Science.gov

Sample records for absolute thermoelectric power

  1. Understanding the resistivity and absolute thermoelectric power of disordered metals and alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gasser, Jean-Georges

    2008-03-01

    We recall definitions of the electronic transport properties, direct coefficients like electrical and thermal transport conductivities and crossed thermoelectric coefficients like the Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson coefficients. We discuss the links between the different electronic transport coefficients and the experimental problems in measuring these properties in liquid metals. The electronic transport properties are interpreted in terms of the scattering of electrons by 'pseudo-atoms'. The absolute thermoelectric power (ATP), thermopower or Seebeck coefficient is known as the derivative of the electrical resistivity versus energy. The key is to understand the concept of resistivity versus energy. We show that the resistivity follows approximately a 1/E curve. The structure factor modulates this curve and, for a Fermi energy corresponding to noble and divalent metals, induces a positive thermopower when the free electron theory predicts a negative one. A second modulation is introduced by the pseudopotential squared form factor or equivalently by the squared t matrix of the scattering potential. This term sometimes introduces an anti-resonance (divalent metals) which lowers the resistivity, and sometimes a resonance having an important effect on the transition metals. Following the position of the Fermi energy, the thermopower can be positive or negative. For heavy semi-metals, the density of states splits into an s and a p band, themselves different from a free electron E0.5 curve. The electrons available to be scattered enter the Ziman formula. Thus if the density of states is not a free electron one, a third modulation of the \\rho \\cong 1/E curve is needed, which also can change the sign of the thermopower. For alloys, different contributions weighted by the concentrations are needed to explain the concentration dependent resistivity or thermopower. The formalism is the same for amorphous metals. It is possible that this mechanism can be extended to high

  2. New experimental methodology, setup and LabView program for accurate absolute thermoelectric power and electrical resistivity measurements between 25 and 1600 K: Application to pure copper, platinum, tungsten, and nickel at very high temperatures

    SciTech Connect

    Abadlia, L.; Mayoufi, M.; Gasser, F.; Khalouk, K.; Gasser, J. G.

    2014-09-15

    In this paper we describe an experimental setup designed to measure simultaneously and very accurately the resistivity and the absolute thermoelectric power, also called absolute thermopower or absolute Seebeck coefficient, of solid and liquid conductors/semiconductors over a wide range of temperatures (room temperature to 1600 K in present work). A careful analysis of the existing experimental data allowed us to extend the absolute thermoelectric power scale of platinum to the range 0-1800 K with two new polynomial expressions. The experimental device is controlled by a LabView program. A detailed description of the accurate dynamic measurement methodology is given in this paper. We measure the absolute thermoelectric power and the electrical resistivity and deduce with a good accuracy the thermal conductivity using the relations between the three electronic transport coefficients, going beyond the classical Wiedemann-Franz law. We use this experimental setup and methodology to give new very accurate results for pure copper, platinum, and nickel especially at very high temperatures. But resistivity and absolute thermopower measurement can be more than an objective in itself. Resistivity characterizes the bulk of a material while absolute thermoelectric power characterizes the material at the point where the electrical contact is established with a couple of metallic elements (forming a thermocouple). In a forthcoming paper we will show that the measurement of resistivity and absolute thermoelectric power characterizes advantageously the (change of) phase, probably as well as DSC (if not better), since the change of phases can be easily followed during several hours/days at constant temperature.

  3. New experimental methodology, setup and LabView program for accurate absolute thermoelectric power and electrical resistivity measurements between 25 and 1600 K: application to pure copper, platinum, tungsten, and nickel at very high temperatures.

    PubMed

    Abadlia, L; Gasser, F; Khalouk, K; Mayoufi, M; Gasser, J G

    2014-09-01

    In this paper we describe an experimental setup designed to measure simultaneously and very accurately the resistivity and the absolute thermoelectric power, also called absolute thermopower or absolute Seebeck coefficient, of solid and liquid conductors/semiconductors over a wide range of temperatures (room temperature to 1600 K in present work). A careful analysis of the existing experimental data allowed us to extend the absolute thermoelectric power scale of platinum to the range 0-1800 K with two new polynomial expressions. The experimental device is controlled by a LabView program. A detailed description of the accurate dynamic measurement methodology is given in this paper. We measure the absolute thermoelectric power and the electrical resistivity and deduce with a good accuracy the thermal conductivity using the relations between the three electronic transport coefficients, going beyond the classical Wiedemann-Franz law. We use this experimental setup and methodology to give new very accurate results for pure copper, platinum, and nickel especially at very high temperatures. But resistivity and absolute thermopower measurement can be more than an objective in itself. Resistivity characterizes the bulk of a material while absolute thermoelectric power characterizes the material at the point where the electrical contact is established with a couple of metallic elements (forming a thermocouple). In a forthcoming paper we will show that the measurement of resistivity and absolute thermoelectric power characterizes advantageously the (change of) phase, probably as well as DSC (if not better), since the change of phases can be easily followed during several hours/days at constant temperature.

  4. Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems Segmented Thermoelectric Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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).

  5. Thermoelectric Devices Cool, Power Electronics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2009-01-01

    Nextreme Thermal Solutions Inc., based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, licensed thermoelectric technology from NASA s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This has allowed the company to develop cutting edge, thin-film thermoelectric coolers that effective remove heat generated by increasingly powerful and tightly packed microchip components. These solid-state coolers are ideal solutions for applications like microprocessors, laser diodes, LEDs, and even potentially for cooling the human body. Nextreme s NASA technology has also enabled the invention of thermoelectric generators capable of powering technologies like medical implants and wireless sensor networks.

  6. Thermoelectric power conversion in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Awaya, Henry I.; Ewell, Richard; Nesmith, Bill; Vandersande, James

    1990-01-01

    A radiatively-heated multicouple for use in the next generation of radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) will employ 20 individual couples within a single cell, so that 40 n- and p-semiconductor legs will be interconnected in series. At the hot end of the RTG, the legs will be electrically interconnected using silicon molybdenum; on the cold side, the legs are interconnected by tungsten. The entire cell is then mechanically attached to a radiator, which conducts heat away and radiates it into space. Deep-space applications will use RTGs developed for vacuum operation; thermoelectric converter power systems using a unicouple configuration have flown on such missions as Pioneers 10 and 11, which used lead telluride thermoelectric converters, and Voyagers I and II, which used silicon germanium-based thermoelectrics.

