a slight reduction of the electrical conductivity nearly unchanged. The abovementioned concept is proven using sodium doped lead telluride, as it is used for thermoelectric generators: The additional doping with calcium again increases the material's hardness while

  16. Investigation and design optimization of exhaust-based thermoelectric generator system for internal combustion engine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Niu, Zhiqiang; Diao, Hai; Yu, Shuhai; Jiao, Kui; Du, Qing; Shu, Gequn

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A 3-D model for exhaust-based thermoelectric waste heat recovery is developed. • Various heat, mass and electric transfer characteristics are elucidated. • Channel size needs to be moderate to balance heat transfer and pressure drop. • Bafflers need to be placed at all locations near all TEG modules. • Baffler angle needs to be sufficiently large, especially for downstream locations. - Abstract: Thermoelectric generator (TEG) has attracted considerable attention for the waste heat recovery of internal combustion engine. In this study, a 3-D numerical model for engine exhaust-based thermoelectric generator (ETEG) system is developed. By considering the detailed geometry of thermoelectric generator (TEG) and exhaust channel, the various transport phenomena are investigated, and design optimization suggestions are given. It is found that the exhaust channel size needs to be moderate to balance the heat transfer to TEG modules and pressure drop along channel. Increasing the number of exhaust channels may improve the performance, however, since more space and TEG modules are needed, the system size and cost need to be considered as well. Although only placing bafflers at the channel inlet could increase the heat transfer coefficient for the whole channel, the near wall temperature downstream might decrease significantly, leading to performance degradation of the TEG modules downstream. To ensure effective utilization of hot exhaust gas, the baffler angle needs to be sufficiently large, especially for the downstream locations. Since larger baffler angles increase the pressure drop significantly, it is suggested that variable baffler angles, with the angle increasing along the flow direction, might be a middle course for balancing the heat transfer and pressure drop. A single ETEG design may not be suitable to all the engine operating conditions, and making the number of exhaust channels and baffler angle adjustable according to different engine

  17. Nuclear risk assessment for the Mars 2020 mission environmental impact statement.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clayton, Daniel James; Bignell, John L.; Jones, Christopher Andrew; Rohe, Daniel Peter; Flores, Gregg J.; Bartel, Timothy James; Gelbard, Fred; Le, San; Morrow, Charles.; Potter, Donald L.; Young, Larry W.; Bixler, Nathan E.; Lipinski, Ronald J.

    2014-01-01

    In the summer of 2020, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to launch a spacecraft as part of the Mars 2020 mission. One option for the rover on the proposed spacecraft uses a Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) to provide continuous electrical and thermal power for the mission. An alternative option being considered is a set of solar panels for electrical power with up to 80 Light-Weight Radioisotope Heater Units (LWRHUs) for local component heating. Both the MMRTG and the LWRHUs use radioactive plutonium dioxide. NASA is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act. The EIS will include information on the risks of mission accidents to the general public and on-site workers at the launch complex. This Nuclear Risk Assessment (NRA) addresses the responses of the MMRTG or LWRHU options to potential accident and abort conditions during the launch opportunity for the Mars 2020 mission and the associated consequences. This information provides the technical basis for the radiological risks of both options for the EIS.

  18. Roll type conducting polymer legs for rigid-flexible thermoelectric generator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teahoon Park

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available A roll-type conducting polymer film was explored as a flexible organic p-type thermoelectric leg using poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (PEDOT doped with tosylate. The PEDOT films were prepared through solution casting polymerization and rolled up for a roll-type leg. Due to the high flexibility, the roll-type PEDOT leg enabled easy contact to both top and bottom electrodes. Simulation on the dynamic heat transfer and convective cooling for a vertically roosted rod- and roll-type PEDOT leg showed that the temperature difference (ΔT between the hot and cold sides of the leg was much higher in the roll than that of the rod. The PEDOT legs were integrated with n-type Bi2Te3 blocks, to give a 36-couple rigid-flexible thermoelectric generator (RF-TEG. The maximum output voltage from the 36-couple RF-TEG under a ΔT of 7.9 K was determined as 36.7 mV along with a high output power of 115 nW. A wearable RF-TEG was prepared upon the combination of the 36-couple RF-TEG with an arm warmer, to afford an output voltage of 10.6 mV, which was generated constantly and steadily from human wrist heat.

  19. Mapping the impacts of thermoelectric power generation: a global, spatially explicit database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raptis, Catherine; Pfister, Stephan

    2017-04-01

    Thermoelectric power generation is associated with environmental pressures resulting from emissions to air and water, as well as water consumption. The need to achieve global coverage in related studies has become pressing in view of climate change. At the same time, the ability to quantify impacts from power production on a high resolution remains pertinent, given their highly regionalized nature, particularly when it comes to water-related impacts. Efforts towards global coverage have increased in recent years, but most work on the impacts of global electricity production presents a coarse geographical differentiation. Over the past few years we have begun a concerted effort to create and make available a global georeferenced inventory of thermoelectric power plant operational characteristics and emissions, by modelling the relevant processes on the highest possible level: that of a generating unit. Our work extends and enhances a commercially available global power plant database, and so far includes: - Georeferencing the generating units and populating the gaps in their steam properties. - Identifying the cooling system for 92% of the global installed thermoelectric power capacity. - Using the completed steam property data, along with local environmental temperature data, to systematically solve the Rankine cycle for each generating unit, involving: i) distinguishing between simple, reheat, and cogenerative cycles, and accounting for particularities in nuclear power cycles; ii) accounting for the effect of different cooling systems (once-through, recirculating (wet tower), dry cooling) on the thermodynamic cycle. One of the direct outcomes of solving the Rankine cycle is the cycle efficiency, an indispensable parameter in any study related to power production, including the quantification of air emissions and water consumption. Another direct output, for those units employing once-through cooling, is the rate of heat rejection to water, which can lead to

  20. Integration of Research for an Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator and the Outer Flow Field of a Car

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, T.; Su, C. Q.; Deng, Y. D.; Wang, Y. P.

    2017-05-01

    The exhaust thermoelectric generator (TEG) can generate electric power from a car engine's waste heat. It is important to maintain a sufficient temperature difference across the thermoelectric modules. The radiator is connected to the cooling units of the thermoelectric modules and used to take away the heat from the TEG system. This paper focuses on the research for the integration of a TEG radiator and the flow field of the car chassis, aiming to cool the radiator by the high speed flow around the chassis. What is more, the TEG radiator is designed as a spoiler to optimize the flow field around the car chassis and even reduce the aerodynamic drag. Concentrating on the flow pressure of the radiator and the aerodynamic drag force, a sedan model with eight different schemes of radiator configurations are studied by computational fluid dynamics simulation. Finally, the simulation results indicate that a reasonable radiator configuration can not only generate high flow pressure to improve the cooling performance, which provides a better support for the TEG system, but also acts as a spoiler to reduce the aerodynamic drag force.

  1. A simple maximum power point tracker for thermoelectric generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paraskevas, Alexandros; Koutroulis, Eftichios

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • A Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) method for thermoelectric generators is proposed. • A power converter is controlled to operate on a pre-programmed locus. • The proposed MPPT technique has the advantage of operational and design simplicity. • The experimental average deviation from the MPP power of the TEG source is 1.87%. - Abstract: ThermoElectric Generators (TEGs) are capable to harvest the ambient thermal energy for power-supplying sensors, actuators, biomedical devices etc. in the μW up to several hundreds of Watts range. In this paper, a Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) method for TEG elements is proposed, which is based on controlling a power converter such that it operates on a pre-programmed locus of operating points close to the MPPs of the power–voltage curves of the TEG power source. Compared to the past-proposed MPPT methods for TEGs, the technique presented in this paper has the advantage of operational and design simplicity. Thus, its implementation using off-the-shelf microelectronic components with low-power consumption characteristics is enabled, without being required to employ specialized integrated circuits or signal processing units of high development cost. Experimental results are presented, which demonstrate that for MPP power levels of the TEG source in the range of 1–17 mW, the average deviation of the power produced by the proposed system from the MPP power of the TEG source is 1.87%.

  2. Design, fabrication, and testing of energy-harvesting thermoelectric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jovanovic, Velimir; Ghamaty, Saeid

    2006-03-01

    An energy-harvesting thermoelectric generator (TEG) is being developed to provide power for wireless sensors used in health monitoring of Navy machinery. TEGs are solid-state devices that convert heat directly into electricity without any moving parts. In this application, the TEGs utilize the heat transfer between shipboard waste heat sources and the ambient air to generate electricity. In order to satisfy the required small design volume of less than one cubic inch, Hi-Z is using its innovative thin-film Quantum Well (QW) thermoelectric technology that will provide a factor of four increase in efficiency and a large reduction in the device volume over the currently used bulk Bi IITe 3 based thermoelectics. QWs are nanostructured multi-layer films. These wireless sensors can be used to detect cracks, corrosion, impact damage, and temperature and vibration excursions as part of the Condition Based Maintenance (CBM) of the Navy ship machinery. The CBM of the ship machinery can be significantly improved by automating the process with the use of self-powered wireless sensors. These power-harvesting TEGs can be used to replace batteries as electrical power sources and to eliminate power cables and data lines. The first QW TEG module was fabricated and initial tests were successful. It is planned to conduct performance tests the entire prototype QW TEG device (consisting of the TEG module, housing, thermal insulation and the heat sink) in a simulated thermal environment of a Navy ship.

  3. Effective thermal conductivity in thermoelectric materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baranowski, LL; Snyder, GJ; Toberer, ES

    2013-05-28

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are solid state heat engines that generate electricity from a temperature gradient. Optimizing these devices for maximum power production can be difficult due to the many heat transport mechanisms occurring simultaneously within the TEG. In this paper, we develop a model for heat transport in thermoelectric materials in which an "effective thermal conductivity" (kappa(eff)) encompasses both the one dimensional steady-state Fourier conduction and the heat generation/consumption due to secondary thermoelectric effects. This model is especially powerful in that the value of kappa(eff) does not depend upon the operating conditions of the TEG but rather on the transport properties of the TE materials themselves. We analyze a variety of thermoelectric materials and generator designs using this concept and demonstrate that kappa(eff) predicts the heat fluxes within these devices to 5% of the exact value. (C) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.

  4. Review—Micro and Nano-Engineering Enabled New Generation of Thermoelectric Generator Devices and Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Rojas, Jhonathan P.

    2017-01-13

    As we are advancing our world to smart living, a critical challenge is increasingly pressing - increased energy demand. While we need mega power supplies for running data centers and other emerging applications, we also need instant small- scale power supply for trillions of electronics that we are using and will use in the age of Internet of Things (IoT) and Internet of Everything (IoE). Such power supplies must meet some parallel demands: sufficient energy supply in reliable, safe and affordable manner. In that regard, thermoelectric generators emerge as important renewable energy source with great potential to take advantage of the widely-abundant and normally-wasted thermal energy. Thanks to the advancements of nano-engineered materials, thermoelectric generators\\' (TEG) performance and feasibility are gradually improving. However, still innovative engineering solutions are scarce to sufficiently take the TEG performance and functionalities beyond the status-quo. Opportunities exist to integrate them with emerging fields and technologies such as wearable electronics, bio-integrated systems, cybernetics and others. This review will mainly focus on unorthodox but effective engineering solutions to notch up the overall performance of TEGs and broadening their application base. First, nanotechnology\\'s influence in TEGs\\' development will be introduced, followed by a discussion on how the introduction of mechanically reconfigurable devices can shape up the emerging spectrum of novel TEG technologies. (C) The Author(s) 2017. Published by ECS.

  5. Si Thermoelectric Power Generator with an Unconventional Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakamoto, Tatsuya; Iida, Tsutomu; Ohno, Yota; Ishikawa, Masashi; Kogo, Yasuo; Hirayama, Naomi; Arai, Koya; Nakamura, Takashi; Nishio, Keishi; Takanashi, Yoshifumi

    2014-06-01

    We examine the mechanical stability of an unconventional Mg2Si thermoelectric generator (TEG) structure. In this structure, the angle θ between the thermoelectric (TE) chips and the heat sink is less than 90°. We examined the tolerance to an external force of various Mg2Si TEG structures using a finite-element method (FEM) with the ANSYS code. The output power of the TEGs was also measured. First, for the FEM analysis, the mechanical properties of sintered Mg2Si TE chips, such as the bending strength and Young's modulus, were measured. Then, two-dimensional (2D) TEG models with various values of θ (90°, 75°, 60°, 45°, 30°, 15°, and 0°) were constructed in ANSYS. The x and y axes were defined as being in the horizontal and vertical directions of the substrate, respectively. In the analysis, the maximum tensile stress in the chip when a constant load was applied to the TEG model in the x direction was determined. Based on the analytical results, an appropriate structure was selected and a module fabricated. For the TEG fabrication, eight TE chips, each with dimensions of 3 mm × 3 mm × 10 mm and consisting of Sb-doped n-Mg2Si prepared by a plasma-activated sintering process, were assembled such that two chips were connected in parallel, and four pairs of these were connected in series on a footprint of 46 mm × 12 mm. The measured power generation characteristics and temperature distribution with temperature differences between 873 K and 373 K are discussed.

  6. A novel self-powered wireless temperature sensor based on thermoelectric generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shi, Yongming; Wang, Yao; Deng, Yuan; Gao, Hongli; Lin, Zhen; Zhu, Wei; Ye, Huihong

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A self-powered temperature sensor, based on thermoelectric generator, is presented. • This novel sensor can operate without any batteries or other power sources. • This sensor combines signal sensing and power supplying together. • The measurement error is 0.5 K during the sensor operating period. • This sensor can detect temperature fluctuation situations such as fire disaster. - Abstract: A novel self-powered wireless temperature sensor has been designed and presented for solving the power supply problem of temperature sensors. This sensor can autonomously measure temperature under positive temperature fluctuation situations. The self-powered characteristic, realized by using four thermoelectric generators, enables the sensor to operate without any batteries or other power sources. In order to obtain these features, attentions are not only focused on the method to combine signal sensing and power generating together, but also on the method to improve measurement accuracy. Experimental results confirm that this novel sensor has excellent measurement accuracy. The measured performance is consistent with the calculated characteristics. For typical application, this self-powered temperature sensor can detect fire before it develops to flashover state. And the maximum detection distance grows with the growth of burning rate. All the results indicate this innovative sensor is a promising self-powered device which can be used to measure temperature value in positive temperature fluctuation situations

  7. Thermoelectric Power Generation System for Future Hybrid Vehicles Using Hot Exhaust Gas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sun-Kook; Won, Byeong-Cheol; Rhi, Seok-Ho; Kim, Shi-Ho; Yoo, Jeong-Ho; Jang, Ju-Chan

    2011-05-01

    The present experimental and computational study investigates a new exhaust gas waste heat recovery system for hybrid vehicles, using a thermoelectric module (TEM) and heat pipes to produce electric power. It proposes a new thermoelectric generation (TEG) system, working with heat pipes to produce electricity from a limited hot surface area. The current TEG system is directly connected to the exhaust pipe, and the amount of electricity generated by the TEMs is directly proportional to their heated area. Current exhaust pipes fail to offer a sufficiently large hot surface area for the high-efficiency waste heat recovery required. To overcome this, a new TEG system has been designed to have an enlarged hot surface area by the addition of ten heat pipes, which act as highly efficient heat transfer devices and can transmit the heat to many TEMs. As designed, this new waste heat recovery system produces a maximum 350 W when the hot exhaust gas heats the evaporator surface of the heat pipe to 170°C; this promises great possibilities for application of this technology in future energy-efficient hybrid vehicles.

  8. Performance study of thermo-electric generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohit, G.; Manaswini, D.; Kotebavi, Vinod; R, Nagaraja S.

    2017-07-01

    Devices like automobiles, stoves, ovens, boilers, kilns and heaters dissipate large amount of waste heat. Since most of this waste heat goes unused, the efficiency of these devices is drastically reduced. A lot of research is being conducted on the recovery of the waste heat, among which Thermoelectric Generators (TEG) is one of the popular method. TEG is a semiconductor device that produces electric potential difference when a thermal gradient develops on it. This paper deals with the study of performance of a TEG module for different hot surface temperatures. Performance characteristics used here are voltage, current and power developed by the TEG. One side of the TEG was kept on a hot plate where uniform heat flux was supplied to that. And the other side was cooled by supplying cold water. The results show that the output power increases significantly with increase in the temperature of the hot surface.

  9. Evaluation of power conditioning architectures for energy production enhancement in thermoelectric generator systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, Hongfei; Sun, Kai; Chen, Min

    2014-01-01

    A large-scale thermoelectric generator (TEG) system has an unbalanced temperature distribution among the TEG modules, which leads to power mismatch among the modules and decreases the power output of the TEG system. To maximize the power output and minimize the power conversion loss, a centralize...

  10. Simple experiments with a thermoelectric module

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kraftmakher, Yaakov

    2005-01-01

    The Seebeck and Peltier effects are explored with a commercially available thermoelectric module and a data-acquisition system. Five topics are presented: (i) thermoelectric heating and cooling, (ii) the Seebeck coefficient, (iii) efficiency of a thermoelectric generator, (iv) the maximum temperature difference provided by a thermoelectric cooler and (v) the Peltier coefficient and the coefficient of performance. Using a data-acquisition system, the measurements are carried out in a reasonably short time. It is shown how to deduce quantities important for the theory and applications of thermoelectric devices

  11. Alternative Green Technology for Power Generation Using Waste-Heat Energy And Advanced Thermoelectric Materials, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA is interested in advancing green technology research for achieving sustainable and environmentally friendly energy sources. Thermo-electric power generation...

  12. Research on a power management system for thermoelectric generators to drive wireless sensors on a spindle unit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Sheng; Yao, Xinhua; Fu, Jianzhong

    2014-07-16

    Thermoelectric energy harvesting is emerging as a promising alternative energy source to drive wireless sensors in mechanical systems. Typically, the waste heat from spindle units in machine tools creates potential for thermoelectric generation. However, the problem of low and fluctuant ambient temperature differences in spindle units limits the application of thermoelectric generation to drive a wireless sensor. This study is devoted to presenting a transformer-based power management system and its associated control strategy to make the wireless sensor work stably at different speeds of the spindle. The charging/discharging time of capacitors is optimized through this energy-harvesting strategy. A rotating spindle platform is set up to test the performance of the power management system at different speeds. The experimental results show that a longer sampling cycle time will increase the stability of the wireless sensor. The experiments also prove that utilizing the optimal time can make the power management system work more effectively compared with other systems using the same sample cycle.

  13. Numerical Modeling of Thermoelectric Generators with Varing Material Properties in a Circuit Simulator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Min; Rosendahl, Lasse; Condra, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    When a thermoelectric generator (TEG) and its external load circuitry are considered together as a system, the codesign and cooptimization of the electronics and the device are crucial in maximizing the system efficiency. In this paper, an accurate TEG model is proposed and implemented in a SPICE...

  14. Integrating Phase-Change Materials into Automotive Thermoelectric Generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein Altstedde, Mirko; Rinderknecht, Frank; Friedrich, Horst

    2014-06-01

    Because the heat emitted by conventional combustion-engine vehicles during operation has highly transient properties, automotive thermoelectric generators (TEG) are intended for a particular operating state (design point). This, however, leads to two problems. First, whenever the combustion engine runs at low load, the maximum operating temperature cannot be properly utilised; second, a combustion engine at high load requires partial diversion of exhaust gas away from the TEG to protect the thermoelectric modules. An attractive means of stabilising dynamic exhaust behaviour (thereby keeping the TEG operating status at the design point for as long as possible) is use of latent heat storage, also known as phase-change materials (PCM). By positioning PCM between module and exhaust heat conduit, and choosing a material with a phase-change temperature matching the module's optimum operating temperature, it can be used as heat storage. This paper presents results obtained during examination of the effect of integration of latent heat storage on the potential of automotive TEG to convert exhaust heat. The research resulted in the development of a concept based on the initial integration idea, followed by proof of concept by use of a specially created prototype. In addition, the potential amount of energy obtained by use of a PCM-equipped TEG was calculated. The simulations indicated a significant increase in electrical energy was obtained in the selected test cycle.

  15. Field test of thermoelectric generator using parabolic trough solar concentrator for power generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viña, Rommel R.; Alagao, Feliciano B.

    2018-03-01

    A 2.4587 square meter effective area cylindrical parabolic solar concentrator was fabricated. The trough concentrator is a 4-ft by 8-ft metal sheet with solar mirror film adhered on it and it is laid on a frame with steel tubes bent in a shape of a parabola. On the focal region of the parabolic trough is the 1.22-m by 0.10-m absorber plate made of copper and coated flat black. This plate served as high temperature reservoir of the eight equally spaced TEC1-12710T125 thermoelectric modules. On the cold side of the modules is a 2.5-in. by 1-in. rectangular aluminum tube with coolant flowing inside. The coolant loop included a direct contact cooling tower which maintained the module cold side assembly inlet temperature of about 28°C. Collector temperature was also kept below the 125°C module maximum operating temperature by controlling the effective area. This was accomplished by adjusting the reflector covering. Using a dummy load and with 8 modules in series, tests results indicated current readings up to 179.4 mA with a voltage of 10.6 VDC and 27% of reflector area or voltage reading up to 12.7 VDC with a current of 165 mA. A steady voltage of 12 VDC was achieved with the use of a voltage regulator. A voltage above 12 VDC will be required to charge a storage battery. Overall results showed the potential of thermoelectric generator (TEG) in combination with solar energy in power generation.

  16. Application of cascading thermoelectric generator and cooler for waste heat recovery from solid oxide fuel cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Houcheng; Kong, Wei; Dong, Feifei; Xu, Haoran; Chen, Bin; Ni, Meng

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Cascading thermoelectric devices are proposed to recover waste heat from SOFCs. • A theoretical model is developed to analyze the new hybrid system performance. • Performance parameters for evaluating the hybrid system are specified. • Feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed system are demonstrated. • Effects of some important parameters on the system performance are discussed. - Abstract: Besides electricity generation, solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) produce a significant amount of waste heat, which needs to be immediately removed to ensure the normal operation of SOFCs. If the waste heat is recovered through bottoming thermal devices, the global efficiency of SOFCs can be improved. In this study, a new hybrid system mainly consisting of a thermoelectric generator, a thermoelectric cooler and an SOFC is proposed to recover the waste heat from SOFC for performance enhancement. The thermodynamic and electrochemical irreversible losses in each component are fully considered. An analytical relationship between the SOFC operating current density and the thermoelectric devices dimensionless electric current is derived, from which the range of SOFC operating current density that permits the thermoelectric devices to effectively work is determined. The equivalent power output and efficiency for the hybrid system are specified under different operating current density regions. The feasibility and effectiveness are illustrated by comparing the proposed hybrid system with the stand-alone SOFC. It is found that the power density and efficiency of the proposed system allow 2.3% and 4.6% larger than that of the stand-alone SOFC, respectively. Finally, various parametric analyses are performed to discuss the effects of some design and operation parameters on the hybrid system performance.

  17. A facility to remotely assemble radioisotope thermoelectric generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Engstrom, J.W.; Goldmann, L.H.; Truitt, R.W.

    1992-07-01

    Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs) are electrical power sources that use heat from decaying radioisotopes to directly generate electrical power. The RTG assembly process is performed in an inert atmosphere inside a large glovebox, which is surrounded by radiation shielding to reduce exposure to neutron and gamma radiation from the radioisotope heat source. In the past, allowable dose rate limits have allowed direct, manual assembly methods; however, current dose rate limits require a thicker radiation shielding that makes direct, manual assembly infeasible. To minimize RTG assembly process modifications, telerobotic systems are being investigated to perform remote assembly tasks. Telerobotic systems duplicate human arm motion and incorporate force feedback sensitivity to handle objects and tools in a human-like manner. A telerobotic system with two arms and a three-dimensional (3-D) vision system can be used to perform remote RTG assembly tasks inside gloveboxes and cells using unmodified, normal hand tools

  18. Investigation of Counter-Flow in a Heat Pipe-Thermoelectric Generator (HPTEG)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remeli, Muhammad Fairuz; Singh, Baljit; Affandi, Nor Dalila Nor; Ding, Lai Chet; Date, Abhijit; Akbarzadeh, Aliakbar

    2017-05-01

    This study explores a method of generating electricity while recovering waste heat through the integration of heat pipes and thermoelectric generators (i.e. HPTEG system). The simultaneous waste heat recovery and power generation processes are achieved without the use of any moving parts. The HPTEG system consists of bismuth telluride thermoelectric generators (TEG), which are sandwiched between two finned pipes to achieve a temperature gradient across the TEG for electricity generation. A counter-flow heat exchanger was built using two separate air ducts. The air ducts were thermally coupled using the HPTEG modules. The evaporator section of the heat pipe absorbed the waste heat in a hot air duct. The heat was then transferred across the TEG surfaces. The condenser section of the HPTEG collected the excess heat from the TEG cold side before releasing it to the cold air duct. A 2-kW electrical heater was installed in the hot air duct to simulate the exhaust gas. An air blower was installed at the inlet of each duct to direct the flow of air into the ducts. A theoretical model was developed for predicting the performance of the HPTEG system using the effectiveness-number of transfer units method. The developed model was able to predict the thermal and electrical output of the HPTEG, along with the rate of heat transfer. The results showed that by increasing the cold air velocity, the effectiveness of the heat exchanger was able to be increased from approximately 52% to 58%. As a consequence of the improved heat transfer, maximum power output of 4.3 W was obtained.

  19. Design, modeling and utilization of thermoelectrical materials and devices in energy systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Min

    Thermoelectric generators can convert waste heat that abounds in modern societies into electricity in an environmentally-friendly and reliable manner, and many applications of thermoelectric devices can be envisaged. The research of this PhD dissertation focuses thermoelectric generator modeling...... at a device level as well as its applications in energy systems. The purpose is to introduce the use of thermoelectric generator into energy systems, and to indicate the impact of implementing thermoelectric generator on the design and operation of energy systems. For this purpose, this dissertation produces...... numerical models as versatile simulation tools to identify speci c optimum design criteria for thermoelectric generators used in various associated thermal and electrical systems, so that the generation performance can be improved due to the optimum system design....

  20. Nanoelectronics «bottom – up»: current generation, generalized Ohm’s law, elastic resistors, conductivity modes, thermoelectricity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Юрій Олексійович Кругляк

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available General questions of electronic conductivity, current generation with the use of electrochemical potentials and Fermi functions, elastic resistor model, ballistic and diffusion transport, conductivity modes, n- and p-conductors and graphene, formulation of the generalized Ohm’s law, thermoelectric phenomena of Seebeck and Peltier, quality indicators and thermoelectric optimization, ballistic and diffusive phonon heat current are discussed in the frame of the «bottom – up» approach of modern nanoelectronics

  1. Cost Scaling of a Real-World Exhaust Waste Heat Recovery Thermoelectric Generator: A Deeper Dive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendricks, Terry J.; Yee, Shannon; LeBlanc, Saniya

    2015-01-01

    Cost is equally important to power density or efficiency for the adoption of waste heat recovery thermoelectric generators (TEG) in many transportation and industrial energy recovery applications. In many cases the system design that minimizes cost (e.g., the $/W value) can be very different than the design that maximizes the system's efficiency or power density, and it is important to understand the relationship between those designs to optimize TEG performance-cost compromises. Expanding on recent cost analysis work and using more detailed system modeling, an enhanced cost scaling analysis of a waste heat recovery thermoelectric generator with more detailed, coupled treatment of the heat exchangers has been performed. In this analysis, the effect of the heat lost to the environment and updated relationships between the hot-side and cold-side conductances that maximize power output are considered. This coupled thermal and thermoelectric treatment of the exhaust waste heat recovery thermoelectric generator yields modified cost scaling and design optimization equations, which are now strongly dependent on the heat leakage fraction, exhaust mass flow rate, and heat exchanger effectiveness. This work shows that heat exchanger costs most often dominate the overall TE system costs, that it is extremely difficult to escape this regime, and in order to achieve TE system costs of $1/W it is necessary to achieve heat exchanger costs of $1/(W/K). Minimum TE system costs per watt generally coincide with maximum power points, but Preferred TE Design Regimes are identified where there is little cost penalty for moving into regions of higher efficiency and slightly lower power outputs. These regimes are closely tied to previously-identified low cost design regimes. This work shows that the optimum fill factor Fopt minimizing system costs decreases as heat losses increase, and increases as exhaust mass flow rate and heat exchanger effectiveness increase. These findings have

  2. New evaluation parameter for wearable thermoelectric generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijethunge, Dimuthu; Kim, Woochul

    2018-04-01

    Wearable devices constitute a key application area for thermoelectric devices. However, owing to new constraints in wearable applications, a few conventional device optimization techniques are not appropriate and material evaluation parameters, such as figure of merit (zT) and power factor (PF), tend to be inadequate. We illustrated the incompleteness of zT and PF by performing simulations and considering different thermoelectric materials. The results indicate a weak correlation between device performance and zT and PF. In this study, we propose a new evaluation parameter, zTwearable, which is better suited for wearable applications compared to conventional zT. Owing to size restrictions, gap filler based device optimization is extremely critical in wearable devices. With respect to the occasions in which gap fillers are used, expressions for power, effective thermal conductivity (keff), and optimum load electrical ratio (mopt) are derived. According to the new parameters, the thermal conductivity of the material has become much more critical now. The proposed new evaluation parameter, namely, zTwearable, is extremely useful in the selection of an appropriate thermoelectric material among various candidates prior to the commencement of the actual design process.

  3. Thermoelectric powered wireless sensors for spent fuel monitoring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carstens, T.; Corradini, M.; Blanchard, J.; Ma, Z.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes using thermoelectric generators to power wireless sensors to monitor spent nuclear fuel during dry-cask storage. OrigenArp was used to determine the decay heat of the spent fuel at different times during the service life of the dry-cask. The Engineering Equation Solver computer program modeled the temperatures inside the spent fuel storage facility during its service life. The temperature distribution in a thermoelectric generator and heat sink was calculated using the computer program Finite Element Heat Transfer. From these temperature distributions the power produced by the thermoelectric generator was determined as a function of the service life of the dry-cask. In addition, an estimation of the path loss experienced by the wireless signal can be made based on materials and thickness of the structure. Once the path loss is known, the transmission power and thermoelectric generator power requirements can be determined. This analysis estimates that a thermoelectric generator can produce enough power for a sensor to function and transmit data from inside the dry-cask throughout its service life. (authors)

  4. Design of flexible thermoelectric generator as human body sensor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Qing, Shaowei; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse Aistrup

    2018-01-01

    Flexible thermoelectric generator (TEG) became an attractive technology that has been widely used especially for curved surfaces applications. This study aims an optimal design of a flexible TEG for human body application. The flexible TEG is part of a sensor and supplies required electrical power...... for data transmission by the sensor. The TEG module includes ink based thermoelements made of nano-carbon bismuth telluride materials. One flexible fin conducts the body heat to the TEG module and there are two fins that exchange the heat from the cold side of the TEG to the ambient. The proposed design...

  5. Thermoelectric as recovery and harvesting of waste heat from portable generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustafa, S. N.; Kamarrudin, N. S.; Hashim, M. S. M.; Bakar, S. A.; Razlan, Z. M.; Harun, A.; Ibrahim, I.; Faizi, M. K.; Saad, M. A. M.; Zunaidi, I.; Wan, W. K.; Desa, H.

    2017-10-01

    Generation of waste heat was ineluctable especially during energy producing process. Waste heat falls into low temperature grade make it complicated to utilize. Thermoelectric generator (TEG) offers opportunity to harvest any temperature grade heat into useful electricity. This project is covered about recovery and utilizing waste heat from portable electric generator by using a TEG which placed at exhaust surface. Temperature difference at both surfaces of TEG was enhanced with supplying cold air from a wind blower. It is found that, even at low air speed, the TEG was successfully produced electricity with aid from DC-DC booster. Results shows possibility to harvest low temperature grade heat and still exist areas for continual improvement.

  6. Solar-TEP - Development of materials for thermo-electric power generators; SOLAR-TEP - Materialentwicklung fuer solarthermoelektrische Stromerzeuger - Schlussbericht 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert, R.; Weidenkaff, A.

    2008-06-15

    This final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) reports on the development of materials for thermo-electric power generators. Cobaltate phases are discussed as being suitable materials for thermoelectric applications at high temperatures. These potential thermoelectric materials are characterised with respect to their crystal structure, microstructure, composition, and thermal stability. The Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity and electrical resistivity of polycrystalline cobaltates with perovskite-type and layered-cobaltite structure are evaluated for a wide temperature range. The large Seebeck coefficient exhibited by both perovskite-type and layered cobaltite phases is analysed using the Heikes formula. The work is illustrated with results obtained for various materials in graphical form.

  7. Recent Progress on PEDOT-Based Thermoelectric Materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Qingshuo; Mukaida, Masakazu; Kirihara, Kazuhiro; Naitoh, Yasuhisa; Ishida, Takao

    2015-02-16

    The thermoelectric properties of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT)-based materials have attracted attention recently because of their remarkable electrical conductivity, power factor, and figure of merit. In this review, we summarize recent efforts toward improving the thermoelectric properties of PEDOT-based materials. We also discuss thermoelectric measurement techniques and several unsolved problems with the PEDOT system such as the effect of water absorption from the air and the anisotropic thermoelectric properties. In the last part, we describe our work on improving the power output of thermoelectric modules by using PEDOT, and we outline the potential applications of polymer thermoelectric generators.

  8. Object-Oriented Modeling of an Energy Harvesting System Based on Thermoelectric Generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesarajah, Marco; Frey, Georg

    This paper deals with the modeling of an energy harvesting system based on thermoelectric generators (TEG), and the validation of the model by means of a test bench. TEGs are capable to improve the overall energy efficiency of energy systems, e.g. combustion engines or heating systems, by using the remaining waste heat to generate electrical power. Previously, a component-oriented model of the TEG itself was developed in Modelica® language. With this model any TEG can be described and simulated given the material properties and the physical dimension. Now, this model was extended by the surrounding components to a complete model of a thermoelectric energy harvesting system. In addition to the TEG, the model contains the cooling system, the heat source, and the power electronics. To validate the simulation model, a test bench was built and installed on an oil-fired household heating system. The paper reports results of the measurements and discusses the validity of the developed simulation models. Furthermore, the efficiency of the proposed energy harvesting system is derived and possible improvements based on design variations tested in the simulation model are proposed.

  9. A thermoelectric generator using loop heat pipe and design match for maximum-power generation

    KAUST Repository

    Huang, Bin-Juine

    2015-09-05

    The present study focuses on the thermoelectric generator (TEG) using loop heat pipe (LHP) and design match for maximum-power generation. The TEG uses loop heat pipe, a passive cooling device, to dissipate heat without consuming power and free of noise. The experiments for a TEG with 4W rated power show that the LHP performs very well with overall thermal resistance 0.35 K W-1, from the cold side of TEG module to the ambient. The LHP is able to dissipate heat up to 110W and is maintenance free. The TEG design match for maximum-power generation, called “near maximum-power point operation (nMPPO)”, is studied to eliminate the MPPT (maximum-power point tracking controller). nMPPO is simply a system design which properly matches the output voltage of TEG with the battery. It is experimentally shown that TEG using design match for maximum-power generation (nMPPO) performs better than TEG with MPPT.

  10. Analysis of a Temperature-Controlled Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator During a Driving Cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brito, F. P.; Alves, A.; Pires, J. M.; Martins, L. B.; Martins, J.; Oliveira, J.; Teixeira, J.; Goncalves, L. M.; Hall, M. J.

    2016-03-01

    Thermoelectric generators can be used in automotive exhaust energy recovery. As car engines operate under wide variable loads, it is a challenge to design a system for operating efficiently under these variable conditions. This means being able to avoid excessive thermal dilution under low engine loads and being able to operate under high load, high temperature events without the need to deflect the exhaust gases with bypass systems. The authors have previously proposed a thermoelectric generator (TEG) concept with temperature control based on the operating principle of the variable conductance heat pipe/thermosiphon. This strategy allows the TEG modules’ hot face to work under constant, optimized temperature. The variable engine load will only affect the number of modules exposed to the heat source, not the heat transfer temperature. This prevents module overheating under high engine loads and avoids thermal dilution under low engine loads. The present work assesses the merit of the aforementioned approach by analysing the generator output during driving cycles simulated with an energy model of a light vehicle. For the baseline evaporator and condenser configuration, the driving cycle averaged electrical power outputs were approximately 320 W and 550 W for the type-approval Worldwide harmonized light vehicles test procedure Class 3 driving cycle and for a real-world highway driving cycle, respectively.

  11. Laser assisted hybrid additive manufacturing of thermoelectric modules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Tewolde, Mahder; Longtin, Jon P.; Hwang, David J.

    2017-02-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are an attractive means to produce electricity, particular from waste heat applications. However, TEGs are almost exclusively manufactured as flat, rigid modules of limited size and shape, and therefore an appropriate mounting for intimate contact of TEGs modules onto arbitrary surfaces represents a significant challenge. In this study, we introduce laser assisted additive manufacturing method to produce multi-layered thermoelectric generator device directly on flat and non-flat surfaces for waste heat recovery. The laser assisted processing spans from laser scribing of thermal sprayed thin films, curing of dispensed thermoelectric inks and selective laser sintering to functionalize thermoelectric materials.

  12. A Low-Cost Production Method of FeSi2 Power Generation Thermoelectric Modules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Hiroyuki; Kobayashi, Takahide; Kato, Masahiko; Yoneda, Seiji

    2016-03-01

    A method is proposed to reduce the production cost of power generation thermoelectric modules. FeSi2 is employed as the thermoelectric material because of its low cost, low environmental load, and oxidation resistance. The raw materials were prepared in the composition of Fe0.96Si2.1Co0.04 for n-type and Fe0.92Si2.1Mn0.08 for p-type, which were added with 0.5 wt.% Cu as the starting materials. They were sintered without pressure at 1446 K to be formed into elements. The Seebeck coefficient and resistivity at room temperature were determined to be -182 μV/K and 0.13 mΩm for n-type, and 338 μV/K and 1.13 mΩm for p-type, respectively. The brazing conditions of the direct joining between the element and the solder were examined. Pastes of BNi-6, BNi-7 or TB-608T were tried as the solder. TB-608T was useable for metallizing of insulation substrates and joining of thermoelectric elements in order to manufacture thermoelectric modules. The joining strength was determined to be 50 MPa between the alumina plate and the elements. No mechanical failure was observed in the modules after repetition of 10 or more exposures to a heat source of 670 K. No change was found in the internal resistance. The present production method will provide modules with high durability and low production cost, which will enable high-power multi-stage cascade modules at a reasonable cost.

  13. Thermoelectric Conversion of Waste Heat to Electricity in an IC Engine Powered Vehicle

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2012-01-31

    The thermoelectric generator shorting system provides the capability to monitor and short-out individual thermoelectric couples in the event of failure. This makes the series configured thermoelectric generator robust to individual thermoelectric couple failure. Open circuit detection of the thermoelectric couples and the associated short control is a key technique to ensure normal functionality of the TE generator under failure of individual TE couples. This report describes a five-year effort whose goal was the understanding the issues related to the development of a thermoelectric energy recovery device for a Class-8 truck. Likely materials and important issues related to the utility of this generator were identified. Several prototype generators were constructed and demonstrated. The generators developed demonstrated several new concepts including advanced insulation, couple bypass technology and the first implementation of skutterudite thermoelectric material in a generator design. Additional work will be required to bring this system to fruition. However, such generators offer the possibility of converting energy that is otherwise wasted to useful electric power. Uur studies indicate that this can be accomplished in a cost-effective manner for this application.

  14. Coupled Thermoelectric Devices: Theory and Experiment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaziel A. Rojas

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we address theoretically and experimentally the optimization problem of the heat transfer occurring in two coupled thermoelectric devices. A simple experimental set up is used. The optimization parameters are the applied electric currents. When one thermoelectric is analysed, the temperature difference Δ T between the thermoelectric boundaries shows a parabolic profile with respect to the applied electric current. This behaviour agrees qualitatively with the corresponding experimental measurement. The global entropy generation shows a monotonous increase with the electric current. In the case of two coupled thermoelectric devices, elliptic isocontours for Δ T are obtained in applying an electric current through each of the thermoelectrics. The isocontours also fit well with measurements. Optimal figure of merit is found for a specific set of values of the applied electric currents. The entropy generation-thermal figure of merit relationship is studied. It is shown that, given a value of the thermal figure of merit, the device can be operated in a state of minimum entropy production.