  7. Concentrated Solar Thermoelectric Power

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Gang; Ren, Zhifeng

    2015-07-09

    The goal of this project is to demonstrate in the lab that solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) can exceed 10% solar-to-electricity efficiency, and STEGs can be integrated with phase-change materials (PCM) for thermal storage, providing operation beyond daylight hours. This project achieved significant progress in many tasks necessary to achieving the overall project goals. An accurate Themoelectric Generator (TEG) model was developed, which included realistic treatment of contact materials, contact resistances and radiative losses. In terms of fabricating physical TEGs, high performance contact materials for skutterudite TE segments were developed, along with brazing and soldering methods to assemble segmented TEGs. Accurate measurement systems for determining device performance (in addition to just TE material performance) were built for this project and used to characterize our TEGs. From the optical components’ side, a spectrally selective cermet surface was developed with high solar absorptance and low thermal emittance, with thermal stability at high temperature. A measurement technique was also developed to determine absorptance and total hemispherical emittance at high temperature, and was used to characterize the fabricated spectrally selective surfaces. In addition, a novel reflective cavity was designed to reduce radiative absorber losses and achieve high receiver efficiency at low concentration ratios. A prototype cavity demonstrated that large reductions in radiative losses were possible through this technique. For the overall concentrating STEG system, a number of devices were fabricated and tested in a custom built test platform to characterize their efficiency performance. Additionally, testing was performed with integration of PCM thermal storage, and the storage time of the lab scale system was evaluated. Our latest testing results showed a STEG efficiency of 9.6%, indicating promising potential for high performance concentrated STEGs.

  8. Thermoelectric conversion for space nuclear power

    SciTech Connect

    Ewell, R.; Stapfer, G.

    1982-08-01

    A lightweight, high performance nuclear reactor power system can offer significant advantages for many space missions. Conceptual design has been completed for the SP-100, a system which utilizes many thermoelectric converters and is capable of delivering 100 kilowatts of electrical power. A reference design, using thermoelectric materials with an average figure of merit of 1.0 X 10/sup -3/K/sup -1/ and a reactor heat pipe temperature of 1500 K, is presented which has a mass of 2280 kg not including contingency. The sensitivity of system mass to changes in the configuration and thermoelectric material properties are presented.

  9. Thermoelectric conversion for space nuclear power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ewell, R.; Stapfer, G.

    1982-01-01

    A lightweight, high performance nuclear reactor power system can offer significant advantages for many space missions. Conceptual design has been completed for the SP-100, a system which utilizes many thermoelectric converters and is capable of delivering 100 kilowatts of electrical power. A reference design, using thermoelectric materials with an average figure of merit of 0.001/K and a reactor heat pipe temperature of 1500 K, is presented which has a mass of 2280 kg not including contingency. The sensitivity of system mass to changes in the configuration and thermoelectric material properties are presented

  10. Heat Management in Thermoelectric Power Generators.

    PubMed

    Zebarjadi, M

    2016-04-01

    Thermoelectric power generators are used to convert heat into electricity. Like any other heat engine, the performance of a thermoelectric generator increases as the temperature difference on the sides increases. It is generally assumed that as more heat is forced through the thermoelectric legs, their performance increases. Therefore, insulations are typically used to minimize the heat losses and to confine the heat transport through the thermoelectric legs. In this paper we show that to some extend it is beneficial to purposely open heat loss channels in order to establish a larger temperature gradient and therefore to increase the overall efficiency and achieve larger electric power output. We define a modified Biot number (Bi) as an indicator of requirements for sidewall insulation. We show cooling from sidewalls increases the efficiency for Bi values less than one, and decreases the efficiency for Bi values larger than one.

  11. Heat Management in Thermoelectric Power Generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zebarjadi, M.

    2016-04-01

    Thermoelectric power generators are used to convert heat into electricity. Like any other heat engine, the performance of a thermoelectric generator increases as the temperature difference on the sides increases. It is generally assumed that as more heat is forced through the thermoelectric legs, their performance increases. Therefore, insulations are typically used to minimize the heat losses and to confine the heat transport through the thermoelectric legs. In this paper we show that to some extend it is beneficial to purposely open heat loss channels in order to establish a larger temperature gradient and therefore to increase the overall efficiency and achieve larger electric power output. We define a modified Biot number (Bi) as an indicator of requirements for sidewall insulation. We show cooling from sidewalls increases the efficiency for Bi values less than one, and decreases the efficiency for Bi values larger than one.

  12. Heat Management in Thermoelectric Power Generators

    PubMed Central

    Zebarjadi, M.

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric power generators are used to convert heat into electricity. Like any other heat engine, the performance of a thermoelectric generator increases as the temperature difference on the sides increases. It is generally assumed that as more heat is forced through the thermoelectric legs, their performance increases. Therefore, insulations are typically used to minimize the heat losses and to confine the heat transport through the thermoelectric legs. In this paper we show that to some extend it is beneficial to purposely open heat loss channels in order to establish a larger temperature gradient and therefore to increase the overall efficiency and achieve larger electric power output. We define a modified Biot number (Bi) as an indicator of requirements for sidewall insulation. We show cooling from sidewalls increases the efficiency for Bi values less than one, and decreases the efficiency for Bi values larger than one. PMID:27033717

  13. Heat Management in Thermoelectric Power Generators.

    PubMed

    Zebarjadi, M

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric power generators are used to convert heat into electricity. Like any other heat engine, the performance of a thermoelectric generator increases as the temperature difference on the sides increases. It is generally assumed that as more heat is forced through the thermoelectric legs, their performance increases. Therefore, insulations are typically used to minimize the heat losses and to confine the heat transport through the thermoelectric legs. In this paper we show that to some extend it is beneficial to purposely open heat loss channels in order to establish a larger temperature gradient and therefore to increase the overall efficiency and achieve larger electric power output. We define a modified Biot number (Bi) as an indicator of requirements for sidewall insulation. We show cooling from sidewalls increases the efficiency for Bi values less than one, and decreases the efficiency for Bi values larger than one. PMID:27033717

  14. Thermoelectric power generator with intermediate loop

    DOEpatents

    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.

  15. Thermoelectric power generator with intermediate loop

    DOEpatents

    Bel,; Lon E.; Crane, Douglas Todd

    2009-10-27

    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.

  16. Microfabricated thermoelectric power-generation devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Ryan, Margaret A. (Inventor); Borshchevsky, Alex (Inventor); Phillips, Wayne (Inventor); Kolawa, Elizabeth A. (Inventor); Snyder, G. Jeffrey (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor); Kascich, Thorsten (Inventor); Mueller, Peter (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    A device for generating power to run an electronic component. The device includes a heat-conducting substrate (composed, e.g., of diamond or another high thermal conductivity material) disposed in thermal contact with a high temperature region. During operation, heat flows from the high temperature region into the heat-conducting substrate, from which the heat flows into the electrical power generator. A thermoelectric material (e.g., a BiTe alloy-based film or other thermoelectric material) is placed in thermal contact with the heat-conducting substrate. A low temperature region is located on the side of the thermoelectric material opposite that of the high temperature region. The thermal gradient generates electrical power and drives an electrical component.

  17. Microfabricated thermoelectric power-generation devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Ryan, Margaret A. (Inventor); Borshchevsky, Alex (Inventor); Phillips, Wayne (Inventor); Kolawa, Elizabeth A. (Inventor); Snyder, G. Jeffrey (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor); Kascich, Thorsten (Inventor); Mueller, Peter (Inventor)

    2002-01-01

    A device for generating power to run an electronic component. The device includes a heat-conducting substrate (composed, e.g., of diamond or another high thermal conductivity material) disposed in thermal contact with a high temperature region. During operation, heat flows from the high temperature region into the heat-conducting substrate, from which the heat flows into the electrical power generator. A thermoelectric material (e.g., a BiTe alloy-based film or other thermoelectric material) is placed in thermal contact with the heat-conducting substrate. A low temperature region is located on the side of the thermoelectric material opposite that of the high temperature region. The thermal gradient generates electrical power and drives an electrical component.

  18. Thermoelectric power generator for variable thermal power source

    DOEpatents

    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.

  19. Special Application Thermoelectric Micro Isotope Power Sources

    SciTech Connect

    Heshmatpour, Ben; Lieberman, Al; Khayat, Mo; Leanna, Andrew; Dobry, Ted

    2008-01-21

    Promising design concepts for milliwatt (mW) size micro isotope power sources (MIPS) are being sought for use in various space and terrestrial applications, including a multitude of future NASA scientific missions and a range of military applications. To date, the radioisotope power sources (RPS) used on various space and terrestrial programs have provided power levels ranging from one-half to several hundred watts. In recent years, the increased use of smaller spacecraft and planned new scientific space missions by NASA, special terrestrial and military applications suggest the need for lower power, including mW level, radioisotope power sources. These power sources have the potential to enable such applications as long-lived meteorological or seismological stations distributed across planetary surfaces, surface probes, deep space micro-spacecraft and sub-satellites, terrestrial sensors, transmitters, and micro-electromechanical systems. The power requirements are in the range of 1 mW to several hundred mW. The primary technical requirements for space applications are long life, high reliability, high specific power, and high power density, and those for some special military uses are very high power density, specific power, reliability, low radiological induced degradation, and very low radiation leakage. Thermoelectric conversion is of particular interest because of its technological maturity and proven reliability. This paper summarizes the thermoelectric, thermal, and radioisotope heat source designs and presents the corresponding performance for a number of mW size thermoelectric micro isotope power sources.

  20. Thermoelectric unicouple used for power generation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caillat, Thierry (Inventor); Zoltan, Andrew (Inventor); Zoltan, Leslie (Inventor); Snyder, Jeffrey (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    A high-efficiency thermoelectric unicouple is used for power generation. The unicouple is formed with a plurality of legs, each leg formed of a plurality of segments. The legs are formed in a way that equalizes certain aspects of the different segments. Different materials are also described.

  1. Lunar Base Thermoelectric Power Station Study

    SciTech Connect

    Determan, William; Frye, Patrick; Mondt, Jack; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Johnson, Ken; Stapfer, Gerhard; Brooks, Michael; Heshmatpour, Ben

    2006-01-20

    Under NASA's Project Prometheus, the Nuclear Space Power Systems Program, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne, and Teledyne Energy Systems have teamed with a number of universities, under the Segmented Thermoelectric Multicouple Converter (STMC) Task, 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 promising candidates for 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 a lunar base power station where kilowatts of power would be 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 particular mission concept. 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 as well as transport issues for this concept. The goal of the study was to review the entire life cycle of

  2. Thermoelectric power generation for hybrid-electric vehicle auxiliary power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Headings, Leon M.; Washington, Gregory N.; Midlam-Mohler, Shawn; Heremans, Joseph P.

    2009-03-01

    The plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle (PHEV) concept allows for a moderate driving range in electric mode but uses an onboard range extender to capitalize on the high energy density of fuels using a combustion-based generator, typically using an internal combustion engine. An alternative being developed here is a combustion-based thermoelectric generator in order to develop systems technologies which capitalize on the high power density and inherent benefits of solid-state thermoelectric power generation. This thermoelectric power unit may find application in many military, industrial, and consumer applications including range extension for PHEVs. In this research, a baseline prototype was constructed using a novel multi-fuel atomizer with diesel fuel, a conventional thermoelectric heat exchange configuration, and a commercially available bismuth telluride module (maximum 225°C). This prototype successfully demonstrated the viability of diesel fuel for thermoelectric power generation, provided a baseline performance for evaluating future improvements, provided the mechanism to develop simulation and analysis tools and methods, and highlighted areas requiring development. The improvements in heat transfer efficiency using catalytic combustion were evaluated, the system was redesigned to operate at temperatures around 500 °C, and the performance of advanced high temperature thermoelectric modules was examined.

  3. Lunar base thermoelectric power station study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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

  4. Thermoelectric Powered High Temperature Wireless Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kucukkomurler, Ahmet

    This study describes use of a thermoelectric power converter to transform waste heat into electrical energy to power an RF receiver and transmitter, for use in harsh environment wireless temperature sensing and telemetry. The sensing and transmitting module employs a DS-1820 low power digital temperature sensor to perform temperature to voltage conversion, an ATX-34 RF transmitter, an ARX-34 RF receiver module, and a PIC16f84A microcontroller to synchronize data communication between them. The unit has been tested in a laboratory environment, and promising results have been obtained for an actual automotive wireless under hood temperature sensing and telemetry implementation.

  5. Achieving Maximum Power in Thermoelectric Generation with Simple Power Electronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Youn, Nari; Lee, Hohyun; Wee, Daehyun; Gomez, Miguel; Reid, Rachel; Ohara, Brandon

    2014-06-01

    A thermoelectric generator typically delivers a relatively low power output, and hence it is of great practical importance to determine a design and operating condition close to those which can provide the maximum attainable power. To maintain a favorable condition for the maximum power output, power electronics circuits are usually applied. One of the simplest methods is to control the operating voltage at half the open-circuit voltage, assuming that the typical impedance-matching condition, in which the load and internal resistances are matched, yields the maximum power output. However, recent investigations have shown that, when external thermal resistances exist between the thermoelectric modules and thermal reservoirs, the impedance-matching condition is not identical to the condition for the maximum power output. In this article, it is argued that, although the impedance-matching condition is not the condition for maximum power output, the maximum power is still achievable when the operating voltage is kept at half the open-circuit voltage. More precisely, it is shown that the typical V- I curve for thermoelectric generators must show approximately linear behavior, which justifies the use of a simple strategy in thermoelectric power generation applications. The conditions for the validity of the approximation are mathematically discussed, supported by a few examples. Experimental evidence at room temperature is also provided.