  15. A comparison of micro-structured flat-plate and cross-cut heat sinks for thermoelectric generation application

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rezania, Alireza; Rosendahl, L. A.

    2015-01-01

    . In this study, a micro-structured plate-fin heat sink is compared to a modified design of cross-cut heat sink applied to TEGs over a range of temperatures and thermal conductivities. The particular focus of this study is to explore the net power output from the TEG module. The three-dimensional governing...... equations for the flow and heat transfer are solved using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) in conjunction with the thermoelectric characteristics of the TEG over a wide range of flow inlet velocities. The results show that at small flow inlet velocity, the maximum net power output in TEG with plate......Heat sink configuration has strong impact on net power output from thermoelectric generators (TEGs). A weak cooling strategy can even cause negative net power output from the thermoelectric device. However, the net power output can be significantly improved by optimal design of the heat sink...

  16. A High Temperature Experimental Characterization Procedure for Oxide-Based Thermoelectric Generator Modules under Transient Conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Man, Elena Anamaria; Schaltz, Erik; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2015-01-01

    Characterization methods for thermoelectric generator (TEG) modules play an important role in studying their behavior and in enhancing the performance and simulation of TEG systems also. The purpose of this study is to analyze the behavior in transient and steady-state of the temperature applied...

  17. A review on heat sink for thermo-electric power generation: Classifications and parameters affecting performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elghool, Ali; Basrawi, Firdaus; Ibrahim, Thamir Khalil; Habib, Khairul; Ibrahim, Hassan; Idris, Daing Mohamad Nafiz Daing

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Coupling a thermoelectric power generation (TEG) to a heat sink is presented. • Review the classifications and parameters affecting performance of the TEG with heat sink. • Discuss different mathematical models of the heat sinks. • The passive heat sinks are most appropriate because of the inherent efficiency of TEG. • Medium temperature range below 300 °C is found to be most suitable for HPHS. - Abstract: In recent years, there have been growing interests in key areas related to global warming resulting from environmental emissions, and the diminishing sources of fossil fuel. The increased interest has led to significant research efforts towards finding novel technologies in clean energy production. Consequently, the merits of a thermo-electric generator (TEG) have promised a revival of alternative means of producing green energy. It is, however, impractical to account for the cost of thermal energy input to the TEG which is in the form of final waste heat. This is because the technology presents critical limitations in determining its cost efficiency nor its economic disadvantages. This paper reviews the principles of thermo-electric power production, as well the materials use, performance achieved, and application areas. The paper also takes a particular deliberation on TEG heat sinks geometries and categories. The review emphasizes more on the TEG performance while considering a number of heat sink parameters related to its performance.

  18. Thermoelectricity for future sustainable energy technologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weidenkaff Anke

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectricity is a general term for a number of effects describing the direct interconversion of heat and electricity. Thermoelectric devices are therefore promising, environmental-friendly alternatives to conventional power generators or cooling units. Since the mid-90s, research on thermoelectric properties and their applications has steadily increased. In the course of years, the development of high-temperature resistant TE materials and devices has emerged as one of the main areas of interest focusing both on basic research and practical applications. A wide range of innovative and cost-efficient material classes has been studied and their properties improved. This has also led to advances in synthesis and metrology. The paper starts out with thermoelectric history, basic effects underlying thermoelectric conversion and selected examples of application. The main part focuses on thermoelectric materials including an outline of the design rules, a review on the most common materials and the feasibility of improved future high-temperature thermoelectric converters.

  19. Thermoelectricity: materials and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elberg, S.; Mathonnet, P.

    1975-01-01

    After a brief recall of the basic principles of thermoelectricity, the essential characteristics intervening in the different thermoelectric devices operating modes are defined. Properties of the materials the most used nowadays and performances of the apparatus that they allow to realize are indicated. Advantages and drawbacks of the principal applications in the form of electrical generators, refrigerators and heat pumps are pointed out [fr

  20. Nano-Micro Materials Enabled Thermoelectricity From Window Glasses

    KAUST Repository

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2012-11-03

    With growing world population and decreasing fossil fuel reserves we need to explore and utilize variety of renewable and clean energy sources to meet the imminent challenge of energy crisis. Solar energy is considered as the leading promising alternate energy source with the pertinent challenge of off sunshine period and uneven worldwide distribution of usable sun light. Although thermoelectricity is considered as a reasonable energy harvester from wasted heat, its mass scale usage is yet to be developed. By transforming window glasses into generators of thermoelectricity, this doctoral work explores engineering aspects of using the temperature gradient between the hot outdoor heated by the sun and the relatively cold indoor of a building for mass scale energy generation. In order to utilize the two counter temperature environments simultaneously, variety of techniques, including: a) insertion of basic metals like copper and nickel wire, b) sputtering of thermoelectric films on side walls of individual glass strips to form the thickness depth of the glass on subsequent curing of the strips, and c) embedding nano-manufactured thermoelectric pillars, have been implemented for innovative integration of thermoelectric materials into window glasses. The practical demonstration of thermoelectric windows has been validated using a finite element model to predict the behavior of thermoelectric window under variety of varying conditions. MEMS based characterization platform has been fabricated for thermoelectric characterization of thin films employing van der Pauw and four probe modules. Enhancement of thermoelectric properties of the nano- manufactured pillars due to nano-structuring, achieved through mechanical alloying of micro-sized thermoelectric powders, has been explored. Modulation of thermoelectric properties of the nano-structured thermoelectric pillars by addition of sulfur to nano-powder matrix has also been investigated in detail. Using the best possible p

  1. Flexible and foldable paper-substrate thermoelectric generator (teg)

    KAUST Repository

    Rojas, Jhonathan Prieto

    2017-08-24

    Flexible and foldable paper-substrate thermoelectric generators (TEGs) and methods for making the paper-substrate TEGs are disclosed. A method includes depositing a plurality of thermocouples in series on a paper substrate to create a paper-substrate TEG, wherein the plurality of thermocouples is deposited between two contact points of the paper-substrate TEG. The method may also include setting the power density and maximum achievable temperature gradient of the paper-substrate TEG by folding the paper-substrate TEG. A paper-substrate TEG apparatus may include a paper substrate and a plurality of thermocouples deposited in series on the paper substrate between two contact points of the paper-substrate TEG, wherein the power density and maximum achievable temperature gradient of the paper-substrate TEG is set by folding the paper-substrate TEG.

  2. Performance of the Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop Rover Heat Rejection System Used for Thermal Control of the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover on the Surface of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhandari, Pradeep; Birur, Gajanana; Bame, David; Mastropietro, A. J.; Miller, Jennifer; Karlmann, Paul; Liu, Yuanming; Anderson, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    The challenging range of landing sites for which the Mars Science Laboratory Rover was designed, required a rover thermal management system that is capable of keeping temperatures controlled across a wide variety of environmental conditions. On the Martian surface where temperatures can be as cold as -123 C and as warm as 38 C, the Rover relies upon a Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop (MPFL) Rover Heat Rejection System (RHRS) and external radiators to maintain the temperature of sensitive electronics and science instruments within a -40 C to +50 C range. The RHRS harnesses some of the waste heat generated from the Rover power source, known as the Multi Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG), for use as survival heat for the rover during cold conditions. The MMRTG produces 110 Watts of electrical power while generating waste heat equivalent to approximately 2000 Watts. Heat exchanger plates (hot plates) positioned close to the MMRTG pick up this survival heat from it by radiative heat transfer and supply it to the rover. This design is the first instance of use of a RHRS for thermal control of a rover or lander on the surface of a planet. After an extremely successful landing on Mars (August 5), the rover and the RHRS have performed flawlessly for close to an earth year (half the nominal mission life). This paper will share the performance of the RHRS on the Martian surface as well as compare it to its predictions.

  3. Electrical performance analysis and economic evaluation of combined biomass cook stove thermoelectric (BITE) generator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lertsatitthanakorn, C

    2007-05-01

    The use of biomass cook stoves is widespread in the domestic sector of developing countries, but the stoves are not efficient. To advance the versatility of the cook stove, we investigated the feasibility of adding a commercial thermoelectric (TE) module made of bismuth-telluride based materials to the stove's side wall, thereby creating a thermoelectric generator system that utilizes a proportion of the stove's waste heat. The system, a biomass cook stove thermoelectric generator (BITE), consists of a commercial TE module (Taihuaxing model TEP1-1264-3.4), a metal sheet wall which acts as one side of the stove's structure and serves as the hot side of the TE module, and a rectangular fin heat sink at the cold side of the TE module. An experimental set-up was built to evaluate the conversion efficiency at various temperature ranges. The experimental set-up revealed that the electrical power output and the conversion efficiency depended on the temperature difference between the cold and hot sides of the TE module. At a temperature difference of approximately 150 degrees C, the unit achieved a power output of 2.4W. The conversion efficiency of 3.2% was enough to drive a low power incandescent light bulb or a small portable radio. A theoretical model approximated the power output at low temperature ranges. An economic analysis indicated that the payback period tends to be very short when compared with the cost of the same power supplied by batteries. Therefore, the generator design formulated here could be used in the domestic sector. The system is not intended to compete with primary power sources but serves adequately as an emergency or backup source of power.

  4. Experimental and theoretical analysis of a hybrid solar thermoelectric generator with forced convection cooling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundarraj, Pradeepkumar; Taylor, Robert A.; Banerjee, Debosmita; Maity, Dipak; Sinha Roy, Susanta

    2017-01-01

    Hybrid solar thermoelectric generators (HSTEGs) have garnered significant research attention recently due to their potential ability to cogenerate heat and electricity. In this paper, theoretical and experimental investigations of the electrical and thermal performance of a HSTEG system are reported. In order to validate the theoretical model, a laboratory scale HSTEG system (based on forced convection cooling) is developed. The HSTEG consists of six thermoelectric generator modules, an electrical heater, and a stainless steel cooling block. Our experimental analysis shows that the HSTEG is capable of producing a maximum electrical power output of 4.7 W, an electrical efficiency of 1.2% and thermal efficiency of 61% for an average temperature difference of 92 °C across the TEG modules with a heater power input of 382 W. These experimental results of the HSTEG system are found to be in good agreement with the theoretical prediction. This experimental/theoretical analysis can also serve as a guide for evaluating the performance of the HSTEG system with forced convection cooling.

  5. Thermoelectric Energy Conversion: Materials, Devices, and Systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Gang

    2015-01-01

    This paper will present a discussion of challenges, progresses, and opportunities in thermoelectric energy conversion technology. We will start with an introduction to thermoelectric technology, followed by discussing advances in thermoelectric materials, devices, and systems. Thermoelectric energy conversion exploits the Seebeck effect to convert thermal energy into electricity, or the Peltier effect for heat pumping applications. Thermoelectric devices are scalable, capable of generating power from nano Watts to mega Watts. One key issue is to improve materials thermoelectric figure- of-merit that is linearly proportional to the Seebeck coefficient, the square of the electrical conductivity, and inversely proportional to the thermal conductivity. Improving the figure-of-merit requires good understanding of electron and phonon transport as their properties are often contradictory in trends. Over the past decade, excellent progresses have been made in the understanding of electron and phonon transport in thermoelectric materials, and in improving existing and identify new materials, especially by exploring nanoscale size effects. Taking materials to real world applications, however, faces more challenges in terms of materials stability, device fabrication, thermal management and system design. Progresses and lessons learnt from our effort in fabricating thermoelectric devices will be discussed. We have demonstrated device thermal-to-electrical energy conversion efficiency ∼10% and solar-thermoelectric generator efficiency at 4.6% without optical concentration of sunlight (Figure 1) and ∼8-9% efficiency with optical concentration. Great opportunities exist in advancing materials as well as in using existing materials for energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy utilization, as well as mobile applications. (paper)

  6. Carbon-Nanotube-Based Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Blackburn, Jeffrey L. [Chemistry and Nanoscience Center, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden CO 80401-3305 USA; Ferguson, Andrew J. [Chemistry and Nanoscience Center, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden CO 80401-3305 USA; Cho, Chungyeon [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A& M University, College Station TX 77843-3003 USA; Grunlan, Jaime C. [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A& M University, College Station TX 77843-3003 USA

    2018-01-22

    Conversion of waste heat to voltage has the potential to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of a number of critical energy sectors, such as the transportation and electricity-generation sectors, and manufacturing processes. Thermal energy is also an abundant low-flux source that can be harnessed to power portable/wearable electronic devices and critical components in remote off-grid locations. As such, a number of different inorganic and organic materials are being explored for their potential in thermoelectric-energy-harvesting devices. Carbon-based thermoelectric materials are particularly attractive due to their use of nontoxic, abundant source-materials, their amenability to high-throughput solution-phase fabrication routes, and the high specific energy (i.e., W g-1) enabled by their low mass. Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) represent a unique 1D carbon allotrope with structural, electrical, and thermal properties that enable efficient thermoelectric-energy conversion. Here, the progress made toward understanding the fundamental thermoelectric properties of SWCNTs, nanotube-based composites, and thermoelectric devices prepared from these materials is reviewed in detail. This progress illuminates the tremendous potential that carbon-nanotube-based materials and composites have for producing high-performance next-generation devices for thermoelectric-energy harvesting.

  7. CFD Analysis for Assessing the Effect of Wind on the Thermal Control of the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhandari, Pradeep; Anderson, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    The challenging range of landing sites for which the Mars Science Laboratory Rover was designed, requires a rover thermal management system that is capable of keeping temperatures controlled across a wide variety of environmental conditions. On the Martian surface where temperatures can be as cold as -123 C and as warm as 38 C, the rover relies upon a Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop (MPFL) Rover Heat Rejection System (RHRS) and external radiators to maintain the temperature of sensitive electronics and science instruments within a -40 C to 50 C range. The RHRS harnesses some of the waste heat generated from the rover power source, known as the Multi Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG), for use as survival heat for the rover during cold conditions. The MMRTG produces 110 W of electrical power while generating waste heat equivalent to approximately 2000 W. Heat exchanger plates (hot plates) positioned close to the MMRTG pick up this survival heat from it by radiative heat transfer. Winds on Mars can be as fast as 15 m/s for extended periods. They can lead to significant heat loss from the MMRTG and the hot plates due to convective heat pick up from these surfaces. Estimation of this convective heat loss cannot be accurately and adequately achieved by simple textbook based calculations because of the very complicated flow fields around these surfaces, which are a function of wind direction and speed. Accurate calculations necessitated the employment of sophisticated Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) computer codes. This paper describes the methodology and results of these CFD calculations. Additionally, these results are compared to simple textbook based calculations that served as benchmarks and sanity checks for them. And finally, the overall RHRS system performance predictions will be shared to show how these results affected the overall rover thermal performance.

  8. Unified Quantum Model of Work Generation in Thermoelectric Generators, Solar and Fuel Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Alicki

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available In the previous papers, the idea of “hidden oscillations” has been applied to explain work generation in semiconductor photovoltaic cells and thermoelectric generators. The aim of this paper is firstly to extend this approach to fuel cells and, secondly, to create a unified quantum model for all types of such devices. They are treated as electron pumps powered by heat or chemical engines. The working fluid is electron gas and the necessary oscillating element (“piston” is provided by plasma oscillation. Those oscillations are localized around the junction that also serves as a diode rectifying fast electric charge oscillations and yielding a final output direct current (DC. The dynamics of the devices are governed by the Markovian master equations that can be derived in a rigorous way from the underlying Hamiltonian models and are consistent with the laws of thermodynamics. The new ingredient is the derivation of master equations for systems driven by chemical reactions.

  9. Methods of synthesizing thermoelectric materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Shuo; Liu, Wei-Shu; Wang, Hengzhi; Wang, Hui; Yu, Bo; Chen, Gang

    2016-04-05

    Methods for synthesis of thermoelectric materials are disclosed. In some embodiments, a method of fabricating a thermoelectric material includes generating a plurality of nanoparticles from a starting material comprising one or more chalcogens and one or more transition metals; and consolidating the nanoparticles under elevated pressure and temperature, wherein the nanoparticles are heated and cooled at a controlled rate.

  10. A flameless catalytic combustion-based thermoelectric generator for powering electronic instruments on gas pipelines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xiao, Heng; Qiu, Kuanrong; Gou, Xiaolong; Ou, Qiang

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: ► MPPT is used to improve the feature that TEG output is sensitive to load variation. ► The improved feature makes TEG suitable to power electronic device on gas pipeline. ► Test shows heat transfer uniformity plays an important role in improving TEG output. ► It can get an optimized TEG by uniformly filling a thermal insulation material. - Abstract: This paper presents a flameless catalytic combustion-based thermoelectric power generator that uses commercial thermoelectric modules. The structure of the thermoelectric generator (TEG) is introduced and the power performance is measured based on a designed circuit system. The open circuit voltage of the TEG is about 7.3 V. The maximum power output can reach up to 6.5 W when the load resistance matches the TEG internal resistance. However, the system output is sensitive to load variation. To improve this characteristic, maximum power point tracking technique is used and results in an open circuit voltage of 13.8 V. The improved characteristic makes the TEG system a good charger to keep the lead acid battery fully charged so as to meet the needs of electronic instruments on gas pipelines. In addition, the combustion features have been investigated based on the temperature measurement. Test results show that the uniformity of combustion heat transfer process and the combustion chamber structure play important roles in improving system power output. It can get an optimized TEG system (maximum power output: 8.3 W) by uniformly filling a thermal insulation material (asbestos) to avoid a non-uniform combustion heat transfer process

  11. Heat Pipe-Assisted Thermoelectric Power Generation Technology for Waste Heat Recovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Ju-Chan; Chi, Ri-Guang; Rhi, Seok-Ho; Lee, Kye-Bock; Hwang, Hyun-Chang; Lee, Ji-Su; Lee, Wook-Hyun

    2015-06-01

    Currently, large amounts of thermal energy dissipated from automobiles are emitted through hot exhaust pipes. This has resulted in the need for a new efficient recycling method to recover energy from waste hot exhaust gas. The present experimental study investigated how to improve the power output of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) system assisted by a wickless loop heat pipe (loop thermosyphon) under the limited space of the exhaust gas pipeline. The present study shows a novel loop-type heat pipe-assisted TEG concept to be applied to hybrid vehicles. The operating temperature of a TEG's hot side surface should be as high as possible to maximize the Seebeck effect. The present study shows a novel TEG concept of transferring heat from the source to the sink. This technology can transfer waste heat to any local place with a loop-type heat pipe. The present TEG system with a heat pipe can transfer heat and generate an electromotive force power of around 1.3 V in the case of 170°C hot exhaust gas. Two thermoelectric modules (TEMs) for a conductive block model and four Bi2Te3 TEMs with a heat pipe-assisted model were installed in the condenser section. Heat flows to the condenser section from the evaporator section connected to the exhaust pipe. This novel TEG system with a heat pipe can be placed in any location on an automobile.

  12. A study of selected aspects of the operation of thermoelectric generator incorporated in a biomass-fired stove

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sornek Krzysztof

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available High demands in the field of energy efficiency and clean combustion make it necessary to looking for the new developments in the field of stoves, fireplaces and stove-fireplaces with accumulation. An interesting idea is to use the thermoelectric modules, which receive a heat from flue gas and convert it to the electricity. Electricity generated in this way may be used to power combustion optimizers and other components. This paper shows results of studied carried out to determine the possibility of combined heat and power generation using the stove-fireplace with accumulation. Thermoelectric generator with maximum hot side temperature at a level of 150°C was placed on the surface of the exchanger. Cooling down was realized using the dedicated water exchanger as well as the heat sink without and with an air fan. The experimental results allowed to define the effect of the different cooling systems on the output TEG voltage. Moreover, dependence of the current-voltage characteristics and generated power from the temperature was obtained.

  13. Behavior of a thermoelectric power generation device based on solar irradiation and the earth’s surface-air temperature difference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Zhe; Li, Wenbin; Kan, Jiangming

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • A technical solution to the power supply of wireless sensor networks is presented. • The low voltage produced by TEG is boosted from less than 1 V to more than 4 V. • An output current and voltage of TEG device is acquired as 21.47 mA and 221 mV. • The device successfully provides output power 4.7 mW in no electricity conditions. • The thermo-economic value of TEG device is demonstrated. - Abstract: Motivated by the limited power supply of wireless sensors used to monitor the natural environment, for example, in forests, this study presents a technical solution by recycling solar irradiation heat using thermoelectric generators. Based on solar irradiation and the earth’s surface-air temperature difference, a new type of thermoelectric power generation device has been devised, the distinguishing features of which include the application of an all-glass heat-tube-type vacuum solar heat collection pipe to absorb and transfer solar energy without a water medium and the use of a thin heat dissipation tube to cool the earth surface air temperature. The effects of key parameters such as solar illumination, air temperature, load resistance, the proportional coefficient, output power and power generation efficiency for thermoelectric energy conversion are analyzed. The results of realistic outdoor experiments show that under a state of regular illumination at 3.75 × 10 4 lx, using one TEG module, the thermoelectric device is able to boost the voltage obtained from the natural solar irradiation from 221 mV to 4.41 V, with an output power of 4.7 mW. This means that the electrical energy generated can provide the power supply for low power consumption components, such as low power wireless sensors, ZigBee modules and other low power loads

  14. Thermoelectric Generators for Automotive Waste Heat Recovery Systems Part I: Numerical Modeling and Baseline Model Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sumeet; Heister, Stephen D.; Xu, Xianfan; Salvador, James R.; Meisner, Gregory P.

    2013-04-01

    A numerical model has been developed to simulate coupled thermal and electrical energy transfer processes in a thermoelectric generator (TEG) designed for automotive waste heat recovery systems. This model is capable of computing the overall heat transferred, the electrical power output, and the associated pressure drop for given inlet conditions of the exhaust gas and the available TEG volume. Multiple-filled skutterudites and conventional bismuth telluride are considered for thermoelectric modules (TEMs) for conversion of waste heat from exhaust into usable electrical power. Heat transfer between the hot exhaust gas and the hot side of the TEMs is enhanced with the use of a plate-fin heat exchanger integrated within the TEG and using liquid coolant on the cold side. The TEG is discretized along the exhaust flow direction using a finite-volume method. Each control volume is modeled as a thermal resistance network which consists of integrated submodels including a heat exchanger and a thermoelectric device. The pressure drop along the TEG is calculated using standard pressure loss correlations and viscous drag models. The model is validated to preserve global energy balances and is applied to analyze a prototype TEG with data provided by General Motors. Detailed results are provided for local and global heat transfer and electric power generation. In the companion paper, the model is then applied to consider various TEG topologies using skutterudite and bismuth telluride TEMs.

  15. Efficiency Study of a Commercial Thermoelectric Power Generator (TEG) Under Thermal Cycling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatzikraniotis, E.; Zorbas, K. T.; Samaras, I.; Kyratsi, Th.; Paraskevopoulos, K. M.

    2010-09-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) make use of the Seebeck effect in semiconductors for the direct conversion of heat to electrical energy. The possible use of a device consisting of numerous TEG modules for waste heat recovery from an internal combustion (IC) engine could considerably help worldwide efforts towards energy saving. However, commercially available TEGs operate at temperatures much lower than the actual operating temperature range in the exhaust pipe of an automobile, which could cause structural failure of the thermoelectric elements. Furthermore, continuous thermal cycling could lead to reduced efficiency and lifetime of the TEG. In this work we investigate the long-term performance and stability of a commercially available TEG under temperature and power cycling. The module was subjected to sequential hot-side heating (at 200°C) and cooling for long times (3000 h) in order to measure changes in the TEG’s performance. A reduction in Seebeck coefficient and an increase in resistivity were observed. Alternating-current (AC) impedance measurements and scanning electron microscope (SEM) observations were performed on the module, and results are presented and discussed.

  16. Advanced Thermoelectric Materials for Efficient Waste Heat Recovery in Process Industries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adam Polcyn; Moe Khaleel

    2009-01-06

    The overall objective of the project was to integrate advanced thermoelectric materials into a power generation device that could convert waste heat from an industrial process to electricity with an efficiency approaching 20%. Advanced thermoelectric materials were developed with figure-of-merit ZT of 1.5 at 275 degrees C. These materials were not successfully integrated into a power generation device. However, waste heat recovery was demonstrated from an industrial process (the combustion exhaust gas stream of an oxyfuel-fired flat glass melting furnace) using a commercially available (5% efficiency) thermoelectric generator coupled to a heat pipe. It was concluded that significant improvements both in thermoelectric material figure-of-merit and in cost-effective methods for capturing heat would be required to make thermoelectric waste heat recovery viable for widespread industrial application.

  17. Carbon-Nanotube-Based Thermoelectric Materials and Devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackburn, Jeffrey L; Ferguson, Andrew J; Cho, Chungyeon; Grunlan, Jaime C

    2018-03-01

    Conversion of waste heat to voltage has the potential to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of a number of critical energy sectors, such as the transportation and electricity-generation sectors, and manufacturing processes. Thermal energy is also an abundant low-flux source that can be harnessed to power portable/wearable electronic devices and critical components in remote off-grid locations. As such, a number of different inorganic and organic materials are being explored for their potential in thermoelectric-energy-harvesting devices. Carbon-based thermoelectric materials are particularly attractive due to their use of nontoxic, abundant source-materials, their amenability to high-throughput solution-phase fabrication routes, and the high specific energy (i.e., W g -1 ) enabled by their low mass. Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) represent a unique 1D carbon allotrope with structural, electrical, and thermal properties that enable efficient thermoelectric-energy conversion. Here, the progress made toward understanding the fundamental thermoelectric properties of SWCNTs, nanotube-based composites, and thermoelectric devices prepared from these materials is reviewed in detail. This progress illuminates the tremendous potential that carbon-nanotube-based materials and composites have for producing high-performance next-generation devices for thermoelectric-energy harvesting. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Theoretical and Field Experimental Investigation of an Arrayed Solar Thermoelectric Flat-Plate Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehman, Naveed ur; Siddiqui, Mubashir Ali

    2018-05-01

    This work theoretically and experimentally investigated the performance of an arrayed solar flat-plate thermoelectric generator (ASFTEG). An analytical model, based on energy balances, was established for determining load voltage, power output and overall efficiency of ASFTEGs. An array consists of TEG devices (or modules) connected electrically in series and operating in closed-circuit mode with a load. The model takes into account the distinct temperature difference across each module, which is a major feature of this model. Parasitic losses have also been included in the model for realistic results. With the given set of simulation parameters, an ASFTEG consisting of four commercially available Bi2Te3 modules had a predicted load voltage of 200 mV and generated 3546 μW of electric power output. Predictions from the model were in good agreement with field experimental outcomes from a prototype ASFTEG, which was developed for validation purposes. Later, the model was simulated to maximize the performance of the ASFTEG by adjusting the thermal and electrical design of the system. Optimum values of design parameters were evaluated and discussed in detail. Beyond the current limitations associated with improvements in thermoelectric materials, this study will eventually lead to the successful development of portable roof-top renewable TEGs.

  19. Effect of Cooling Units on the Performance of an Automotive Exhaust-Based Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, C. Q.; Zhu, D. C.; Deng, Y. D.; Wang, Y. P.; Liu, X.

    2017-05-01

    Currently, automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generators (AETEGs) are a hot topic in energy recovery. In order to investigate the influence of coolant flow rate, coolant flow direction and cooling unit arrangement in the AETEG, a thermoelectric generator (TEG) model and a related test bench are constructed. Water cooling is adopted in this study. Due to the non-uniformity of the surface temperature of the heat source, the coolant flow direction would affect the output performance of the TEG. Changing the volumetric flow rate of coolant can increase the output power of multi-modules connected in series or/and parallel as it can improve the temperature uniformity of the cooling unit. Since the temperature uniformity of the cooling unit has a strong influence on the output power, two cooling units are connected in series or parallel to research the effect of cooling unit arrangements on the maximum output power of the TEG. Experimental and theoretical analyses reveal that the net output power is generally higher with cooling units connected in parallel than cooling units connected in series in the cooling system with two cooling units.

  20. Combustion Characteristics of Butane Porous Burner for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. F. Mustafa

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study explores the utilization of a porous burner for thermoelectric power generation. The porous burner was tested with butane gas using two sets of configurations: single layer porcelain and a stacked-up double layer alumina and porcelain. Six PbSnTe thermoelectric (TE modules with a total area of 54 cm2 were attached to the wall of the burner. Fins were also added to the cold side of the TE modules. Fuel-air equivalence ratio was varied between the blowoff and flashback limit and the corresponding temperature, current-voltage, and emissions were recorded. The stacked-up double layer negatively affected the combustion efficiency at an equivalence ratio of 0.20 to 0.42, but single layer porcelain shows diminishing trend in the equivalence ratio of 0.60 to 0.90. The surface temperature of a stacked-up porous media is considerably higher than the single layer. Carbon monoxide emission is independent for both porous media configurations, but moderate reduction was recorded for single layer porcelain at lean fuel-air equivalence ratio. Nitrogen oxides is insensitive in the lean fuel-air equivalence ratio for both configurations, even though slight reduction was observed in the rich region for single layer porcelain. Power output was found to be highly dependent on the temperature gradient.

  1. Performance of a Composite Thermoelectric Generator with Different Arrangements of SiGe, BiTe and PbTe under Different Configurations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Vargas-Almeida

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we analyze the role of the thermoelectric (TE properties, namely Seebeck coefficient α, thermal conductivity κ and electrical resistivity ρ, of three different materials in a composite thermoelectric generator (CTEG under different configurations. The CTEG is composed of three thermoelectric modules (TEMs: (1 two TEMs thermally and electrically connected in series (SC; (2 two branches of TEMs thermally and electrically connected in parallel (PSC; and (3 three TEMs thermally and electrically connected in parallel (TEP. In general, each of the TEMs have different thermoelectric parameters, namely a Seebeck coefficient α, a thermal conductance K and an electrical resistance R. Following the framework proposed recently, we show the effect of: (1 the configuration; and (2 the arrangements of TE materials on the corresponding equivalent figure of merit Zeq and consequently on the maximum power Pmax and efficiency η of the CTEG. Firstly, we consider that the whole system is formed of the same thermoelectric material (α1,K1,R1 = α2,K2,R2 = α3,K3,R3 and, secondly, that the whole system is constituted by only two different thermoelectric materials Entropy 2015, 17 7388 (αi,Ki,Ri ≠ αj ,Kj ,Rj 6= αl,Kl,Rl, where i, j, l can be 1, 2 or 3. In this work, we propose arrangements of TEMs, which clearly have the advantage of a higher thermoelectric figure of merit value compared to a conventional thermoelectric module. A corollary about the Zeq-max for CTEG is obtained as a result of these considerations. We suggest an optimum configuration.

  2. Mg2BIV: Narrow Bandgap Thermoelectric Semiconductors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Il-Ho

    2018-05-01

    Thermoelectric materials can convert thermal energy directly into electric energy and vice versa. The electricity generation from waste heat via thermoelectric devices can be considered as a new energy source. For instance, automotive exhaust gas and all industrial processes generate an enormous amount of waste heat that can be converted to electricity by using thermoelectric devices. Magnesium compound Mg2BIV (BIV = Si, Ge or Sn) has a favorable combination of physical and chemical properties and can be a good base for the development of new efficient thermoelectrics. Because they possess similar properties to those of group BIV elemental semiconductors, they have been recognized as good candidates for thermoelectric applications. Mg2Si, Mg2Ge and Mg2Sn with an antifluorite structure are narrow bandgap semiconductors with indirect band gaps of 0.77 eV, 0.74 eV, and 0.35 eV, respectively. Mg2BIV has been recognized as a promising material for thermoelectric energy conversion at temperatures ranging from 500 K to 800 K. Compared to other thermoelectric materials operating in the similar temperature range, such as PbTe and filled skutterudites, the important aspects of Mg2BIV are non-toxic and earth-abundant elements. Based on classical thermoelectric theory, the material factor β ( m* / m e)3/2μκ L -1 can be utilized as the criterion for thermoelectric material selection, where m* is the density-of-states effective mass, me is the mass of an electron, μ is the carrier mobility, and κL is the lattice thermal conductivity. The β for magnesium silicides is 14, which is very high compared to 0.8 for iron silicides, 1.4 for manganese silicides, and 2.6 for silicon-germanium alloys. In this paper, basic phenomena of thermoelectricity and transport parameters for thermoelectric materials were briefly introduced, and thermoelectric properties of Mg2BIV synthesized by using a solid-state reaction were reviewed. In addition, various Mg2BIV compounds were discussed

  3. Thermoelectric Generators Based on Ionic Liquids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laux, Edith; Uhl, Stefanie; Jeandupeux, Laure; López, Pilar Pérez; Sanglard, Pauline; Vanoli, Ennio; Marti, Roger; Keppner, Herbert

    2018-06-01

    Looking at energy harvesting using body or waste heat for portable electronic or on-board devices, Ionic liquids are interesting candidates as thermoactive materials in thermoelectric generators (TEGs) because of their outstanding properties. Two different kinds of ionic liquid, with alkylammonium and choline as cations, were studied, whereby different anions and redox couples were combined. This study focussed on the intention to find non-hazardous and environmentally friendly ionic liquids for TEGs to be selected among the thousands that can potentially be used. Seebeck coefficients (SEs) as high as - 15 mV/K were measured, in a particular case for an electrode temperature difference of 20 K. The bottleneck of our TEG device is still the abundance of negative SE liquids matching the internal resistance with the existing positive SE-liquids at series connections. In this paper, we show further progress in finding increased negative SE liquids. For current extraction from the TEG, the ionic liquid must be blended with a redox couple, allowing carrier exchange in a cyclic process under a voltage which is incuced by the asymmetry of the generator in terms of hot and cold electrodes. In our study, two types of redox pairs were tested. It was observed that a high SE of an ionic liquid/redox blend is not a sufficient condition for high power output. It appears that more complex effects between the ionic liquid and the electrode determine the magnitude of the final current/power output. The physico-chemical understanding of such a TEG cell is not yet available.

  4. General-purpose heat source: Research and development program, radioisotope thermoelectric generator/thin fragment impact test

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reimus, M.A.H.; Hinckley, J.E.

    1996-11-01

    The general-purpose heat source provides power for space missions by transmitting the heat of 238 Pu decay to an array of thermoelectric elements in a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG). Because the potential for a launch abort or return from orbit exists for any space mission, the heat source response to credible accident scenarios is being evaluated. This test was designed to provide information on the response of a loaded RTG to impact by a fragment similar to the type of fragment produced by breakup of the spacecraft propulsion module system. The results of this test indicated that impact by a thin aluminum fragment traveling at 306 m/s may result in significant damage to the converter housing, failure of one fueled clad, and release of a small quantity of fuel

  5. Nanostructured silicon for thermoelectric

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stranz, A.; Kähler, J.; Waag, A.; Peiner, E.

    2011-06-01

    Thermoelectric modules convert thermal energy into electrical energy and vice versa. At present bismuth telluride is the most widely commercial used material for thermoelectric energy conversion. There are many applications where bismuth telluride modules are installed, mainly for refrigeration. However, bismuth telluride as material for energy generation in large scale has some disadvantages. Its availability is limited, it is hot stable at higher temperatures (>250°C) and manufacturing cost is relatively high. An alternative material for energy conversion in the future could be silicon. The technological processing of silicon is well advanced due to the rapid development of microelectronics in recent years. Silicon is largely available and environmentally friendly. The operating temperature of silicon thermoelectric generators can be much higher than of bismuth telluride. Today silicon is rarely used as a thermoelectric material because of its high thermal conductivity. In order to use silicon as an efficient thermoelectric material, it is necessary to reduce its thermal conductivity, while maintaining high electrical conductivity and high Seebeck coefficient. This can be done by nanostructuring into arrays of pillars. Fabrication of silicon pillars using ICP-cryogenic dry etching (Inductive Coupled Plasma) will be described. Their uniform height of the pillars allows simultaneous connecting of all pillars of an array. The pillars have diameters down to 180 nm and their height was selected between 1 micron and 10 microns. Measurement of electrical resistance of single silicon pillars will be presented which is done in a scanning electron microscope (SEM) equipped with nanomanipulators. Furthermore, measurement of thermal conductivity of single pillars with different diameters using the 3ω method will be shown.

  6. Pumped Fluid Loop Heat Rejection and Recovery Systems for Thermal Control of the Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhandari, Pradeep; Birur, Gajanana; Prina, Mauro; Ramirez, Brenda; Paris, Anthony; Novak, Keith; Pauken, Michael

    2006-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the heat rejection and heat recovery system for thermal control of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). The MSL mission will use mechanically pumped fluid loop based architecture for thermal control of the spacecraft and rover. The architecture is designed to harness waste heat from an Multi Mission Radioisotope Thermo-electric Generator (MMRTG) during Mars surface operations for thermal control during cold conditions and also reject heat during the cruise aspect of the mission. There are several test that are being conducted that will insure the safety of this concept. This architecture can be used during any future interplanetary missions utilizing radioisotope power systems for power generation.

  7. Application of thermoelectric generator as an alternative energy source; Utilizacao dos geradores termoeletricos como fonte de energia alternativa

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pepino, Giovana [Newmar Energia, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2004-07-01

    This document will deal some information about the TEG and design of TEGs. Thermoelectric energy conversion is a solid state process that converts heat energy to electrical energy without moving parts. The result is a device that is characterized by a very high degree of reliability and low maintenance requirement. These characteristics lend the unit to service in remote areas where limited access is available fore service. Technicians that service the other equipment on location can be trained to service the thermoelectric generator. There are many other uses for TEGs including power supplies for supervisory control and data acquisition systems. (author)

  8. Nanostructured Thermoelectric Oxides for Energy Harvesting Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Abutaha, Anas I.

    2015-11-24

    As the world strives to adapt to the increasing demand for electrical power, sustainable energy sources are attracting significant interest. Around 60% of energy utilized in the world is wasted as heat. Different industrial processes, home heating, and exhausts in cars, all generate a huge amount of unused waste heat. With such a huge potential, there is also significant interest in discovering inexpensive technologies for power generation from waste heat. As a result, thermoelectric materials have become important for many renewable energy research programs. While significant advancements have been done in improving the thermoelectric properties of the conventional heavy-element based materials (such as Bi2Te3 and PbTe), high-temperature applications of thermoelectrics are still limited to one materials system, namely SiGe, since the traditional thermoelectric materials degrade and oxidize at high temperature. Therefore, oxide thermoelectrics emerge as a promising class of materials since they can operate athigher temperatures and in harsher environments compared to non-oxide thermoelectrics. Furthermore, oxides are abundant and friendly to the environment. Among oxides, crystalline SrTiO3 and ZnO are promising thermoelectric materials. The main objective of this work is therefore to pursue focused investigations of SrTiO3 and ZnO thin films and superlattices grown by pulsed laser deposition (PLD), with the goal of optimizing their thermoelectric properties by following different strategies. First, the effect of laser fluence on the thermoelectric properties of La doped epitaxial SrTiO3 films is discussed. Films grown at higher laser fluences exhibit better thermoelectric performance. Second, the role of crystal orientation in determining the thermoelectric properties of epitaxial Al doped ZnO (AZO) films is explained. Vertically aligned (c-axis) AZO films have superior thermoelectric properties compared to other films with different crystal orientations. Third

  9. Anisotropic Thermoelectric Devices Made from Single-Crystal Semimetal Microwires in Glass Coating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konopko, L. A.; Nikolaeva, A. A.; Kobylianskaya, A. K.; Huber, T. E.

    2018-04-01

    Thermoelectric heat conversion based on the Seebeck and Peltier effects generated at the junction between two materials of type-n and type-p is well known. Here, we present a demonstration of an unconventional thermoelectric energy conversion that is based on a single element made of an anisotropic material. In such materials, a heat flow generates a transverse thermoelectric electric field lying across the heat flow. Potentially, in applications involving miniature devices, the anisotropic thermoelectric (AT) effect has the advantage over traditional thermoelectrics that it simplifies the thermoelectric generator architecture. This is because the generator can be made of a single thermoelectric material without the complexity of a series of contacts forming a pile. A feature of anisotropic thermoelectrics is that the thermoelectric voltage is proportional to the element length and inversely proportional to the effective thickness. The AT effect has been demonstrated with artificial anisotropic thin film consisting of layers of alternating thermoelectric type, but there has been no demonstration of this effect in a long single-crystal. Electronic transport measurements have shown that the semimetal bismuth is highly anisotropic. We have prepared an experimental sample consisting of a 10-m-long glass-insulated single-crystal tin-doped bismuth microwire (d = 4 μm). Crucial for this experiment is the ability to grow the microwire as a single-crystal using a technique of recrystallization with laser heating and under a strong electric field. The sample was wound as a spiral, bonded to a copper disk, and used in various experiments. The sensitivity of the sample to heat flow is as high as 10-2 V/W with a time constant τ of about 0.5 s.