  6. Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Thermoelectric Power Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buckle, J. R.; Knox, A.; Siviter, J.; Montecucco, A.

    2013-07-01

    Autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) are a vital part of the oceanographer's toolbox, allowing long-term measurements across a range of ocean depths of a number of ocean properties such as salinity, fluorescence, and temperature profile. Buoyancy-based gliding, rather than direct propulsion, dramatically reduces AUV power consumption and allows long-duration missions on the order of months rather than hours or days, allowing large distances to be analyzed or many successive analyses of a certain area without the need for retrieval. Recent versions of these gliders have seen the buoyancy variation system change from electrically powered to thermally powered using phase-change materials, however a significant battery pack is still required to power communications and sensors, with power consumption in the region of 250 mW. The authors propose a novel application of a thermoelectric generation system, utilizing the depth-related variation in oceanic temperature. A thermal energy store provides a temperature differential across which a thermoelectric device can generate from repeated dives, with the primary purpose of extending mission range. The system is modeled in Simulink to analyze the effect of variation in design parameters. The system proves capable of generating all required power for a modern AUV.

  7. Thermoelectric Fabrics: Toward Power Generating Clothing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Yong; Cai, Kefeng; Chen, Song; Wang, Hongxia; Shen, Shirley Z.; Donelson, Richard; Lin, Tong

    2015-03-01

    Herein, we demonstrate that a flexible, air-permeable, thermoelectric (TE) power generator can be prepared by applying a TE polymer (e.g. poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate)) coated commercial fabric and subsequently by linking the coated strips with a conductive connection (e.g. using fine metal wires). The poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate) coated fabric shows very stable TE properties from 300 K to 390 K. The fabric device can generate a TE voltage output (V) of 4.3 mV at a temperature difference (ΔT) of 75.2 K. The potential for using fabric TE devices to harvest body temperature energy has been discussed. Fabric-based TE devices may be useful for the development of new power generating clothing and self-powered wearable electronics.

  8. Thermoelectric fabrics: toward power generating clothing.

    PubMed

    Du, Yong; Cai, Kefeng; Chen, Song; Wang, Hongxia; Shen, Shirley Z; Donelson, Richard; Lin, Tong

    2015-03-23

    Herein, we demonstrate that a flexible, air-permeable, thermoelectric (TE) power generator can be prepared by applying a TE polymer (e.g. poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate)) coated commercial fabric and subsequently by linking the coated strips with a conductive connection (e.g. using fine metal wires). The poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate) coated fabric shows very stable TE properties from 300 K to 390 K. The fabric device can generate a TE voltage output (V) of 4.3 mV at a temperature difference (ΔT) of 75.2 K. The potential for using fabric TE devices to harvest body temperature energy has been discussed. Fabric-based TE devices may be useful for the development of new power generating clothing and self-powered wearable electronics.

  9. Thermoelectric Fabrics: Toward Power Generating Clothing

    PubMed Central

    Du, Yong; Cai, Kefeng; Chen, Song; Wang, Hongxia; Shen, Shirley Z.; Donelson, Richard; Lin, Tong

    2015-01-01

    Herein, we demonstrate that a flexible, air-permeable, thermoelectric (TE) power generator can be prepared by applying a TE polymer (e.g. poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate)) coated commercial fabric and subsequently by linking the coated strips with a conductive connection (e.g. using fine metal wires). The poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(4-styrenesulfonate) coated fabric shows very stable TE properties from 300 K to 390 K. The fabric device can generate a TE voltage output (V) of 4.3 mV at a temperature difference (ΔT) of 75.2 K. The potential for using fabric TE devices to harvest body temperature energy has been discussed. Fabric-based TE devices may be useful for the development of new power generating clothing and self-powered wearable electronics. PMID:25804132

  10. High Efficiency Thermoelectric Radioisotope Power Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    El-Genk, Mohamed; Saber, Hamed; Caillat, Thierry

    2004-01-01

    The work performed and whose results presented in this report is a joint effort between the University of New Mexico s Institute for Space and Nuclear Power Studies (ISNPS) and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), California Institute of Technology. In addition to the development, design, and fabrication of skutterudites and skutterudites-based segmented unicouples this effort included conducting performance tests of these unicouples for hundreds of hours to verify theoretical predictions of the conversion efficiency. The performance predictions of these unicouples are obtained using 1-D and 3-D models developed for that purpose and for estimating the actual performance and side heat losses in the tests conducted at ISNPS. In addition to the performance tests, the development of the 1-D and 3-D models and the development of Advanced Radioisotope Power systems for Beginning-Of-Life (BOM) power of 108 We are carried out at ISNPS. The materials synthesis and fabrication of the unicouples are carried out at JPL. The research conducted at ISNPS is documented in chapters 2-5 and that conducted at JP, in documented in chapter 5. An important consideration in the design and optimization of segmented thermoelectric unicouples (STUs) is determining the relative lengths, cross-section areas, and the interfacial temperatures of the segments of the different materials in the n- and p-legs. These variables are determined using a genetic algorithm (GA) in conjunction with one-dimensional analytical model of STUs that is developed in chapter 2. Results indicated that when optimized for maximum conversion efficiency, the interfacial temperatures between various segments in a STU are close to those at the intersections of the Figure-Of-Merit (FOM), ZT, curves of the thermoelectric materials of the adjacent segments. When optimizing the STUs for maximum electrical power density, however, the interfacial temperatures are different from those at the intersections of the ZT curves, but

  11. Development of Thermoelectric Self-Powered Heating Equipment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, K.; Hayden, A. C. S.

    2011-05-01

    In this work, a self-powered residential heating system was developed using thermoelectric generation technology. A full-size prototype was designed, constructed, and tested, in which Bi2Te3-based thermoelectric modules were incorporated into a gas-fired heating boiler. Up to 161 W of electricity is generated by the thermoelectric modules. This is sufficient to power all the electrical components of the residential heating equipment including pump, fan, blower, valves, and control panel. In this way, the heating system can operate entirely on fuel combustion and does not need externally generated electricity. The performance of the thermoelectric devices has been investigated in the integrated heating system under various operating conditions. The energy system's advantages include simplicity, low noise, clean operation, and low maintenance. The thermoelectric self-powered heating system could provide the consumer with heating system reliability and a reduction in electric power consumption.