  10. Anisotropic Thermoelectric Devices Made from Single-Crystal Semimetal Microwires in Glass Coating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konopko, L. A.; Nikolaeva, A. A.; Kobylianskaya, A. K.; Huber, T. E.

    2018-06-01

    Thermoelectric heat conversion based on the Seebeck and Peltier effects generated at the junction between two materials of type- n and type- p is well known. Here, we present a demonstration of an unconventional thermoelectric energy conversion that is based on a single element made of an anisotropic material. In such materials, a heat flow generates a transverse thermoelectric electric field lying across the heat flow. Potentially, in applications involving miniature devices, the anisotropic thermoelectric (AT) effect has the advantage over traditional thermoelectrics that it simplifies the thermoelectric generator architecture. This is because the generator can be made of a single thermoelectric material without the complexity of a series of contacts forming a pile. A feature of anisotropic thermoelectrics is that the thermoelectric voltage is proportional to the element length and inversely proportional to the effective thickness. The AT effect has been demonstrated with artificial anisotropic thin film consisting of layers of alternating thermoelectric type, but there has been no demonstration of this effect in a long single-crystal. Electronic transport measurements have shown that the semimetal bismuth is highly anisotropic. We have prepared an experimental sample consisting of a 10-m-long glass-insulated single-crystal tin-doped bismuth microwire ( d = 4 μm). Crucial for this experiment is the ability to grow the microwire as a single-crystal using a technique of recrystallization with laser heating and under a strong electric field. The sample was wound as a spiral, bonded to a copper disk, and used in various experiments. The sensitivity of the sample to heat flow is as high as 10-2 V/W with a time constant τ of about 0.5 s.

  11. Survey and analysis of environmental performance indicators applied to thermoelectric generation styles; Levantamento e analise de indicadores de desempenho ambiental aplicados a empreendimentos termeletricos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Freitas, Bruno Moreno Rodrigo de; Cardoso Junior, Ricardo Abranches Felix [Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Niteroi, RJ (Brazil)

    2010-07-01

    Country economic growth is proportional bond to it electric generation increasing capacity. Brazil, which has a power matrix predominantly renewable, currently is increasing generation, from thermoelectricity, due, mainly, to major facilities in relation to environmental licensing. Since this new Thermal Power Plants operating, tied to the generation with those ones already installed, will result in environmental impacts that must be properly controlled. Such control should follow the Environmental Performance Evaluation guidance, standardized by ABNT NBR ISO 14031/04. Therefore, the following work presents the main Environmental Performance Indicators applied to several thermoelectric generation styles (Oil, Natural Gas, Diesel, Mineral Coal, Biomass, Waste, Solar and Nuclear). (author)

  12. A study of using a thermoelectric generator to harvest energy from a table lamp

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weng, Chien-Chou; Huang, Mei-Jiau

    2014-01-01

    The application of a TEG (thermoelectric power generator) to harvest energy from the waste heat of a commercial table lamp was investigated experimentally as well as numerically. The table lamp was integrated with TEG chips which were cooled by a natural convection heat sink. In the simulation, the heat sink was not truly simulated but modeled by the compact heat sink model. The effective thermal conductivity of the fiction fluid in the compact model was calibrated by matching the calculated and measured temperatures. A 1D TEG model taking the Peltier and Joule heats into consideration was then proposed to predict the power generation rate based on the simulated hot side and cold side thermal conductances of the open-circuit system. The prediction is in a good agreement with the closed-circuit simulation results but has a slightly larger maximum power generation rate and a slightly smaller optimal electric load than the experimental measurements. It was attributed to the effect of the remaining electric resistances in the circuit other than the internal resistance of the TEG chips and external load. Finally, it was found that the low hot-side thermal conductance is the main reason for the low power generation efficiency. - Highlights: • Energy recovery from a commercial table lamp investigated. • A 1D TEG (thermoelectric power generator) system model based on the open-circuit simulation results proposed. • Modeling of Peltier and Joule heats in closed-circuit simulations attempted. • Heat sink modeled by the compact heat sink model. • The performance of TEGs connected electronically in parallel and in series studied and compared

  13. Introduction to thermoelectricity

    CERN Document Server

    Goldsmid, H Julian

    2016-01-01

    This book is a comprehensive introduction to all aspects of thermoelectric energy conversion. It covers both theory and practice. The book is timely as it refers to the many improvements that have come about in the last few years through the use of nanostructures. The concept of semiconductor thermoelements led to major advances during the second half of the twentieth century, making Peltier refrigeration a widely used technique. The latest materials herald thermoelectric generation as the preferred technique for exploiting low-grade heat. The book shows how progress has been made by increasing the thermal resistivity of the lattice until it is almost as large as it is for glass. It points the way towards the attainment of similar improvements in the electronic parameters. It does not neglect practical considerations, such as the desirability of making thermocouples from inexpensive and environmentally acceptable materials. The second edition was extended to also include recent advances in thermoelectric ener...

  14. Opto-thermoelectric nanotweezers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Linhan; Wang, Mingsong; Peng, Xiaolei; Lissek, Emanuel N.; Mao, Zhangming; Scarabelli, Leonardo; Adkins, Emily; Coskun, Sahin; Unalan, Husnu Emrah; Korgel, Brian A.; Liz-Marzán, Luis M.; Florin, Ernst-Ludwig; Zheng, Yuebing

    2018-04-01

    Optical manipulation of plasmonic nanoparticles provides opportunities for fundamental and technical innovation in nanophotonics. Optical heating arising from the photon-to-phonon conversion is considered as an intrinsic loss in metal nanoparticles, which limits their applications. We show here that this drawback can be turned into an advantage, by developing an extremely low-power optical tweezing technique, termed opto-thermoelectric nanotweezers. By optically heating a thermoplasmonic substrate, a light-directed thermoelectric field can be generated due to spatial separation of dissolved ions within the heating laser spot, which allows us to manipulate metal nanoparticles of a wide range of materials, sizes and shapes with single-particle resolution. In combination with dark-field optical imaging, nanoparticles can be selectively trapped and their spectroscopic response can be resolved in situ. With its simple optics, versatile low-power operation, applicability to diverse nanoparticles and tunable working wavelength, opto-thermoelectric nanotweezers will become a powerful tool in colloid science and nanotechnology.

  15. Development of Multi-Physics Dynamics Models for High-Frequency Large-Amplitude Structural Response Simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derkevorkian, Armen; Peterson, Lee; Kolaini, Ali R.; Hendricks, Terry J.; Nesmith, Bill J.

    2016-01-01

    An analytic approach is demonstrated to reveal potential pyroshock -driven dynamic effects causing power losses in the Thermo -Electric (TE) module bars of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Multi -Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG). This study utilizes high- fidelity finite element analysis with SIERRA/PRESTO codes to estimate wave propagation effects due to large -amplitude suddenly -applied pyro shock loads in the MMRTG. A high fidelity model of the TE module bar was created with approximately 30 million degrees -of-freedom (DOF). First, a quasi -static preload was applied on top of the TE module bar, then transient tri- axial acceleration inputs were simultaneously applied on the preloaded module. The applied input acceleration signals were measured during MMRTG shock qualification tests performed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. An explicit finite element solver in the SIERRA/PRESTO computational environment, along with a 3000 processor parallel super -computing framework at NASA -AMES, was used for the simulation. The simulation results were investigated both qualitatively and quantitatively. The predicted shock wave propagation results provide detailed structural responses throughout the TE module bar, and key insights into the dynamic response (i.e., loads, displacements, accelerations) of critical internal spring/piston compression systems, TE materials, and internal component interfaces in the MMRTG TE module bar. They also provide confidence on the viability of this high -fidelity modeling scheme to accurately predict shock wave propagation patterns within complex structures. This analytic approach is envisioned for modeling shock sensitive hardware susceptible to intense shock environments positioned near shock separation devices in modern space vehicles and systems.

  16. Micro/Nano Fabricated Solid-State Thermoelectric Generator Devices for Integrated High Voltage Power Sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleurial, J.-P.; Ryan, M. A.; Snyder, G. J.; Huang, C.-K.; Whitacre, J. F.; Patel, J.; Lim, J.; Borshchevsky, A.

    2002-01-01

    Deep space missions have a strong need for compact, high power density, reliable and long life electrical power generation and storage under extreme temperature conditions. Except for electrochemical batteries and solar cells, there are currently no available miniaturized power sources. Conventional power generators devices become inefficient in extreme environments (such as encountered in Mars, Venus or outer planet missions) and rechargeable energy storage devices can only be operated in a narrow temperature range thereby limiting mission duration. The planned development of much smaller spacecrafts incorporating a variety of micro/nanodevices and miniature vehicles will require novel, reliable power technologies. It is also expected that such micro power sources could have a wide range of terrestrial applications, in particular when the limited lifetime and environmental limitations of batteries are key factors. Advanced solid-state thermoelectric combined with radioisotope or waste heat sources and low profile energy storage devices are ideally suited for these applications. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been actively pursuing the development of thermoelectric micro/nanodevices that can be fabricated using a combination of electrochemical deposition and integrated circuit processing techniques. Some of the technical challenges associated with these micro/nanodevice concepts, their expected level of performance and experimental fabrication and testing results to date are presented and discussed.

  17. Simulation and experimental study on thermal optimization of the heat exchanger for automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.Q. Su

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric technology has revealed the potential for automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generator (TEG, which contributes to the improvement of the fuel economy of the engine-powered vehicle. As a major factor, thermal capacity and heat transfer of the heat exchanger affect the performance of TEG effectively. With the thermal energy of exhaust gas harvested by thermoelectric modules, a temperature gradient appears on the heat exchanger surface, so as the interior flow distribution of the heat exchanger. In order to achieve uniform temperature distribution and higher interface temperature, the thermal characteristics of heat exchangers with various heat transfer enhancement features are studied, such as internal structure, material and surface area. Combining the computational fluid dynamics simulations and infrared test on a high-performance engine with a dynamometer, the thermal performance of the heat exchanger is evaluated. Simulation and experiment results show that a plate-shaped heat exchanger made of brass with accordion-shaped internal structure achieves a relatively ideal performance, which can practically improve overall thermal performance of the TEG.

  18. NANOSTRUCTURING AS A WAY FOR THERMOELECTRIC EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. V. Bochkov

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The urgency of thermoelectric energy conversion is proved. Perspectives of nanostructures usage as thermoelectric materials are shown. The authors have systematized and generalized the methods and investigation results of bulk nanostructure thermoelectrics based on Bi-Sb-Te solid solutions. Ways of nanoparticles fabrication and their subsequent sintering into a bulk sample, results of structure study of the received materials are shown by methods of electronic microscopy and X-ray spectroscopy, results of mechanical properties investigation. Methods of manufacturing suggested with the authors’ participation and properties of thermoelectric nanocomposites, fabricated with addition of fullerene, thermally split graphite, graphene and molybdenum disulphide are discussed. Methods for prevention of recrystallization, measurement methods of thermoelectric properties of studied nanothermoelectrics are considered, including electric and thermal conductivities, thermoemf and the figure of merit. Factors that influence on thermoelectric figure of merit, including the tunneling of carriers through interfaces between nanograins, the additional phonon scattering on nanograin borders and the energy filtration of carriers through barriers have been theoretically investigated. Mechanisms and ways for improvement of the figure of merit are determined. Experimental confirmation for thermoelectric figure of merit increase is received. Physical mechanisms of thermoelectric figure of merit increase are shown by perceptivity of nanostructures utilization. The growth of thermoelectric figure of merit means an expansion of areas for rational application of thermoelectric energy generation and thermoelectric cooling.

  19. Maximum Power Point Tracking Control of a Thermoelectric Generation System Using the Extremum Seeking Control Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ssennoga Twaha

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This study proposes and implements maximum power Point Tracking (MPPT control on thermoelectric generation system using an extremum seeking control (ESC algorithm. The MPPT is applied to guarantee maximum power extraction from the TEG system. The work has been carried out through modelling of thermoelectric generator/dc-dc converter system using Matlab/Simulink. The effectiveness of ESC technique has been assessed by comparing the results with those of the Perturb and Observe (P&O MPPT method under the same operating conditions. Results indicate that ESC MPPT method extracts more power than the P&O technique, where the output power of ESC technique is higher than that of P&O by 0.47 W or 6.1% at a hot side temperature of 200 °C. It is also noted that the ESC MPPT based model is almost fourfold faster than the P&O method. This is attributed to smaller MPPT circuit of ESC compared to that of P&O, hence we conclude that the ESC MPPT method outperforms the P&O technique.

  20. Modeling and performance analysis of a concentrated photovoltaic–thermoelectric hybrid power generation system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lamba, Ravita; Kaushik, S.C.

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • Thermodynamic model of concentrated photovoltaic–thermoelectric system is analysed. • Thomson effect reduces the power output of PV, TE and hybrid PV–TEG system. • Effect of thermocouple number, irradiance, PV and TE current have been studied. • The optimum concentration ratio for maximum power output has been found out. • The overall efficiency and power output of hybrid PV–TEG system has been improved. - Abstract: In this study, a thermodynamic model for analysing the performance of a concentrated photovoltaic–thermoelectric generator (CPV–TEG) hybrid system including Thomson effect in conjunction with Seebeck, Joule and Fourier heat conduction effects has been developed and simulated in MATALB environment. The expressions for calculating the temperature of photovoltaic (PV) module, hot and cold sides of thermoelectric (TE) module are derived analytically as well. The effect of concentration ratio, number of thermocouples in TE module, solar irradiance, PV module current and TE module current on power output and efficiency of the PV, TEG and hybrid PV–TEG system have been studied. The optimum concentration ratio corresponding to maximum power output of the hybrid system has been found out. It has been observed that by considering Thomson effect in TEG module, the power output of the PV, TE and hybrid PV–TEG systems decreases and at C = 1 and 5, it reduces the power output of hybrid system by 0.7% and 4.78% respectively. The results of this study may provide basis for performance optimization of a practical irreversible CPV–TEG hybrid system.

  1. Experimental and analytical study on thermoelectric self cooling of devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martinez, A.; Astrain, D.; Rodriguez, A.

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents and studies the novel concept of thermoelectric self cooling, which can be introduced as the cooling and temperature control of a device using thermoelectric technology without electricity consumption. For this study, it is designed a device endowed with an internal heat source. Subsequently, a commonly used cooling system is attached to the device and the thermal performance is statistically assessed. Afterwards, it is developed and studied a thermoelectric self cooling system appropriate for the device. Experimental and analytical results show that the thermal resistance between the heat source and the environment reduced by 25-30% when the thermoelectric self cooling system is installed, and indicates the promising applicability of this technology to devices that generate large amounts of heat, such as electrical power converters, transformers and control systems. Likewise, it was statistically proved that the thermoelectric self cooling system leads to significant reductions in the temperature difference between the heat source and the environment, and, what is more, this reduction increases as the heat flow generated by the heat source increases, which makes evident the fact that thermoelectric self cooling systems work as temperature controllers. -- Highlights: → Novel concept of thermoelectric self cooling is presented and studied. → No extra electricity is needed. → Thermal resistance between the heat source and the environment reduces by 25-30%. → Increasing reduction in temperature difference between heat source and environment. → Great applicability to any device that generates heat and must be cooled.

  2. Conflict between internal combustion engine and thermoelectric generator during waste heat recovery in cars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korzhuev, M. A.

    2011-02-01

    It is shown that an internal combustion engine and a thermoelectric generator (TEG) arranged on the exhaust pipe of this engine come into the conflict of thermal machines that is related to using the same energy resource. The conflict grows with increasing useful electric power W e of the TEG, which leads to the limitation of both the maximum TEG output power ( W {e/max}) and the possibility of waste heat recovery in cars.

  3. Test system for thermoelectric modules and materials

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hejtmánek, Jiří; Knížek, Karel; Švejda, V.; Horna, P.; Sikora, M.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 43, č. 10 (2014), s. 3726-3732 ISSN 0361-5235 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-17538S Institutional support: RVO:68378271 Keywords : thermoelectric power module * automatic thermoelectric testing setup * heat flow measurement * power generation * heat recovery Subject RIV: BM - Solid Matter Physics ; Magnetism Impact factor: 1.798, year: 2014

  4. Hierarchical thermoelectrics : Crystal grain boundaries as scalable phonon scatterers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Selli, Daniele; Boulfelfel, Salah Eddine; Schapotschnikow, PZ; Donadio, Davide; Leoni, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials are strategically valuable for sustainable development, as they allow for the generation of electrical energy from wasted heat. In recent years several strategies have demonstrated some efficiency in improving thermoelectric properties. Dopants affect carrier

  5. 3D printing of shape-conformable thermoelectric materials using all-inorganic Bi2Te3-based inks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Fredrick; Kwon, Beomjin; Eom, Youngho; Lee, Ji Eun; Park, Sangmin; Jo, Seungki; Park, Sung Hoon; Kim, Bong-Seo; Im, Hye Jin; Lee, Min Ho; Min, Tae Sik; Kim, Kyung Tae; Chae, Han Gi; King, William P.; Son, Jae Sung

    2018-04-01

    Thermoelectric energy conversion offers a unique solution for generating electricity from waste heat. However, despite recent improvements in the efficiency of thermoelectric materials, the widespread application of thermoelectric generators has been hampered by challenges in fabricating thermoelectric materials with appropriate dimensions to perfectly fit heat sources. Herein, we report an extrusion-based three-dimensional printing method to produce thermoelectric materials with geometries suitable for heat sources. All-inorganic viscoelastic inks were synthesized using Sb2Te3 chalcogenidometallate ions as inorganic binders for Bi2Te3-based particles. Three-dimensional printed materials with various geometries showed homogenous thermoelectric properties, and their dimensionless figure-of-merit values of 0.9 (p-type) and 0.6 (n-type) were comparable to the bulk values. Conformal cylindrical thermoelectric generators made of 3D-printed half rings mounted on an alumina pipe were studied both experimentally and computationally. Simulations show that the power output of the conformal, shape-optimized generator is higher than that of conventional planar generators.

  6. Effect of heat treatment on the electrical resistance of photoresist as related to radioisotopic thermoelectric generator aging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, R.T. Jr.

    1979-03-01

    Photoresist is used in electrical contact definition and processing in radioisotopic thermoelectric generators. Inadequate removal of material during processing could lead to electrical shorting when exposed to the high temperature use environment. This effect has been simulated through studies of the electrical resistance of thin layers of photoresist (Kodak Metal Etch Resist) on glass (Corning 7052) with tungsten electrodes. Results show that both the photoresist and the glass contribute to the resistance. The glass resistance decreases with increasing temperature and becomes significant at high temperatures. Annealing studies on the photoresist show that the resistance of the photoresist decreases by over five orders of magnitude upon annealing to 500 0 C, with a corresponding decrease in activation energy from 0.27 eV (350 0 C anneal) to 0.10 eV (500 0 C anneal). Time dependent decreases in resistance of the photoresist were also measured for up to 8 to 9 days during high temperature anneals. Some electrolytic transport of tungsten may occur through the photoresist at high temperatures. Results are compared with data on thermoelectric generators and show that photoresist could cause the electrical aging (voltage degradation) problem observed in some generators

  7. Analysis of an Increase in the Efficiency of a Spark Ignition Engine Through the Application of an Automotive Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkisz, Jerzy; Fuc, Pawel; Lijewski, Piotr; Ziolkowski, Andrzej; Galant, Marta; Siedlecki, Maciej

    2016-08-01

    We have analyzed the increase of the overall efficiency of a spark ignition engine through energy recovery following the application of an automotive thermoelectric generator (ATEG) of our own design. The design of the generator was developed following emission investigations during vehicle driving under city traffic conditions. The measurement points were defined by actual operation conditions (engine speed and load), subsequently reproduced on an engine dynamometer. Both the vehicle used in the on-road tests and the engine dynamometer were fit with the same, downsized spark ignition engine (with high effective power-to-displacement ratio). The thermodynamic parameters of the exhaust gases (temperature and exhaust gas mass flow) were measured on the engine testbed, along with the fuel consumption and electric current generated by the thermoelectric modules. On this basis, the power of the ATEG and its impact on overall engine efficiency were determined.

  8. Engineering Scoping Study of Thermoelectric Generator Systems for Industrial Waste Heat Recovery

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hendricks, Terry [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Choate, William T. [BCS, Inc., Laurel, MD (United States)

    2006-11-01

    This report evaluates thermoelectric generator (TEG) systems with the intent to: 1) examine industrial processes in order to identify and quantify industrial waste heat sources that could potentially use TEGs; 2) describe the operating environment that a TEG would encounter in selected industrial processes and quantify the anticipated TEG system performance; 3) identify cost, design and/or engineering performance requirements that will be needed for TEGs to operate in the selected industrial processes; and 4) identify the research, development and deployment needed to overcome the limitations that discourage the development and use of TEGs for recovery of industrial waste heat.

  9. Power output and efficiency of a thermoelectric generator under temperature control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Wei-Hsin; Wu, Po-Hua; Wang, Xiao-Dong; Lin, Yu-Li

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • Power output and efficiency of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) is studied. • Temperatures at the module’s surfaces are approximated by sinusoidal functions. • Mean output power and efficiency are enhanced by the temperature oscillation. • The maximum mean efficiency of the TEG in this study is 8.45%. • The phase angle of 180° is a feasible operation for maximizing the performance. - Abstract: Operation control is an effective way to improve the output power of thermoelectric generators (TEGs). The present study is intended to numerically investigate the power output and efficiency of a TEG and find the operating conditions for maximizing its performance. The temperature distributions at the hot side and cold side surfaces of the TEG are approximated by sinusoidal functions. The influences of the temperature amplitudes at the hot side surface and the cold side surface, the phase angle, and the figure-of-merit (ZT) on the performance of the TEG are analyzed. The predictions indicate that the mean output power and efficiency of the TEG are significantly enhanced by the temperature oscillation, whereas the mean absorbed heat by the TEG is slightly influenced. An increase in the temperature amplitude of the hot side surface and the phase angle can effectively improve the performance. For the phase angle of 0°, a smaller temperature amplitude at the cold side surface renders the better performance compared to that with a larger amplitude. When the ZT value increases from 0.736 to 1.8, the mean efficiency at the phase angle of 180° is amplified by a factor of 1.72, and the maximum mean efficiency is 8.45%. In summary, a larger temperature amplitude at the hot side surface with the phase angle of 180° is a feasible operation for maximizing the performance.

  10. The strong thermoelectric effect in nanocarbon generated by the ballistic phonon drag of electrons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eidelman, E D; Vul', A Ya

    2007-01-01

    The thermoelectric power and thermoelectric figure of merit for carbon nanostructure consisting of graphite-like (sp 2 ) and diamond-like (sp 3 ) regions have been investigated. The probability of electron collisions with quasi-ballistic phonons in sp 2 regions has been analysed for the first time. We have shown that the probability is not small. We have analysed the influence of various factors on the process of the electron-ballistic phonon drag (the phonon drag effect). The thermoelectric power and thermoelectric figure of merit under conditions of ballistic transport were found to be substantially higher than those in the cases of drag by thermalized phonons and of electron diffusion. The thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) in the case of a ballistic phonon contribution to the phonon drag of electrons should be 50 times that for chaotic phonons and 500 times that in the case of the diffusion process. In that case ZT should be a record (ZT≥2-3)

  11. Power performance of the general-purpose heat source radioisotope thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bennett, G.L.; Lombardo, J.J.; Rock, B.J.

    1986-01-01

    The General-Purpose Heat Source Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (GRHS-RTG) has been developed under the sponsorship of the Department of Energy (DOE) to provide electrical power for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Galileo mission to Jupiter and the joint NASA/European Space Agency (ESA) Ulysses mission to study the polar regions of the sun. A total of five nuclear-heated generators and one electrically heated generator have been built and tested, proving out the design concept and meeting the specification requirements. The GPHS-RTG design is built upon the successful-technology used in the RTGs flown on the two NASA Voyager spacecraft and two US Air Force communications satellites. THe GPHS-RTG converts about 4400 W(t) from the nuclear heat source into at least 285 W(e) at beginning of mission (BOM). The GPHS-RTG consists of two major components: the General-Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) and the Converter. A conceptual drawing of the GPHs-RTG is presented and its design and performance are described

  12. Nanostructured Thermoelectric Oxide Materials for Effective Power Generation from Waste Heat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Van Nong, Ngo; Pryds, Nini

    A large amount of thermal energy that emitted from many industrial processes is available as waste heat. It is difficult to reclaim this heat due to the dispersed nature and relative smallness of its sources. Thermoelectric conversion can offer a very promising method to overcome these difficulties...... by converting heat directly into electricity. However, the requirements for this task place in the materials are not easily satisfied by the conventional thermoelectric materials. Not only they must possess a high thermoelectric performance, they should also be stable at high temperatures and be composed...... of nontoxic and low-cost elements, and must be able to be processed and shaped cheaply. Oxides are among the strongest candidate materials for this purpose, and recently they have been intensively investigated and developed [1-5]. In this report, the development progress of two state-of-the-art p-type Ca3Co4O...

  13. Thermoelectric properties of low-dimensional clathrates from first principles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasinathan, Deepa; Rosner, Helge

    2011-03-01

    Type-I inorganic clathrates are host-guest structures with the guest atoms trapped in the framework of the host structure. From a thermoelectric point of view, they are interesting because they are semiconductors with adjustable bandgaps. Investigations in the past decade have shown that type-I clathrates X8 Ga 16 Ge 30 (X = Ba, Sr, Eu) may have the unusual property of ``phonon glass-electron crystal'' for good thermoelectric materials. Among the known clathrates, Ba 8 Ga 16 Ge 30 has the highest figure of merit (ZT~1). To enable a more widespread usage of thermoelectric technology power generation and heating/cooling applications, ZT of at least 2-3 is required. Two different research approaches have been proposed for developing next generation thermoelectric materials: one investigating new families of advanced bulk materials, and the other studying low-dimensional materials. In our work, we concentrate on understanding the thermoelectric properties of the nanostructured Ba-based clathrates. We use semi-classical Boltzmann transport equations to calculate the various thermoelectric properties as a function of reduced dimensions. We observe that there exists a delicate balance between the electrical conductivity and the electronic part of the thermal conductivity in reduced dimensions. Insights from these results can directly be used to control particle size in nanostructuring experiments.

  14. Proposal for a phase-coherent thermoelectric transistor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Giazotto, F.; Robinson, J. W. A.; Moodera, J. S.; Bergeret, F. S.

    2014-01-01

    Identifying materials and devices which offer efficient thermoelectric effects at low temperature is a major obstacle for the development of thermal management strategies for low-temperature electronic systems. Superconductors cannot offer a solution since their near perfect electron-hole symmetry leads to a negligible thermoelectric response; however, here we demonstrate theoretically a superconducting thermoelectric transistor which offers unparalleled figures of merit of up to ∼45 and Seebeck coefficients as large as a few mV/K at sub-Kelvin temperatures. The device is also phase-tunable meaning its thermoelectric response for power generation can be precisely controlled with a small magnetic field. Our concept is based on a superconductor-normal metal-superconductor interferometer in which the normal metal weak-link is tunnel coupled to a ferromagnetic insulator and a Zeeman split superconductor. Upon application of an external magnetic flux, the interferometer enables phase-coherent manipulation of thermoelectric properties whilst offering efficiencies which approach the Carnot limit

  15. Proposal for a phase-coherent thermoelectric transistor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Giazotto, F., E-mail: giazotto@sns.it [NEST, Instituto Nanoscienze-CNR and Scuola Normale Superiore, I-56127 Pisa (Italy); Robinson, J. W. A., E-mail: jjr33@cam.ac.uk [Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge, 27 Charles Babbage Road, Cambridge CB3 0FS (United Kingdom); Moodera, J. S. [Department of Physics and Francis Bitter Magnet Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 (United States); Bergeret, F. S., E-mail: sebastian-bergeret@ehu.es [Centro de Física de Materiales (CFM-MPC), Centro Mixto CSIC-UPV/EHU, Manuel de Lardizabal 4, E-20018 San Sebastián (Spain); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC), Manuel de Lardizabal 5, E-20018 San Sebastián (Spain)

    2014-08-11

    Identifying materials and devices which offer efficient thermoelectric effects at low temperature is a major obstacle for the development of thermal management strategies for low-temperature electronic systems. Superconductors cannot offer a solution since their near perfect electron-hole symmetry leads to a negligible thermoelectric response; however, here we demonstrate theoretically a superconducting thermoelectric transistor which offers unparalleled figures of merit of up to ∼45 and Seebeck coefficients as large as a few mV/K at sub-Kelvin temperatures. The device is also phase-tunable meaning its thermoelectric response for power generation can be precisely controlled with a small magnetic field. Our concept is based on a superconductor-normal metal-superconductor interferometer in which the normal metal weak-link is tunnel coupled to a ferromagnetic insulator and a Zeeman split superconductor. Upon application of an external magnetic flux, the interferometer enables phase-coherent manipulation of thermoelectric properties whilst offering efficiencies which approach the Carnot limit.

  16. A thermoelectric power generating heat exchanger: Part II – Numerical modeling and optimization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sarhadi, Ali; Bjørk, Rasmus; Lindeburg, N.

    2016-01-01

    In Part I of this study, the performance of an experimental integrated thermoelectric generator (TEG)-heat exchanger was presented. In the current study, Part II, the obtained experimental results are compared with those predicted by a finite element (FE) model. In the simulation of the integrated...... TEG-heat exchanger, the thermal contact resistance between the TEG and the heat exchanger is modeled assuming either an ideal thermal contact or using a combined Cooper–Mikic–Yovanovich (CMY) and parallel plate gap formulation, which takes into account the contact pressure, roughness and hardness...

  17. Research for Actively Reducing Infrared Radiation by Thermoelectric Refrigerator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Hoon; Kim, Kyomin; Kim, Woochul [Yonsei Univ., Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2017-03-15

    We introduced a technology for reducing infrared radiation through the active cooling of hot surfaces by using a thermoelectric refrigerator. Certain surfaces were heated by aerodynamic heating, and the heat generation processes are proposed here. We calculated the temperatures and radiations from surfaces, while using thermoelectric refrigerators to cool the surfaces. The results showed that the contrast between the radiations of certain surfaces and the ambient environments can be removed using thermoelectric refrigerators.

  18. Silicon nanowire networks for multi-stage thermoelectric modules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Norris, Kate J.; Garrett, Matthew P.; Zhang, Junce; Coleman, Elane; Tompa, Gary S.; Kobayashi, Nobuhiko P.

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Fabricated flexible single, double, and quadruple stacked Si thermoelectric modules. • Measured an enhanced power production of 27%, showing vertical stacking is scalable. • Vertically scalable thermoelectric module design of semiconducting nanowires. • Design can utilize either p or n-type semiconductors, both types are not required. • ΔT increases with thickness therefore power/area can increase as modules are stacked. - Abstract: We present the fabrication and characterization of single, double, and quadruple stacked flexible silicon nanowire network based thermoelectric modules. From double to quadruple stacked modules, power production increased 27%, demonstrating that stacking multiple nanowire thermoelectric devices in series is a scalable method to generate power by supplying larger temperature gradient. We present a vertically scalable multi-stage thermoelectric module design using semiconducting nanowires, eliminating the need for both n-type and p-type semiconductors for modules

  19. Experimental investigation of thermoelectric power generation versus coolant pumping power in a microchannel heat sink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kolaei, Alireza Rezania; Rosendahl, Lasse; Andreasen, Søren Juhl

    2012-01-01

    The coolant heat sinks in thermoelectric generators (TEG) play an important role in order to power generation in the energy systems. This paper explores the effective pumping power required for the TEGs cooling at five temperature difference of the hot and cold sides of the TEG. In addition......, the temperature distribution and the pressure drop in sample microchannels are considered at four sample coolant flow rates. The heat sink contains twenty plate-fin microchannels with hydraulic diameter equal to 0.93 mm. The experimental results show that there is a unique flow rate that gives maximum net-power...

  20. Numerical investigation of heat pipe-based photovoltaic–thermoelectric generator (HP-PV/TEG) hybrid system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Makki, Adham; Omer, Siddig; Su, Yuehong; Sabir, Hisham

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • Integration of TE generators with a heat pipe-based PV module as a hybrid system is proposed. • Numerical transient modeling based on the energy balance equations of the system was performed. • Integration of TE generators with PV module aid operating the solar cells at a steady level in harsh conditions. - Abstract: Photovoltaic (PV) cells are able to absorb about 80% of the solar spectral irradiance, however, certain percentage accounts for electricity conversion depending on the cell technology employed. The remainder energy however, can elevate the silicon junction temperature in the PV encapsulation perilously, resulting in deteriorated performance. Temperature rise at the PV cell level is addressed as one of the most critical issues that can seriously degrade and shortens the life-time of the PV cells, hence thermal management of the PV module during operation is considered essential. Hybrid PV designs which are able to simultaneously generate electrical energy and utilize the waste heat have been proven to be the most promising solution. In this study, theoretical investigation of a hybrid system comprising of thermoelectric generator integration with a heat pipe-based Photovoltaic/Thermal (PV/T) absorber is proposed and evaluated. The system presented incorporates a PV panel for direct electricity generation, a heat pipe for excessive heat absorption from the PV cells and a thermoelectric generator (TEG) performing direct heat-to-electricity conversion. A mathematical model based on the energy balance within the system is developed to evaluate the performance of the hybrid integration and the improvements associated with the thermal management of PV cells. Results are presented in terms of the overall system efficiency compared to a conventional PV panel under identical operating conditions. The integration of TEG modules with PV cells in such way aid improving the performance of the PV cells in addition to utilizing the waste

  1. Thermoelectric microgenerators. Current status and prospects of application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Strutynska L. T.

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Analysis of current status and prospects of using thermoelectric microgenerators, including organic-fueled ones, is performed. Developments of thermoelectric microgenerators presented in this review demonstrate that their increasingly wide use forms a separate, very important line of thermoelectricity – micropower generation with growing potential of practical applications for charging batteries, mobile phones, digital cameras and photocameras, power supply to small radio stations, other portable devices, including medical. The ways of increasing the efficiency of such devices and relevant lines of their wide use in practice are determined.

  2. Weight Penalty Incurred in Thermoelectric Recovery of Automobile Exhaust Heat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, D. M.; Smith, J.; Thomas, G.; Min, G.

    2011-05-01

    Thermoelectric recovery of automobile waste exhaust heat has been identified as having potential for reducing fuel consumption and environmentally unfriendly emissions. Around 35% of combustion energy is discharged as heat through the exhaust system, at temperatures which depend upon the engine's operation and range from 800°C to 900°C at the outlet port to less than 50°C at the tail-pipe. Beneficial reduction in fuel consumption of 5% to 10% is widely quoted in the literature. However, comparison between claims is difficult due to nonuniformity of driving conditions. In this paper the available waste exhaust heat energy produced by a 1.5 L family car when undergoing the new European drive cycle was measured and the potential thermoelectric output estimated. The work required to power the vehicle through the drive cycle was also determined and used to evaluate key parameters. This enabled an estimate to be made of the engine efficiency and additional work required by the engine to meet the load of a thermoelectric generating system. It is concluded that incorporating a thermoelectric generator would attract a penalty of around 12 W/kg. Employing thermoelectric modules fabricated from low-density material such as magnesium silicide would considerably reduce the generator weight penalty.

  3. High Temperature Integrated Thermoelectric Ststem and Materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mike S. H. Chu

    2011-06-06

    The final goal of this project is to produce, by the end of Phase II, an all ceramic high temperature thermoelectric module. Such a module design integrates oxide ceramic n-type, oxide ceramic p-type materials as thermoelectric legs and oxide ceramic conductive material as metalizing connection between n-type and p-type legs. The benefits of this all ceramic module are that it can function at higher temperatures (> 700 C), it is mechanically and functionally more reliable and it can be scaled up to production at lower cost. With this all ceramic module, millions of dollars in savings or in new opportunities recovering waste heat from high temperature processes could be made available. A very attractive application will be to convert exhaust heat from a vehicle to reusable electric energy by a thermoelectric generator (TEG). Phase I activities were focused on evaluating potential n-type and p-type oxide compositions as the thermoelectric legs. More than 40 oxide ceramic powder compositions were made and studied in the laboratory. The compositions were divided into 6 groups representing different material systems. Basic ceramic properties and thermoelectric properties of discs sintered from these powders were measured. Powders with different particles sizes were made to evaluate the effects of particle size reduction on thermoelectric properties. Several powders were submitted to a leading thermoelectric company for complete thermoelectric evaluation. Initial evaluation showed that when samples were sintered by conventional method, they had reasonable values of Seebeck coefficient but very low values of electrical conductivity. Therefore, their power factors (PF) and figure of merits (ZT) were too low to be useful for high temperature thermoelectric applications. An unconventional sintering method, Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS) was determined to produce better thermoelectric properties. Particle size reduction of powders also was found to have some positive benefits

  4. Status report on performance of radioisotope thermoelectric generators using silicon germanium thermoelectric elements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bennett, G.L.; Campbell, R.W.; Putnam, L.R.; Hemler, R.J.

    1994-01-01

    Three general-purpose heat source radioisotope thermoelectric generators (GPHS-RTGs) are currently in use in space: two on board the Galileo spacecraft on its way to Jupiter and one on the Ulysses spacecraft exploring the polar regions of the Sun. The GPHS-RTG was designed to provide at least 285 W(e) at the beginning of mission (BOM) within a mass constraint of 56 kg and an overall size envelope of 42.2 cm in diameter and 114 cm in length. The Galileo spacecraft, which as already sent back exciting scientific information on Venus, Earth, and the asteroids Gaspra and Ida, carries two GPHS-RTGs which operate at 30 V. The Ulysses spacecraft, which has already successfully swung past Jupiter on its way to the southern polar regions of the Sun, carries one GPHS-RTG which operates at 28 V. The analyses presented in the paper show that both Galileo and Ulysses will have sufficient power for the baseline missions and analyses are under way to determine the power available for an extended Ulysses mission out to the year 2002. Ten other silicon-germanium-based RTGs on the LES 8/9 and Voyager 1/2 spacecraft have completed their prime missions and are now successfully performing extended missions

  5. Design, Modeling, Fabrication, and Evaluation of Thermoelectric Generators with Hot-Wire Chemical Vapor Deposited Polysilicon as Thermoelement Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Leon, Maria Theresa; Tarazona, Antulio; Chong, Harold; Kraft, Michael

    2014-11-01

    This paper presents the design, modeling, fabrication, and evaluation of thermoelectric generators (TEGs) with p-type polysilicon deposited by hot-wire chemical vapor deposition (HWCVD) as thermoelement material. A thermal model is developed based on energy balance and heat transfer equations using lumped thermal conductances. Several test structures were fabricated to allow characterization of the boron-doped polysilicon material deposited by HWCVD. The film was found to be electrically active without any post-deposition annealing. Based on the tests performed on the test structures, it is determined that the Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity, and electrical resistivity of the HWCVD polysilicon are 113 μV/K, 126 W/mK, and 3.58 × 10-5 Ω m, respectively. Results from laser tests performed on the fabricated TEG are in good agreement with the thermal model. The temperature values derived from the thermal model are within 2.8% of the measured temperature values. For a 1-W laser input, an open-circuit voltage and output power of 247 mV and 347 nW, respectively, were generated. This translates to a temperature difference of 63°C across the thermoelements. This paper demonstrates that HWCVD, which is a cost-effective way of producing solar cells, can also be applied in the production of TEGs. By establishing that HWCVD polysilicon can be an effective thermoelectric material, further work on developing photovoltaic-thermoelectric (PV-TE) hybrid microsystems that are cost-effective and better performing can be explored.

  6. Fine Art of Thermoelectricity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brus, Viktor V; Gluba, Marc; Rappich, Jörg; Lang, Felix; Maryanchuk, Pavlo D; Nickel, Norbert H

    2018-02-07

    A detailed study of hitherto unknown electrical and thermoelectric properties of graphite pencil traces on paper was carried out by measuring the Hall and Seebeck effects. We show that the combination of pencil-drawn graphite and brush-painted poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS) films on regular office paper results in extremely simple, low-cost, and environmentally friendly thermoelectric power generators with promising output characteristics at low-temperature gradients. The working characteristics can be improved even further by incorporating n-type InSe flakes. The combination of pencil-drawn n-InSe:graphite nanocomposites and brush-painted PEDOT:PSS increases the power output by 1 order of magnitude.

  7. Experimental and numerical study of waste heat recovery characteristics of direct contact thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Tae Young; Negash, Assmelash; Cho, Gyubaek

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Energy harvesting performance of direct contact thermoelectric generator was studied. • Power-current and voltage-current curves were given for various operating conditions. • Output power prediction using numerical results and empirical correlation was verified. • A 1.0–2.0% conversion efficiency and 5.7–11.1% heat recovery efficiency were obtained. • A 0.25% increase in efficiency was found with a 10 K decrease in coolant temperature. - Abstract: In this study, waste heat recovery performance of a direct contact thermoelectric generator (DCTEG) is experimentally investigated on a diesel engine. In order to conduct an insightful analysis of the DCTEG characteristics, three experimental parameters—engine load, rotation speed, and coolant temperature—are chosen to vary over ranges during the experiments. Experimental results show that higher temperature differences across thermoelectric modules (TEM), larger engine loads, and rotation speeds lead to an improved energy conversion efficiency of the DCTEG, which lies in the range of approximately 1.0–2.0%, while the output power ranges approximately 12–45 W. The increase in the conversion efficiency for an increased engine load becomes more noticeable with a higher engine rotation speed. A 10 K decrease in the coolant temperature yields an approximately 0.25% increase in the conversion efficiency for the engine operating conditions tested. In addition, 3D numerical simulations were conducted to investigate the heat transfer and pressure characteristics of the DCTEG. Numerically obtained exhaust gas temperatures exiting the DCTEG were in good agreement with experimental results. It is also revealed that incorporation of the temperature fields from the numerical simulation and an empirical correlation for a temperature-power relationship provides a good predictor for output power from the DCTEG, especially at low engine load conditions, which deviates from experimental results as the

  8. Parametric analysis of temperature gradient across thermoelectric power generators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khaled Chahine

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a parametric analysis of power generation from thermoelectric generators (TEGs. The aim of the parametric analysis is to provide recommendations with respect to the applications of TEGs. To proceed, the one-dimensional steady-state solution of the heat diffusion equation is considered with various boundary conditions representing real encountered cases. Four configurations are tested. The first configuration corresponds to the TEG heated with constant temperature at its lower surface and cooled with a fluid at its upper surface. The second configuration corresponds to the TEG heated with constant heat flux at its lower surface and cooled with a fluid at its upper surface. The third configuration corresponds to the TEG heated with constant heat flux at its lower surface and cooled by a constant temperature at its upper surface. The fourth configuration corresponds to the TEG heated by a fluid at its lower surface and cooled by a fluid at its upper surface. It was shown that the most promising configuration is the fourth one and temperature differences up to 70˚C can be achieved at 150˚C heat source. Finally, a new concept is implemented based on configuration four and tested experimentally.

  9. Power-Generation Characteristics After Vibration and Thermal Stresses of Thermoelectric Unicouples with CoSb3/Ti/Mo(Cu) Interfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Kwang Ho; Choi, Soon-Mok; Kim, Kyung-Hun; Choi, Hyoung-Seuk; Seo, Won-Seon; Kim, Il-Ho; Lee, Soonil; Hwang, Hae Jin

    2015-06-01

    Reliability tests for thermoelectric unicouples were carried out to investigate the adhesion properties of CoSb3/Ti/Mo(Cu) interfaces. The n-type In0.25 Co3.95Ni0.05Sb12 and p-type In0.25Co3FeSb12 bulks were prepared for fabricating a thermoelectric unicouple (one p- n couple) by an induction melting and a spark plasma sintering process. Mo-Cu alloy was selected as an electrode for the unicouples due to its high melting temperature and proper work function value. Many thermoelectric unicouples with the CoSb3/Ti/Mo(Cu) interfaces were fabricated with the proper brazing materials by means of a repeated firing process. Reliability of the unicouples with the interfaces was evaluated by a vibration test and a thermal cycling test. After the thermal cycling and vibration tests, the power-generation characteristics of the unicouples were compared with the unicouples before the tests. Even after the vibration test, electrical power with a power density of 0.5 W/cm2 was generated. The Ti-interlayer is considered as a possible candidate for making a reliable unicouple with high adhesion strength. With the thermal cycling test, the resistance of the unicouple increased and the electrical power from the unicouple decreased. A failure mode by the thermal cycling test was ascribed to a complex effect of micro-cracks originated from the thermal stress and oxidation problem of the thermoelectric materials; that is, a thick oxide layer more than 300 μm was detected after a high-temperature durability test of n-type In0.25Co3.95Ni0.05Sb12 material at 773 K in air for 7 days.

  10. Work plan for the fabrication of the radioisotope thermoelectric generator transportation system package mounting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Satoh, J.A.

    1994-01-01

    The Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) has available a dedicated system for the transportation of RTG payloads. The RTG Transportation System (System 100) is comprised of four systems; the Package (System 120), the Semi-trailer (System 140), the Gas Management (System 160), and the Facility Transport (System 180). This document provides guidelines on the fabrication, technical requirements, and quality assurance of the Package Mounting (Subsystem 145), part of System 140. The description follows the Development Control Requirements of WHC-CM-6-1, EP 2.4, Rev. 3

  11. Ge/SiGe superlattices for nanostructured thermoelectric modules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chrastina, D.; Cecchi, S.; Hague, J.P.; Frigerio, J.; Samarelli, A.; Ferre–Llin, L.; Paul, D.J.; Müller, E.; Etzelstorfer, T.; Stangl, J.; Isella, G.

    2013-01-01

    Thermoelectrics are presently used in a number of applications for both turning heat into electricity and also for using electricity to produce cooling. Mature Si/SiGe and Ge/SiGe heteroepitaxial growth technology would allow highly efficient thermoelectric materials to be engineered, which would be compatible and integrable with complementary metal oxide silicon micropower circuits used in autonomous systems. A high thermoelectric figure of merit requires that electrical conductivity be maintained while thermal conductivity is reduced; thermoelectric figures of merit can be improved with respect to bulk thermoelectric materials by fabricating low-dimensional structures which enhance the density of states near the Fermi level and through phonon scattering at heterointerfaces. We have grown and characterized Ge-rich Ge/SiGe/Si superlattices for nanofabricated thermoelectric generators. Low-energy plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition has been used to obtain nanoscale-heterostructured material which is several microns thick. Crystal quality and strain control have been investigated by means of high resolution X-ray diffraction. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy images confirm the material and interface quality. Electrical conductivity has been characterized by the mobility spectrum technique. - Highlights: ► High-quality Ge/SiGe multiple quantum wells for thermoelectric applications ► Mobility spectra of systems featuring a large number of parallel conduction channels ► Competitive thermoelectric properties measured in single devices

  12. Nano-materials Enabled Thermoelectricity from Window Glasses

    KAUST Repository

    Inayat, Salman Bin

    2012-11-13

    With a projection of nearly doubling up the world population by 2050, we need wide variety of renewable and clean energy sources to meet the increased energy demand. Solar energy is considered as the leading promising alternate energy source with the pertinent challenge of off sunshine period and uneven worldwide distribution of usable sun light. Although thermoelectricity is considered as a reasonable renewable energy from wasted heat, its mass scale usage is yet to be developed. Here we show, large scale integration of nano-manufactured pellets of thermoelectric nano-materials, embedded into window glasses to generate thermoelectricity using the temperature difference between hot outside and cool inside. For the first time, this work offers an opportunity to potentially generate 304 watts of usable power from 9 m2 window at a 206C temperature gradient. If a natural temperature gradient exists, this can serve as a sustainable energy source for green building technology.

  13. Development of Perovskite-Type Materials for Thermoelectric Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tingjun Wu

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Oxide perovskite materials have a long history of being investigated for thermoelectric applications. Compared to the state-of-the-art tin and lead chalcogenides, these perovskite compounds have advantages of low toxicity, eco-friendliness, and high elemental abundance. However, because of low electrical conductivity and high thermal conductivity, the total thermoelectric performance of oxide perovskites is relatively poor. Variety of methods were used to enhance the TE properties of oxide perovskite materials, such as doping, inducing oxygen vacancy, embedding crystal imperfection, and so on. Recently, hybrid perovskite materials started to draw attention for thermoelectric application. Due to the low thermal conductivity and high Seebeck coefficient feature of hybrid perovskites materials, they can be promising thermoelectric materials and hold the potential for the application of wearable energy generators and cooling devices. This mini-review will build a bridge between oxide perovskites and burgeoning hybrid halide perovskites in the research of thermoelectric properties with an aim to further enhance the relevant performance of perovskite-type materials.

  14. Green thermoelectrics: Observation and analysis of plant thermoelectric response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goupil Christophe

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Plants are sensitive to thermal and electrical effects; yet the coupling of both, known as thermoelectricity, and its quantitative measurement in vegetal systems never were reported. We recorded the thermoelectric response of bean sprouts under various thermal conditions and stress. The obtained experimental data unambiguously demonstrate that a temperature difference between the roots and the leaves of a bean sprout induces a thermoelectric voltage between these two points. Basing our analysis of the data on the force-flux formalism of linear response theory, we found that the strength of the vegetal equivalent to the thermoelectric coupling is one order of magnitude larger than that in the best thermoelectric materials. Experimental data also show the importance of the thermal stress variation rate in the plant’s electrophysiological response. therefore, thermoelectric effects are sufficiently important to partake in the complex and intertwined processes of energy and matter transport within plants.

  15. Magnetic tunnel junction thermocouple for thermoelectric power harvesting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böhnert, T.; Paz, E.; Ferreira, R.; Freitas, P. P.

    2018-05-01

    The thermoelectric power generated in magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs) is determined as a function of the tunnel barrier thickness for a matched electric circuit. This study suggests that lower resistance area product and higher tunnel magnetoresistance will maximize the thermoelectric power output of the MTJ structures. Further, the thermoelectric behavior of a series of two MTJs, a MTJ thermocouple, is investigated as a function of its magnetic configurations. In an alternating magnetic configurations the thermovoltages cancel each other, while the magnetic contribution remains. A large array of MTJ thermocouples could amplify the magnetic thermovoltage signal significantly.

  16. Synthesis and characterization of new ceramic thermoelectrics implemented in a thermoelectric oxide module

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tomeš, P.; Robert, R.; Trottmann, M.; Bocher, L.; Aguirre, M.H.; Bitschi, A.; Hejtmánek, Jiří; Weidenkaff, A.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 39, č. 9 (2010), 1696-1703 ISSN 0361-5235 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10100521 Keywords : thermoelectric materials * perovskites * power generation * oxide ceramics * micro-IR camera measurement Subject RIV: BM - Solid Matter Physics ; Magnetism Impact factor: 1.421, year: 2010

  17. Performance Evaluation of Waste Heat Recovery in a Charcoal Stove using a Thermo-Electric Module

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nnamdi Judges Ajah

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Charcoal stoves have widespread use among the poorer households and outdoor food vendors in Nigeria. In order to improve the efficiency of charcoal stoves, various researches have tried integrating a thermoelectric module in the charcoal stove. The researches, however did not exploit the performance of the thermoelectric modules at different ambient temperatures. To evaluate the performance of thermoelectric integrated charcoal stoves in the sub-Saharan Africa, a self-powered, forced air induced thermoelectric charcoal stove experiment was carried out at five different ambient temperatures of 36ºC, 33ºC, 32ºC, 30ºC and 29ºC and an average fuel hotbed temperature of 1023.75ºC. The thermoelectric charcoal stove generated a maximum voltage of 5.25V at an ambient temperature of 29ºC. The least maximum voltage was generated at the highest ambient temperature of 36ºC. It was observed that the maximum voltage increased with decreasing ambient temperature, this could be attributed to the ambient air being used to cool the thermoelectric generator. Therefore, it could be said that the performance of a forced draft thermoelectric charcoal stove increases with decrease in ambient temperature.

  18. Thermoelectric materials having porosity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heremans, Joseph P.; Jaworski, Christopher M.; Jovovic, Vladimir; Harris, Fred

    2014-08-05

    A thermoelectric material and a method of making a thermoelectric material are provided. In certain embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises at least 10 volume percent porosity. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material has a zT greater than about 1.2 at a temperature of about 375 K. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a topological thermoelectric material. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a general composition of (Bi.sub.1-xSb.sub.x).sub.u(Te.sub.1-ySe.sub.y).sub.w, wherein 0.ltoreq.x.ltoreq.1, 0.ltoreq.y.ltoreq.1, 1.8.ltoreq.u.ltoreq.2.2, 2.8.ltoreq.w.ltoreq.3.2. In further embodiments, the thermoelectric material includes a compound having at least one group IV element and at least one group VI element. In certain embodiments, the method includes providing a powder comprising a thermoelectric composition, pressing the powder, and sintering the powder to form the thermoelectric material.

  19. Thermoelectric properties and performance of flexible reduced graphene oxide films up to 3,000 K

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tian; Pickel, Andrea D.; Yao, Yonggang; Chen, Yanan; Zeng, Yuqiang; Lacey, Steven D.; Li, Yiju; Wang, Yilin; Dai, Jiaqi; Wang, Yanbin; Yang, Bao; Fuhrer, Michael S.; Marconnet, Amy; Dames, Chris; Drew, Dennis H.; Hu, Liangbing

    2018-02-01

    The development of ultrahigh-temperature thermoelectric materials could enable thermoelectric topping of combustion power cycles as well as extending the range of direct thermoelectric power generation in concentrated solar power. However, thermoelectric operation temperatures have been restricted to under 1,500 K due to the lack of suitable materials. Here, we demonstrate a thermoelectric conversion material based on high-temperature reduced graphene oxide nanosheets that can perform reliably up to 3,000 K. After a reduction treatment at 3,300 K, the nanosheet film exhibits an increased conductivity to 4,000 S cm-1 at 3,000 K and a high power factor S2σ = 54.5 µW cm-1 K-2. We report measurements characterizing the film's thermoelectric properties up to 3,000 K. The reduced graphene oxide film also exhibits a high broadband radiation absorbance and can act as both a radiative receiver and a thermoelectric generator. The printable, lightweight and flexible film is attractive for system integration and scalable manufacturing.

  20. Thermoelectric generators for efficiency improvement of power generation by motor generators – Environmental and economic perspectives

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patyk, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: ► TEGs can save costs and reduce environmental burden in a wide range of conditions. ► Reduction of the environmental burden is still possible under worse conditions. ► Under the same conditions steam expanders produce bigger amounts of electricity. ► Steam expanders are more eco-efficient in the upper performance range. ► TEG production plays only a small role for the overall assessment. -- Abstract: The use of waste heat from exhaust gas of internal combustion engines in power plants and CHP plants is considered a promising application field for thermoelectrics (TE). Some recent studies have provided important knowledge on the energy efficiency of current and future thermoelectric generators (TEGs). The focus of these studies has been primarily on the precise modelling of power units and their operation, i.e., the quantification of power production by TEGs. One of the studies additionally assessed the costs and the CO 2 emissions of fuel combustion, without equipment and fuel supply. Until now, there was no life cycle-related analysis considering TEG and power unit manufacture, environmental impacts beyond climate change and competing technologies for waste heat utilisation. In order to fill this gap, the present study applies the life cycle approach, takes account of a variety of environmental impacts and costs and compares TEGs with the competing steam expander technology. The results show that, under many conditions, TEGs in power units can save energy costs and reduce the environmental burden, i.e., they are eco-efficient. With additional expenditure, energy savings and environmental benefits can be achieved even under disadvantageous conditions. However, in the upper power range the performance of steam expanders in terms of electricity production and eco-efficiency is better. The reduction costs of greenhouse gas emissions and environmental impacts as eco-efficiency indicators show identical patterns. Under reasonable operating

  1. A thermoelectric cap for seafloor hydrothermal vents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xie, Yu; Wu, Shi-jun; Yang, Can-jun

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • We developed a thermoelectric cap (TC) to harvest hydrothermal energy. • The TC was deployed at a hydrothermal vent site near Kueishantao islet, Taiwan. • The TC monitored the temperature of the hydrothermal fluids during the field test. • The TC could make the thermal energy of hydrothermal fluids a viable power source. - Abstract: Long-term in situ monitoring is crucial to seafloor scientific investigations. One of the challenges of operating sensors in seabed is the lifespan of the sensors. Such sensors are commonly powered by batteries when other alternatives, such as tidal or solar energy, are unavailable. However, the batteries have a limited lifespan and must be recharged or replaced periodically, which is costly and impractical. A thermoelectric cap, which harvests the thermal energy of hydrothermal fluids through a conduction pipe and converts the heat to electrical energy by using thermoelectric generators, was developed to avoid these inconveniences. The thermoelectric cap was combined with a power and temperature measurement system that enables the thermoelectric cap to power a light-emitting diode lamp, an electronic load (60 Ω), and 16 thermocouples continuously. The thermoelectric cap was field tested at a shallow hydrothermal vent site near Kueishantao islet, which is located offshore of northeastern Taiwan. By using the thermal gradient between hydrothermal fluids and seawater, the thermoelectric cap obtained a sustained power of 0.2–0.5 W during the field test. The thermoelectric cap successfully powered the 16 thermocouples and recorded the temperature of the hydrothermal fluids during the entire field test. Our results show that the thermal energy of hydrothermal fluids can be an alternative renewable power source for oceanographic research.

  2. Transient Model of Hybrid Concentrated Photovoltaic with Thermoelectric Generator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mahmoudi Nezhad, Sajjad; Qing, Shaowei; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza

    2017-01-01

    Transient performance of a concentrated photovoltaic thermoelectric (CPV-TEG) hybrid system is modeled and investigated. A heat sink with water, as the working fluid has been implemented as the cold reservoir of the hybrid system to harvest the heat loss from CPV cell and to increase the efficiency...

  3. Research Progress on AgSbTe2-based Thermoelectric Materials

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CAO Qigao; MA Guang; JIA Zhihua; ZHENG Jing; LI Jin

    2012-01-01

    Thermoelectric power generation represents a class of energy conversion technology,which has been used in power supply of aeronautic and astronautic exploring missions,now showing notable advantages to harvest the widely distributed waste heat and convert the abundant solar energy into electricity at lower cost than Si-based photovoltaic technology.Thermoelectric dimensionless figure of merit ZT plays a key role in the conversion efficiency from thermal to electrical energy.Low thermal conductivity and large Seebeck coefficient make the AgSbTe2 compound a very promising candidate for high efficiency p-type thermoelectric applications.The AgSbTe2-based thermoelectric system has been repeatedly studied as prospective thermoelectric materials.In this review,we firstly clarify some fundamental tradeoffs dictating the ZT value through the relationship ZT =S2σT/κ.We also pay special attentions to the recent advances in AgSbTe2-based thermoelectric materials.Finally,we provide an outlook of new directions in this filed.

  4. The thermoelectric process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vining, C B

    1997-07-01

    The efficiency of thermoelectric technology today is limited by the properties of available thermoelectric materials and a wide variety of new approaches to developing better materials have recently been suggested. The key goal is to find a material with a large ZT, the dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit. However, if an analogy is drawn between thermoelectric technology and gas-cycle engines then selecting different materials for the thermoelements is analogous to selecting a different working gas for the mechanical engine. And an attempt to improve ZT is analogous to an attempt to improve certain thermodynamic properties of the working-gas. An alternative approach is to focus on the thermoelectric process itself (rather than on ZT), which is analogous to considering alternate cycles such as Stirling vs. Brayton vs. Rankine etc., rather than merely considering alternative gases. Focusing on the process is a radically different approach compared to previous studies focusing on ZT. Aspects of the thermoelectric process and alternative approaches to efficient thermoelectric conversion are discussed.

  5. The General-Purpose Heat Source Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator: Power for the Galileo and Ulysses missions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bennett, G.L.; Lombardo, J.J.; Hemler, R.J.; Peterson, J.R.

    1986-01-01

    Electrical power for NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter and ESA's Ulysses mission to explore the polar regions of the Sun will be provided by General-Purpose Heat Source Radioisotope Thermo-electric Generators (GPHS-RTGs). Building upon the successful RTG technology used in the Voyager program, each GPHS-RTG will provide at least 285 W(e) at beginning-of-mission. The design concept has been proven through extensive tests of an electrically heated Engineering Unit and a nuclear-heated Qualification Unit. Four flight generators have been successfully assembled and tested for use on the Galileo and Ulysses spacecraft. All indications are that the GPHS-RTGs will meet or exceed the power requirement of the missions

  6. Pathways for acceleration of development and commercialization of novel thermoelectric materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jovovic, Vladimir; Heian, Ellen M.; Harris, Fred R.; Sootsman, Joseph; Kossakovski, Dmitri [ZT Plus, Azusa, CA (United States)

    2011-07-01

    Efficient and robust thermoelectric (TE) materials are the cornerstone of any future TE generator system implementation. Today, efforts at commercialization of TE materials often lack the rigor and speed necessary for market readiness of any new material. Here we present the requirements for optimizing a thermoelectric material through a defined development process. We discuss the optimization process, tools that assist in rapid evaluation of thermoelectric performance, and the reproducibility of samples when these methods are employed. The results from our case study demonstrate the feasibility of this approach to prepare reproducible commercial quantities of advanced thermoelectric materials. (orig.)

  7. Half-Heusler Alloys as Promising Thermoelectric Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Alexander A.

    This thesis describes Ph.D. research on the half-Heusler class of thermoelectric materials. Half-Heusler alloys are a versatile class of materials that have been studied for use in photovoltaics, phase change memory, and thermoelectric power generation. With respect to thermoelectric power generation, new approaches were recently developed in order to improve the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, of half-Heusler alloys. Two of the strategies discussed in this work are adding excess Ni within MNiSn (M = Ti, Zr, or Hf) compounds to form full-Heusler nanostructures and using isoelectronic substitution of Ti, Zr, and Hf in MNiSn compounds to create microscale grain boundaries. This work uses computational simulations based on density functional theory, combined with the cluster expansion method, to predict the stable phases of pseudo-binary and pseudo-ternary composition systems. Statistical mechanics methods were used to calculate temperature-composition phase diagrams that relate the equilibrium phases. It is shown that full-Heusler nanostructures are predicted to remain stable even at high temperatures, and the microscale grain boundaries observed in (Ti,Zr,Hf)NiSn materials are found to be thermodynamically unstable at equilibrium. A new strategy of combining MNiSn materials with ZrNiPb has also recently emerged, and theoretical and experimental work show that a solid solution of the two materials is stable.

  8. Thermoelectric materials - Compromising between high efficiency and materials abundance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Homm, G.; Klar, P.J. [I. Physikalisches Institut, Justus-Liebig-Universitaet, Heinrich-Buff-Ring 16, 35392 Giessen (Germany)

    2011-09-15

    In the context of CO{sub 2} neutral and regenerative energy production, the field of thermoelectrics has shifted more and more into the focus of scientific research in the last few years. Particularly a lot of research projects were started in the field of energy autarkic sensor technology and the so called energy harvesting, i.e. the recycling of otherwise lost energy. A potentially huge industrial branch for thermoelectric applications is the automotive industry with a main emphasis on generating electricity out of the waste heat of combustion engines with the help of thermoelectric generators or using Peltier cooling to replace conventional air conditioning in the passenger compartment. In addition, many niche applications are possible, e.g. as sensors for measuring the air pressure of tires etc. The applications of thermoelectric devices are very versatile. We analyse the potential of the state-of-the-art thermoelectric materials SiGe, PbTe, Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}, FeSi{sub 2} and potentially ZnO with respect to employment in four types of applications, classified by mobile vs stationary and specialized vs. mass application. The selection criteria comprise efficiency, materials availability, costs, environmental friendliness and toxicity. Based on these criteria, a decision matrix for choosing the appropriate material system for a specific application is defined. (copyright 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim) (orig.)

  9. Thermoelectric single-photon detector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuzanyan, A A; Petrosyan, V A; Kuzanyan, A S

    2012-01-01

    The ability to detect a single photon is the ultimate level of sensitivity in the measurement of optical radiation. Sensors capable of detecting single photons and determining their energy have many scientific and technological applications. Kondo-enhanced Seebeck effect cryogenic detectors are based on thermoelectric heat-to-voltage conversion and voltage readout. We evaluate the prospects of CeB 6 and (La,Ce)B 6 hexaboride crystals for their application as a sensitive element in this type of detectors. We conclude that such detectors can register a single UV photon, have a fast count rate (up to 45 MHz) and a high spectral resolution of 0.1 eV. We calculate the electric potential generated along the thermoelectric sensor upon registering a UV single photon.

  10. Thermoelectric materials -- New directions and approaches. Materials Research Society symposium proceedings, Volume 478

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tritt, T M; Kanatzidis, M G; Lyon, Jr, H B; Mahan, G D [eds.

    1997-07-01

    Thermoelectric materials are utilized in a wide variety of applications related to solid-state refrigeration or small-scale power generation. Thermoelectric cooling is an environmentally friendly method of small-scale cooling in specific applications such as cooling computer chips and laser diodes. Thermoelectric materials are used in a wide range of applications from beverage coolers to power generation for deep-space probes such as the Voyager missions. Over the past thirty years, alloys based on the Bi-Te systems {l{underscore}brace}(Bi{sub 1{minus}x}Sb{sub x}){sub 2} (Te{sub 1{minus}x}Se{sub x}){sub 3}{r{underscore}brace} and Si{sub 1{minus}x}Ge{sub x} systems have been extensively studied and optimized for their use as thermoelectric materials to perform a variety of solid-state thermoelectric refrigeration and power generation tasks. Despite this extensive investigation of the traditional thermoelectric materials, there is still a substantial need and room for improvement, and thus, entirely new classes of compounds will have to be investigated. Over the past two-to-three years, research in the field of thermoelectric materials has been undergoing a rapid rebirth. The enhanced interest in better thermoelectric materials has been driven by the need for much higher performance and new temperature regimes for thermoelectric devices in many applications. The essence of a good thermoelectric is given by the determination of the material's dimensionless figure of merit, ZT = ({alpha}{sup 2}{sigma}/{lambda})T, where {alpha} is the Seebeck coefficient, {sigma} the electrical conductivity and {lambda} the total thermal conductivity. The best thermoelectric materials have a value of ZT = 1. This ZT = 1 has been an upper limit for more than 30 years, yet no theoretical or thermodynamic reason exits for why it can not be larger. The focus of the symposium is embodied in the title, Thermoelectric Materials: New Directions and Approaches. Many of the researchers in the

  11. Performance and stress analysis of oxide thermoelectric module architecture designed for maximum power output

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wijesekara, Waruna; Rosendahl, Lasse; Wu, NingYu

    Oxide thermoelectric materials are promising candidates for energy harvesting from mid to high temperature heat sources. In this work, the oxide thermoelectric materials and the final design of the high temperature thermoelectric module were developed. Also, prototypes of oxide thermoelectric...... of real thermoelectric uni-couples, the three-dimensional governing equations for the coupled heat transfer and thermoelectric effects were developed. Finite element simulations of this system were done using the COMSOL Multiphysics solver. Prototypes of the models were developed and the analytical...... generator were built for high temperature applications. This paper specifically discusses the thermoelectric module design and the prototype validations of the design. Here p type calcium cobalt oxide and n type aluminum doped ZnO were developed as the oxide thermoelectric materials. Hot side and cold side...

  12. Thermoelectric behavior of conducting polymers: On the possibility of off-diagonal thermoelectricity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mateeva, N; Niculescu, H; Schlenoff, J; Testardi, L

    1997-07-01

    Non-cubic materials, when structurally aligned, possess sufficient anisotropy to exhibit thermoelectric effects where the electrical and thermal currents are orthogonal (off-diagonal thermoelectricity). The authors discuss the benefits of this form of thermoelectricity for devices and describe a search for suitable properties in the air-stable conducting polymers polyaniline and polypyrrole. They find the simple and general correlation that the logarithm of the electrical conductivity scales linearly with the Seebeck coefficient on doping but with proportionality in excess of the conventional prediction for thermoelectricity. The correlation is unexpected in its universality and unfavorable for thermoelectric applications. A simple model suggests that mobile charges of both signs exist in these polymers, and this leads to reduced thermoelectric efficiency. They also briefly discuss non air-stable polyacetylene, where ambipolar transport does not appear to occur, and where properties seem more favorable for thermoelectricity.

  13. Experimental Study of Heat Energy Absorber with Porous Medium for Thermoelectric Conversion System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tzer-Ming Jeng

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The thermoelectric conversion system usually consists of the heat absorber, the thermoelectric generator (TEG and the heat sink, while the heat absorber collects the heat to increase the temperature on the hot surface of TEG and enhances the generating electricity. This study experimentally investigated the performance of the brass-beads packed-bed heat absorber for the thermoelectric conversion system. The packed-bed heat absorber is installed in a square channel with the various flow orientation systems and the small ratio of channel width to bead diameter. The flow orientation systems included the straight flow and jet flow systems. This study showed the local and average heat transfer characteristics for various parameters. The experimental results can be the base of designs for the novel porous heat absorber of the thermoelectric conversion system.

  14. A compendium of the radioisotope thermoelectric generator transportation system and recent programmatic changes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Becker, D.L.; McCoy, J.C.

    1996-03-01

    Because RTGs contain significant quantities of radioactive materials, usually plutonium-238 and its decay products, they must be transported in packages built in accordance with 10 CFR 71 (1994). To meet these regulatory requirements, US DOE commissioned Westinghouse Hanford Co. in 1988 to develop a Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator Transportation System (RTGTS) that would fully comply while protecting RTGs from adverse environmental conditions during normal transport conditions (eg, mainly shock and heat). RTGTS is scheduled for completion Dec. 1996 and will be available to support NASA's Cassini mission to Saturn in Oct. 1997. This paper provides an overview of the RTGTS project, discusses the hardware being produced, and summarizes various programmatic and management innovations required by recent changes at DOE

  15. Test System for Thermoelectric Modules and Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hejtmánek, J.; Knížek, K.; Švejda, V.; Horna, P.; Sikora, M.

    2014-10-01

    We present a design for a complex measuring device that enables its user to assess the parameters of power-generating thermoelectric modules (TEMs) (or bulk thermoelectric materials) under a wide range of temperatures ( T cold = 25°C to 90°C, T hot TEM, the actual heat flow through the module, and its mechanical load, which can be varied during the measurement. Key components of our testing setup are (i) a measuring chamber where the TEM/material is compressed between thermally shielded heating blocks equipped with a mechanical loading system and water-cooled copper-based cooler, (ii) an electrical load system, (iii) a type K thermocouple array connected to a data acquisition computer, and (iv) a thermostatic water-based cooling system with electronically controlled flow rate and temperature of cooling water. Our testing setup represents a useful tool able to assess, e.g., the thermoelectric parameters of newly developed TEMs and materials or to evaluate the thermoelectric parameters of commercially available modules and materials for comparison with values declared by the manufacturer.

  16. Scientific and Technical Challenges in Thermal Transport and Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    KAUST Repository

    O'Dwyer, Colm

    2017-01-19

    This paper considers the state-of-the-art and open scientific and technological questions in thermoelectric materials and devices, from phonon engineering and scattering methods, to new and complex materials and their thermoelectric behavior. The paper also describes recent approaches to create structural and compositional material systems designed to enhance the thermoelectric figure of merit and power factors. We also summarize and contextualize recent advances in the use of superlattice structures and porosity or roughness to influence phonon scattering mechanisms and detail some advances in integrated thermoelectric materials for generators and coolers for thermally stable photonic devices.

  17. Scientific and Technical Challenges in Thermal Transport and Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    KAUST Repository

    O'Dwyer, Colm; Chen, Renkun; He, Jr-Hau; Lee, Jaeho; Razeeb, Kafil M.

    2017-01-01

    This paper considers the state-of-the-art and open scientific and technological questions in thermoelectric materials and devices, from phonon engineering and scattering methods, to new and complex materials and their thermoelectric behavior. The paper also describes recent approaches to create structural and compositional material systems designed to enhance the thermoelectric figure of merit and power factors. We also summarize and contextualize recent advances in the use of superlattice structures and porosity or roughness to influence phonon scattering mechanisms and detail some advances in integrated thermoelectric materials for generators and coolers for thermally stable photonic devices.

  18. High-Temperature Performance of Stacked Silicon Nanowires for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stranz, Andrej; Waag, Andreas; Peiner, Erwin

    2013-07-01

    Deep reactive-ion etching at cryogenic temperatures (cryo-DRIE) has been used to produce arrays of silicon nanowires (NWs) for thermoelectric (TE) power generation devices. Using cryo-DRIE, we were able to fabricate NWs of large aspect ratios (up to 32) using a photoresist mask. Roughening of the NW sidewalls occurred, which has been recognized as beneficial for low thermal conductivity. Generated NWs, which were 7 μm in length and 220 nm to 270 nm in diameter, were robust enough to be stacked with a bulk silicon chip as a common top contact to the NWs. Mechanical support of the NW array, which can be created by filling the free space between the NWs using silicon oxide or polyimide, was not required. The Seebeck voltage, measured across multiple stacks of up to 16 bulk silicon dies, revealed negligible thermal interface resistance. With stacked silicon NWs, we observed Seebeck voltages that were an order of magnitude higher than those observed for bulk silicon. Degradation of the TE performance of silicon NWs was not observed for temperatures up to 470°C and temperature gradients up to 170 K.

  19. Thermal effect of a thermoelectric generator on parallel microchannel heat sink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kolaei, Alireza Rezania; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2012-01-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEG) convert heat energy to electrical power by means of semiconductor charge carriers serving as working fluid. In this work, a TEG is applied to a parallel microchannel heat sink. The effect of the inlet plenum arrangement on the laminar flow distribution...... in the channels is considered at a wide range of the pressure drop along the heat sink. The particular focus of this study is geometrical effect of the TEG on the heat transfer characteristics in the micro-heat sink. The hydraulic diameter of the microchannels is 270 μm, and three heat fluxes are applied...... on the hot surface of the TEG. By considering the maximum temperature limitation for Bi_2 Te_3 material and using the microchannel heat sink for cooling down the TEG system, an optimum pumping power is achieved. The results are in a good agreement with the previous experimental and theoretical studies....

  20. Theoretical and experimental analysis of a solar thermoelectric power generation device based on gravity-assisted heat pipes and solar irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Zhe; Li, Wenbin; Kan, Jiangming; Xu, Daochun

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • A technical solution to the power supply of wireless sensor networks is presented. • The low voltage produced by device is boosted from around 1 V to more than 4 V. • An output current and voltage of the device is acquired as 343 mA and 1057 mV. • The device provides output power 362.56 mW in no electricity conditions. • The economic value of device is demonstrated. - Abstract: Solar thermoelectric power generation has been widely used to solve the power supply limitation issue for low-power wireless sensors because of its light weight, high reliability, low cost, lack of noise, and environmental friendliness. A solar thermoelectric power generation system based on gravity-assisted heat pipes and solar radiation is devised in this paper, and its behavior is continuously measured in realistic outdoor circumstances. The effects of key parameters, including solar luminous flux, load resistance, a proportional coefficient, and a relative Seebeck coefficient, are analyzed. Related experimental results show that the device can output a voltage of 1057 mV and an electrical current of 343 mA, resulting in an output power of 362.56 mW. With a stable external energy conversion module under aluminous flux of 7.81 × 10"4 lx, the voltage converted from the nature solar radiation is boosted from 1057 mV to 4.40 V, which meets the rated operating voltage of low power consumption components, such as low-power wireless sensors and ZigBee modules. An economic analysis of the system shows that the solar thermoelectric power generation device is both economically and technically competitive when it is applied in a low-voltage wireless sensor network.

  1. Enhanced Efficiency of Thermoelectric Generator by Optimizing Mechanical and Electrical Structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinlong Chen

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Much attention has been paid to the application of low temperature thermal resources, especially for power generation in recent years. Most of the current commercialized thermal (including geothermal power-generation technologies convert thermal energy to electric energy indirectly, that is, making mechanical work before producing electricity. Technology using a thermoelectric generator (TEG, however, can directly transform thermal energy into electricity through the Seebeck effect. TEG technology has many advantages such as compactness, quietness, and reliability because there are no moving parts. One of the biggest disadvantages of TEGs is the low efficiency from thermal to electric energy. For this reason, we redesigned and modified our previous 1 KW (at a temperature difference of around 120 °C TEG system. The output power of the system was improved significantly, about 34.6% greater; the instantaneous efficiency of the TEG system could reach about 6.5%. Laboratory experiments have been conducted to measure the output power at different conditions: different connection modes between TEG modules, different mechanical structures, and different temperature differences between hot and cold sides. The TEG apparatus has been tested and the data have been presented. This kind of TEG power system can be applied in many thermal and geothermal sites with low temperature resources, including oil fields where fossil and geothermal energies are coproduced.

  2. Analytical thermal model validation for Cassini radioisotope thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin, E.I.

    1997-01-01

    The Saturn-bound Cassini spacecraft is designed to rely, without precedent, on the waste heat from its three radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) to warm the propulsion module subsystem, and the RTG end dome temperature is a key determining factor of the amount of waste heat delivered. A previously validated SINDA thermal model of the RTG was the sole guide to understanding its complex thermal behavior, but displayed large discrepancies against some initial thermal development test data. A careful revalidation effort led to significant modifications and adjustments of the model, which result in a doubling of the radiative heat transfer from the heat source support assemblies to the end domes and bring up the end dome and flange temperature predictions to within 2 C of the pertinent test data. The increased inboard end dome temperature has a considerable impact on thermal control of the spacecraft central body. The validation process offers an example of physically-driven analytical model calibration with test data from not only an electrical simulator but also a nuclear-fueled flight unit, and has established the end dome temperatures of a flight RTG where no in-flight or ground-test data existed before

  3. Environmental procedures for thermoelectric power plants by national mineral coal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Serra, M.T.F.; Verney Gothe, C.A. de; Silva Ramos, R. da

    1990-01-01

    This paper presents the environmental impacts decursive of utilization of South-Brazilian mineral coal to generation of electric energy. This environmental impacts and alternatives of attenuating measures are presented and evaluated, containing the totality of productive cycle: mining, processing, transport, stock piling and use in thermoelectric power plants. Environmental procedures are systematized for first time, in order to be observed in whole expansion of coal thermoelectric generator park. The conception of power plants and site studies of their useful lives are also included. (C.M.). 19 figs, 24 tabs

  4. Thermoelectrical Generator for a MEMS-Fuze

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. K. Efremov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The structure of modern fuzes includes micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS, which have such advanced devices as micro-accelerometers and micro-switches, being triggered at a specified level of setback. Independent power source (PS, as an inherent part of the MEMSfuze, charges an energy storage unit during the shot and triggers the fuze firing circuit when the shell encounters the target. Operating level of the control signal should be achieved within the time of remote arming, determined by the type of ammunition. The paper considers a possibility to develop PS as a thermoelectric generator (TEG with aerodynamic heating of hot junctions due to friction of the projectile body on the incoming airflow. The initial temperature is determined by the driving band cutting into the rifling and friction during the movement of projectile through the tube bore. The paper presents a technique for calculating the temperature field along the body of the projectile from the critical point, located at the top of the shell head. The solution of the equation of heat balance reveals the temporal development of the projectile body temperature. The proposed mathematical model of the TEG describes the process of converting heat into electrical output signal (thermo-EMF. An example of calculation for a specific artillery system – 57-mm anti-aircraft gun S-60 is given. Calculation of the TEG output signal was limited by the time, which is necessary to reach the top of the projectile trajectory. It is shown that at high altitude the temperature difference may drop to zero, thus cutting off the TEG output signal. Selection of capacitive storage parameters can be based on the reliability test conditions of the fuze firing circuit actuators, taking into account the partial storage discharge on the trajectory before the projectile encounters the target.