  12. Thermoelectric Power Conversion System Combined with LNG Vaporizer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kambe, Mitsuru; Morita, Ryo; Omoto, Kazuyuki; Koji, Yasuhiro; Yoshida, Tatsuo; Noishiki, Koji

    A conceptual design of the thermoelectric power conversion system combined with open rack type LNG (liquefied natural gas) vaporizer to make use of cold heat of LNG is presented. The system performance analysis has been made based on the thermoelectric module performance data obtained at the cryogenic thermoelectric (CTE) test rig which could realize temperature and fluid dynamic condition of the open rack type LNG vaporizer. Conventional bismuth-telluride thermoelectric modules were tested, however, each module is encapsulated in the stainless steel container to achieve water proof. Electricity production cost evaluation of the system is also discussed.

  13. Near-term thermoelectric nuclear power options for SEI missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterson, Jerry R.

    1992-01-01

    Three different types of thermoelectric nuclear space power systems are discussed. First, the general purpose heat source Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG), which was qualified and flown on Galileo/Ulysses and is in development for Cassini, is discussed. Second, the modular RTG, which is undergoing life verification, is discussed. Finally, the SP-100 is discussed. The information is presented in viewgraph form.

  14. Thermophotovoltaic and thermoelectric portable power generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chan, Walker R.; Waits, Christopher M.; Joannopoulos, John D.; Celanovic, Ivan

    2014-06-01

    The quest for developing clean, quiet, and portable high energy density, and ultra-compact power sources continues. Although batteries offer a well known solution, limits on the chemistry developed to date constrain the energy density to 0.2 kWh/kg, whereas many hydrocarbon fuels have energy densities closer to 13 kWh/kg. The fundamental challenge remains: how efficiently and robustly can these widely available chemical fuels be converted into electricity in a millimeter to centimeter scale systems? Here we explore two promising technologies for high energy density power generators: thermophotovoltaics (TPV) and thermoelectrics (TE). These heat to electricity conversion processes are appealing because they are fully static leading to quiet and robust operation, allow for multifuel operation due to the ease of generating heat, and offer high power densities. We will present some previous work done in the TPV and TE fields. In addition we will outline the common technological barriers facing both approaches, as well as outline the main differences. Performance for state of the art research generators will be compared as well as projections for future practically achievable systems. A viable TPV or TE power source for a ten watt for one week mission can be built from a <10% efficient device which is achievable with current state of the art technology such as photonic crystals or advanced TE materials.

  15. Approach to the Practical Use of Thermoelectric Power Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kajikawa, Takenobu

    2009-07-01

    The results of research and development in the Japanese national project “Development for Advanced Thermoelectric Conversion Systems” are summarized, and the approaches to practical use of advanced thermoelectric modules and power generation systems are presented. The 5-year national project was successfully completed in March 2007. Three kinds of high- efficiency cascaded thermoelectric modules and two kinds of innovative Bi-Te thermoelectric modules were successfully developed. Heat cycle tests for three types of modules were also completed. Moreover, four types of advanced thermoelectric power generation systems were experimentally demonstrated for recovery of waste heat from the industrial and private sectors. In order to proceed further, thermoelectric power generation systems using practical heat sources were followed after installation of the developed modules. In parallel, various approaches for practical use by private companies, as well as plans for the next-phase project by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and the Engineering Advancement Association (ENAA), were also followed. The scenarios to proceed to the commercial phase of thermoelectric power generation are discussed on the basis of the results of the national project.

  16. Computer optimization of reactor-thermoelectric space power systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maag, W. L.; Finnegan, P. M.; Fishbach, L. H.

    1973-01-01

    A computer simulation and optimization code that has been developed for nuclear space power systems is described. The results of using this code to analyze two reactor-thermoelectric systems are presented.

  17. A power conditioning system for radioisotope thermoelectric generator energy sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gillis, J. A., Jr.

    1974-01-01

    The use of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG) as the primary source of energy in unmanned spacecraft is discussed. RTG output control, power conditioning system requirements, the electrical design, and circuit performance are also discussed.

  18. Accelerated Discovery of Thermoelectric Materials: Combinatorial Facility and High-Throughput Measurement of Thermoelectric Power Factor.

    PubMed

    García-Cañadas, Jorge; Adkins, Nicholas J E; McCain, Stephen; Hauptstein, Bastian; Brew, Ashley; Jarvis, David J; Min, Gao

    2016-06-13

    A series of processes have been developed to facilitate the rapid discovery of new promising thermoelectric alloys. A novel combinatorial facility where elements are wire-fed and laser-melted was designed and constructed. Different sample compositions can be achieved by feeding different element wires at specific rates. The composition of all the samples prepared was tested by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS). Then, their thermoelectric properties (power factor) at room temperature were screened in a specially designed new high-throughput setup. After the screening, the thermoelectric properties can be mapped with the possibility of identifying compositional trends. As a proof-of-concept, a promising thermoelectric ternary system, Al-Fe-Ti, has been identified, demonstrating the capability of this accelerated approach.

  19. Accelerated Discovery of Thermoelectric Materials: Combinatorial Facility and High-Throughput Measurement of Thermoelectric Power Factor.

    PubMed

    García-Cañadas, Jorge; Adkins, Nicholas J E; McCain, Stephen; Hauptstein, Bastian; Brew, Ashley; Jarvis, David J; Min, Gao

    2016-06-13

    A series of processes have been developed to facilitate the rapid discovery of new promising thermoelectric alloys. A novel combinatorial facility where elements are wire-fed and laser-melted was designed and constructed. Different sample compositions can be achieved by feeding different element wires at specific rates. The composition of all the samples prepared was tested by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS). Then, their thermoelectric properties (power factor) at room temperature were screened in a specially designed new high-throughput setup. After the screening, the thermoelectric properties can be mapped with the possibility of identifying compositional trends. As a proof-of-concept, a promising thermoelectric ternary system, Al-Fe-Ti, has been identified, demonstrating the capability of this accelerated approach. PMID:27186664

  20. Nanoscale Thermoelectrics: A Study of the Absolute Seebeck Coefficient of Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, Sarah J.

    measure, S, as a function of temperature using a micro-machined thermal isolation platform consisting of a suspended, patterned SiN membrane. By measuring a series of thicknesses of metallic films up to the infinitely thin film limit, in which the electrical resistivity is no longer decreasing with increasing film thickness, but still not at bulk values, along with the effective electron mean free path, we are able to show the contribution of the leads needed to measure this property. Having a comprehensive understanding of the background contribution we are able to determine the absolute Seebeck coefficient of a wide variety of thin films. The nature of the design of the SiN membrane also allows the ability to accurately and directly measure thermal and electrical transport of the thin films yielding a comprehensive measurement of the three quantities that characterize a material's efficiency. This can serve to further the development of thermoelectric materials through precise measurements of the material properties that dictate efficiency.

  1. Fiber optic signal amplifier using thermoelectric power generation

    DOEpatents

    Hart, M.M.