  5. Knudsen pump driven by a thermoelectric material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pharas, Kunal; McNamara, Shamus

    2010-01-01

    The first use of a thermoelectric material in the bidirectional operation of a gas pump using thermal transpiration has been demonstrated. The thermoelectric material maintains a higher temperature difference which favors thermal transpiration and thus increases the efficiency of gas pumping. Since the hot and cold sides of the thermoelectric material are reversible, the direction of the pump may be changed by reversing the electrical current direction. Two different pump designs are presented that illustrate some of the design tradeoffs. The pumps are characterized by measuring the pressure difference that may be generated and by measuring the flow rate in the forward and reverse directions. For a pump composed of a porous material with a pore size of 100 nm, a maximum flow rate of 0.74 cm 3 min −1 and a maximum pressure of 1.69 kPa are achieved

  6. Thermoelectric figure of merit of polymeric systems for low-power generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cigarini, Luigi; Ruini, Alice; Catellani, Alessandra; Calzolari, Arrigo

    2017-10-01

    The request of thermoelectric materials for low-power and flexible applications fosters the investigation of the intrinsic electron and thermal transport of conducting polymeric chains, which are building blocks of the complex variety of organic composites proposed in experimental samples. Using calculations from first principles and the Landauer approach for both electron and phonon carriers, we study the thermoelectric figure of merit zT of three representative and largely used polymer chains, namely poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene), polyaniline and polyfluorene. Our results provide an upper-limit estimate of zT, due to the intrinsic electronic and vibrational properties of the selected compounds, and pave the way to a microscopic understanding of the mechanisms that affect their electronic and transport characteristics in terms of structural distortions and chemical doping.

  7. Numerical Investigation on the Performance of an Automotive Thermoelectric Generator with Exhaust-Module-Coolant Direct Contact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yiping; Tang, Yulin; Deng, Yadong; Su, Chuqi

    2018-06-01

    Energy conservation and environmental protection have typically been a concern of research. Researchers have confirmed that in automotive engines, just 12-25% of the fuel energy converts into effective work and 30-40% gets wasted in the form of exhaust. Saidur et al. (Energy Policy 37:3650, 2009) and Hasanuzzaman et al. (Energy 36:233, 2011). It will be significant to enhance fuel availability and decrease environmental pollution if the waste heat in the exhaust could be recovered. Thermoelectric generators (TEGs), which can translate heat into electricity, have become a topic of interest for vehicle exhaust waste heat recovery. In conventional automotive TEGs, the thermoelectric modules (TEMs) are arranged between the exhaust tank and the coolant tank. The TEMs do not contact the hot exhaust and coolant, which leads to low heat transfer efficiency. Moreover, to provide enough packing force to keep good contact with the exhaust tank and the coolant tank, the framework required is so robust that the TEGs become too heavy. Therefore, in current study, an automotive TEG was designed which included one exhaust channel, one coolant channel and several TEMs. In the TEG, the TEMs which contacted the exhaust and coolant directly were inserted into the walls of each coolant channel. To evaluate the performance of the automotive TEG, the flow field and temperature field were computed by computational fluid dynamics (CFD). Based on the temperature distribution obtained by CFD and the performance parameters of the modules, the total power generation was obtained by some proved empirical formulas. Compared with conventional automotive TEGs, the power generation per unit volume exhaust was boosted.

  8. Numerical Investigation on the Performance of an Automotive Thermoelectric Generator with Exhaust-Module-Coolant Direct Contact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yiping; Tang, Yulin; Deng, Yadong; Su, Chuqi

    2017-12-01

    Energy conservation and environmental protection have typically been a concern of research. Researchers have confirmed that in automotive engines, just 12-25% of the fuel energy converts into effective work and 30-40% gets wasted in the form of exhaust. Saidur et al. (Energy Policy 37:3650, 2009) and Hasanuzzaman et al. (Energy 36:233, 2011). It will be significant to enhance fuel availability and decrease environmental pollution if the waste heat in the exhaust could be recovered. Thermoelectric generators (TEGs), which can translate heat into electricity, have become a topic of interest for vehicle exhaust waste heat recovery. In conventional automotive TEGs, the thermoelectric modules (TEMs) are arranged between the exhaust tank and the coolant tank. The TEMs do not contact the hot exhaust and coolant, which leads to low heat transfer efficiency. Moreover, to provide enough packing force to keep good contact with the exhaust tank and the coolant tank, the framework required is so robust that the TEGs become too heavy. Therefore, in current study, an automotive TEG was designed which included one exhaust channel, one coolant channel and several TEMs. In the TEG, the TEMs which contacted the exhaust and coolant directly were inserted into the walls of each coolant channel. To evaluate the performance of the automotive TEG, the flow field and temperature field were computed by computational fluid dynamics (CFD). Based on the temperature distribution obtained by CFD and the performance parameters of the modules, the total power generation was obtained by some proved empirical formulas. Compared with conventional automotive TEGs, the power generation per unit volume exhaust was boosted.

  9. Maximum Efficiency of Thermoelectric Heat Conversion in High-Temperature Power Devices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. I. Khvesyuk

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Modern trends in development of aircraft engineering go with development of vehicles of the fifth generation. The features of aircrafts of the fifth generation are motivation to use new high-performance systems of onboard power supply. The operating temperature of the outer walls of engines is of 800–1000 K. This corresponds to radiation heat flux of 10 kW/m2 . The thermal energy including radiation of the engine wall may potentially be converted into electricity. The main objective of this paper is to analyze if it is possible to use a high efficiency thermoelectric conversion of heat into electricity. The paper considers issues such as working processes, choice of materials, and optimization of thermoelectric conversion. It presents the analysis results of operating conditions of thermoelectric generator (TEG used in advanced hightemperature power devices. A high-temperature heat source is a favorable factor for the thermoelectric conversion of heat. It is shown that for existing thermoelectric materials a theoretical conversion efficiency can reach the level of 15–20% at temperatures up to 1500 K and available values of Ioffe parameter being ZT = 2–3 (Z is figure of merit, T is temperature. To ensure temperature regime and high efficiency thermoelectric conversion simultaneously it is necessary to have a certain match between TEG power, temperature of hot and cold surfaces, and heat transfer coefficient of the cooling system. The paper discusses a concept of radiation absorber on the TEG hot surface. The analysis has demonstrated a number of potentialities for highly efficient conversion through using the TEG in high-temperature power devices. This work has been implemented under support of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation; project No. 1145 (the programme “Organization of Research Engineering Activities”.

  10. Performance analysis of a stationary fuel cell thermoelectric cogeneration system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kuo, J.K.; Hwang, J.J.; Lin, C.H. [Department of Greenergy, National University of Tainan, Tainan, 70005 (China)

    2012-12-15

    The main purpose of our study was to use an experimental method and system dynamic simulation technology to examine a proton exchange membrane fuel cell thermoelectric cogeneration system that provides both high-quality electric power and heated water. In the second part of our study, we experimentally verified the development of key components of the fuel cell and conducted a comprehensive analysis of the subsystems, including the fuel cell module, hydrogen supply subsystem, air supply subsystem, humidifier subsystem, and heat recovery subsystem. Finally, we integrated all of the subsystems into a PEM fuel cell thermoelectric cogeneration system and performed efficiency tests and analysis of power generation, heat recovery, and thermoelectric cogeneration. After comparing this system's efficiency results using simulation and experimentation, we determined that the accuracy of the simulation values when compared to the experimental values was >95%, showing that this system's simulation nearly approached the efficiency of the actual experiment, including more than 53% for power generation efficiency, more than 39% for heat recovery efficiency, and more than 93% for thermoelectric cogeneration combined efficiency. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  11. Thermoelectricity in liquid crystals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohd Said, Suhana; Nordin, Abdul Rahman; Abdullah, Norbani; Balamurugan, S.

    2015-09-01

    The thermoelectric effect, also known as the Seebeck effect, describes the conversion of a temperature gradient into electricity. A Figure of Merit (ZT) is used to describe the thermoelectric ability of a material. It is directly dependent on its Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity, and inversely dependent on its thermal conductivity. There is usually a compromise between these parameters, which limit the performance of thermoelectric materials. The current achievement for ZT~2.2 falls short of the expected threshold of ZT=3 to allow its viability in commercial applications. In recent times, advances in organic thermoelectrics been significant, improving by over 3 orders of magnitude over a period of about 10 years. Liquid crystals are newly investigated as candidate thermoelectric materials, given their low thermal conductivity, inherent ordering, and in some cases, reasonable electrical conductivity. In this work the thermoelectric behaviour of a discotic liquid crystal, is discussed. The DLC was filled into cells coated with a charge injector, and an alignment of the columnar axis perpendicular to the substrate was allowed to form. This thermoelectric behavior can be correlated to the order-disorder transition. A reasonable thermoelectric power in the liquid crystal temperature regime was noted. In summary, thermoelectric liquid crystals may have the potential to be utilised in flexible devices, as a standalone power source.

  12. High Tc Superconducting Magnet Excited by a Semiconductor Thermoelectric Element

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuriyama, T.; Ono, M.; Tabe, S.; Oguchi, A.; Okamura, T.

    2006-04-01

    A high Tc superconducting (HTS) magnet excited by a thermal electromotive force of a thermoelectric element is studied. This HTS magnet has the advantages of compactness, lightweight and continuous excitation in comparison with conventional HTS magnets, because this HTS magnet does not need a large external power source. In this system, a heat input into the cryogenic environment is necessary to excite the thermoelectric element for constant operation. This heat generation, however, causes a rise in temperature of an HTS coil and reduces the system performance. In this paper, a newly designed magnet system which adopted a two-stage GM cryocooler was investigated. It enabled us to control the temperature of a thermoelectric element and that of an HTS coil independently. The temperature of the HTS coil could be kept at 10-20 K at the second stage of the GM cryocooler, while the thermoelectric element could be excited at higher temperature in the range of 50-70 K at the first stage, where the performance of the thermoelectric element was higher. The experimental results on this HTS magnet are shown and the possibility of the thermoelectric element as a main power source of the HTS magnets is discussed.

  13. Evaluation of Thermoelectric Performance and Durability of Functionalized Skutterudite Legs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skomedal, Gunstein; Kristiansen, Nils R.; Sottong, Reinhard; Middleton, Hugh

    2017-04-01

    Thermoelectric generators are a promising technology for waste heat recovery. As new materials and devices enter a market penetration stage, it is of interest to employ fast and efficient measurement methods to evaluate the long-term stability of thermoelectric materials in combination with metallization and coating (functionalized thermoelectric legs). We have investigated a method for measuring several thermoelectric legs simultaneously. The legs are put under a common temperature gradient, and the electrical characteristics of each leg are measured individually during thermal cycling. Using this method, one can test different types of metallization and coating applied to skutterudite thermoelectric legs and look at the relative changes over time. Postcharacterization of these initial tests with skutterudite legs using a potential Seebeck microprobe and an electron microscope showed that oxidation and interlayer diffusion are the main reasons for the gradual increase in internal resistance and the decrease in open-circuit voltage. Although we only tested skutterudite material in this work, the method is fully capable of testing all kinds of material, metallization, and coating. It is thus a promising method for studying the relationship between failure modes and mechanisms of functionalized thermoelectric legs.

  14. Thermoelectric System Absorbing Waste Heat from a Steel Ladle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Baiyi; Meng, Xiangning; Zhu, Miaoyong; Suzuki, Ryosuke O.

    2018-06-01

    China's iron and steel industry has made great progress in energy savings and emission reductions with the application of many waste heat recovery technologies. However, most of the medium and low temperature waste heat and radiant waste heat has not been effectively utilized. This paper proposes a thermoelectric system that generates electricity by absorbing the radiant heat from the surface of steel ladles in a steel plant. The thermoelectric behavior of modules in this system is analyzed by a numerical simulation method. The effects of external resistance and module structure on thermoelectric performance are also discussed in the temperature range of the wall surface of a steel ladle. The results show that the wall temperature has a significant influence on the thermoelectric behavior of the module, so its uniformity and stability should be considered in practical application. The ratio of the optimum external resistance to the internal resistance of the thermoelectric module is in the range of 1.6-2.0, which indicates the importance of external load optimization for a given thermoelectric system. In addition, the output power and the conversion efficiency of the module can be significantly improved by increasing the length of the thermoelectric legs and adopting a double-layer structure. Finally, through the optimization of external resistance and structure, the power output can reach 83-304 W/m2. This system is shown to be a promising approach for energy recovery.

  15. Effect of Mach number on thermoelectric performance of SiC ceramics nose-tip for supersonic vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Han, Xiao-Yi; Wang, Jun

    2014-01-01

    This paper focus on the effects of Mach number on thermoelectric energy conversion for the limitation of aero-heating and the feasibility of energy harvesting on supersonic vehicles. A model of nose-tip structure constructed with SiC ceramics is developed to numerically study the thermoelectric performance in a supersonic flow field by employing the computational fluid dynamics and the thermal conduction theory. Results are given in the cases of different Mach numbers. Moreover, the thermoelectric performance in each case is predicted with and without Thomson heat, respectively. Due to the increase of Mach number, both the temperature difference and the conductive heat flux between the hot side and the cold side of nose tip are increased. This results in the growth of the thermoelectric power generated and the energy conversion efficiency. With respect to the Thomson effect, over 50% of total power generated converts to Thomson heat, which greatly reduces the thermoelectric power and efficiency. However, whether the Thomson effect is considered or not, with the Mach number increasing from 2.5 to 4.5, the thermoelectric performance can be effectively improved. -- Highlights: • Thermoelectric SiC nose-tip structure for aerodynamic heat harvesting of high-speed vehicles is studied. • Thermoelectric performance is predicted based on numerical methods and experimental thermoelectric parameters. • The effects of Mach number on thermoelectric performance are studied in the present paper. • Results with respect to the Thomson effect are also explored. • Output power and energy efficiency of the thermoelectric nose-tip are increased with the increase of Mach number

  16. A prototype on-line work procedure system for radioisotope thermoelectric generator production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kiebel, G.R.

    1991-09-01

    An on-line system to manage work procedures is being developed to support radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) assembly and testing in a new production facility. This system implements production work procedures as interactive electronic documents executed at the work site with no intermediate printed form. It provides good control of the creation and application of work procedures and provides active assistance to the worker in performing them and in documenting the results. An extensive prototype of this system is being evaluated to ensure that it will have all the necessary features and that it will fit the user's needs and expectations. This effort has involved the Radioisotope Power Systems Facility (RPSF) operations organization and technology transfer between Westinghouse Hanford Company (Westinghouse Hanford) and EG ampersand G Mound Applied Technologies Inc. (Mound) at the US Department of Energy (DOE) Mound Site. 1 ref

  17. Investigation of Solar Hybrid Electric/Thermal System with Radiation Concentrator and Thermoelectric Generator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edgar Arturo Chávez Urbiola

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available An experimental study of a solar-concentrating system based on thermoelectric generators (TEGs was performed. The system included an electrical generating unit with 6 serially connected TEGs using a traditional semiconductor material, Bi2Te3, which was illuminated by concentrated solar radiation on one side and cooled by running water on the other side. A sun-tracking concentrator with a mosaic set of mirrors was used; its orientation towards the sun was achieved with two pairs of radiation sensors, a differential amplifier, and two servomotors. The hot side of the TEGs at midday has a temperature of around 200°C, and the cold side is approximately 50°C. The thermosiphon cooling system was designed to absorb the heat passing through the TEGs and provide optimal working conditions. The system generates 20 W of electrical energy and 200 W of thermal energy stored in water with a temperature of around 50°C. The hybrid system studied can be considered as an alternative to photovoltaic/thermal systems, especially in countries with abundant solar radiation, such as Mexico, China, and India.

  18. A Hybrid Maximum Power Point Tracking Method for Automobile Exhaust Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quan, Rui; Zhou, Wei; Yang, Guangyou; Quan, Shuhai

    2017-05-01

    To make full use of the maximum output power of automobile exhaust thermoelectric generator (AETEG) based on Bi2Te3 thermoelectric modules (TEMs), taking into account the advantages and disadvantages of existing maximum power point tracking methods, and according to the output characteristics of TEMs, a hybrid maximum power point tracking method combining perturb and observe (P&O) algorithm, quadratic interpolation and constant voltage tracking method was put forward in this paper. Firstly, it searched the maximum power point with P&O algorithms and a quadratic interpolation method, then, it forced the AETEG to work at its maximum power point with constant voltage tracking. A synchronous buck converter and controller were implemented in the electric bus of the AETEG applied in a military sports utility vehicle, and the whole system was modeled and simulated with a MATLAB/Simulink environment. Simulation results demonstrate that the maximum output power of the AETEG based on the proposed hybrid method is increased by about 3.0% and 3.7% compared with that using only the P&O algorithm and the quadratic interpolation method, respectively. The shorter tracking time is only 1.4 s, which is reduced by half compared with that of the P&O algorithm and quadratic interpolation method, respectively. The experimental results demonstrate that the tracked maximum power is approximately equal to the real value using the proposed hybrid method,and it can preferentially deal with the voltage fluctuation of the AETEG with only P&O algorithm, and resolve the issue that its working point can barely be adjusted only with constant voltage tracking when the operation conditions change.

  19. Parametric study of a thermoelectric generator system for exhaust gas energy recovery in diesel road freight transportation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vale, S.; Heber, L.; Coelho, P.J.; Silva, C.M.

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • 1-D numerical TEG model in diesel freight vehicles exhaust pipe. • Over 800 W of electrical power for the heavy-duty vehicle. • Plain fins provide better performance than offset strip fins. • The height of the thermocouple legs plays a significant role. • 2% maximum efficiency needs further improvements. - Abstract: A parametric study and optimization approaches of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) for the recovery of energy from the exhaust gas in Diesel vehicles used in freight transport is reported. The TEG is installed in the tailpipe of a commercial vehicle (3.5 tonnes) and a heavy-duty vehicle (40 tonnes). The exhaust gas is used as the heat source and the cooling water as the heat sink. Two different heat exchanger configurations are considered: plain fins and offset strip fins. The influence of the height, length and spacing of the fins on the electrical and net power is analysed for the fixed width and length of the TEG. The influence of the length and width of the TEG and of the height of the thermocouple legs is also investigated. According to the criteria used in this study, plain fins are the best choice, yielding a maximum electrical power of 188 W for the commercial vehicle and 886 W for the heavy-duty vehicle. The best recovery efficiency is about 2%, with an average thermoelectric material efficiency of approximately 4.4%, for the light-duty vehicle. Accordingly, there is significant room for further improvement and optimisation based on the thermoelectric modules and the system design.

  20. Numerical study on thermoelectric–hydraulic performance of a thermoelectric power generator with a plate-fin heat exchanger with longitudinal vortex generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ma, Ting; Lu, Xing; Pandit, Jaideep; Ekkad, Srinath V.; Huxtable, Scott T.; Deshpande, Samruddhi; Wang, Qiu-wang

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • LVGs are proposed to enhance thermal–electrical conversion performance of TEGs. • Open circuit voltage of TEGs with LVGs is increased by 41–75% in baseline cases. • Reynolds number and hot-side inlet temperature have significant effects on TEGs. • Cold-side temperature has a smaller effect on TEGs. - Abstract: In this paper, the effect of longitudinal vortex generators (LVGs) on the performance of a thermoelectric power generator (TEG) with a plate-fin heat exchanger is investigated. A fluid-thermal-electric multi-physics coupled model for the TEG is established on the COMSOL® platform, in which the Seebeck, Peltier, Thomson, and Joule heating effects are taken into account. The equivalent thermal–electrical properties of the thermoelectric (TE) module are used in the numerical simulation. The results indicate that the LVGs produce complex three-dimensional vortices in the cross section downstream from the LVGs, thus enhancing the heat transfer and electric performance compared to a TEG without LVGs. Under baseline operating conditions, the heat input and open circuit voltage of the TEG with LVGs are increased by 41–75% compared to a TEG with smooth channel. The simulations also show that the Reynolds number and hot-side inlet temperature have significant effects on the net power and thermal efficiency of the TEG, but the cold-side temperature has a smaller effect. Additionally, the performance of the TEG under a constant heat transfer coefficient boundary condition is almost the same as the performance under a constant temperature boundary condition. Overall, this work demonstrates that LVGs have great potential to enhance the performance of TEGs for waste heat recovery from vehicle exhaust.

  1. Thermoelectric Powered Wireless Sensors for Dry-Cask Storage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carstens, Thomas Alan

    This study focuses on the development of self-powered wireless sensors. These sensors can be used to measure key parameters in extreme environments; e.g., temperature monitoring for spent nuclear fuel during dry-cask storage. This study has developed a design methodology for these self-powered monitoring systems. The main elements that constitute this work consist of selecting and testing a power source for the wireless sensor, determination of the attenuation of the wireless signal, and testing the wireless sensor circuitry in an extreme environment. OrigenArp determined the decay heat and gamma/neutron source strength of the spent fuel throughout the service life of the dry-cask. A first principles analysis modeled the temperatures inside the dry-cask. A finite-element heat transfer code calculated the temperature distribution of the thermoelectric and heat sink. The temperature distributions determine the power produced by the thermoelectric. It was experimentally verified that a thermoelectric generator (HZ-14) with a DC/DC converter (Linear Technology LTC3108EDE) can power a transceiver (EmbedRF) at condition which represent prototypical conditions throughout and beyond the service life of the dry-cask. The wireless sensor is required to broadcast with enough power to overcome the attenuation from the dry-cask. It will be important to minimize the attenuation of the signal in order to broadcast with a small transmission power. To investigate the signal transmission through the dry-cask, CST Microwave Studio was used to determine the scattering parameter S2,1 for a horizontal dry-cask. Important parameters that can influence the transmission of the signal are antenna orientation, antenna placement, and transmission frequency. The thermoelectric generator, DC/DC converter, and transceiver were exposed to 60Co gamma radiation (exposure rate170.3 Rad/min) at the University of Wisconsin Medical Radiation Research Center. The effects of gamma radiation on the

  2. Reliable Thermoelectric Module Design under Opposing Requirements from Structural and Thermoelectric Considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karri, Naveen K.; Mo, Changki

    2018-06-01

    Structural reliability of thermoelectric generation (TEG) systems still remains an issue, especially for applications such as large-scale industrial or automobile exhaust heat recovery, in which TEG systems are subject to dynamic loads and thermal cycling. Traditional thermoelectric (TE) system design and optimization techniques, focused on performance alone, could result in designs that may fail during operation as the geometric requirements for optimal performance (especially the power) are often in conflict with the requirements for mechanical reliability. This study focused on reducing the thermomechanical stresses in a TEG system without compromising the optimized system performance. Finite element simulations were carried out to study the effect of TE element (leg) geometry such as leg length and cross-sectional shape under constrained material volume requirements. Results indicated that the element length has a major influence on the element stresses whereas regular cross-sectional shapes have minor influence. The impact of TE element stresses on the mechanical reliability is evaluated using brittle material failure theory based on Weibull analysis. An alternate couple configuration that relies on the industry practice of redundant element design is investigated. Results showed that the alternate configuration considerably reduced the TE element and metallization stresses, thereby enhancing the structural reliability, with little trade-off in the optimized performance. The proposed alternate configuration could serve as a potential design modification for improving the reliability of systems optimized for thermoelectric performance.

  3. Thermoelectric properties control due to doping level and sintering conditions for FGM thermoelectric element

    CERN Document Server

    Kajikawa, T; Shiraishi, K; Ohmori, M; Hirai, T

    1999-01-01

    Thermoelectric performance is determined with three factors, namely, Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity and thermal conductivity. For metal and single crystalline semiconductor, those factors have close interrelation each $9 other. However, as the sintered thermoelectric element has various levels of superstructure from macro scale and micro scale in terms of the thermoelectric mechanism, the relationship among them is more complex than that for the $9 melt- grown element, so it is suggested that the control of the temperature dependence of thermoelectric properties is possible to enhance the thermoelectric performance for wide temperature range due to FGM approach. The research $9 objective is to investigate the characteristics of the thermoelectric properties for various doping levels and hot-pressed conditions to make the thermoelectric elements for which the temperature dependence of the performance is $9 controlled due to FGM approach varying the doping levels and sintering conditions. By usage ...

  4. Hydro-climatic conditions and thermoelectric electricity generation – Part I: Development of models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koch, Hagen; Vögele, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    In recent years there have been several heat waves affecting the use of thermoelectric power plants, e.g. in Europe and the U.S. In this paper the linkage between hydro-climatic conditions and possible electricity generation restrictions is described. The coupling of hydrological models and a power plant model is presented. In this approach each power plant is considered separately with its technical specifications. Also environmental regulations, e.g. permissible rise in the cooling water temperature, are considered for the respective power plant. The hydrological models developed to simulate river runoff and water temperature are also site specific. The approach presented is applied to Krümmel nuclear power plant in Germany. Analysed are the uncertainties with regard to electricity generation restrictions on account of climatic developments and corresponding higher water temperatures and low flows. Overall, increased water temperatures and declining river runoff lead to more frequent and more severe generation restrictions. It is concluded that the site-specific approach is necessary to reliably simulate power plants water demand, river runoff and water temperature. Using a simulation time step of one day, electricity generation restrictions are significantly higher than for simulations at monthly time step. - Highlights: • An approach to assess climate effects on electricity generation is presented. • Site specific models for power plants, water temperature and discharge are used. • Monthly and daily simulation time-steps give different results. • Climate change effects on generation depend on cooling system and climate scenario

  5. Solar thermoelectricity via advanced latent heat storage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olsen, M. L.; Rea, J.; Glatzmaier, G. C.; Hardin, C.; Oshman, C.; Vaughn, J.; Roark, T.; Raade, J. W.; Bradshaw, R. W.; Sharp, J.; Avery, A. D.; Bobela, D.; Bonner, R.; Weigand, R.; Campo, D.; Parilla, P. A.; Siegel, N. P.; Toberer, E. S.; Ginley, D. S.

    2016-05-01

    We report on a new modular, dispatchable, and cost-effective solar electricity-generating technology. Solar ThermoElectricity via Advanced Latent heat Storage (STEALS) integrates several state-of-the-art technologies to provide electricity on demand. In the envisioned STEALS system, concentrated sunlight is converted to heat at a solar absorber. The heat is then delivered to either a thermoelectric (TE) module for direct electricity generation, or to charge a phase change material for thermal energy storage, enabling subsequent generation during off-sun hours, or both for simultaneous electricity production and energy storage. The key to making STEALS a dispatchable technology lies in the development of a "thermal valve," which controls when heat is allowed to flow through the TE module, thus controlling when electricity is generated. The current project addresses each of the three major subcomponents, (i) the TE module, (ii) the thermal energy storage system, and (iii) the thermal valve. The project also includes system-level and techno- economic modeling of the envisioned integrated system and will culminate in the demonstration of a laboratory-scale STEALS prototype capable of generating 3kWe.

  6. Mosaic crystals leading a new route to achieve ultrahigh thermoelectric performance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yi Xie

    2015-01-01

    Solid-state thermoelectric technology uses electrons or holes as the working fluid for heat pumping and power generation.Adopting the technology in harvesting solar heat,converting waste industrial heat into electricity,and pumping out operational heat has tremendous potential in solid-state electronics applications.A combination of highly efficient electronic transport and low heat conductivity is a prerequisite for excellent thermoelectric performance.As these two requirements are substantially orthogonal,their synchronous realization is difficult in practice,hindering the commercial use of thermoelectricity[1,2].Scientists from the Shanghai Institute of Ceramics,Chinese Academy of Sciences,in collaboration with scien-

  7. Metallization for Yb14MnSb11-Based Thermoelectric Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firdosy, Samad; Li, Billy Chun-Yip; Ravi, Vilupanur; Sakamoto, Jeffrey; Caillat, Thierry; Ewell, Richard C.; Brandon, Erik J.

    2011-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials provide a means for converting heat into electrical power using a fully solid-state device. Power-generating devices (which include individual couples as well as multicouple modules) require the use of ntype and p-type thermoelectric materials, typically comprising highly doped narrow band-gap semiconductors which are connected to a heat collector and electrodes. To achieve greater device efficiency and greater specific power will require using new thermoelectric materials, in more complex combinations. One such material is the p-type compound semiconductor Yb14MnSb11 (YMS), which has been demonstrated to have one of the highest ZT values at 1,000 C, the desired operational temperature of many space-based radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). Despite the favorable attributes of the bulk YMS material, it must ultimately be incorporated into a power-generating device using a suitable joining technology. Typically, processes such as diffusion bonding and/or brazing are used to join thermoelectric materials to the heat collector and electrodes, with the goal of providing a stable, ohmic contact with high thermal conductivity at the required operating temperature. Since YMS is an inorganic compound featuring chemical bonds with a mixture of covalent and ionic character, simple metallurgical diffusion bonding is difficult to implement. Furthermore, the Sb within YMS readily reacts with most metals to form antimonide compounds with a wide range of stoichiometries. Although choosing metals that react to form high-melting-point antimonides could be employed to form a stable reaction bond, it is difficult to limit the reactivity of Sb in YMS such that the electrode is not completely consumed at an operating temperature of 1,000 C. Previous attempts to form suitable metallization layers resulted in poor bonding, complete consumption of the metallization layer or fracture within the YMS thermoelement (or leg).

  8. Overview of industry interest in new thermoelectric materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lyon, Jr, H B

    1997-07-01

    The technology base for air conditioning, refrigeration, component cooling below ambient temperatures and power generation will be required to meet several new challenges. The main lines of these challenges will be presented in a way which relates them to the several new thermoelectric materials and materials engineering options being pursued by the research community. The potential benefits of thermoelectric devices are only partially met by enhancing the figure of merit ZT, the nature of the design challenge and the resulting systems approach are presented. The research and the industry are entering into a new era.

  9. Yb14MnSb11 as a High-Efficiency Thermoelectric Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Gascoin, Franck; Brown, Shawna; Kauzlarich, Susan

    2009-01-01

    Yb14MnSb11 has been found to be wellsuited for use as a p-type thermoelectric material in applications that involve hotside temperatures in the approximate range of 1,200 to 1,300 K. The figure of merit that characterizes the thermal-to-electric power-conversion efficiency is greater for this material than for SiGe, which, until now, has been regarded as the state-of-the art high-temperature ptype thermoelectric material. Moreover, relative to SiGe, Yb14MnSb11 is better suited to incorporation into a segmented thermoelectric leg that includes the moderate-temperature p-type thermoelectric material CeFe4Sb12 and possibly other, lower-temperature p-type thermoelectric materials. Interest in Yb14MnSb11 as a candidate high-temperature thermoelectric material was prompted in part by its unique electronic properties and complex crystalline structure, which place it in a class somewhere between (1) a class of semiconducting valence compounds known in the art as Zintl compounds and (2) the class of intermetallic compounds. From the perspective of chemistry, this classification of Yb14MnSb11 provides a first indication of a potentially rich library of compounds, the thermoelectric properties of which can be easily optimized. The concepts of the thermoelectric figure of merit and the thermoelectric compatibility factor are discussed in Compatibility of Segments of Thermo - electric Generators (NPO-30798), which appears on page 55. The traditional thermoelectric figure of merit, Z, is defined by the equation Z = alpha sup 2/rho K, where alpha is the Seebeck coefficient, rho is the electrical resistivity, and k is the thermal conductivity.

  10. A Thermoelectric Waste-Heat-Recovery System for Portland Cement Rotary Kilns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Qi; Li, Peng; Cai, Lanlan; Zhou, Pingwang; Tang, Di; Zhai, Pengcheng; Zhang, Qingjie

    2015-06-01

    Portland cement is produced by one of the most energy-intensive industrial processes. Energy consumption in the manufacture of Portland cement is approximately 110-120 kWh ton-1. The cement rotary kiln is the crucial equipment used for cement production. Approximately 10-15% of the energy consumed in production of the cement clinker is directly dissipated into the atmosphere through the external surface of the rotary kiln. Innovative technology for energy conservation is urgently needed by the cement industry. In this paper we propose a novel thermoelectric waste-heat-recovery system to reduce heat losses from cement rotary kilns. This system is configured as an array of thermoelectric generation units arranged longitudinally on a secondary shell coaxial with the rotary kiln. A mathematical model was developed for estimation of the performance of waste heat recovery. Discussions mainly focus on electricity generation and energy saving, taking a Φ4.8 × 72 m cement rotary kiln as an example. Results show that the Bi2Te3-PbTe hybrid thermoelectric waste-heat-recovery system can generate approximately 211 kW electrical power while saving 3283 kW energy. Compared with the kiln without the thermoelectric recovery system, the kiln with the system can recover more than 32.85% of the energy that used to be lost as waste heat through the kiln surface.

  11. Thermoelectric flux effect in superconducting indium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Harlingen, D.J.

    1977-01-01

    In this paper we discuss a thermoelectric effect in superconductors which provides a mechanism for studying quasiparticle relaxation and scattering processes in non-equilibrium superconductors by transport measurements. We report measurements of the thermoelecric flux effect in samples consisting of indium and lead near the In transition temperature; in this temperature range, the contribution to DELTA/sub TAU/ from the Pb is insignificant and so values of OMEGA(T) are obtained for indium. The results of our experiments may be summarized as follows: (1) we have a thermally-generated flux effect in 5 superconducting In-Pb toroidal samples, (2) experimental tests suggest that the observed effect does indeed arise from the proposed thermoelectric flux effect, (3) OMEGA(T) for indium is found to diverge as (T/sub c/ - T)/sup -3/2/ more rapidly than predicted by simple theory, (4) OMEGA(T) at T/T sub c/ = .999 is nearly 10/sup 5/ larger than initially expected, (5) OMEGA (T) roughly correlates with the magnitude of the normal state thermoelectric coefficient for our samples

  12. Equivalent Electrical Circuits of Thermoelectric Generators under Different Operating Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saima Siouane

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Energy harvesting has become a promising and alternative solution to conventional energy generation patterns to overcome the problem of supplying autonomous electrical systems. More particularly, thermal energy harvesting technologies have drawn a major interest in both research and industry. Thermoelectric Generators (TEGs can be used in two different operating conditions, under constant temperature gradient or constant heat flow. The commonly used TEG electrical model, based on a voltage source in series with an electrical resistance, shows its limitations especially under constant heat flow conditions. Here, the analytical electrical modeling, taking into consideration the internal and contact thermal resistances of a TEG under constant temperature gradient and constant heat flow conditions, is first given. To give further insight into the electrical behavior of a TEG module in different operating conditions, we propose a new and original way of emulating the above analytical expressions with usual electronics components (voltage source, resistors, diode, whose values are determined with the TEG’s parameters. Note that such a TEG emulation is particularly suited when designing the electronic circuitry commonly associated to the TEG, to realize both Maximum Power Point Tracking and output voltage regulation. First, the proposed equivalent electrical circuits are validated through simulation with a SPICE environment in static operating conditions using only one value of either temperature gradient or heat flow. Then, they are also analyzed in dynamic operating conditions where both temperature gradient and heat flow are considered as time-varying functions.

  13. Method of controlling temperature of a thermoelectric generator in an exhaust system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior, Gregory P; Reynolds, Michael G; Cowgill, Joshua D

    2013-05-21

    A method of controlling the temperature of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) in an exhaust system of an engine is provided. The method includes determining the temperature of the heated side of the TEG, determining exhaust gas flow rate through the TEG, and determining the exhaust gas temperature through the TEG. A rate of change in temperature of the heated side of the TEG is predicted based on the determined temperature, the determined exhaust gas flow rate, and the determined exhaust gas temperature through the TEG. Using the predicted rate of change of temperature of the heated side, exhaust gas flow rate through the TEG is calculated that will result in a maximum temperature of the heated side of the TEG less than a predetermined critical temperature given the predicted rate of change in temperature of the heated side of the TEG. A corresponding apparatus is provided.

  14. Variable cooling circuit for thermoelectric generator and engine and method of control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior, Gregory P

    2012-10-30

    An apparatus is provided that includes an engine, an exhaust system, and a thermoelectric generator (TEG) operatively connected to the exhaust system and configured to allow exhaust gas flow therethrough. A first radiator is operatively connected to the engine. An openable and closable engine valve is configured to open to permit coolant to circulate through the engine and the first radiator when coolant temperature is greater than a predetermined minimum coolant temperature. A first and a second valve are controllable to route cooling fluid from the TEG to the engine through coolant passages under a first set of operating conditions to establish a first cooling circuit, and from the TEG to a second radiator through at least some other coolant passages under a second set of operating conditions to establish a second cooling circuit. A method of controlling a cooling circuit is also provided.

  15. Enhancement of Thermoelectric Properties of PEDOT:PSS and Tellurium-PEDOT:PSS Hybrid Composites by Simple Chemical Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin Bae, Eun; Hun Kang, Young; Jang, Kwang-Suk; Yun Cho, Song

    2016-01-01

    The thermoelectric properties of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) and tellurium-PEDOT:PSS (Te-PEDOT:PSS) hybrid composites were enhanced via simple chemical treatment. The performance of thermoelectric materials is determined by their electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, and Seebeck coefficient. Significant enhancement of the electrical conductivity of PEDOT:PSS and Te-PEDOT:PSS hybrid composites from 787.99 and 11.01 to 4839.92 and 334.68 S cm-1, respectively was achieved by simple chemical treatment with H2SO4. The power factor of the developed materials could be effectively tuned over a very wide range depending on the concentration of the H2SO4 solution used in the chemical treatment. The power factors of the developed thermoelectric materials were optimized to 51.85 and 284 μW m-1 K-2, respectively, which represent an increase of four orders of magnitude relative to the corresponding parameters of the untreated thermoelectric materials. Using the Te-PEDOT:PSS hybrid composites, a flexible thermoelectric generator that could be embedded in textiles was fabricated by a printing process. This thermoelectric array generates a thermoelectric voltage of 2 mV using human body heat.

  16. Light-triggered thermoelectric conversion based on a carbon nanotube-polymer hybrid gel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyako, Eijiro; Nagata, Hideya; Funahashi, Ryoji; Hirano, Ken; Hirotsu, Takahiro

    2009-01-01

    Lights? Nanotubes? Action! A hydrogel comprising lysozymes, poly(ethylene glycol), phospholipids, and functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes is employed for light-driven thermoelectric conversion. A photoinduced thermoelectric conversion module based on the hydrogel functions as a novel electric power generator (see image). This concept may find application in various industries, such as robotics and aerospace engineering.

  17. Electric power generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carney, H.C.

    1977-01-01

    An electric power generator of the type employing a nuclear heat source and a thermoelectric converter is described wherein a transparent thermal insulating medium is provided inside an encapsulating enclosure to thermally insulate the heat source and thermoelectric generator. The heat source, the thermoelectric converter, and the enclosure are provided with facing surfaces which are heat-reflective to a substantial degree to inhibit radiation of heat through the medium of the encapsulating enclosure. Multiple reflective foils may be spaced within the medium as necessary to inhibit natural convection of heat and/or further inhibit radiation

  18. KOVEC studies of radioisotope thermoelectric generator response (In connection with possible NASA space shuttle accident explosion scenarios)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Walton, J.; Weston, A.; Lee, E.

    1984-06-26

    The Department of Energy (DOE) commissioned a study leading to a final report (NUS-4543, Report of the Shuttle Transportation System (STS) Explosion Working Group (EWG), June 8, 1984), concerned with PuO/sub 2/ dispersal should the NASA space shuttle explode during the proposed Galileo and ISPN launches planned for 1986. At DOE's request, LLNL furnished appendices that describe hydrocode KOVEC calculations of potential damage to the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators, fueled by PuO/sub 2/, should certain explosion scenarios occur. These appendices are contained in this report.

  19. MeV Si ion modifications on the thermoelectric generators from Si/Si + Ge superlattice nano-layered films

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budak, S.; Heidary, K.; Johnson, R. B.; Colon, T.; Muntele, C.; Ila, D.

    2014-08-01

    The performance of thermoelectric materials and devices is characterized by a dimensionless figure of merit, ZT = S2σT/K, where, S and σ denote, respectively, the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity, T is the absolute temperature in Kelvin and K represents the thermal conductivity. The figure of merit may be improved by means of raising either S or σ or by lowering K. In our laboratory, we have fabricated and characterized the performance of a large variety of thermoelectric generators (TEG). Two TEG groups comprised of 50 and 100 alternating layers of Si/Si + Ge multi-nanolayered superlattice films have been fabricated and thoroughly characterized. Ion beam assisted deposition (IBAD) was utilized to assemble the alternating sandwiched layers, resulting in total thickness of 300 nm and 317 nm for 50 and 100 layer devices, respectively. Rutherford Backscattering Spectroscopy (RBS) was employed in order to monitor the precise quantity of Si and Ge utilized in the construction of specific multilayer thin films. The material layers were subsequently impregnated with quantum dots and/or quantum clusters, in order to concurrently reduce the cross plane thermal conductivity, increase the cross plane Seebeck coefficient and raise the cross plane electrical conductivity. The quantum dots/clusters were implanted via the 5 MeV Si ion bombardment which was performed using a Pelletron high energy ion beam accelerator. We have achieved remarkable results for the thermoelectric and optical properties of the Si/Si + Ge multilayer thin film TEG systems. We have demonstrated that with optimal setting of the 5 MeV Si ion beam bombardment fluences, one can fabricate TEG systems with figures of merits substantially higher than the values previously reported.

  20. MeV Si ion modifications on the thermoelectric generators from Si/Si + Ge superlattice nano-layered films

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Budak, S., E-mail: satilmis.budak@aamu.edu [Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Alabama A and M University, Huntsville, AL (United States); Heidary, K. [Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Alabama A and M University, Huntsville, AL (United States); Johnson, R.B.; Colon, T. [Department of Physics, Alabama A and M University, Huntsville, AL (United States); Muntele, C. [Cygnus Scientific Services, Huntsville, AL (United States); Ila, D. [Department of Physics, Fayetteville St. University, Fayetteville, NC (United States)

    2014-08-15

    The performance of thermoelectric materials and devices is characterized by a dimensionless figure of merit, ZT = S{sup 2}σT/K, where, S and σ denote, respectively, the Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity, T is the absolute temperature in Kelvin and K represents the thermal conductivity. The figure of merit may be improved by means of raising either S or σ or by lowering K. In our laboratory, we have fabricated and characterized the performance of a large variety of thermoelectric generators (TEG). Two TEG groups comprised of 50 and 100 alternating layers of Si/Si + Ge multi-nanolayered superlattice films have been fabricated and thoroughly characterized. Ion beam assisted deposition (IBAD) was utilized to assemble the alternating sandwiched layers, resulting in total thickness of 300 nm and 317 nm for 50 and 100 layer devices, respectively. Rutherford Backscattering Spectroscopy (RBS) was employed in order to monitor the precise quantity of Si and Ge utilized in the construction of specific multilayer thin films. The material layers were subsequently impregnated with quantum dots and/or quantum clusters, in order to concurrently reduce the cross plane thermal conductivity, increase the cross plane Seebeck coefficient and raise the cross plane electrical conductivity. The quantum dots/clusters were implanted via the 5 MeV Si ion bombardment which was performed using a Pelletron high energy ion beam accelerator. We have achieved remarkable results for the thermoelectric and optical properties of the Si/Si + Ge multilayer thin film TEG systems. We have demonstrated that with optimal setting of the 5 MeV Si ion beam bombardment fluences, one can fabricate TEG systems with figures of merits substantially higher than the values previously reported.

  1. Encapsulation of high temperature thermoelectric modules

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Salvador, James R.; Sakamoto, Jeffrey; Park, Youngsam

    2017-07-11

    A method of encapsulating a thermoelectric device and its associated thermoelectric elements in an inert atmosphere and a thermoelectric device fabricated by such method are described. These thermoelectric devices may be intended for use under conditions which would otherwise promote oxidation of the thermoelectric elements. The capsule is formed by securing a suitably-sized thin-walled strip of oxidation-resistant metal to the ceramic substrates which support the thermoelectric elements. The thin-walled metal strip is positioned to enclose the edges of the thermoelectric device and is secured to the substrates using gap-filling materials. The strip, substrates and gap-filling materials cooperatively encapsulate the thermoelectric elements and exclude oxygen and water vapor from atmospheric air so that the elements may be maintained in an inert, non-oxidizing environment.

  2. Phase transition enhanced thermoelectric figure-of-merit in copper chalcogenides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David R. Brown

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available While thermoelectric materials can be used for solid state cooling, waste heat recovery, and solar electricity generation, low values of the thermoelectric figure of merit, zT, have led to an efficiency too low for widespread use. Thermoelectric effects are characterized by the Seebeck coefficient or thermopower, which is related to the entropy associated with charge transport. For example, coupling spin entropy with the presence of charge carriers has enabled the enhancement of zT in cobalt oxides. We demonstrate that the coupling of a continuous phase transition to carrier transport in Cu2Se over a broad (360–410 K temperature range results in a dramatic peak in thermopower, an increase in phonon and electron scattering, and a corresponding doubling of zT (to 0.7 at 406 K, and a similar but larger increase over a wider temperature range in the zT of Cu1.97Ag.03Se (almost 1.0 at 400 K. The use of structural entropy for enhanced thermopower could lead to new engineering approaches for thermoelectric materials with high zT and new green applications for thermoelectrics.

  3. High Power Density, Lightweight Thermoelectric Metamaterials for Energy Harvesting

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Thermoelectric energy harvesting utilizes materials that generate an electrical current when subjected to a temperature gradient, or simply, a hot and cold source of...

  4. Thermoelectric Waste Heat Recovery Program for Passenger Vehicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jovovic, Vladimir [Gentherm Incorporated, Azusa, CA (United States)

    2015-12-31

    Gentherm began work in October 2011 to develop a Thermoelectric Waste Energy Recovery System for passenger vehicle applications. Partners in this program were BMW and Tenneco. Tenneco, in the role of TIER 1 supplier, developed the system-level packaging of the thermoelectric power generator. As the OEM, BMW Group demonstrated the TEG system in their vehicle in the final program phase. Gentherm demonstrated the performance of the TEG in medium duty and heavy duty vehicles. Technology developed and demonstrated in this program showed potential to reduce fuel consumption in medium and heavy duty vehicles. In light duty vehicles it showed more modest potential.

  5. Thermoelectric Energy Harvesting Using Phase Change Materials (PCMs) in High Temperature Environments in Aircraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elefsiniotis, A.; Becker, Th.; Schmid, U.

    2014-06-01

    Wireless, energy-autonomous structural health-monitoring systems in aircraft have the potential of reducing total maintenance costs. Thermoelectric energy harvesting, which seems the best choice for creating truly autonomous health monitoring sensors, is the principle behind converting waste heat to useful electrical energy through the use of thermoelectric generators. To enhance the temperature difference across the two sides of a thermoelectric generator, i.e. increasing heat flux and energy production, a phase change material acting as thermal mass is attached on one side of the thermoelectric generators while the other side is placed on the aircraft structure. The application area under investigation for this paper is the pylon aft fairing, located near the engine of an aircraft, with temperatures reaching on the inside up to 350 °C. Given these harsh operational conditions, the performance of a device, containing erythritol as a phase change material, is evaluated. The harvested energy reaching values up to 81.4 J can be regulated by a power management module capable of storing the excess energy and recovering it from the medium powering a sensor node and a wireless transceiver.

  6. Modelling of thermoelectric materials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjerg, Lasse

    In order to discover new good thermoelectric materials, there are essentially two ways. One way is to go to the laboratory, synthesise a new material, and measure the thermoelectric properties. The amount of compounds, which can be investigated this way is limited because the process is time...... consuming. Another approach is to model the thermoelectric properties of a material on a computer. Several crystal structures can be investigated this way without use of much man power. I have chosen the latter approach. Using density functional theory I am able to calculate the band structure of a material....... This band structure I can then use to calculate the thermoelectric properties of the material. With these results I have investigated several materials and found the optimum theoretical doping concentration. If materials with these doping concentrations be synthesised, considerably better thermoelectric...

  7. Micro scale CHP based on biomass intelligent heat transfer with thermoelectric generators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moser, W.; Aigenbauer, S.; Heckmann, M.; Friedl, G. (Austrian Bioenergy Centre GmbH, Wieselburg (Austria)); Hofbauer, H. (Institute of Chemical Engineering, Vienna University of Technology (Austria))

    2007-07-01

    Pellet burners need auxiliary electrical power to provide CO{sub 2} balanced heat in a comfortable and environment friendly way. The idea is to produce this and some extra electricity within the device in order to save resources and to gain operation reliability and independency. An option for micro scale CHP is the usage of thermoelectric generators (TEGs). They allow direct conversion of heat into electrical power. They have the advantage of a long maintenance free durability and noiseless operation without moving parts or any working fluid. The useful heat remains almost unaffected and can still be used for heating. TEGs are predestined for the use in micro scale CHP based on solid biomass. In this paper the first results from the fully integrated prototype are presented. The performance of the TEG was observed for different loads and operating conditions in order to realise an optimised micro scale CHP based on solid biomass. (orig.)

  8. Thermoelectric generator testing and RTG degradation mechanisms evaluation. Progress report No. 36

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lockwood, A.; Shields, V.

    1980-07-01

    The n-type selenide legs after 15,000 hours continue to show reasonable agreement with the 3M Co. published thermal conductivity data. In the ingradient testing after 16,500 hours the 3 surviving n-legs (out of 5) show serious degradation in power to load. Weight loss and thermoelectricity property measurements on the first samples of material produced by G.E. continue to correspond to the results previously obtained on R.C.A. material from the MHW program. The remaining MHW generator on test, Q1-A, has accumulated 23,679 hours and performance remains stable. The 18 couple modules S/N-1 and -3 previously tested at RCA show no significant change in operation during the current JPL testing. A comparison of LES 8/9 RTG's with an improved version of DEGRA is shown. No changes in the trends of degradation of LES 8 and 9 and the Voyager RTGs have been observed

  9. Thermoelectricity - A Promising Complementarity with Efficient Stoves in Off-grid-areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camille Favarel

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric modules produce electricity from heat flow. In areas without electricity, biomass is generally burnt in open fires or rudimentary stoves in order to generate heat, to cook and to produce domestic hot water. Combustion quality in these devices is very low and needs a large amount of wood extracted from surrounding forests. “Planète Bois” develops highly efficient clean multifunction stoves based on double chamber combustion.  As an exhaust fan is necessary to adjust the primary and secondary air flows for optimal combustion, these stoves cannot currently be used without electricity. Thermoelectric modules incorporated in a heat exchanger between the flue and the hot water tank can supply the exhaust fan and also produce some electricity for other basic purposes. Our paper presents tests that were done on one of these stoves to size the thermoelectric generator and thus the produced electricity. These preliminary tests are used to identify an outlook for the successful implementation of these stoves.

  10. New Materials for High Temperature Thermoelectric Power Generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kauzlarich, Susan [Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)

    2016-02-03

    The scope of this proposal was to develop two new high ZT materials with enhanced properties for the n- and p-leg of a thermoelectric device capable of operating at a maximum temperature of 1275 K and to demonstrate the efficiency in a working device. Nanostructured composites and new materials based on n– and p–type nanostructured Si1-xGex (ZT1273K ~ 1) and the recently discovered p–type high temperature Zintl phase material, Yb14MnSb11 (ZT1273K ~1) were developed and tested in a working device.

  11. Optimization of Thermoelectric Components for Automobile Waste Heat Recovery Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sumeet; Heister, Stephen D.; Xu, Xianfan; Salvador, James R.

    2015-10-01

    For a typical spark ignition engine approximately 40% of available thermal energy is lost as hot exhaust gas. To improve fuel economy, researchers are currently evaluating technology which exploits exhaust stream thermal power by use of thermoelectric generators (TEGs) that operate on the basis of the Seebeck effect. A 5% improvement in fuel economy, achieved by use of TEG output power, is a stated objective for light-duty trucks and personal automobiles. System modeling of thermoelectric (TE) components requires solution of coupled thermal and electric fluxes through the n and p-type semiconductor legs, given appropriate thermal boundary conditions at the junctions. Such applications have large thermal gradients along the semiconductor legs, and material properties are highly dependent on spatially varying temperature profiles. In this work, one-dimensional heat flux and temperature variations across thermoelectric legs were solved by using an iterative numerical approach to optimize both TE module and TEG designs. Design traits were investigated by assuming use of skutterudite as a thermoelectric material with potential for automotive applications in which exhaust gas and heat exchanger temperatures typically vary from 100°C to over 600°C. Dependence of leg efficiency, thermal fluxes and electric power generation on leg geometry, fill fractions, electric current, thermal boundary conditions, etc., were studied in detail. Optimum leg geometries were computed for a variety of automotive exhaust conditions.

  12. General Approach for Composite Thermoelectric Systems with Thermal Coupling: The Case of a Dual Thermoelectric Cooler

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cuautli Yanehowi Flores-Niño

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we show a general approach for inhomogeneous composite thermoelectric systems, and as an illustrative case, we consider a dual thermoelectric cooler. This composite cooler consists of two thermoelectric modules (TEMs connected thermally in parallel and electrically in series. Each TEM has different thermoelectric (TE properties, namely thermal conductance, electrical resistance and the Seebeck coefficient. The system is coupled by thermal conductances to heat reservoirs. The proposed approach consists of derivation of the dimensionless thermoelectric properties for the whole system. Thus, we obtain an equivalent figure of merit whose impact and meaning is discussed. We make use of dimensionless equations to study the impact of the thermal conductance matching on the cooling capacity and the coefficient of the performance of the system. The equivalent thermoelectric properties derived with our formalism include the external conductances and all intrinsic thermoelectric properties of each component of the system. Our proposed approach permits us changing the thermoelectric parameters of the TEMs and the working conditions of the composite system. Furthermore, our analysis shows the effect of the number of thermocouples on the system. These considerations are very useful for the design of thermoelectric composite systems. We reproduce the qualitative behavior of a commercial composite TEM connected electrically in series.

  13. Thermoelectric Properties of Solution-Processed n-Doped Ladder-Type Conducting Polymers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Suhao; Sun, Hengda; Ail, Ujwala

    2016-01-01

    Ladder-type "torsion-free" conducting polymers (e.g., polybenzimidazobenzophenanthroline (BBL)) can outperform "structurally distorted" donor-acceptor polymers (e.g., P(NDI2OD-T2)), in terms of conductivity and thermoelectric power factor. The polaron delocalization length is larger in BBL than...... in P(NDI2OD-T2), resulting in a higher measured polaron mobility. Structure-function relationships are drawn, setting material-design guidelines for the next generation of conducting thermoelectric polymers....

  14. The performance of a combined solar photovoltaic (PV) and thermoelectric generator (TEG) system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørk, Rasmus; Nielsen, Kaspar Kirstein

    2015-01-01

    The performance of a combined solar photovoltaic (PV) and thermoelectric generator (TEG) system is examined using an analytical model for four different types of commercial PVs and a commercial bismuth telluride TEG. The TEG is applied directly on the back of the PV, so that the two devices have...... the same temperature. The PVs considered are crystalline Si (c-Si), amorphous Si (a-Si), copper indium gallium (di) selenide (CIGS) and cadmium telluride (CdTe) cells. The degradation of PV performance with temperature is shown to dominate the increase in power produced by the TEG, due to the low...... efficiency of the TEG. For c-Si, CIGS and CdTe PV cells the combined system produces a lower power and has a lower efficiency than the PV alone, whereas for an a-Si cell the total system performance may be slightly increased by the TEG....

  15. The Influence of the Inner Topology of Cooling Units on the Performance of Automotive Exhaust-Based Thermoelectric Generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, D. C.; Su, C. Q.; Deng, Y. D.; Wang, Y. P.; Liu, X.

    2018-06-01

    Automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generators are currently a hot topic in energy recovery. The waste heat of automotive exhaust gas can be converted into electricity by means of thermoelectric modules. Generally, inserting fins into the cooling unit contributes to enhancing the heat transfer for a higher power output. However, the introduction of fins will result in a pressure drop in the cooling system. In current research, in order to enhance the heat transfer and avoid a large pressure drop, a cooling unit with cylindrical grooves on the interior surface was proposed. To evaluate the performance of the cylindrical grooves, different inner topologies, including a smooth interior surface,a smooth interior surface with inserted fins and an interior surface with cylindrical grooves, were compared. The results revealed that compared with the smooth interior surface, the smooth interior surface with inserted fins and the interior surface with cylindrical grooves both enhanced the heat transfer, but the interior surface with cylindrical grooves obtained a lower pressure drop. To improve the performance of the cylindrical grooves, different groove-depth ratios were tried, and the results showed that a groove-depth ratio of 0.081 could provide the best overall performance.

  16. Universal Majorana thermoelectric noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smirnov, Sergey

    2018-04-01

    Thermoelectric phenomena resulting from an interplay between particle flows induced by electric fields and temperature inhomogeneities are extremely insightful as a tool providing substantial knowledge about the microscopic structure of a given system. By tuning, e.g., parameters of a nanoscopic system coupled via tunneling mechanisms to two contacts, one may achieve various situations where the electric current induced by an external bias voltage competes with the electric current excited by the temperature difference of the two contacts. Even more exciting physics emerges when the system's electronic degrees freedom split to form Majorana fermions which make the thermoelectric dynamics universal. Here, we propose revealing these unique universal signatures of Majorana fermions in strongly nonequilibrium quantum dots via noise of the thermoelectric transport beyond linear response. It is demonstrated that whereas mean thermoelectric quantities are only universal at large-bias voltages, the noise of the electric current excited by an external bias voltage and the temperature difference of the contacts is universal at any bias voltage. We provide truly universal, i.e., independent of the system's parameters, thermoelectric ratios between nonlinear response coefficients of the noise and mean current at large-bias voltages where experiments may easily be performed to uniquely detect these truly universal Majorana thermoelectric signatures.

  17. Thermoelectric Efficiency Improvement in Vacuum Tubes of Decomposing Liquid Lithium-Ammonia Solutions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Jungyoon; Kim, Miae; Shim, Kyuchol; Kim, Jibeom; Jeon, Joonhyeon

    2013-01-01

    Lithium-ammonia (Li-NH 3 ) solutions are possible to be successfully made under the vacuum condition but there still remains a problem of undergoing stable and reliable decomposition in vacuum for high-efficiency thermoelectric power generation. This paper describes a new method for improving the thermoelectric conversion efficiency of Li-NH 3 solutions in vacuum. The proposed method uses a ‘U’-shaped Pyrex vacuum tube for the preparation and decomposition of pure fluid Li-NH 3 solutions. The tube is shaped so that a gas passageway (‘U’) connecting both legs of the ‘U’ helps to balance pressure inside both ends of the tube (due to NH 3 gasification) during decomposition on the hot side. Thermoelectric experimental results show that solution reaction in the ‘U’-shaped tube proceeds more stably and efficiently than in the ‘U’-shaped tube, and consequently, thermoelectric conversion efficiency is improved. It is also proved that the proposed method can provide a reversible reaction, which can rotate between synthesis and decomposition in the tube, for deriving the long-time, high-efficiency thermoelectric power

  18. Results of metallographical diagnostic examination of Navy half-watt thermoelectric converters degraded by accelerated tests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosell, F.E. Jr.; Rouklove, P.G.

    1977-01-01

    To verify the 15-year reliability of the Navy half-watt radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG), bismuth--telluride thermoelectric converters were submitted to testing at high temperatures which accelerated the degradation and caused failure of the converters. Metallographic diagnostic examination of failed units verified failure mechanisms. Results of diagnostic examinations are presented

  19. Thermoelectric Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Peng; Berkun, Isil; Schmidt, Robert D.; Luzenski, Matthew F.; Lu, Xu; Bordon Sarac, Patricia; Case, Eldon D.; Hogan, Timothy P.

    2014-06-01

    Mg2(Si,Sn) compounds are promising candidate low-cost, lightweight, nontoxic thermoelectric materials made from abundant elements and are suited for power generation applications in the intermediate temperature range of 600 K to 800 K. Knowledge on the transport and mechanical properties of Mg2(Si,Sn) compounds is essential to the design of Mg2(Si,Sn)-based thermoelectric devices. In this work, such materials were synthesized using the molten-salt sealing method and were powder processed, followed by pulsed electric sintering densification. A set of Mg2.08Si0.4- x Sn0.6Sb x (0 ≤ x ≤ 0.072) compounds were investigated, and a peak ZT of 1.50 was obtained at 716 K in Mg2.08Si0.364Sn0.6Sb0.036. The high ZT is attributed to a high electrical conductivity in these samples, possibly caused by a magnesium deficiency in the final product. The mechanical response of the material to stresses is a function of the elastic moduli. The temperature-dependent Young's modulus, shear modulus, bulk modulus, Poisson's ratio, acoustic wave speeds, and acoustic Debye temperature of the undoped Mg2(Si,Sn) compounds were measured using resonant ultrasound spectroscopy from 295 K to 603 K. In addition, the hardness and fracture toughness were measured at room temperature.

  20. Thermoelectric refrigerator having improved temperature stabilization means

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Falco, C.M.

    1982-01-01

    A control system for thermoelectric refrigerators is disclosed. The thermoelectric refrigerator includes at least one thermoelectric element that undergoes a first order change at a predetermined critical temperature. The element functions as a thermoelectric refrigerator element above the critical temperature, but discontinuously ceases to function as a thermoelectric refrigerator element below the critical temperature. One example of such an arrangement includes thermoelectric refrigerator elements which are superconductors. The transition temperature of one of the superconductor elements is selected as the temperature control point of the refrigerator. When the refrigerator attempts to cool below the point, the metals become superconductors losing their ability to perform as a thermoelectric refrigerator. An extremely accurate, first-order control is realized

  1. Feasibility and parametric evaluation of hybrid concentrated photovoltaic-thermoelectric system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse Aistrup

    2017-01-01

    Concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) system integrated with thermoelectric generators (TEGs) is a novel technology that has potential to offer high efficient system. In this study, a thermally coupled model of concentrated photovoltaic-thermoelctric (CPV/TEG) system is established to investigate...... feasibility of the hybrid system over wide range of solar concentrations and different types of heat sinks. The model takes into account critical design parameters in the CPV and the TEG module. The results of this study show that for thermoelectric materials with ZT ≈ 1, the CPV/TEG system is more efficient...

  2. Thermoelectric-pyroelectric hybrid energy generation from thermopower waves in core-shell structured carbon nanotube-PZT nanocomposites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeo, Taehan; Hwang, Hayoung; Shin, Dongjoon; Seo, Byungseok; Choi, Wonjoon

    2017-02-10

    There is an urgent need to develop a suitable energy source owing to the rapid development of various innovative devices using micro-nanotechnology. The thermopower wave (TW), which produces a high specific power during the combustion of solid fuel inside micro-nanostructure materials, is a unique energy source for unusual platforms that cannot use conventional energy sources. Here, we report on the significant enhancement of hybrid energy generation of pyroelectrics and thermoelectrics from TWs in carbon nanotube (CNT)-PZT (lead zirconate titanate, P(Z 0.5 -T 0.5 )) composites for the first time. Conventional TWs use only charge carrier transport driven by the temperature gradient along the core materials to produce voltage. In this study, a core-shell structure of CNTs-PZTs was prepared to utilize both the temperature gradient along the core material (thermoelectrics) and the dynamic change in the temperature of the shell structure (pyroelectrics) induced by TWs. The dual mechanism of energy generation in CNT-PZT composites amplified the average peak and duration of the voltage up to 403 mV and 612 ms, respectively, by a factor of 2 and 60 times those for the composites without a PZT layer. Furthermore, dynamic voltage measurements and structural analysis in repetitive TWs confirmed that CNT-PZT composites maintain the original performance in multiple TWs, which improves the reusability of materials. The advanced TWs obtained by the application of a PZT layer as a pyroelectric material contributes to the extension of the usable energy portion as well as the development of TW-based operating devices.

  3. Simulation and Optimization of the Heat Exchanger for Automotive Exhaust-Based Thermoelectric Generators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, C. Q.; Huang, C.; Deng, Y. D.; Wang, Y. P.; Chu, P. Q.; Zheng, S. J.

    2016-03-01

    In order to enhance the exhaust waste heat recovery efficiency of the automotive exhaust-based thermoelectric generator (TEG) system, a three-segment heat exchanger with folded-shaped internal structure for the TEG system is investigated in this study. As the major effect factors of the performance for the TEG system, surface temperature, and thermal uniformity of the heat exchanger are analyzed in this research, pressure drop along the heat exchanger is also considered. Based on computational fluid dynamics simulations and temperature distribution, the pressure drop along the heat exchanger is obtained. By considering variable length and thickness of folded plates in each segment of the heat exchanger, response surface methodology and optimization by a multi-objective genetic algorithm is applied for surface temperature, thermal uniformity, and pressure drop for the folded-shaped heat exchanger. An optimum design based on the optimization is proposed to improve the overall performance of the TEG system. The performance of the optimized heat exchanger in different engine conditions is discussed.

  4. Development and Processing of p-type Oxide Thermoelectric Materials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, NingYu; Van Nong, Ngo

    The main aim of this research is to investigate and develop well-performing p-type thermoelectric oxide materials that are sufficiently stable at high temperatures for power generating applications involving industrial processes. Presently, the challenges facing the widespread implementation...

  5. Characterization of thermoelectric devices by laser induced Seebeck electromotive force (LIS-EMF) measurement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lopez, Luis-David Patino [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Dilhaire, Stefan [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Grauby, Stephane [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Salhi, M Amine [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Ezzahri, Younes [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Claeys, Wilfrid [Universite de Bordeaux 1, Centre de Physique Moleculaire Optique et Hertzienne, 351, cours de la liberation, 33405 Talence (France); Batsale, Jean-Christophe [Laboratoire TREFLE, Esplanade des Arts et Metiers, 33405 Talence Cedex (France)

    2005-05-21

    An in-depth study related to a new method of characterizing properties in thermoelectrics is proposed in this paper. This technique is appropriate for single or multi-layered thermoelectric devices. A modulated laser beam is used as a heater in order to generate a Seebeck electromotive force (EMF). The laser beam, line shaped, can be focused at any location along the sample surface, allowing spatially resolved measurements. Seebeck EMF measurements, associated with a versatile model based on the thermal quadrupoles method, allow determination of the sample Seebeck EMF profile and identifying of the sample thermal contact resistances, and should be useful for identification of devices and material thermoelectric properties.

  6. Characterization of thermoelectric devices by laser induced Seebeck electromotive force (LIS-EMF) measurement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lopez, Luis-David Patino; Dilhaire, Stefan; Grauby, Stephane; Salhi, M Amine; Ezzahri, Younes; Claeys, Wilfrid; Batsale, Jean-Christophe

    2005-01-01

    An in-depth study related to a new method of characterizing properties in thermoelectrics is proposed in this paper. This technique is appropriate for single or multi-layered thermoelectric devices. A modulated laser beam is used as a heater in order to generate a Seebeck electromotive force (EMF). The laser beam, line shaped, can be focused at any location along the sample surface, allowing spatially resolved measurements. Seebeck EMF measurements, associated with a versatile model based on the thermal quadrupoles method, allow determination of the sample Seebeck EMF profile and identifying of the sample thermal contact resistances, and should be useful for identification of devices and material thermoelectric properties

  7. A study of hear sink performance in air and soil for use in a thermoelectric energy harvesting device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snyder, J.; Lawrence, E. E.

    2002-01-01

    A suggested application of a thermoelectric generator is to exploit the natural temperature difference between the air and the soil to generate small amounts of electrical energy. Since the conversion efficiency of even the best thermoelectric generators available is very low, the performance of the heat sinks providing the heat flow is critical. By providing a constant heat input to various heat sinks, field tests of their thermal conductances in soil and in air were performed. Aprototype device without a thermoelectric generator was constructed, buried, and monitored to experimentally measure the heat flow achievable in such a system. Theoretical considerations for design and selection of improved heat sinks are also presented. In particular, the method of shape factoranalysis is used to give rough estimates and upper bounds for the thermal conductance of a passive heat sink buried in soil.

  8. Solar thermoelectric generators fabricated on a silicon-on-insulator substrate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Leon, Maria Theresa; Chong, Harold; Kraft, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Solar thermal power generation is an attractive electricity generation technology as it is environment-friendly, has the potential for increased efficiency, and has high reliability. The design, modelling, and evaluation of solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) fabricated on a silicon-on-insulator substrate are presented in this paper. Solar concentration is achieved by using a focusing lens to concentrate solar input onto the membrane of the STEG. A thermal model is developed based on energy balance and heat transfer equations using lumped thermal conductances. This thermal model is shown to be in good agreement with actual measurement results. For a 1 W laser input with a spot size of 1 mm, a maximum open-circuit voltage of 3.06 V is obtained, which translates to a temperature difference of 226 °C across the thermoelements and delivers 25 µW of output power under matched load conditions. Based on solar simulator measurements, a maximum TEG voltage of 803 mV was achieved by using a 50.8 mm diameter plano-convex lens to focus solar input to a TEG with a length of 1000 µm, width of 15 µm, membrane diameter of 3 mm, and 114 thermocouples. This translates to a temperature difference of 18 °C across the thermoelements and an output power under matched load conditions of 431 nW. This paper demonstrates that by utilizing a solar concentrator to focus solar radiation onto the hot junction of a TEG, the temperature difference across the device is increased; subsequently improving the TEG’s efficiency. By using materials that are compatible with standard CMOS and MEMS processes, integration of solar-driven TEGs with on-chip electronics is seen to be a viable way of solar energy harvesting where the resulting microscale system is envisioned to have promising applications in on-board power sources, sensor networks, and autonomous microsystems. (paper)

  9. Enhancing Thermoelectric Performance Using Nonlinear Transport Effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Jian-Hua; Imry, Yoseph

    2017-06-01

    We study nonlinear transport effects on the maximum efficiency and power for both inelastic and elastic thermoelectric generators. The former device refers to phonon-assisted hopping in double quantum dots, while the latter device is represented by elastic tunneling through a single quantum dot. We find that nonlinear thermoelectric transport can lead to enhanced efficiency and power for both types of devices. A comprehensive survey of various quantum-dot energy, temperature, and parasitic heat conduction reveals that the nonlinear transport-induced improvements of the maximum efficiency and power are overall much more significant for inelastic devices than for elastic devices, even for temperature biases as small as Th=1.2 Tc (Th and Tc are the temperatures of the hot and cold reservoirs, respectively). The underlying mechanism is revealed as due to the fact that, unlike the Fermi distribution, the Bose distribution is not bounded when the temperature bias increases. A large flux density of absorbed phonons leads to a great enhancement of the electrical current, output power, and energy efficiency, dominating over the concurrent increase of the parasitic heat current. Our study reveals that nonlinear transport effects can be a useful tool for improving thermoelectric performance.

  10. CeB6 Sensor for Thermoelectric Single-Photon Detector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armen KUZANIAN

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Interest in single-photon detectors has recently sharply increased. The most developed single-photon detectors are currently based on superconductors. Following the theory, thermoelectric single-photon detectors can compete with superconducting detectors. The operational principle of thermoelectric detector is based on photon absorption by absorber as a result of which a temperature gradient is generated across the sensor. In this work we present the results of computer modeling of heat distribution processes after absorption of a photon of 1 keV - 1 eV energy in different areas of the absorber for different geometries of tungsten absorber and cerium hexaboride sensor. The time dependence of the temperature difference between the ends of the thermoelectric sensor and electric potential appearing across the sensor are calculated. The results of calculations show that it is realistic to detect single photons from IR to X-ray and determine their energy. Count rates up to hundreds gigahertz can be achieved.

  11. Thermoelectric performance of tellurium-reduced quaternary p-type lead–chalcogenide composites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aminorroaya Yamini, Sima; Wang, Heng; Gibbs, Zachary M.; Pei, Yanzhong; Mitchell, David R.G.; Dou, Shi Xue; Snyder, G. Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    Graphical abstract: - Abstract: A long-standing technological challenge to the widespread application of thermoelectric generators is obtaining high-performance thermoelectric materials from abundant elements. Intensive study on PbTe alloys has resulted in a high figure of merit for the single-phase ternary PbTe–PbSe system through band structure engineering, and the low thermal conductivity achieved due to nanostructuring leads to high thermoelectric performance for ternary PbTe–PbS compounds. Recently, the single-phase p-type quaternary PbTe–PbSe–PbS alloys have been shown to provide thermoelectric performance superior to the binary and ternary lead chalcogenides. This occurs via tuning of the band structure and from an extraordinary low thermal conductivity resulting from high-contrast atomic mass solute atoms. Here, we present the thermoelectric efficiency of nanostructured p-type quaternary PbTe–PbSe–PbS composites and compare the results with corresponding single-phase quaternary lead chalcogenide alloys. We demonstrate that the very low lattice thermal conductivity achieved is attributed to phonon scattering at high-contrast atomic mass solute atoms rather than from the contribution of secondary phases. This results in a thermoelectric efficiency of ∼1.4 over a wide temperature range (650–850 K) in a p-type quaternary (PbTe) 0.65 (PbSe) 0.1 (PbS) 0.25 composite that is lower than that of single-phase (PbTe) 0.85 (PbSe) 0.1 (PbS) 0.05 alloy without secondary phases

  12. Influence of an Optimized Thermoelectric Generator on the Back Pressure of the Subsequent Exhaust Gas System of a Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kühn, Roland; Koeppen, Olaf; Kitte, Jens

    2014-06-01

    Numerous research projects in automotive engineering focus on the industrialization of the thermoelectric generator (TEG). The development and the implementation of thermoelectric systems into the vehicle environment are commonly supported by virtual design activities. In this paper a customized simulation architecture is presented that includes almost all vehicle parts which are influenced by the TEG (overall system simulation) but is nevertheless capable of real-time use. Moreover, an optimized planar TEG with minimum nominal power output of about 580 W and pressure loss at nominal conditions of 10 mbar, synthesized using the overall system simulation, and the overall system simulation itself are used to answer a generally neglected question: What influence does the position of a TEG have on the back pressure of the subsequent exhaust gas system of the vehicle? It is found that the influence of the TEG on the muffler is low, but the catalytic converter is strongly influenced. It is shown that the TEG can reduce the back pressure of an exhaust gas system so much that its overall back pressure is less than the back pressure of a standard exhaust gas system.

  13. An approach to design a 90Sr radioisotope thermoelectric generator using analytical and Monte Carlo methods with ANSYS, COMSOL, and MCNP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khajepour, Abolhasan; Rahmani, Faezeh

    2017-01-01

    In this study, a 90 Sr radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) with power of milliWatt was designed to operate in the determined temperature (300-312K). For this purpose, the combination of analytical and Monte Carlo methods with ANSYS and COMSOL software as well as the MCNP code was used. This designed RTG contains 90 Sr as a radioisotope heat source (RHS) and 127 coupled thermoelectric modules (TEMs) based on bismuth telluride. Kapton (2.45mm in thickness) and Cryotherm sheets (0.78mm in thickness) were selected as the thermal insulators of the RHS, as well as a stainless steel container was used as a generator chamber. The initial design of the RHS geometry was performed according to the amount of radioactive material (strontium titanate) as well as the heat transfer calculations and mechanical strength considerations. According to the Monte Carlo simulation performed by the MCNP code, approximately 0.35 kCi of 90 Sr is sufficient to generate heat power in the RHS. To determine the optimal design of the RTG, the distribution of temperature as well as the dissipated heat and input power to the module were calculated in different parts of the generator using the ANSYS software. Output voltage according to temperature distribution on TEM was calculated using COMSOL. Optimization of the dimension of the RHS and heat insulator was performed to adapt the average temperature of the hot plate of TEM to the determined hot temperature value. This designed RTG generates 8mW in power with an efficiency of 1%. This proposed approach of combination method can be used for the precise design of various types of RTGs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Integration of Thermoelectric Generators and Wood Stove to Produce Heat, Hot Water, and Electrical Power

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goudarzi, A. M.; Mazandarani, P.; Panahi, R.; Behsaz, H.; Rezania, A.; Rosendahl, L. A.

    2013-07-01

    Traditional fire stoves are characterized by low efficiency. In this experimental study, the combustion chamber of the stove is augmented by two devices. An electric fan can increase the air-to-fuel ratio in order to increase the system's efficiency and decrease air pollution by providing complete combustion of wood. In addition, thermoelectric generators (TEGs) produce power that can be used to satisfy all basic needs. In this study, a water-based cooling system is designed to increase the efficiency of the TEGs and also produce hot water for residential use. Through a range of tests, an average of 7.9 W was achieved by a commercial TEG with substrate area of 56 mm × 56 mm, which can produce 14.7 W output power at the maximum matched load. The total power generated by the stove is 166 W. Also, in this study a reasonable ratio of fuel to time is described for residential use. The presented prototype is designed to fulfill the basic needs of domestic electricity, hot water, and essential heat for warming the room and cooking.

  15. Over-the-road shock and vibration testing of the radioisotope thermoelectric generator transportation system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Becker, D.L.

    1997-01-01

    Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTG) convert heat generated by radioactive decay into electricity through the use of thermocouples. The RTGs have a long operating life, are reasonably lightweight, and require little or no maintenance, which make them particularly attractive for use in spacecraft. However, because RTGs contain significant quantities of radioactive materials, normally plutonium-238 and its decay products, they must be transported in packages built in accordance with Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 71 (10 CFR 71). To meet these regulations, a RTG Transportation System (RTGTS) that fully complies with 10 CFR 71 has been developed, which protects RTGs from adverse environmental conditions during normal conditions of transport (e.g., shock, vibration, and heat). To ensure the protection of RTGs from shock and vibration loadings during transport, extensive over-the-road testing was conducted on the RTG'S to obtain real-time recordings of accelerations of the air-ride suspension system trailer floor, packaging, and support structure. This paper provides an overview of the RTG'S, a discussion of the shock and vibration testing, and a comparison of the test results to the specified shock response spectra and power spectral density acceleration criteria

  16. Stable and low contact resistance electrical contacts for high temperature SiGe thermoelectric generators

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Bo

    2018-04-14

    The thermal stability and contact resistance of TaAlN thin films as electrical contacts to SiGe thermoelectric elements are reported. We demonstrate that a sharp interface is maintained after the device annealed at 800°C for over 100h, indicating that no interdiffusion takes place between TaAlN and SiGe. A specific contact resistivity of (2.1±1.3)×10−6Ω-cm2 for p-type SiGe and (2.8±1.6)×10−5 Ω-cm2 for n-type SiGe is demonstrated after the high temperature annealing. These results show that TaAlN is a promising contact material for high temperature thermoelectrics such as SiGe.

  17. High Performance Thermoelectric Materials Using Solution Phase Synthesis of Narrow Bandgap Core/Shell Quantum Dots Deposited Into Colloidal Crystal Thin Films

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    2005-01-01

    Thermoelectrics is the science and technology associated with thermoelectric converters, that is, the generation of electrical power based on the Seebeck effect and refrigeration by the Peltier effect...

  18. Influence of heat pipe operating temperature on exhaust heat thermoelectric generation

    OpenAIRE

    Brito, F. P.; Martins, Jorge; Gonçalves, L. M.; Antunes, Nuno; Sousa, Diogo

    2013-01-01

    Increasingly stringent targets on energy efficiency and emissions, as well as growing vehicle electrification are making attractive the electric recovery of the energy normally wasted through the tailpipe of Internal Combustion Engines. Recent developments in thermoelectrics (TE) may soon make them a viable solution for such applications. This team has been exploring the potential of using TE modules in combination with variable conductance heat pipes for transferring the exhaust heat to ...

  19. Dynamic thermoelectricity in uniform bipolar semiconductor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Volovichev, I.N., E-mail: vin@ire.kharkov.ua

    2016-07-01

    The theory of the dynamic thermoelectric effect has been developed. The effect lies in an electric current flowing in a closed circuit that consists of a uniform bipolar semiconductor, in which a non-uniform temperature distribution in the form of the traveling wave is created. The calculations are performed for the one-dimensional model in the quasi-neutrality approximation. It was shown that the direct thermoelectric current prevails, despite the periodicity of the thermal excitation, the circuit homogeneity and the lack of rectifier properties of the semiconductor system. Several physical reasons underlining the dynamic thermoelectric effect are found. One of them is similar to the Dember photoelectric effect, its contribution to the current flowing is determined by the difference in the electron and hole mobilities, and is completely independent of the carrier Seebeck coefficients. The dependence of the thermoelectric short circuit current magnitude on the semiconductor parameters, as well as on the temperature wave amplitude, length and velocity is studied. It is shown that the magnitude of the thermoelectric current is proportional to the square of the temperature wave amplitude. The dependence of the thermoelectric short circuit current on the temperature wave length and velocity is the nonmonotonic function. The optimum values for the temperature wave length and velocity, at which the dynamic thermoelectric effect is the greatest, have been deduced. It is found that the thermoelectric short circuit current changes its direction with decreasing the temperature wave length under certain conditions. The prospects for the possible applications of the dynamic thermoelectric effect are also discussed.

  20. Increasing efficiency and optimizing thermoelectric power plant equipment. Povyshenie effektivnosti i optimizatsiia teploenergeticheskikh ustanovok

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andriushchenko, A.I.

    1981-01-01

    The problems of increasing the efficiency and optimizing the operational conditions of a thermoelectric power plant and providing efficient operational conditions of the primary and auxillary equipment at a thermoelectric power plant are examined. Methodologies and designs for optimizing the primary parameters of the power-generating equipment based on economic factors are given. A number of recommendations for designing equipment based on the research results are given.