    1995-04-18

    A remote fiber optic signal amplifier for use as a repeater/amplifier, such as in transoceanic communications, powered by a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator. The amplifier comprises a unit with connections on the receiving and sending sides of the communications system, and an erbium-doped fiber amplifier connecting each sending fiber to each receiving fiber. The thermoelectric generator, preferably a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator delivers power to the amplifiers through a regulator. The heat exchange surfaces of the thermoelectric generator are made of materials resistant to corrosion and biological growth and are directly exposed to the outside, such as the ocean water in transoceanic communications. 2 figs.

  2. Fiber optic signal amplifier using thermoelectric power generation

    DOEpatents

    Hart, Mark M.

    1995-01-01

    A remote fiber optic signal amplifier for use as a repeater/amplifier, such as in transoceanic communications, powered by a Pu.sub.238 or Sr.sub.90 thermoelectric generator. The amplifier comprises a unit with connections on the receiving and sending sides of the communications system, and an erbium-doped fiber amplifier connecting each sending fiber to each receiving fiber. The thermoelectric generator, preferably a Pu.sub.238 or Sr.sub.90 thermoelectric generator delivers power to the amplifiers through a regulator. The heat exchange surfaces of the thermoelectric generator are made of materials resistant to corrosion and biological growth and are directly exposed to the outside, such as the ocean water in transoceanic communications.

  3. Fiber optic signal amplifier using thermoelectric power generation

    DOEpatents

    Hart, M.M.

    1993-01-01

    A remote fiber optic signal amplifier for use as a repeater/amplifier, such as in transoceanic communication, powered by a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator. The amplifier comprises a unit with connections on the receiving and sending sides of the communications system, and an erbium-doped fiber amplifier connecting each sending fiber to each receiving fiber. The thermoelectric generator, preferably a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator delivers power to the amplifiers through a regulator. The heat exchange surfaces of the thermoelectric generator are made of material resistant to corrosion and biological growth and are directly exposed to the outside, such as the ocean water in transoceanic communications.

  4. Apparatus for the Measurement of Thermoelectric Power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hishida, Shoji; Ho, Pei-Chun

    The Seebeck Effect refers to the electric potential that is established in a material under an imposed temperature gradient. This effect provides a useful tool for characterizing the thermal and electric transport behavior of materials. A measurement probe is under development in order to measure the Seebeck Coefficient (Thermoelectric Power) of a sample over the temperature range from 10 - 300 K in a cryocooler system. The sample is mounted between two platforms: one that is thermally connected with the measurement probe and another that is thermally isolated, referred to as the cold and hot platforms respectively. A 2k Ω resistance heater on the hot platform is used to establish a temperature gradient across the sample and between the two platforms. A Cernox resistance thermometer measures the temperature of the cold platform, and a Type T differential thermocouple, composed of copper-constantan-copper wires, is used to measure the temperature difference. The probe will be calibrated using the known thermopowers of Nickel, Platinum, and Chromel samples. The performance results of this design will be presented. Research at CSU-Fresno is supported by NSF DMR-1506677. Shoji Hishida is also supported by the Undergraduate Research Grant at CSU Fresno.

  5. Thermoelectric powered wireless sensors for spent fuel monitoring

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-07-01

    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)

  6. Development of a thermoelectric self-powered residential heating system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, K.; Hayden, A. C. S.

    Self-powered heating equipment has the potential for high overall energy efficiency and can provide an effective means of providing on site power and energy security in residential homes. It is also attractive for remote communities where connection to the grid is not cost effective. Self-powered residential heating systems operate entirely on fuel combustion and do not need externally generated electricity. Excess power can be provided for other electrical loads. To realize this concept, one must develop a reliable and low maintenance means of generating electricity and integrate it into fuel-fired heating equipment. In the present work, a self-powered residential heating system was developed using thermoelectric power generation technology. A thermoelectric module with a power generation capacity of 550 W was integrated into a fuel-fired furnace. The thermoelectric module has a radial configuration that fits well with the heating equipment. The electricity generated is adequate to power all electrical components for a residential central heating system. The performance of the thermoelectric module was examined under various operating conditions. The effects of heat transfer conditions were studied in order to maximize electric power output. A mathematical model was established and used to look into the influence of heat transfer coefficients and other parameters on electric power output and efficiency.

  7. Thermoelectric-Driven Autonomous Sensors for a Biomass Power Plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodríguez, A.; Astrain, D.; Martínez, A.; Gubía, E.; Sorbet, F. J.

    2013-07-01

    This work presents the design and development of a thermoelectric generator intended to harness waste heat in a biomass power plant, and generate electric power to operate sensors and the required electronics for wireless communication. The first objective of the work is to design the optimum thermoelectric generator to harness heat from a hot surface, and generate electric power to operate a flowmeter and a wireless transmitter. The process is conducted by using a computational model, presented in previous papers, to determine the final design that meets the requirements of electric power consumption and number of transmissions per minute. Finally, the thermoelectric generator is simulated to evaluate its performance. The final device transmits information every 5 s. Moreover, it is completely autonomous and can be easily installed, since no electric wires are required.

  8. Cooling power of transverse thermoelectrics for cryogenic cooling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Yang; Ma, Ming; Grayson, M.

    2016-05-01

    Transverse Peltier coolers have been experimentally and theoretically studied since 1960s due to their capability of achieving cooling in a single-leg geometry. Recently proposed pxn-type transverse thermoelectrics reveal the possibility of intrinsic or undoped transverse coolers that can, in principle, function at cryogenic temperatures, which has drawn more attention to the performance of such transverse coolers. However, unlike longitudinal thermoelectrics, the equations for transverse thermoelectrics cannot be solved analytically. In this study, we therefore calculate the thermoelectric transport in transverse coolers numerically, and introduce a normalized notation, which reduces the independent parameters in the governing equations to a normalized electric field E* and a hot-side transverse figure of merit zTh, only. A numerical study of the maximum cooling temperature difference and cooling power reveals the superior performance of transverse thermoelectric coolers compared to longitudinal coolers with the same figure of merit, providing another motivation in the search for new transverse thermoelectric materials with large figure of merit.