  1. Thermoelectrics and its energy harvesting

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rowe, David Michael

    2012-01-01

    .... It details the latest techniques for the preparation of thermoelectric materials employed in energy harvesting, together with advances in the thermoelectric characterisation of nanoscale material...

  2. Electronic cooling using thermoelectric devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zebarjadi, M., E-mail: m.zebarjadi@rutgers.edu [Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854 (United States); Institute of Advanced Materials, Devices, and Nanotechnology, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854 (United States)

    2015-05-18

    Thermoelectric coolers or Peltier coolers are used to pump heat in the opposite direction of the natural heat flux. These coolers have also been proposed for electronic cooling, wherein the aim is to pump heat in the natural heat flux direction and from hot spots to the colder ambient temperature. In this manuscript, we show that for such applications, one needs to use thermoelectric materials with large thermal conductivity and large power factor, instead of the traditionally used high ZT thermoelectric materials. We further show that with the known thermoelectric materials, the active cooling cannot compete with passive cooling, and one needs to explore a new set of materials to provide a cooling solution better than a regular copper heat sink. We propose a set of materials and directions for exploring possible materials candidates suitable for electronic cooling. Finally, to achieve maximum cooling, we propose to use thermoelectric elements as fins attached to copper blocks.

  3. Water: A critical resource in the thermoelectric power industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feeley, Thomas J. III.; McNemar, Andrea; Skone, Timothy J.; Stiegel, Gary J. Jr.; Nemeth, Michael; Schimmoller, Brian; Murphy, James T.; Manfredo, Lynn

    2008-01-01

    Water availability represents a growing concern for meeting future power generation needs. In the United States, projected population growth rates, energy consumption patterns, and demand from competing water use sectors will increase pressure on power generators to reduce water use. Water availability and use also exhibit strong regional variations, complicating the nature of public policy and technological response. The US Department of Energy's (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is engaged in a research and development (R and D) program to reduce freshwater withdrawal (total quantity of water utilized) and consumption (portion of withdrawal not returned to the source) from existing and future thermoelectric power generating facilities. The Innovations for Existing Plants (IEP) Program is currently developing technologies in 5 categories of water management projects to reduce water use while minimizing the impacts of plant operations on water quality. This paper outlines the freshwater withdrawal and consumption rates for various thermoelectric power generating types and then estimates the potential benefits of IEP program technologies at both the national and regional levels in the year 2030. NETL is working to protect and conserve water resources while leveraging domestic fossil fuel resources, such as coal, to increase national energy security. (author)

  4. semiconducting nanostructures: morphology and thermoelectric properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culebras, Mario; Torán, Raquel; Gómez, Clara M.; Cantarero, Andrés

    2014-08-01

    Semiconducting metallic oxides, especially perosvkite materials, are great candidates for thermoelectric applications due to several advantages over traditionally metallic alloys such as low production costs and high chemical stability at high temperatures. Nanostructuration can be the key to develop highly efficient thermoelectric materials. In this work, La 1- x Ca x MnO 3 perosvkite nanostructures with Ca as a dopant have been synthesized by the hydrothermal method to be used in thermoelectric applications at room temperature. Several heat treatments have been made in all samples, leading to a change in their morphology and thermoelectric properties. The best thermoelectric efficiency has been obtained for a Ca content of x=0.5. The electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient are strongly related to the calcium content.

  5. Efficient Space Hardy Thermoelectric Materials with Broad Temperature Range, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The goal of this work is developing new thermoelectric materials for use in fabricating solid state cooling devices and electrical power generators, which are 200 to...

  6. Compressive strain induced enhancement in thermoelectric-power-factor in monolayer MoS2 nanosheet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dimple; Jena, Nityasagar; De Sarkar, Abir

    2017-01-01

    Strain and temperature induced tunability in the thermoelectric properties in monolayer MoS 2 (ML-MoS 2 ) has been demonstrated using density functional theory coupled to semi-classical Boltzmann transport theory. Compressive strain, in general and uniaxial compressive strain (along the zig-zag direction), in particular, is found to be most effective in enhancing the thermoelectric power factor, owing to the higher electronic mobility and its sensitivity to lattice compression along this direction. Variation in the Seebeck coefficient and electronic band gap with strain is found to follow the Goldsmid–Sharp relation. n-type doping is found to raise the relaxation time-scaled thermoelectric power factor higher than p-type doping and this divide widens with increasing temperature. The relaxation time-scaled thermoelectric power factor in optimally n-doped ML-MoS 2 is found to undergo maximal enhancement under the application of 3% uniaxial compressive strain along the zig-zag direction, when both the ( direct ) electronic band gap and the Seebeck coefficient reach their maximum, while the electron mobility drops down drastically from 73.08 to 44.15 cm 2 V −1 s −1 . Such strain sensitive thermoelectric responses in ML-MoS 2 could open doorways for a variety of applications in emerging areas in 2D-thermoelectrics, such as on-chip thermoelectric power generation and waste thermal energy harvesting. (paper)

  7. Rapid characterization of thermoelectric properties of composition spread (La1-xCax)VO3 films

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Itaka, K.; Wang, Q.J.; Minami, H.; Kawaji, H.; Koinuma, H.

    2004-01-01

    Vanadium oxides possess various interesting properties due to multivalence of a vanadium atom and attract our interest as a target material for the exploration of new applications. We investigated vanadates (La 1-x Ca x )VO 3 with a perovskite structure as thermoelectric (TE) materials because heavy electrons in vanadates are expected to generate large thermopower. To proceed the investigation of thermoelectric properties of the composition spread library more efficiently, we devised a new instrument of multi-channel measurement of their thermoelectric properties. The polarity of Seebeck coefficients changed from positive (0≤x≤0.2) to negative (0.2 3 (x∼0)

  8. Quantum Coherent Three-Terminal Thermoelectrics: Maximum Efficiency at Given Power Output

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert S. Whitney

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This work considers the nonlinear scattering theory for three-terminal thermoelectric devices used for power generation or refrigeration. Such systems are quantum phase-coherent versions of a thermocouple, and the theory applies to systems in which interactions can be treated at a mean-field level. It considers an arbitrary three-terminal system in any external magnetic field, including systems with broken time-reversal symmetry, such as chiral thermoelectrics, as well as systems in which the magnetic field plays no role. It is shown that the upper bound on efficiency at given power output is of quantum origin and is stricter than Carnot’s bound. The bound is exactly the same as previously found for two-terminal devices and can be achieved by three-terminal systems with or without broken time-reversal symmetry, i.e., chiral and non-chiral thermoelectrics.

  9. Feasibility and parametric evaluation of hybrid concentrated photovoltaic-thermoelectric system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Rosendahl, Lasse Aistrup

    2017-01-01

    Concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) system integrated with thermoelectric generators (TEGs) is a novel technology that has potential to offer high efficient system. In this study, a thermally coupled model of concentrated photovoltaic-thermoelctric (CPV/TEG) system is established to investigate...... than CPV-only system. The results indicate that contribution of the TEG in power generation enhances at high sun concentrations. Depending to critical design parameters of the CPV and the TEG, there are optimal values for heat transfer coefficient in the heat sink that offer minimum energy cost....... feasibility of the hybrid system over wide range of solar concentrations and different types of heat sinks. The model takes into account critical design parameters in the CPV and the TEG module. The results of this study show that for thermoelectric materials with ZT ≈ 1, the CPV/TEG system is more efficient...

  10. Efficient Space Hardy Thermoelectric Materials with Broad Temperature Range, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The goal of this work is to develop new thermoelectric materials for use in fabricating solid state cooling devices and electrical power generators, which are 200 to...

  11. A review of thermoelectric cooling: Materials, modeling and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao, Dongliang; Tan, Gang

    2014-01-01

    This study reviews the recent advances of thermoelectric materials, modeling approaches, and applications. Thermoelectric cooling systems have advantages over conventional cooling devices, including compact in size, light in weight, high reliability, no mechanical moving parts, no working fluid, being powered by direct current, and easily switching between cooling and heating modes. In this study, historical development of thermoelectric cooling has been briefly introduced first. Next, the development of thermoelectric materials has been given and the achievements in past decade have been summarized. To improve thermoelectric cooling system's performance, the modeling techniques have been described for both the thermoelement modeling and thermoelectric cooler (TEC) modeling including standard simplified energy equilibrium model, one-dimensional and three-dimensional models, and numerical compact model. Finally, the thermoelectric cooling applications have been reviewed in aspects of domestic refrigeration, electronic cooling, scientific application, and automobile air conditioning and seat temperature control, with summaries for the commercially available thermoelectric modules and thermoelectric refrigerators. It is expected that this study will be beneficial to thermoelectric cooling system design, simulation, and analysis. - Highlights: •Thermoelectric cooling has great prospects with thermoelectric material's advances. •Modeling techniques for both thermoelement and TEC have been reviewed. •Principle thermoelectric cooling applications have been reviewed and summarized

  12. Development and Analysis of Hybrid Thermoelectric Refrigerator Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saifizi, M.; Zakaria, M. S.; Yaacob, Sazali; Wan, Khairunizam

    2018-03-01

    Thermoelectric module (TEM) is a type of solid-state devices which has the capability to maintain the accuracy of small temperature variation application. In this study, a hybrid thermoelectric refrigerator system is introduced by utilizing TEMs; direct and air to air thermoelectric heat pump to cool down and maintain low temperature for vaccines storage. Two different materials which are aluminum and stainless steel are used as container in hybrid thermoelectric refrigerator (HTER) configuration to investigate the response of every system in transient and steady state mode. A proper temperature sensor calibration technique is implemented to make certain real time data acquisition of the systems are not affected very much from the noise generated. From step response analysis, it is indicated that HTER I (aluminum) has rapid settling time from transient to steady state than HTER II (stainless steel) since aluminum has better thermal conductivity as compared to stainless steel. It is found that HTER I is better in cooling capability with the same input current instead of HTER II which required a longer time to achieve steady state mode. Besides, in Pseudo Random Binary Sequence (PRBS) response analysis injected to both systems shows HTER I is very sensitive to current input as the sequence length of HTER I is shorter than HTER II. However both systems depict the varying temperature in the range of 4 oC due to differences in thermal conductivity of container.

  13. A power conditioning system for thermoelectric generator based on interleaved Boost converter with MPPT control

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ni, L.-X; Sun, K.; Zhang, L.

    2011-01-01

    The thermoelectric generation (TEG) system has its special charactristics of high stablility, low voltage and high current output, which is different from PV modules. The power conditioning system and control schemes used in PV applications cannot be directly applied to TEG applications. A power...... conditioning system for TEG based on interleaved Boost converter with maximum power point tracking (MPPT) control is investigated in this paper. Since an internal resistance exists inside TEG modules, an improved perturbation and observation (P&O) MPPT control scheme with power limit is proposed to extract...... maximum power from TEG by matching the load with internal resistance. Since the battery is usually employed as the load for TEG systems, the interleaved Boost converter operates in two different modes for battery charging: before the battery is fully charged, the system outputs the maximum power (MPPT...

  14. High thermoelectric power factor in two-dimensional crystals of Mo S2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hippalgaonkar, Kedar; Wang, Ying; Ye, Yu; Qiu, Diana Y.; Zhu, Hanyu; Wang, Yuan; Moore, Joel; Louie, Steven G.; Zhang, Xiang

    2017-03-01

    The quest for high-efficiency heat-to-electricity conversion has been one of the major driving forces toward renewable energy production for the future. Efficient thermoelectric devices require high voltage generation from a temperature gradient and a large electrical conductivity while maintaining a low thermal conductivity. For a given thermal conductivity and temperature, the thermoelectric power factor is determined by the electronic structure of the material. Low dimensionality (1D and 2D) opens new routes to a high power factor due to the unique density of states (DOS) of confined electrons and holes. The 2D transition metal dichalcogenide (TMDC) semiconductors represent a new class of thermoelectric materials not only due to such confinement effects but especially due to their large effective masses and valley degeneracies. Here, we report a power factor of Mo S2 as large as 8.5 mW m-1K-2 at room temperature, which is among the highest measured in traditional, gapped thermoelectric materials. To obtain these high power factors, we perform thermoelectric measurements on few-layer Mo S2 in the metallic regime, which allows us to access the 2D DOS near the conduction band edge and exploit the effect of 2D confinement on electron scattering rates, resulting in a large Seebeck coefficient. The demonstrated high, electronically modulated power factor in 2D TMDCs holds promise for efficient thermoelectric energy conversion.

  15. Thermoelectric transport and Peltier cooling of cold atomic gases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grenier, Charles; Kollath, Corinna; Georges, Antoine

    2016-12-01

    This brief review presents the emerging field of mesoscopic physics with cold atoms, with an emphasis on thermal and 'thermoelectric' transport, i.e. coupled transport of particles and entropy. We review in particular the comparison between theoretically predicted and experimentally observed thermoelectric effects in such systems. We also show how combining well-designed transport properties and evaporative cooling leads to an equivalent of the Peltier effect with cold atoms, which can be used as a new cooling procedure with improved cooling power and efficiency compared to the evaporative cooling currently used in atomic gases. This could lead to a new generation of experiments probing strong correlation effects of ultracold fermionic atoms at low temperatures.

  16. Techno-Economic Feasibility of Highly Efficient Cost-Effective Thermoelectric-SOFC Hybrid Power Generation Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jifeng Zhang; Jean Yamanis

    2007-09-30

    Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) systems have the potential to generate exhaust gas streams of high temperature, ranging from 400 to 800 C. These high temperature gas streams can be used for additional power generation with bottoming cycle technologies to achieve higher system power efficiency. One of the potential candidate bottoming cycles is power generation by means of thermoelectric (TE) devices, which have the inherent advantages of low noise, low maintenance and long life. This study was to analyze the feasibility of combining coal gas based SOFC and TE through system performance and cost techno-economic modeling in the context of multi-MW power plants, with 200 kW SOFC-TE module as building blocks. System and component concepts were generated for combining SOFC and TE covering electro-thermo-chemical system integration, power conditioning system (PCS) and component designs. SOFC cost and performance models previously developed at United Technologies Research Center were modified and used in overall system analysis. The TE model was validated and provided by BSST. The optimum system in terms of energy conversion efficiency was found to be a pressurized SOFC-TE, with system efficiency of 65.3% and cost of $390/kW of manufacturing cost. The pressurization ratio was approximately 4 and the assumed ZT of the TE was 2.5. System and component specifications were generated based on the modeling study. The major technology and cost barriers for maturing the system include pressurized SOFC stack using coal gas, the high temperature recycle blowers, and system control design. Finally, a 4-step development roadmap is proposed for future technology development, the first step being a 1 kW proof-of-concept demonstration unit.

  17. Magnesium and Manganese Silicides For Efficient And Low Cost Thermo-Electric Power Generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Trivedi, Sudhir B. [Brimrose Technology Corporation; Kutcher, Susan W. [Brimrose Technology Corporation; Rosemeier, Cory A. [Brimrose Technology Corporation; Mayers, David [Brimrose Technology Corporation; Singh, Jogender [Pennsylvania State University

    2013-12-02

    Thermoelectric Power Generation (TEPG) is the most efficient and commercially deployable power generation technology for harvesting wasted heat from such things as automobile exhausts, industrial furnaces, and incinerators, and converting it into usable electrical power. We investigated the materials magnesium silicide (Mg2Si) and manganese silicide (MnSi) for TEG. MgSi2 and MnSi are environmentally friendly, have constituent elements that are abundant in the earth's crust, non-toxic, lighter and cheaper. In Phase I, we successfully produced Mg2Si and MnSi material with good TE properties. We developed a novel technique to synthesize Mg2Si with good crystalline quality, which is normally very difficult due to high Mg vapor pressure and its corrosive nature. We produced n-type Mg2Si and p-type MnSi nanocomposite pellets using FAST. Measurements of resistivity and voltage under a temperature gradient indicated a Seebeck coefficient of roughly 120 V/K on average per leg, which is quite respectable. Results indicated however, that issues related to bonding resulted in high resistivity contacts. Determining a bonding process and bonding material that can provide ohmic contact from room temperature to the operating temperature is an essential part of successful device fabrication. Work continues in the development of a process for reproducibly obtaining low resistance electrical contacts.

  18. The potential impacts of climate-change policy on freshwater use in thermoelectric power generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chandel, Munish K.; Pratson, Lincoln F.; Jackson, Robert B.

    2011-01-01

    Climate change policy involving a price on carbon would change the mix of power plants and the amount of water they withdraw and consume to generate electricity. We analyze what these changes could entail for electricity generation in the United States under four climate policy scenarios that involve different costs for emitting CO 2 and different technology options for reducing emissions out to the year 2030. The potential impacts of the scenarios on the U.S. electric system are modeled using a modified version of the U.S. National Energy Modeling System and water-use factors for thermoelectric power plants derived from electric utility data compiled by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Under all the climate-policy scenarios, freshwater withdrawals decline 2-14% relative to a business-as-usual (BAU) scenario of no U.S. climate policy. Furthermore, water use decreases as the price on CO 2 under the climate policies increases. At relatively high carbon prices (>$50/tonne CO 2 ), however, retrofitting coal plants to capture CO 2 increases freshwater consumption compared to BAU in 2030. Our analysis suggests that climate policies and a carbon price will reduce both electricity generation and freshwater withdrawals compared to BAU unless a substantial number of coal plants are retrofitted to capture CO 2 . - Highlights: → We analyze the impact of climate change policy on water use for electricity generation. → Water use decreases with an increase in CO 2 allowance price. → Retrofitting of coal plants with CCS could increase water use considerably.

  19. Nanostructured Thermoelectric Oxides for Energy Harvesting Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Abutaha, Anas I.

    2015-01-01

    of thermoelectrics are still limited to one materials system, namely SiGe, since the traditional thermoelectric materials degrade and oxidize at high temperature. Therefore, oxide thermoelectrics emerge as a promising class of materials since they can operate

  20. Theoretical analysis of heat transfer in, and electrical performance of, a milliwatt radioisotopic powered thermoelectric generator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biver, C.J.

    1975-01-01

    A simplified, theoretical model has been made for a radioisotope-powered milliwatt thermoelectric generator (RTG). Calculations of unit heat transfer and electrical performance characteristics are made in two ways: (a) using discrete values of input physical parameters for an individual unit; and (b) using a statistical simulation (Monte Carlo) approach for estimating the variation in performance in a group of N-units. The statistical simulation approach is useful in: (a) estimating the allowable range of input parameters conducive to the production design meeting specifications in a group of N-units; and (b) determining particular parameters that must be significantly restricted in variation to achieve desired performance. The available experimental data, as compared with the discrete value calculations, are in quite good agreement (within 5 percent generally). (U.S.)

  1. Effects of Fluid Directions on Heat Exchange in Thermoelectric Generators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Suzuki, Ryosuke; Sasaki, Yuto; Fujisaka, Takeyuki

    2012-01-01

    Thermal fluids can transport heat to the large surface of a thermoelectric (TE) panel from hot and/or cold sources. The TE power thus obtainable was precisely evaluated using numerical calculations based on fluid dynamics and heat transfer. The commercial software FLUENT was coupled with a TE model...... for this purpose. The fluid velocity distribution and the temperature profiles in the fluids and TE modules were calculated in two-dimensional space. The electromotive force was then evaluated for counter-flow and split-flow models to show the effect of a stagnation point. Friction along the fluid surface along...

  2. Experimental study of a plat-flame micro combustor burning DME for thermoelectric power generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, L.Q.; Zhao, D.Q.; Guo, C.M.; Wang, X.H. [Key Laboratory of Renewable Energy and Gas Hydrate, CAS, Guangzhou Institute of Energy Conversion of CAS, Guangzhou 510640 (China)

    2011-01-15

    A centimeter magnitude thermoelectric (TE) power generation system based on a plat-flame micro combustor burning DME (dimethyl ether) has been developed. The chamber wall of this micro combustor was made of two parallel sintered porous plates which acted as mixture inlet. The main virtue of this combustor is that it can keep combustor wall at lower temperature for reducing heat loss when sustaining a stable flame. Experimental test results showed it was feasible to obtain stable DME/air premixed flame at lean combustion situations in the micro combustor. The combustion load of this 0.48 cm{sup 3} chamber capacity was 20-200 W at equivalence ratio {phi} = 0.6. Though the flame temperature was above 1000 C, the combustor's wall temperature was near 600 C lower than flame temperature. In the demonstrated TE power generation system which integrated the plat-flame micro combustor, a heat spreader had good effect on uniforming the hot side temperature field of TE modules. Cooled by water and with 150 W input power at {phi} = 0.7, the system produced 10 V output at open circuit and 4 V at 10 {omega} load. The maximum power output was above 2 W, and the maximum overall chemical-electric energy conversion efficiency was 1.25%. (author)

  3. TiNiSn and Zr{sub 0.5}Hf{sub 0.5}NiSn superlattices for thermoelectrics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaeger, Tino; Jakob, Gerhard [Institut fuer Physik, Universitaet Mainz, 55099 Mainz (Germany); Schwall, Michael; Kozina, Xeniya; Balke, Benjamin; Felser, Claudia [Institut fuer Analytische und Anorganische Chemie, Universitaet Mainz, 55099 Mainz (Germany); Populoh, Sascha; Weidenkaff, Anke [EMPA, Ueberlandstrasse 129, 8600 Duebendorf (Switzerland)

    2012-07-01

    In order to increase the attractiveness of thermoelectric devices, their efficiency must be increased. Beside others, the properties of the thermoelectric material can be improved. That can be achieved by either increasing Seebeck coefficient or conductivity or by a depressed thermal conductivity along the thermal gradient. For thin films, superlattices or multilayers can be used to lower the cross plane thermal conductivity. As a bottom up approach, artificially layered films with a periodicity of about 5-6 nm are assumed to generate the most phonon scattering at the interfaces. If electrical properties remain unchanged or less effected, the thermoelectric efficiency is enhanced. Semiconducting Half-Heuslers are well studied thermoelectric bulk materials. Among others, TiNiSn and Zr{sub 0.5}Hf{sub 0.5}NiSn are potential candidates. Essentially, their similar lattice constants enable epitaxial layers on top of each other. Furthermore, varied atomic masses of Ti, Zr and Hf generate the aspired alternating mass distribution. By rotating the substrate in between simultaneously burning cathodes, significant film thicknesses can be achieved by sputter deposition.

  4. Thermoelectric automotive waste heat energy recovery using maximum power point tracking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu Chuang; Chau, K.T.

    2009-01-01

    This paper proposes and implements a thermoelectric waste heat energy recovery system for internal combustion engine automobiles, including gasoline vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles. The key is to directly convert the heat energy from automotive waste heat to electrical energy using a thermoelectric generator, which is then regulated by a DC-DC Cuk converter to charge a battery using maximum power point tracking. Hence, the electrical power stored in the battery can be maximized. Both analysis and experimental results demonstrate that the proposed system can work well under different working conditions, and is promising for automotive industry.

  5. Thermoelectric Devices: Solid-State Refrigerators and Electrical Generators in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winder, Edmund J.; Ellis, Arthur B.; Lisensky, George C.

    1996-10-01

    Thermoelectric devices are solid-state devices that convert thermal energy from a temperature gradient into electrical energy (the Seebeck effect) or convert electrical energy into a temperature gradient (the Peltier effect). The first application is used most notably in spacecraft power generation systems (for example, in Voyager I and II) and in thermocouples for temperature measurement, while the second application is largely used in specialized cooling applications. Both applications can be demonstrated in the lecture hall to illustrate thermodynamic principles in a compelling manner. They also provide insight into the workings of a high-tech system that is achieving more widespread consumer use. The most visible consumer use of thermoelectric devices utilizing the Peltier effect is in portable electric food coolers/warmers that plug into an automobile cigarette lighter. Conventional cooling systems such as those used in refrigerators utilize a compressor and a working fluid to transfer heat. Thermal energy is absorbed and released as the working fluid undergoes expansion and compression and changes phase from liquid to vapor and back, respectively (1). Semiconductor thermoelectric coolers (also known as Peltier coolers) offer several advantages over conventional systems. They are entirely solid-state devices, with no moving parts; this makes them rugged, reliable, and quiet. They use no ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons, potentially offering a more environmentally responsible alternative to conventional refrigeration. They can be extremely compact, much more so than compressor-based systems. Precise temperature control (screws have to be removed to access the thermoelectric module. The module comes equipped with finned aluminum heat sinks attached to both sides; one of these has to be detached in order to remove the module from the lid. The heat sink is then reattached to the module, as shown in Figure 1. Figure 1. Thermoelectric module with attached heat

  6. Development and experimental validation of a thermoelectric test bench for laboratory lessons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Rodríguez

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The refrigeration process reduces the temperature of a space or a given volume while the power generation process employs a source of thermal energy to generate electrical power. Because of the importance of these two processes, training of engineers in this area is of great interest. In engineering courses it is normally studied the vapor compression and absorption refrigeration, and power generation systems such as gas turbine and steam turbine. Another type of cooling and generation less studied within the engineering curriculum, having a great interest, it is cooling and thermal generation based on Peltier and Seebeck effects. The theoretical concepts are useful, but students have difficulties understanding the physical meaning of their possible applications. Providing students with tools to test and apply the theory in real applications, will lead to a better understanding of the subject. Engineers must have strong theoretical, computational and also experimental skills. A prototype test bench has been built and experimentally validated to perform practical lessons of thermoelectric generation and refrigeration. Using this prototype students learn the most effective way of cooling systems and thermal power generation as well as basic concepts associated with thermoelectricity. It has been proven that students learn the process of data acquisition, and the technology used in thermoelectric devices. These practical lessons are implemented for a 60 people group of students in the development of subject of Thermodynamic including in the Degree in Engineering in Industrial Technologies of Public University of Navarra. Normal 0 21 false false false ES X-NONE X-NONE Normal 0 21 false false false ES X-NONE X-NONE Generation of electrical power

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hursen, T.F.; Kolenik, S.A.; Purdy, D.L.

    1976-01-01

    A heat-to-electricity converter is disclosed which includes a radioactive heat source and a thermoelectric element of relatively short overall length capable of delivering a low voltage of the order of a few tenths of a volt. Such a thermoelectric element operates at a higher efficiency than longer higher-voltage elements; for example, elements producing 6 volts. In the generation of required power, the thermoelectric element drives a solid-state converter which is controlled by input current rather than input voltage and operates efficiently for a high signal-plus-noise to signal ratio of current. The solid-state converter has the voltage gain necessary to deliver the required voltage at the low input of the thermoelectric element

  7. Simulation Analysis of Tilted Polyhedron-Shaped Thermoelectric Elements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Xiangning; Suzuki, Ryosuke O.

    2015-06-01

    The generation of thermoelectricity is considered a promising approach to harness the waste heat generated in industries, automobiles, gas fields, and other man-made processes. The waste heat can be converted to electricity via a thermoelectric (TE) generator. In this light, the generator performance depends on the geometric configuration of its constituent elements as well as their material properties. Our previous work reported TE behaviors for modules consisting of parallelogram-shaped elements, because elements with tilted laminate structures provide increased mechanical stability and efficient heat-transferring ability from the hot surface to the cold surface. Here, we study TE elements in the shape of a polyhedron that is obtained by mechanically truncating the edges of a parallelogram element in order to further enhance the generator performance and reduce TE material usage. The TE performance of the modules consisting of these polyhedron elements is numerically simulated by using the finite-volume method. The output power, voltage, and current of the polyhedral TE module are greater than those of the parallelogram-element module. The polyhedron shape positively affects heat transfer and the flow of electric charges in the light of increasing the efficiency of conversion from heat to electricity. By varying the shape of the truncated portions, we determine the optimal shape that enables homogeneous heat flux distribution and slow diffusion of thermal energy to obtain the better efficiency of conversion of heat into electricity. We believe that the findings of our study can significantly contribute to the design policy in TE generation.

  8. High-Efficiency, Nanowire Based Thermoelectric Devices for Radioisotope Power Conversion, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This SBIR Phase I proposal responds to topic S3.03 of the 2010 NASA SBIR solicitation, for Power Generation and Conversion. Thermoelectric devices offer a simple and...

  9. Spin thermoelectric effects in organic single-molecule devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, H.L.; Wang, M.X.; Qian, C.; Hong, X.K.; Zhang, D.B.; Liu, Y.S.; Yang, X.F., E-mail: xfyang@cslg.edu.cn

    2017-05-25

    Highlights: • A stronger spin thermoelectric performance in a polyacetylene device is observed. • For the antiferromagnetic (AFM) ordering, a transport gap is opened. Thus the thermoelectric effects are largely enhanced. - Abstract: The spin thermoelectric performance of a polyacetylene chain bridging two zigzag graphene nanoribbons (ZGNRs) is investigated based on first principles method. Two different edge spin arrangements in ZGNRs are considered. For ferromagnetic (FM) ordering, transmission eigenstates with different spin indices distributed below and above Fermi level are observed, leading directly to a strong spin thermoelectric effect in a wide temperature range. With the edge spins arranged in the antiferromagnetic (AFM) ordering, an obvious transport gap appears in the system, which greatly enhances the thermoelectric effects. The presence of a small spin splitting also induces a spin thermoelectric effect greater than the charge thermoelectric effect in certain temperature range. In general, the single-molecule junction exhibits the potential to be used for the design of perfect thermospin devices.

  10. An additive approach to low temperature zero pressure sintering of bismuth antimony telluride thermoelectric materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catlin, Glenn C.; Tripathi, Rajesh; Nunes, Geoffrey; Lynch, Philip B.; Jones, Howard D.; Schmitt, Devin C.

    2017-03-01

    This paper presents an additive-based approach to the formulation of thermoelectric materials suitable for screen printing. Such printing processes are a likely route to such thermoelectric applications as micro-generators for wireless sensor networks and medical devices, but require the development of materials that can be sintered at ambient pressure and low temperatures. Using a rapid screening process, we identify the eutectic combination of antimony and tellurium as an additive for bismuth-antimony-telluride that enables good thermoelectric performance without a high pressure step. An optimized composite of 15 weight percent Sb7.5Te92.5 in Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 is scaled up and formulated into a screen-printable paste. Samples fabricated from this paste achieve a thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) of 0.74 using a maximum processing temperature of 748 K and a total thermal processing budget of 12 K-hours.

  11. Power Generator with Thermo-Differential Modules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saiz, John R.; Nguyen, James

    2010-01-01

    A thermoelectric power generator consists of an oven box and a solar cooker/solar reflector unit. The solar reflector concentrates sunlight into heat and transfers the heat into the oven box via a heat pipe. The oven box unit is surrounded by five thermoelectric modules and is located at the bottom end of the solar reflector. When the heat is pumped into one side of the thermoelectric module and ejected from the opposite side at ambient temperatures, an electrical current is produced. Typical temperature accumulation in the solar reflector is approximately 200 C (392 F). The heat pipe then transfers heat into the oven box with a loss of about 40 percent. At the ambient temperature of about 20 C (68 F), the temperature differential is about 100 C (180 F) apart. Each thermoelectric module, generates about 6 watts of power. One oven box with five thermoelectric modules produces about 30 watts. The system provides power for unattended instruments in remote areas, such as space colonies and space vehicles, and in polar and other remote regions on Earth.

  12. Electron transport in erbium arsenide:indium gallium(aluminum)arsenide metal/semiconductor nanocomposites for thermoelectric power generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahk, Je-Hyeong

    Electron transport in thin film ErAs:InGa(Al)As metal/semiconductor nanocomposite materials grown by molecular beam epitaxy is investigated experimentally and theoretically for efficient thermoelectric power generation. Thermoelectric properties such as the Seebeck coefficient, the electrical conductivity, and the thermal conductivity are measured for the various compositions of the material up to 840 K. A special sample preparation method is proposed to protect the thin films from damage and/or decomposition, and prevent the parasitic substrate conduction effect during the high temperature measurements. The sample preparation method includes surface passivation, high temperature metallization with a diffusion barrier, and the covalent oxide bonding technique for substrate removal. The experimental results for the nanocomposite materials are analyzed using the Boltzmann transport equation under the relaxation time approximation. The scattering characteristics of free electrons in the InGa(Al)As is defined by four major scattering mechanisms such as the polar optical phonon scattering, the ionized impurity scattering, the alloy scattering, and the acoustic phonon deformation potential scattering. Combining these scattering mechanisms, the electron transport model successfully fits the temperature-dependent thermoelectric properties of Si-doped InGaAlAs materials, and predicts the figure of merits at various doping levels in various Al compositions. The nanoparticle-electron interaction is modeled as a momentum scattering for free electrons caused by the electrostatic potential perturbation around nanoparticles and the band offset at the interface. The ErAs nanoparticles are assumed to be semi-metals that can donate electrons to the matrix, and positively charged after the charge transfer to build up the screened coulomb potential outside them. The nanoparticle scattering rate is calculated for this potential profile using the partial wave method, and used to analyze

  13. A potential candidate for the sustainable and reliable domestic energy generation–Thermoelectric cogeneration system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zheng, X.F.; Yan, Y.Y.; Simpson, K.

    2013-01-01

    Due to being solid-state, noiseless and maintenance free, thermoelectric devices have found wide applications in different areas since they were discovered over 180 years ago. The applications are concerned with environment-friendly refrigeration and power generation in transportation tools, industrial utilities, military devices, medical services and space applications. It is utilisation of waste heat in varying applications that make the modules particularly attractive. Nevertheless, despite a few academic papers, there has not been extensive use in the domestic sector. A concept of thermoelectric cogeneration system (‘TCS’) is proposed to highlight the direction for enhancing the sustainability by improving the energy efficiency in domestic sector. Compared to the thermoelectric systems used in other areas which only uses the part of converted energy but wastes the unconverted part by dissipating it into the environment, the system presented here maximally recover the available heat by generating electrical power and producing hot water simultaneously. The viability of this system concept is evaluated on a bench-scale experimental prototype. The outputs of electrical power and hot water have been investigated at different temperature difference. The cost saving potential and cost recovery period have been estimated using the available heat sources in domestic sector. The results intend to provide reference for developing the real-scale domestic thermoelectric cogeneration system and show the potential benefits

  14. Feasibility Study on the Use of a Solar Thermoelectric Cogenerator Comprising a Thermoelectric Module and Evacuated Tubular Collector with Parabolic Trough Concentrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miao, L.; Zhang, M.; Tanemura, S.; Tanaka, T.; Kang, Y. P.; Xu, G.

    2012-06-01

    We have designed a new solar thermoelectric cogeneration system consisting of an evacuated tubular solar collector (ETSC) with a parabolic trough concentrator (PTC) and thermoelectric modules (TEMs) to supply both thermal energy and electricity. The main design concepts are (1) the hot side of the TEM is bonded to the solar selective absorber installed in an evacuated glass tube, (2) the cold side of the TEM is also bonded to the heat sink, and (3) the outer circulated water is heated by residual solar energy after TEM generation. We present an example solar thermal simulation based on energy balance and heat transfer as used in solar engineering to predict the electrical conversion efficiency and solar thermal conversion efficiency for different values of parameters such as the solar insolation, concentration ratio, and TEM ZT values.

  15. New thinking on modeling of thermoelectric devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, T.

    2016-01-01

    Highlights: • New model was developed for performance calculation of thermoelectric devices. • The model takes into account the temperature-dependent material properties. • It takes into account the spatial-dependent heat flow rate in thermoelement. • It can take into account the heat and electricity losses at the junctions. • It can probe a broad range of parameters for module performance optimization. - Abstract: The performance of a thermoelectric power generation (TEPG) module and a device designed to convert engine exhaust heat directly into electricity was studied under different operating conditions using a proposed thermoelectric (TE) model in this work. The proposed model was obtained from the first law of thermodynamics, Ohm’s law, nonlinear analytical solution of thermoelectric transport equation, and a control volume that represents a typical TEPG module or device such that the temperature-dependent material properties of, the spatial-dependent heat flow rate through the TE element, and the interfacial electrical and thermal losses can be taken into account in the performance calculation. The performance of a typical TEPG module under a broad range of cold-side temperatures and the temperature differences between its hot-side and cold-side was calculated by the proposed model and the results agree very well with the existing model predictions. Comparison between the model predictions and the experimental results confirmed that reducing the interfacial electric resistance can enhance the module performance. The inter-dependence of the key thermal and TEPG system design and optimization parameters was examined for a real TEPG device using the proposed model and an optimal module fill factor of 0.35 was found within the given mass flow rates between 0.0154 and 0.052 kg/s of exhaust stream.

  16. Thermoelectric air-cooling module for electronic devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chang, Yu-Wei; Chang, Chih-Chung; Ke, Ming-Tsun; Chen, Sih-Li

    2009-01-01

    This article investigates the thermoelectric air-cooling module for electronic devices. The effects of heat load of heater and input current to thermoelectric cooler are experimentally determined. A theoretical model of thermal analogy network is developed to predict the thermal performance of the thermoelectric air-cooling module. The result shows that the prediction by the model agrees with the experimental data. At a specific heat load, the thermoelectric air-cooling module reaches the best cooling performance at an optimum input current. In this study, the optimum input currents are from 6 A to 7 A at the heat loads from 20 W to 100 W. The result also demonstrates that the thermoelectric air-cooling module performs better performance at a lower heat load. The lowest total temperature difference-heat load ratio is experimentally estimated as -0.54 W K -1 at the low heat load of 20 W, while it is 0.664 W K -1 at the high heat load of 100 W. In some conditions, the thermoelectric air-cooling module performs worse than the air-cooling heat sink only. This article shows the effective operating range in which the cooling performance of the thermoelectric air-cooling module excels that of the air-cooling heat sink only.

  17. The thermoelectric performance of bulk three-dimensional graphene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Zhi, E-mail: yangzhi@tyut.edu.cn [Key Lab of Advanced Transducers and Intelligent Control System, Ministry of Education and Shanxi Province, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024 (China); College of Physics and Optoelectronics, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024 (China); Lan, Guoqiang; Ouyang, Bin [Department of Mining and Materials Engineering, McGill University, Montreal H3A 0C5 (Canada); Xu, Li-Chun; Liu, Ruiping [College of Physics and Optoelectronics, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024 (China); Liu, Xuguang, E-mail: liuxuguang@tyut.edu.cn [Key Lab of Interface Science and Engineering in Advanced Materials, Ministry of Education, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024 (China); College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan 030024 (China); Song, Jun [Department of Mining and Materials Engineering, McGill University, Montreal H3A 0C5 (Canada)

    2016-11-01

    The electronic and thermoelectric properties of a new carbon bulk material, three-dimensional (3D) graphene, are investigated in this study. Our results show that 3D graphene has unique electronic structure, i.e., near the Fermi level there exist Dirac cones. More importantly, the thermoelectric performance of 3D graphene is excellent, at room temperature the thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) is 0.21, an order of magnitude higher than that of graphene. By introducing line defects, the ZT of 3D graphene could be enhanced to 1.52, indicating 3D graphene is a powerful candidate for constructing novel thermoelectric materials. - Highlights: • There exist Dirac cones in three-dimensional (3D) graphene. • The thermoelectric performance of 3D graphene is excellent. • The defective 3D graphene has better thermoelectric performance.

  18. Effect of high fluence neutron irradiation on transport properties of thermoelectrics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, H.; Leonard, K. J.

    2017-07-01

    Thermoelectric materials were subjected to high fluence neutron irradiation in order to understand the effect of radiation damage on transport properties. This study is relevant to the NASA Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) program in which thermoelectric elements are exposed to radiation over a long period of time in space missions. Selected n-type and p-type bismuth telluride materials were irradiated at the High Flux Isotope Reactor with a neutron fluence of 1.3 × 1018 n/cm2 (E > 0.1 MeV). The increase in the Seebeck coefficient in the n-type material was partially off-set by an increase in electrical resistivity, making the power factor higher at lower temperatures. For the p-type materials, although the Seebeck coefficient was not affected by irradiation, electrical resistivity decreased slightly. The figure of merit, zT, showed a clear drop in the 300-400 K range for the p-type material and an increase for the n-type material. Considering that the p-type and n-type materials are connected in series in a module, the overall irradiation damages at the device level were limited. These results, at neutron fluences exceeding a typical space mission, are significant to ensure that the radiation damage to thermoelectrics does not affect the performance of RTGs.