  9. New thermoelectric materials and devices for terrestrial power generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Borshchevsky, Alex; Caillat, Thierry

    1997-01-01

    The development of new, more efficient, materials and devices is the key to expand the range of applications of thermoelectric generators. New potential terrestrial applications have been recently described in the literature. There exists a wide range of heat source temperatures for these applications, from low grade waste heat, at 320-350K, up to 80 to 1100K, such as in the heat recovery from a processing plant of combustible solid waste. The automobile industry has also recently developed a strong interest in a waste exhaust heat recovery power source operating in the 375-775K temperature range to supplement or replace the alternator and thus decrease fuel consumption. Because of the relatively small temperature drop across the generator and of the generator mass requirements, it is estimated that values of 1.5 to 2.0 are needed for the dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, in order to develop an economically viable system. Of course, there are other factors besides ZT when considering the potential use of thermoelectrics. For example, most commercial applications also require that the materials have also to be cheap enough, or environmentally friendly to make the thermoelectric power generation a viable option. Due to the need for reductions in the mass, cost and volume of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) used to power spacecrafts for deep space missions, a search for new advanced materials with ZT values substantially higher than state-of-the-art Si0.8Ge0.2 alloys (ZTSiGe Å 0.65 from 575 to 1275K) was initiated a few years ago at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Recent results on novel materials have demonstrated that ZT values significantly larger than 1.0 could be obtained in the 475 to 975K temperature range. These materials are excellent candidates to be used in terrestrial thermoelectric power generators using waste heat or liquid fuels.

  10. Development of Next Generation Segmented Thermoelectric Radioisotope Power Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleurial, J.; Caillat, T.; Ewell, R. C.

    2005-12-01

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators have been used for space-based applications since 1961 with a total of 22 space missions that have successfully used RTGs for electrical power production. The key advantages of radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) are their long life, robustness, compact size, and high reliability. Thermoelectric converters are easily scalable, and possess a linear current-voltage curve, making power generation easy to control via a shunt regulator and shunt radiator. They produce no noise, vibration or torque during operation. These properties have made RTGs ideally suitable for autonomous missions in the extreme environments of outer space and on planetary surfaces. More advanced radioisotope power systems (RPS) with higher specific power (W/kg) and/or power output are desirable for future NASA missions, including the Europa Geophysical Orbiter mission. For the past few years, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has been developing more efficient thermoelectric materials and has demonstrated significant increases in the conversion efficiency of high temperature thermocouples, up to 14% when operated across a 975K to 300K temperature differential. In collaboration with NASA Glenn Research Center, universities (USC and UNM), Ceramic and Metal Composites Corporation and industrial partners, JPL is now planning to lead the research and development of advanced thermoelectric technology for integration into the next generations of RPS. Preliminary studies indicate that this technology has the potential for improving the RPS specific power by more than 50% over the current state-of-the-art multi-mission RTG being built for the Mars Science Laboratory mission. A second generation advanced RPS is projected at more than doubling the specific power.

  11. Staircase Quantum Dots Configuration in Nanowires for Optimized Thermoelectric Power

    PubMed Central

    Li, Lijie; Jiang, Jian-Hua

    2016-01-01

    The performance of thermoelectric energy harvesters can be improved by nanostructures that exploit inelastic transport processes. One prototype is the three-terminal hopping thermoelectric device where electron hopping between quantum-dots are driven by hot phonons. Such three-terminal hopping thermoelectric devices have potential in achieving high efficiency or power via inelastic transport and without relying on heavy-elements or toxic compounds. We show in this work how output power of the device can be optimized via tuning the number and energy configuration of the quantum-dots embedded in parallel nanowires. We find that the staircase energy configuration with constant energy-step can improve the power factor over a serial connection of a single pair of quantum-dots. Moreover, for a fixed energy-step, there is an optimal length for the nanowire. Similarly for a fixed number of quantum-dots there is an optimal energy-step for the output power. Our results are important for future developments of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric devices. PMID:27550093

  12. Thermoelectric Materials Development for Low Temperature Geothermal Power Generation

    DOE Data Explorer

    Tim Hansen

    2016-01-29

    Data includes characterization results for novel thermoelectric materials developed specifically for power generation from low temperature geothermal brines. Materials characterization data includes material density, thickness, resistance, Seebeck coefficient. This research was carried out by Novus Energy Partners in Cooperation with Southern Research Institute for a Department of Energy Sponsored Project.

  13. Staircase Quantum Dots Configuration in Nanowires for Optimized Thermoelectric Power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Lijie; Jiang, Jian-Hua

    2016-08-01

    The performance of thermoelectric energy harvesters can be improved by nanostructures that exploit inelastic transport processes. One prototype is the three-terminal hopping thermoelectric device where electron hopping between quantum-dots are driven by hot phonons. Such three-terminal hopping thermoelectric devices have potential in achieving high efficiency or power via inelastic transport and without relying on heavy-elements or toxic compounds. We show in this work how output power of the device can be optimized via tuning the number and energy configuration of the quantum-dots embedded in parallel nanowires. We find that the staircase energy configuration with constant energy-step can improve the power factor over a serial connection of a single pair of quantum-dots. Moreover, for a fixed energy-step, there is an optimal length for the nanowire. Similarly for a fixed number of quantum-dots there is an optimal energy-step for the output power. Our results are important for future developments of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric devices.

  14. Staircase Quantum Dots Configuration in Nanowires for Optimized Thermoelectric Power.

    PubMed

    Li, Lijie; Jiang, Jian-Hua

    2016-01-01

    The performance of thermoelectric energy harvesters can be improved by nanostructures that exploit inelastic transport processes. One prototype is the three-terminal hopping thermoelectric device where electron hopping between quantum-dots are driven by hot phonons. Such three-terminal hopping thermoelectric devices have potential in achieving high efficiency or power via inelastic transport and without relying on heavy-elements or toxic compounds. We show in this work how output power of the device can be optimized via tuning the number and energy configuration of the quantum-dots embedded in parallel nanowires. We find that the staircase energy configuration with constant energy-step can improve the power factor over a serial connection of a single pair of quantum-dots. Moreover, for a fixed energy-step, there is an optimal length for the nanowire. Similarly for a fixed number of quantum-dots there is an optimal energy-step for the output power. Our results are important for future developments of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric devices. PMID:27550093

  15. Staircase Quantum Dots Configuration in Nanowires for Optimized Thermoelectric Power.

    PubMed

    Li, Lijie; Jiang, Jian-Hua

    2016-08-23

    The performance of thermoelectric energy harvesters can be improved by nanostructures that exploit inelastic transport processes. One prototype is the three-terminal hopping thermoelectric device where electron hopping between quantum-dots are driven by hot phonons. Such three-terminal hopping thermoelectric devices have potential in achieving high efficiency or power via inelastic transport and without relying on heavy-elements or toxic compounds. We show in this work how output power of the device can be optimized via tuning the number and energy configuration of the quantum-dots embedded in parallel nanowires. We find that the staircase energy configuration with constant energy-step can improve the power factor over a serial connection of a single pair of quantum-dots. Moreover, for a fixed energy-step, there is an optimal length for the nanowire. Similarly for a fixed number of quantum-dots there is an optimal energy-step for the output power. Our results are important for future developments of high-performance nanostructured thermoelectric devices.

  16. A note on the electrochemical nature of the thermoelectric power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Apertet, Y.; Ouerdane, H.; Goupil, C.; Lecoeur, Ph.