  19. Numerical and experimental analysis for exhaust heat exchangers in automobile thermoelectric generators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shengqiang Bai

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Ideal heat exchangers recover as much heat as possible from an engine exhaust at the cost of an acceptable pressure drop. They provide primary heat for a thermoelectric generator (TEG, and their capacity and efficiency is dependent on the material, shape, and type of the heat exchanger. Six different exhaust heat exchangers were designed within the same shell, and their computational fluid dynamics (CFD models were developed to compare heat transfer and pressure drop in typical driving cycles for a vehicle with a 1.2 L gasoline engine. The result showed that the serial plate structure enhanced heat transfer by 7 baffles and transferred the maximum heat of 1737 W. It also produced a maximum pressure drop of 9.7 kPa in a suburban driving cycle. The numerical results for the pipe structure and an empty cavity were verified by experiments. Under the maximum power output condition, only the inclined plate and empty cavity structure undergoes a pressure drop less than 80 kPa, and the largest pressure drop exceeds 190 kPa. In this case, a mechanism with a differential pressure switch is essential to bypass part of the exhaust.

  1. Lunar base thermoelectric power station study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Determan, William; Frye, Patrick; Mondt, Jack; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Johnson, Ken; Stapfer, G.; Brooks, Michael D.; Heshmatpour, Ben

    2006-01-01

    Under NASA's Project Prometheus, the Nuclear Systems Program, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, and Teledyne Energy Systems have teamed with a number of universities, under the Segmented Thermoelectric Multicouple Converter (STMC) program, to develop the next generation of advanced thermoelectric converters for space reactor power systems. Work on the STMC converter assembly has progressed to the point where the lower temperature stage of the segmented multicouple converter assembly is ready for laboratory testing and the upper stage materials have been identified and their properties are being characterized. One aspect of the program involves mission application studies to help define the potential benefits from the use of these STMC technologies for designated NASA missions such as the lunar base power station where kilowatts of power are required to maintain a permanent manned presence on the surface of the moon. A modular 50 kWe thermoelectric power station concept was developed to address a specific set of requirements developed for this mission. Previous lunar lander concepts had proposed the use of lunar regolith as in-situ radiation shielding material for a reactor power station with a one kilometer exclusion zone radius to minimize astronaut radiation dose rate levels. In the present concept, we will examine the benefits and requirements for a hermetically-sealed reactor thermoelectric power station module suspended within a man-made lunar surface cavity. The concept appears to maximize the shielding capabilities of the lunar regolith while minimizing its handling requirements. Both thermal and nuclear radiation levels from operation of the station, at its 100-m exclusion zone radius, were evaluated and found to be acceptable. Site preparation activities are reviewed and well as transport issues for this concept. The goal of the study was to review the entire life cycle of the unit to assess its technical problems and technology

  2. Feasibility of Thermoelectric Waste Heat Recovery from Research Reactor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Byunghee

    2015-01-01

    A thermoelectric generator has the most competitive method to regenerate the waste heat from research reactors, because it has no limitation on operating temperature. In addition, since the TEG is a solid energy conversion device converting heat to electricity directly without moving parts, the regenerating power system becomes simple and highly reliable. In this regard, a waste heat recovery using thermoelectric generator (TEG) from 15-MW pool type research reactor is suggested and the feasibility is demonstrated. The producible power from waste heat is estimated with respect to the reactor parameters, and an application of the regenerated power is suggested by performing a safety analysis with the power. The producible power from TEG is estimated with respect to the LMTD of the HX and the required heat exchange area is also calculated. By increasing LMTD from 2 K to 20K, the efficiency and the power increases greatly. Also an application of the power regeneration system is suggested by performing a safety analysis with the system, and comparing the results with reference case without the power regeneration

  3. Numerical Investigation for Strengthening Heat Transfer Mechanism of the Tube-Row Heat Exchanger in a Compact Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zheng; Chen, Zijian; Liu, Hongwu; Yue, Hao; Chen, Dongbo; Qin, Delei

    2018-06-01

    According to the basic principle of heat transfer enhancement, a 1-kW compact thermoelectric generator (TEG) is proposed that is suitable for use at high temperatures and high flow speeds. The associated heat exchanger has a tube-row structure with a guide-plate to control the thermal current. The heat exchanger has a volume of 7 L, and the TEG has a mass of 8 kg (excluding the thermoelectric modules (TEMs)). In this paper, the heat transfer process of the tube-row exchanger is modeled and analyzed numerically; and the influences of its structure on the heat transfer and temperature status of the TEMs are investigated. The results show that use of the thin - wall pipes and increase of surface roughness inside the pipes are effective ways to improve the heat transfer efficiency, obtain the rated surface temperature, and make the TEG compact and lightweight. Furthermore, under the same conditions, the calculated results are compared with the data of a fin heat exchanger. The comparison results show that the volume and mass of the tube-row heat exchanger are 19% and 33% lower than those of the fin type unit, and that the pressure drop is reduced by 16%. In addition, the average temperature in the tube-row heat exchanger is increased by 15°C and the average temperature difference is increased by 19°C; the tube-row TEG has a more compact volume and better temperature characteristics.

  4. Numerical Investigation for Strengthening Heat Transfer Mechanism of the Tube-Row Heat Exchanger in a Compact Thermoelectric Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zheng; Chen, Zijian; Liu, Hongwu; Yue, Hao; Chen, Dongbo; Qin, Delei

    2018-04-01

    According to the basic principle of heat transfer enhancement, a 1-kW compact thermoelectric generator (TEG) is proposed that is suitable for use at high temperatures and high flow speeds. The associated heat exchanger has a tube-row structure with a guide-plate to control the thermal current. The heat exchanger has a volume of 7 L, and the TEG has a mass of 8 kg (excluding the thermoelectric modules (TEMs)). In this paper, the heat transfer process of the tube-row exchanger is modeled and analyzed numerically; and the influences of its structure on the heat transfer and temperature status of the TEMs are investigated. The results show that use of the thin - wall pipes and increase of surface roughness inside the pipes are effective ways to improve the heat transfer efficiency, obtain the rated surface temperature, and make the TEG compact and lightweight. Furthermore, under the same conditions, the calculated results are compared with the data of a fin heat exchanger. The comparison results show that the volume and mass of the tube-row heat exchanger are 19% and 33% lower than those of the fin type unit, and that the pressure drop is reduced by 16%. In addition, the average temperature in the tube-row heat exchanger is increased by 15°C and the average temperature difference is increased by 19°C; the tube-row TEG has a more compact volume and better temperature characteristics.

  5. Location study of thermoelectric in Sao Paulo's State, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fadigas, Eliane Aparecida F.A.; Reis, Lineu Belico dos

    1999-01-01

    The article presents the results of studies developed to identify, locate and order thermoelectric generation options through costs increasing. This evaluation considered just options of Sao Paulo, a Brazilian state. The used methodology and the main parameters and variables which influence in the projects economic activity are introduced in the article. A software denominated SAEGET was also used

  6. Improving the Efficiency of a Nucler Power Plant Using a Thermoelectric Cogeneration System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rauf Terzi

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The efficiencies of nuclear power plants are rather poor having the ratio %30 by using the conventional energy/exergy tools. According to that information, large amount of energy is wasted during condensation and thrown out to the environment. Thermoelectric generator (TEG system has a potential to be used as a heat exchanging technology to produce power with a relatively low efficiency (about 5% and it can transform the temperature difference into electricity and generate clean electrical energy. In the present study, we offer a novel system to recover the waste heat from a VVER-1000 nuclear power plant. The heat transfer of the TEG is analyzed numerically with respect to the various temperature ranges and constant mass flow rate of the exhaust steam entering the system. In the analyses, different hot temperature ranges (35ºC, 45ºC and 55ºC and a constant cold temperature (i.e. 18ºC are used for a HZ-20 thermoelectric module and it has been proven that the designed TEG can produce the maximum output power of 76,956 MW for a temperature difference ∆T=37 and the conversion efficiency of 3,854% sits. The TEG is designed for the condenser of a 1000 MW nuclear power plant. It's shown that about 2,0% increasing in the power plant efficiency is expected by using the selected thermoelectric generator in the condensation cycle. Article History: Received: July 15th 2017; Received:  October 17th 2017; Accepted: February 13rd 2018; Available online How to Cite This Article: Terzi, R. and Kurt, E. (2018, Improving the efficiency of a nuclear power plant using a thermoelectric cogeneration system, Int. Journal of Renewable Energy Development, 7(1, 77-84. https://doi.org/10.14710/ijred.7.1.77-84

  7. Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems Segmented Thermoelectric Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caillat, Thierry

    2004-01-01

    Flight times are long; - Need power systems with >15 years life. Mass is at an absolute premium; - Need power systems with high specific power and scalability. 3 orders of magnitude reduction in solar irradiance from Earth to Pluto. Nuclear power sources preferable. The Overall objective is to develop low mass, high efficiency, low-cost Advanced Radioisotope Power System with double the Specific Power and Efficiency over state-of-the-art Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs).

  8. Technical Feasibility Evaluation on The Use of A Peltier Thermoelectric Module to Recover Automobile Exhaust Heat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugiartha, N.; Sastra Negara, P.

    2018-01-01

    A thermoelectric module composes of integrated p-n semiconductors as hot and cold side junctions and uses Seebeck effect between them to function as a thermoelectric generator (TEG) to directly convert heat into electrical power. Exhaust heat from engines as otherwise wasted to the atmosphere is one of the heat sources freely available to drive the TEG. This paper evaluates technical feasibility on the use of a Peltier thermoelectric module for energy recovery application of such kind of waste heat. An experimental apparatus has been setup to simulate real conditions of automobile engine exhaust piping system. It includes a square section aluminium ducting, an aluminium fin heat sink and a TEC1 12706 thermoelectric module. A heater and a cooling fan are employed to simulate hot exhaust gas and ambient air flows, respectively. Electrical loading is controlled by resistors. Dependent variables measured during the test are cold and hot side temperatures, open and loaded circuit output voltages and electrical current. The test results revealed a promising application of the Peltier thermoelectric module for the engine exhaust heat recovery, though the loaded output power produced and loaded output voltage are still far lower than the commercially thermoelectric module originally purposed for the TEG application.

  9. Frequency-domain Harman technique for rapid characterization of bulk and thin film thermoelectric materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Samuel

    Nanostructured thermoelectrics, often in the form of thin films, may potentially improve the generally poor efficiency of bulk thermoelectric power generators and coolers. In order to characterize the efficiency of these new materials it is necessary to measure their thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT. The only direct measurement of ZT is based on the Harman technique and relies on measuring the voltage drop across a sample subjected to a passing continuous current. Application of this technique to thin films is currently carried out as a time-domain measurement of the voltage as the thermal component decays after switching off an applied voltage. This work develops a technique for direct simultaneous measurement of figure of merit and Seebeck coefficient from the harmonic response of a thermoelectric material under alternating current excitation. A thermocouple mounted on the top surface measures voltage across the device as the frequency of the applied voltage is varied. A thermal model allows the sample thermal conductivity to also be determined and shows good agreement with measurements. This technique provides improved signal-to-noise ratio and accuracy compared to time-domain ZT measurements for comparable conditions while simultaneously measuring Seebeck coefficient. The technique is applied to both bulk and thin film thermoelectric samples.

  10. Triboelectric-thermoelectric hybrid nanogenerator for harvesting frictional energy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Min-Ki; Kim, Myoung-Soo; Jo, Sung-Eun; Kim, Yong-Jun

    2016-12-01

    The triboelectric nanogenerator, an energy harvesting device that converts external kinetic energy into electrical energy through using a nano-structured triboelectric material, is well known as an energy harvester with a simple structure and high output voltage. However, triboelectric nanogenerators also inevitably generate heat resulting from the friction that arises from their inherent sliding motions. In this paper, we present a hybrid nanogenerator, which integrates a triboelectric generator and a thermoelectric generator (TEG) for harvesting both the kinetic friction energy and the heat energy that would otherwise be wasted. The triboelectric part consists of a polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) film with nano-structures and a movable aluminum panel. The thermoelectric part is attached to the bottom of the PTFE film by an adhesive phase change material layer. We confirmed that the hybrid nanogenerator can generate an output power that is higher than that generated by a single triboelectric nanogenerator or a TEG. The hybrid nanogenerator was capable of producing a power density of 14.98 mW cm-2. The output power, produced from a sliding motion of 12 cm s-1, was capable of instantaneously lighting up 100 commercial LED bulbs. The hybrid nanogenerator can charge a 47 μF capacitor at a charging rate of 7.0 mV s-1, which is 13.3% faster than a single triboelectric generator. Furthermore, the efficiency of the device was significantly improved by the addition of a heat source. This hybrid energy harvester does not require any difficult fabrication steps, relative to existing triboelectric nanogenerators. The present study addresses a method for increasing the efficiency while solving other problems associated with triboelectric nanogenerators.

  11. High Temperature Thermoelectric Materials for Waste Heat Regeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    ADDRESS. 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) January 2013 2. REPORT TYPE Final 3. DATES COVERED (From - To) 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE High Temperature...National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) deep space explorations, which use radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) to produce...their octahedral voids (shown in figure 10a) with large rare- earth atoms to reduce their lattice conductivity (20). Ions can also be inserted to

  12. High Volume Manufacturing of NanoEngineered High ZT Thermoelectrics for Multiple Energy Generation Applications, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — SMI has teamed with a leading thermoelectric (TE) research group in order to optimize and convert high-performance TE materials developed in laboratory-scale into...

  13. Thermoelectric generator and method of forming same

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, K.T.

    1981-01-01

    A thermoelectric device is disclosed which comprises the formation of a multiplicity of thermocouples on a substrate in a narrow strip form, the thermocouples being formed by printing with first and second inks formed of suitable different powdered metals with a proper binder or flux. The thermocouples are formed in series and the opposed coupled areas are melted to form an intermingling of the two metals and the strips may be formed in substantial lengths and rolled onto a reel, or in relatively short strip form and disposed in a side-by-side abutting relationship in substantial numbers to define a generally rectangular panel form with opposed ends in electrical connection. The method of forming the panels includes the steps of feeding a suitable substrate, either in a continuous roll or sheet form, through first and second printers to form the series connected multiplicity of thermocouples thereon. From the printers the sheet or strip passes through a melter such as an induction furnace and from the furnace it passes through a sheeter, if the strip is in roll form. The sheets are then slit into narrow strips relative to the thermocouples, printed thereon and the strips are then formed into a bundle. A predetermined number of bundles are assembled into a panel form

  14. Manufacturing of Thermoelectric Nanomaterials (Bi 0.4 Sb 1.6 Te 3 /Bi 1.75 Te 3.25 ) and Integration into Window Glasses for Thermoelectricity Generation

    KAUST Repository

    Inayat, Salman Bin; Rader, Kelly; Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa

    2014-01-01

    of 20 degrees C, which is typical in hot climates, such as the desert areas in the Middle East and African Sahara. A thermoelectric window can be a supplementary power source for waste heat recovery in green building technology.

  15. Spin-dependent heat and thermoelectric currents in a Rashba ring coupled to a photon cavity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullah, Nzar Rauf; Tang, Chi-Shung; Manolescu, Andrei; Gudmundsson, Vidar

    2018-01-01

    Spin-dependent heat and thermoelectric currents in a quantum ring with Rashba spin-orbit interaction placed in a photon cavity are theoretically calculated. The quantum ring is coupled to two external leads with different temperatures. In a resonant regime, with the ring structure in resonance with the photon field, the heat and the thermoelectric currents can be controlled by the Rashba spin-orbit interaction. The heat current is suppressed in the presence of the photon field due to contribution of the two-electron and photon replica states to the transport while the thermoelectric current is not sensitive to changes in parameters of the photon field. Our study opens a possibility to use the proposed interferometric device as a tunable heat current generator in the cavity photon field.

  16. Potential Usage of Thermoelectric Devices in a High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell System

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xin, Gao; Chen, Min; Andreasen, Søren Juhl

    2012-01-01

    Methanol fuelled high temperature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (HTPEMFC) power systems are promising as the next generation of vehicle engines, efficient and environmentally friendly. Currently, their performance still needs to be improved and they still rely on a large Li-ion battery...... for system startup. In this paper, to handle these two issues, the potential of thermoelectric (TE) devices applied in a HTPEMFC power system has been preliminarily evaluated. Firstly, right after the fuel cell stack or the methanol reformer, thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are embedded inside a gas......-liquid heat exchanger to jointly form a heat recovery subsystem for electricity production. It is calculated that the recovered power can increase the system efficiency and mitigate the dependence on Li-ion battery during system startup. To further improve the TEG subsystem performance, a finite...

  17. Thermoelectricity an introduction to the principles

    CERN Document Server

    MacDonald, D K C

    2006-01-01

    This introductory treatment provides an understanding of the fundamental concepts and principles involved in the study of thermoelectricity in solids and of conduction in general. Aimed at graduate-level students and those interested in basic theory, it will be especially valuable to experimental physicists working in fields connected with electron transport and to theoreticians seeking a survey of thermoelectricity and related questions.Chronicling the early history of thermoelectricity from its discovery to modern times, this text features a considerable amount of experimental data and discu

  18. Enhanced thermoelectric properties of bismuth telluride-organic hybrid films via graphene doping

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rahman, Airul Azha Abd; Umar, Akrajas Ali; Salleh, Muhamad Mat; Chen, Xiaomei; Oyama, Munetaka

    2016-01-01

    The thermoelectric properties of graphene-doped bismuth telluride-PEDOT:PSS-glycerol (hybrid) films were investigated. Prior to the study, p-type and n-type hybrid films were prepared by doping the PEDOT:PSS-glycerol with the p- and n-type bismuth telluride. Graphene-doped hybrid films were prepared by adding graphene particles of concentration ranging from 0.02 to 0.1 wt% into the hybrid films. Films of graphene-doped hybrid system were then prepared on a glass substrate using a spin-coating technique. It was found that the electrical conductivity of the hybrid films increases with the increasing of the graphene-dopant concentration and optimum at 0.08 wt% for both p- and n-type films, namely 400 and 195 S/cm, respectively. Further increasing in the concentration caused a decreasing in the electrical conductivity. Analysis of the thermoelectric properties of the films obtained that the p-type film exhibited significant improvement in its thermoelectric properties, where the thermoelectric properties increased with the increasing of the doping concentration. Meanwhile, for the case of n-type film, graphene doping showed a negative effect to the thermoelectrical properties, where the thermoelectric properties decreased with the increasing of doping concentration. Seebeck coefficient (and power factor) for optimum p-type and n-type hybrid thin films, i.e., doped with 0.08 wt% of graphene, is 20 μV/K (and 160 μW m -1 K -2 ) and 10 μV/K (and 19.5 μW m -1 K -2 ), respectively. The obtained electrical conductivity and thermoelectric properties of graphene-doped hybrid film are interestingly several orders higher than the pristine hybrid films. A thermocouple device fabricated utilizing the p- and n-type graphene-doped hybrid films can generate an electric voltage as high as 2.2 mV under a temperature difference between the hot-side and the cold-side terminal as only low as 55 K. This is equivalent to the output power as high as 24.2 nW (for output load as high as 50

  19. Applications of thermoelectric modules on heat flow detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leephakpreeda, Thananchai

    2012-03-01

    This paper presents quantitative analysis and practical scenarios of implementation of the thermoelectric module for heat flow detection. Mathematical models of the thermoelectric effects are derived to describe the heat flow from/to the detected media. It is observed that the amount of the heat flow through the thermoelectric module proportionally induces the conduction heat owing to the temperature difference between the hot side and the cold side of the thermoelectric module. In turn, the Seebeck effect takes place in the thermoelectric module where the temperature difference is converted to the electric voltage. Hence, the heat flow from/to the detected media can be observed from both the amount and the polarity of the voltage across the thermoelectric module. Two experiments are demonstrated for viability of the proposed technique by the measurements of the heat flux through the building wall and thermal radiation from the outdoor environment during daytime. Copyright © 2011 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Effective use of thermal energy at both hot and cold side of thermoelectric module for developing efficient thermoelectric water distillation system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Madhhachi, Hayder; Min, Gao

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • New distillation process using thermoelectric to assist evaporation/condensation. • Novel thermoelectric distillation system with reduced specific energy consumption. • Freshwater production by thermoelectrically assisted evaporation and condensation. - Abstract: An efficient thermoelectric distillation system has been designed and constructed for production of drinkable water. The unique design of this system is to use the heat from hot side of the thermoelectric module for water evaporation and the cold side for vapour condensation simultaneously. This novel design significantly reduces energy consumption and improves the system performance. The results of experiments show that the average water production is 28.5 mL/h with a specific energy consumption of 0.00114 kW h/mL in an evaporation chamber filled with 10 × 10 × 30 mm"3 of water. This is significantly lower than the energy consumption required by other existing thermoelectric distillation systems. The results also show that a maximum temperature difference between the hot and cold side of the thermoelectric module is 42.3 °C, which led to temperature increases of 26.4 °C and 8.4 °C in water and vapour, respectively.

  1. Review on Polymers for Thermoelectric Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culebras, Mario; Gómez, Clara M; Cantarero, Andrés

    2014-09-18

    In this review, we report the state-of-the-art of polymers in thermoelectricity. Classically, a number of inorganic compounds have been considered as the best thermoelectric materials. Since the prediction of the improvement of the figure of merit by means of electronic confinement in 1993, it has been improved by a factor of 3-4. In the mean time, organic materials, in particular intrinsically conducting polymers, had been considered as competitors of classical thermoelectrics, since their figure of merit has been improved several orders of magnitude in the last few years. We review here the evolution of the figure of merit or the power factor during the last years, and the best candidates to compete with inorganic materials. We also outline the best polymers to substitute classical thermoelectric materials and the advantages they present in comparison with inorganic systems.

  2. Thermoelectric effects in a rectangular Aharonov-Bohm geometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pye, A. J.; Faux, D. A.; Kearney, M. J.

    2016-04-01

    The thermoelectric transport properties of a rectangular Aharonov-Bohm ring at low temperature are investigated using a theoretical approach based on Green's functions. The oscillations in the transmission coefficient as the field is varied can be used to tune the thermoelectric response of the ring. Large magnitude thermopowers are obtainable which, in conjunction with low conductance, can result in a high thermoelectric figure of merit. The effects of single site impurities and more general Anderson disorder are considered explicitly in the context of evaluating their effect on the Fano-type resonances in the transmission coefficient. Importantly, it is shown that even for moderate levels of disorder, the thermoelectric figure of merit can remain significant, increasing the appeal of such structures from the perspective of specialist thermoelectric applications.

  3. Protection and thermal management of thermoelectric generator system using phase change materials: An experimental investigation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahmadi Atouei, Saeed; Rezaniakolaei, Alireza; Ranjbar, A.A.

    2018-01-01

    In most thermoelectric systems the thermal boundary conditions are transient, and thermal manage-ment of the system is critical to improve electrical performance of the system. In this study, effect of using phase change materials (PCM) to control the hot and cold side temperatures...

  4. Thermoelectric generator experimental performance testing for wireless sensor network application in smart buildings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Al Musleh Mohamed

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In order to make a conventional building more efficient or smarter, systems feedbacks are essential. Such feedbacks can include real-time or logged data from various systems, such as temperature, humidity, lighting and CO2 levels. This is only possible by the use of a network of sensors which report to the building management system. Conventional sensors are limited due to wiring and infrastructure requirements. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN however, eliminates the wiring limitations but still in certain cases require periodical battery changes and maintenance. A suitable solution for WSN limitations is to use different types of ambient energy harvesters to power battery-less sensors or alternatively to charge existing batteries so as to reduce their changing requirements. Such systems are already in place using various energy harvesting techniques. Thermoelectric Generators (TEG are one of them where the temperature gradient is used to generate electricity which is conditioned and used for WSN powering applications. Researchers in this field often face difficulty in estimating the TEG output at the low-temperature difference as manufacturers’ datasheets and performance data are not following the same standards and in most cases cover the high-temperature difference (more than 200C°. This is sufficient for industrial applications but not for WSN systems in the built environment where the temperature difference is much smaller (1-20C° is covered in this study. This paper presents a TEG experimental test setup using a temperature controlled hotplate in order to provide accurate TEG performance data at the low-temperature difference range.

  5. Investigation of mesoporous structures for thermoelectric applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cojocaru, A.; Carstensen, J.; Foell, H.; Boor, J.; Schmidt, V.

    2011-01-01

    Mesoporous silicon is an attractive material for thermoelectric application. For pore wall thicknesses around <100 nm, phonons can not penetrate the porous layer while electrons still can, due to there smaller mean free path length. The resulting good electrical and bad thermal conductivity is a premise for efficient thermoelectric devices. This paper presents results regarding homogeneity, high porosity, and optimal pore wall thicknesses for porous silicon based thermoelectric devices.

  6. The effect of doping on thermoelectric performance of p-type SnSe: Promising thermoelectric material

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, Niraj Kumar; Bathula, Sivaiah; Gahtori, Bhasker [CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy, CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, Dr. K. S. Krishnan Road, New Delhi 110012 (India); Tyagi, Kriti [CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy, CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, Dr. K. S. Krishnan Road, New Delhi 110012 (India); Acdemy of Scientific and Innovative Research (AcSIR), CSIR-National Physical Laboratory (NPL) Campus, New Delhi (India); Haranath, D. [CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy, CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, Dr. K. S. Krishnan Road, New Delhi 110012 (India); Dhar, Ajay, E-mail: adhar@nplindia.org [CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy, CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, Dr. K. S. Krishnan Road, New Delhi 110012 (India)

    2016-05-25

    Tin selenide (SnSe) based thermoelectric materials are being explored for making inexpensive and efficient thermoelectric devices with improved thermoelectric efficiency. As both Sn and Se are earth abundant and relatively inexpensive and these alloys do not involve toxic materials, such as lead and expensive tellurium. Hence, in the present study, we have synthesized SnSe doped with 2 at% of aluminium (Al), lead (Pb), indium (In) and copper (Cu) individually, which is not reported in literature. Out of these, Cu doped SnSe resulted in enhancement of figure-of-merit (zT) of ∼0.7 ± 0.02 at 773 K, synthesized employing conventional fusion method followed by spark plasma sintering. This enhancement in zT is ∼16% over the existing state-of-the-art value for p-type SnSe alloy doped with expensive Ag. This enhancement in ZT is primarily due to the presence of Cu{sub 2}Se second phase associated with intrinsic nanostructure formation of SnSe. This enhancement has been corroborated with the microstructural characterization using field emission scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction studies. Also, Cu doped SnSe exhibited a higher value of carrier concentration in comparison to other samples doped with Al, Pb and In. Further, the compatibility factor of Cu doped SnSe alloys exhibited value of 1.62 V{sup −1} at 773 K and it is suitable to segment with most of the novel TE materials for obtaining the higher thermoelectric efficiencies. - Highlights: • Tin selenide (SnSe) doped with non-toxic and inexpensive dopants. • Synthesized highly dense SnSe employing Spark plasma sintering. • Enhanced thermoelectric compatibility factor of SnSe. • Enhanced thermoelectric performance of SnSe doped with Copper.

  7. Thermoelectric transport in superlattices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reinecke, T L; Broido, D A

    1997-07-01

    The thermoelectric transport properties of superlattices have been studied using an exact solution of the Boltzmann equation. The role of heat transport along the barrier layers, of carrier tunneling through the barriers, of valley degeneracy and of the well width and energy dependences of the carrier-phonon scattering rates on the thermoelectric figure of merit are given. Calculations are given for Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and for PbTe, and the results of recent experiments are discussed.

  8. THERMOELECTRIC PROPERTIES OF HOT-PRESSED p-TYPE Mg2Si0.3Sn0.7 SOLID SOLUTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. N. Isachenko

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available It is shown that thermoelectric energy conversion which gives the possibility for utilizing a low potential heat is one of the ways for adoption of energy-saving technologies; and semiconductor materials with p-type and n-type conductivities having high thermoelectric figure of merit are necessary for operation of thermoelectric generators. The paper deals with possibility of usage of the p-Mg2Si0.3Sn0.7 solid solution (with a nanostructured modification as a couple for the well studied thermoelectric material based on n-Mg2Si-Mg2Sn. A technological scheme for fabrication of heavily doped Mg2Si0.3Sn0.7 solid solution of p-type by hot pressing from nanopowder is developed. The given technology has made it possible to reduce duration of a homogeneous material fabrication and has improved its physical and chemical properties. The samples were made by three ways: direct fusion for polycrystals fabrication; hot pressing from microparticles; nanostructuring, i.e. hot pressing from nanoparticles. By X-ray diffraction it is shown that sizes of structural elements in the fabricated samples are about 40 nm. The probe technique is used for measurement of electric conductivity and Seebeck coefficient. The stationary absolute method is used for measurement of thermal conductivity. Thermoelectric figure of merit is defined by measured values of kinetic coefficients in the temperatures range of 77 – 800 K. It was demonstrated, that electric conductivity, Seebeck coefficient and the power factor do not depend practically on a way of solid solution preparation. Thermal conductivity of samples pressed from nanoparticles has appeared to be higher, than of samples, obtained by direct fusion; i.e. in this case nanostructuring has not led to increase of thermoelectric figure of merit. The conclusion is drawn, that polycrystalline semiconductor Mg2Si0.3Sn0.7 can be used as a p-branch for a thermoelectric generator though nanostructuring has not led to the figure of

  9. Electrochemically deposited BiTe-based nano wires for thermoelectric applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inn-Khuan, N.; Kuan-Ying, K.; Che Zuraini Che Abdul Rahman; Nur Ubaidah Saidin; Suhaila Hani Ilias; Thye-Foo, C.

    2013-01-01

    Full-text: Nano structured materials systems such as thin-films and nano wires (NWs) are promising for thermoelectric power generation and refrigeration compared to traditional counterparts in bulk, due to their enhanced thermoelectric figures-of-merit. BiTe and its derivative compounds, in particular, are well-known for their near-room temperature thermoelectric performance. In this work, both the binary and ternary BiTe-based nano wires namely, BiTe and BiSbTe, were synthesized using template-assisted electrodeposition. Diameters of the nano wires were controlled by the pore sizes of the anodised alumina (AAO) templates used. Systematic study on the compositional change as a function of applied potential was carried out via Linear Sweep Voltametry (LSV). Chemical compositions of the nano wires were studied using Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectrometry (EDXS) and their microstructures evaluated using diffraction and imaging techniques. Results from chemical analysis on the nano wires indicated that while the Sb content in BiSbTe nano wires increased with more negative deposition potentials, the formation of Te 0 and Bi 2 Te 3 were favorable at more positive potentials. (author)

  10. Thermoelectric-figure-of-merit enhancement of silicon-germanium through nanocomposite concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dezhi

    SiGe alloy has been the thermoelectric material element of RTGs (Radioisotope thermoelectric power generators) for more than 20 years because of its good performance at high temperature. It also has a very high potential application in converting exhaust heat into useful electricity, which currently attracts a lot of research interest in the automotive industry where 40% of the energy was rejected as exhaust heat. However, its low conversion efficiency (8%) is a major concern although it is the best in practice. A new concept, namely Si-Ge nanocomposite, was proposed to enhance thermoelectric figure-of-merit. Fast heating pressure sintering was found to be an appropriate synthesizing method and a lab-made direct current-induced hot press system was established. It can reach l200°C within several minutes and many parameters can be controlled. The uniquely designed graphite die assembly can stand l60MPa pressure which is better than the best commercial products (127MPa). Numerous Si-Ge nanocomposite samples were pressed using our DC hot press. Fully dense n-type Si-Ge nanocomposite samples of nanoSi80nanoGe20P were finally obtained. The nanocomposite structure was characterized via XRD, SEM, EDS, and TEM. The proposed nanocomposite structure, dots in a matrix, was observed. Most importantly, the thermoelectric property measurements showed that the Si-Ge nanocomposite of n-type nanoSi80nanoGe20 possessed higher electrical conductivity but lower thermal conductivity, thus a higher ZT than that of n-type nanoSi80microGe20. This result proved that thermoelectric-figure-of-merit enhancement through the nanocomposite concept was the right direction.

  11. Thermoelectric-induced spin currents in single-molecule magnet tunnel junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhengzhong; Jiang, Liang; Wang, Ruiqiang; Wang, Baigeng; Xing, D. Y.

    2010-12-01

    A molecular spin-current generator is proposed, which consists of a single-molecule magnet (SMM) coupled to two normal metal electrodes with temperature gradient. It is shown that this tunneling junction can generate a highly spin-polarized current by thermoelectric effects, whose flowing direction and spin polarization can be changed by adjusting the gate voltage applied to the SMM. This device can be realized with current technologies and may have practical use in spintronics and quantum information.

  12. Environmental procedures for thermoelectric power plants by national mineral coal; Diretrizes ambientais para usinas termeletricas a carvao mineral nacional

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serra, M T.F.; Verney Gothe, C.A. de; Silva Ramos, R da

    1990-01-01

    This paper presents the environmental impacts decursive of utilization of South-Brazilian mineral coal to generation of electric energy. This environmental impacts and alternatives of attenuating measures are presented and evaluated, containing the totality of productive cycle: mining, processing, transport, stock piling and use in thermoelectric power plants. Environmental procedures are systematized for first time, in order to be observed in whole expansion of coal thermoelectric generator park. The conception of power plants and site studies of their useful lives are also included. (C.M.). 19 figs, 24 tabs.

  13. Withdrawal and consumption of water by thermoelectric power plants in the United States, 2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diehl, Timothy H.; Harris, Melissa A.

    2014-01-01

    Estimates of water use at thermoelectric plants were developed by the U.S. Geological Survey based on linked heat and water budgets, and complement reported thermoelectric water withdrawals and consumption. The heat- and water-budget models produced withdrawal and consumption estimates, including thermodynamically plausible ranges of minimum and maximum withdrawal and consumption, for 1,290 water-using plants in the United States for 2010. Total estimated withdrawal for 2010 was about 129 billion gallons per day (Bgal/d), and total estimated consumption was about 3.5 Bgal/d. In contrast, total withdrawal reported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration (EIA), was about 24 percent higher than the modeled estimates, and total EIA-reported consumption was about 8 percent lower. Most thermoelectric generation in 2010 was not associated with thermodynamically plausible EIA-reported values of both withdrawal and consumption.

  14. Review on Polymers for Thermoelectric Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario Culebras

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In this review, we report the state-of-the-art of polymers in thermoelectricity. Classically, a number of inorganic compounds have been considered as the best thermoelectric materials. Since the prediction of the improvement of the figure of merit by means of electronic confinement in 1993, it has been improved by a factor of 3–4. In the mean time, organic materials, in particular intrinsically conducting polymers, had been considered as competitors of classical thermoelectrics, since their figure of merit has been improved several orders of magnitude in the last few years. We review here the evolution of the figure of merit or the power factor during the last years, and the best candidates to compete with inorganic materials. We also outline the best polymers to substitute classical thermoelectric materials and the advantages they present in comparison with inorganic systems.

  15. Mechanical properties of thermoelectric n-type magnesium silicide synthesized employing in situ spark plasma reaction sintering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthiah, Saravanan; Singh, R. C.; Pathak, B. D.; Dhar, Ajay

    2017-07-01

    Thermoelectric devices employing magnesium silicide (Mg2Si) offer an inexpensive and non-toxic solution for green energy generation compared to other existing conventional thermoelectric materials in the mid-temperature range. However, apart from the thermoelectric performance, their mechanical properties are equally important in order to avoid the catastrophic failure of their modules during actual operation. In the present study, we report the synthesis of Mg2Si co-doped with Bi and Sb employing in situ spark plasma reaction sintering and investigate its broad range of mechanical properties. The mechanical properties of the sintered co-doped Mg2Si suggest a significantly enhanced value of hardness ~5.4  ±  0.2 GPa and an elastic modulus ~142.5  ±  6 GPa with a fracture toughness of ~1.71  ±  0.1 MPa  √m. The thermal shock resistance, which is one of the most vital parameter for designing thermoelectric devices, was found to be ~300 W m-1, which is higher than most of the other existing state-of-the-art mid-temperature thermoelectric materials. The friction and wear characteristics of sintered co-doped Mg2Si have been reported for the first time, in order to realize the sustainability of their thermoelectric modules under actual hostile environmental conditions.

  16. Thermoelectric properties of WSi{sub 2}–Si{sub x}Ge{sub 1−x} composites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dynys, F.W.; Sayir, A. [NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH 44135 (United States); Mackey, J., E-mail: jam151@zips.uakron.edu [Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Akron, Akron, OH 44325 (United States); Sehirlioglu, A. [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106 (United States)

    2014-08-01

    Highlights: • We explore a novel W/Si/Ge composite system for thermoelectric applications. • The influence of crucible selection on electrical properties is investigated. • Introduction of W can reduce the expensive Ge component of the alloy. - Abstract: Thermoelectric properties of the W/Si/Ge alloy system have been investigated with varying concentration levels of germanium and tungsten. The alloys were fabricated by directional solidification with the Bridgman method using boron nitride and fused silica crucibles. The effect of crucible contamination was investigated and found to result in doping the system to suitable levels for thermoelectric applications. The system has been demonstrated as a suitable high temperature p-type thermoelectric material exhibiting high power factors, >3000 μW/m K{sup 2}. Seebeck coefficients of the system are on the order of +300 μV/K and electrical conductivities of 2.8 × 10{sup 4} S/m at the optimum operating temperature. The best composition, 0.9 at% W/9.3 at% Ge, achieved a figure of merit comparable to RTG values over the temperature range of interest. The results suggest that W addition can reduce the use of expensive Ge component of the alloy. Reported are the details of processing conditions, microstructure development, and temperature dependent thermoelectric properties. The material system was stable at the temperatures required for NASA’s radioisotope thermoelectric generators.

  17. High Performance High Temperature Thermoelectric Composites with Metallic Inclusions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, James M. (Inventor); Bux, Sabah K. (Inventor); Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Ravi, Vilupanur A. (Inventor); Firdosy, Samad A. (Inventor); Star, Kurt (Inventor); Kaner, Richard B. (Inventor)

    2017-01-01

    The present invention provides a composite thermoelectric material. The composite thermoelectric material can include a semiconductor material comprising a rare earth metal. The atomic percent of the rare earth metal in the semiconductor material can be at least about 20%. The composite thermoelectric material can further include a metal forming metallic inclusions distributed throughout the semiconductor material. The present invention also provides a method of forming this composite thermoelectric material.

  18. Thermoelectric properties of one-dimensional graphene antidot arrays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yan, Yonghong; Liang, Qi-Feng; Zhao, Hui; Wu, Chang-Qin; Li, Baowen

    2012-01-01

    We investigate the thermoelectric properties of one-dimensional (1D) graphene antidot arrays by nonequilibrium Green's function method. We show that by introducing antidots to the pristine graphene nanoribbon the thermal conductance can be reduced greatly while keeping the power factor still high, thus leading to an enhanced thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT). Our numerical results indicate that ZT values of 1D antidot graphene arrays can be up to unity, which means the 1D graphene antidot arrays may be promising for thermoelectric applications. -- Highlights: ► We study thermoelectric properties of one-dimensional (1D) graphene antidot arrays. ► Thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) of 1D antidot arrays can exceed unity. ► ZT of 1D antidot arrays is larger than that of two-dimensional arrays.

  19. Deployable Thermoelectric Metamaterial Energy Harvesting Monitoring System

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project will combine a novel asynchronous monitoring system with the first-of-its-kind thermoelectric metamaterial.  The thermoelectric prototype is constructed...

  20. Thermoelectric characterization of Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} thin films deposited by ALD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zastrow, Sebastian; Schumacher, Christian; Nielsch, Kornelius [University of Hamburg (Germany); Regus, Matthias [University of Kiel (Germany); Schulz, Stephan [University of Duisburg-Essen (Germany)

    2012-07-01

    Thermoelectric materials can be used as temperature sensors or peltier cooling devices as well as to recover a part of the massive losses of energy due to the waste heat generated in fossil-fuel driven power plants and vehicles. Antimony Telluride (Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) is a p-doped semiconductor and in the focus of interest for room temperature applications because of its thermoelectric peak performance at around 350 K. However, thermoelectric properties of Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} ALD thin films have not been reported yet. Based on the work of Pore et al., Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} is deposited with a home-made reactor on SiO{sub 2} by using (Et{sub 3}Si){sub 2}Te and SbCl{sub 3}. The surface roughness as well as the growth rate depend strongly on the deposition temperature as reported by Cu et al. To check the preferential growth directions and the composition, XRD and EDX measurements are carried out. The thermoelectric properties are influenced by the deposition parameters. Therefore, spatial scans of the Seebeck coefficient are performed and the electrical resistivity is measured. In order to enhance the thermoelectric performance, a first optimization by short annealing processes is done under helium atmosphere up to 570 K. The authors