    2016-04-01

    While thermoelectric transport theory is well established and widely applied, it is not always clear in the literature whether the Seebeck coefficient, which is a measure of the strength of the mutual interaction between electric charge transport and heat transport, is to be related to the gradient of the system's chemical potential or to the gradient of its electrochemical potential. The present article aims to clarify the thermodynamic definition of the thermoelectric coupling. First, we recall how the Seebeck coefficient is experimentally determined. We then turn to the analysis of the relationship between the thermoelectric power and the relevant potentials in the thermoelectric system: As the definitions of the chemical and electrochemical potentials are clarified, we show that, with a proper consideration of each potential, one may derive the Seebeck coefficient of a non-degenerate semiconductor without the need to introduce a contact potential as seen sometimes in the literature. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the phenomenological expression of the electrical current resulting from thermoelectric effects may be directly obtained from the drift-diffusion equation.

  17. Electronic Origins of Large Thermoelectric Power Factor of LaOBiS2-xSex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishida, Atsuhiro; Nishiate, Hirotaka; Lee, Chul-Ho; Miura, Osuke; Mizuguchi, Yoshikazu

    2016-07-01

    We have examined the electrical transport properties of densified LaOBiS2-xSex, which constitutes a new family of thermoelectric materials. The power factor increases with increasing concentration of Se, i.e., Se substitution leads to an enhanced electrical conductivity, without suppression of the Seebeck coefficient. Hall measurements reveal that the carrier mobility increases with decreasing carrier concentration as Se doping, which is responsible for the low electrical resistivity and large absolute values of the Seebeck coefficient in the system.

  18. Power-flattening techniques for radioisotopic thermoelectric generators. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Eastman, G.Y.

    1984-07-01

    The objective of this program was to investigation of a novel means of reducing the potential ecologic hazards that may be associated with radiosotopic thermoelectric generators (RTG's). A number of short-lived isotopes have lower toxicities and are more ecologically acceptable than the Plutonium 238 used at present. In addition, the shorter half lives significantly reduce the time period during which isotope encapsulation must be assured (approximately 10 half lives). The technical approach involves the use of a gas-controlled heat pipe to maintain a nearly constant heat input to the thermoelectric converter in spite of the decay profile of a short-lived isotopic heat source. Excess thermal power available early in life, is automatically shorted around the thermoelectric module by way of the heat pipe. A development model of a gas-controlled heat pipe capable of performing the required task was constructed and tested during this program.

  19. Thermoelectric Analysis for Helical Power Generation Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Xiangning; Fujisaka, Takeyuki; Suzuki, Ryosuke O.

    2014-06-01

    The performance of a three-dimensional helical thermoelectric generation (TEG) system is examined by exposing it to a temperature difference with hot and cold sources. The helical paths for the two thermal fluids give the TEG device the potential to efficiently convert thermal energy. The characteristic performance of the helical system is numerically analyzed by using the finite-volume method in a compact system. The helical system is compared with a straight system in which all the thermoelectric (TE) elements present equivalent geometry. The difference in the TE performance between the two systems is not significant when the TE surfaces are maintained at constant temperatures. Both the electromotive force and the current in the TEG system increase linearly with the temperature difference Δ T applied at the two module surfaces. The current preferentially flows through a main path determined by the geometry of the TE element. The merits of the helical design are its compactness, space saving, and smooth fluid flow due to gravity, compared with the straight system.

  20. Advanced high temperature thermoelectrics for space power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockwood, A.; Ewell, R.; Wood, C.

    1981-01-01

    Preliminary results from a spacecraft system study show that an optimum hot junction temperature is in the range of 1500 K for advanced nuclear reactor technology combined with thermoelectric conversion. Advanced silicon germanium thermoelectric conversion is feasible if hot junction temperatures can be raised roughly 100 C or if gallium phosphide can be used to improve the figure of merit, but the performance is marginal. Two new classes of refractory materials, rare earth sulfides and boron-carbon alloys, are being investigated to improve the specific weight of the generator system. Preliminary data on the sulfides have shown very high figures of merit over short temperature ranges. Both n- and p-type doping have been obtained. Pure boron-carbide may extrapolate to high figure of merit at temperatures well above 1500 K but not lower temperature; n-type conduction has been reported by others, but not yet observed in the JPL program. Inadvertant impurity doping may explain the divergence of results reported.

  1. Thermoelectric Powered Wireless Sensors for Dry-Cask Storage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. Thermoelectric Power in Bilayer Graphene Device with Ionic Liquid Gating.

    PubMed

    Chien, Yung-Yu; Yuan, Hongtao; Wang, Chang-Ran; Lee, Wei-Li

    2016-01-01

    The quest for materials showing large thermoelectric power has long been one of the important subjects in material science and technology. Such materials have great potential for thermoelectric cooling and also high figure of merit ZT thermoelectric applications. We have fabricated bilayer graphene devices with ionic-liquid gating in order to tune its band gap via application of a perpendicular electric field on a bilayer graphene. By keeping the Fermi level at charge neutral point during the cool-down, we found that the charge puddles effect can be greatly reduced and thus largely improve the transport properties at low T in graphene-based devices using ionic liquid gating. At (Vig, Vbg) = (-1 V, +23 V), a band gap of about 36.6 ± 3 meV forms, and a nearly 40% enhancement of thermoelectric power at T = 120 K is clearly observed. Our works demonstrate the feasibility of band gap tuning in a bilayer graphene using ionic liquid gating. We also remark on the significant influence of the charge puddles effect in ionic-liquid-based devices.

  3. Gate-Tuned Thermoelectric Power in Black Phosphorus.

    PubMed

    Saito, Yu; Iizuka, Takahiko; Koretsune, Takashi; Arita, Ryotaro; Shimizu, Sunao; Iwasa, Yoshihiro

    2016-08-10

    The electric field effect is a useful means of elucidating intrinsic material properties as well as for designing functional devices. The electric-double-layer transistor (EDLT) enables the control of carrier density in a wide range, which is recently proved to be an effective tool for the investigation of thermoelectric properties. Here, we report the gate-tuning of thermoelectric power in a black phosphorus (BP) single crystal flake with the thickness of 40 nm. Using an EDLT configuration, we successfully control the thermoelectric power (S) and find that the S of ion-gated BP reached +510 μV/K at 210 K in the hole depleted state, which is much higher than the reported bulk single crystal value of +340 μV/K at 300 K. We compared this experimental data with the first-principles-based calculation and found that this enhancement is qualitatively explained by the effective thinning of the conduction channel of the BP flake and nonuniformity of the channel owing to the gate operation in a depletion mode. Our results provide new opportunities for further engineering BP as a thermoelectric material in nanoscale.

  4. Gate-Tuned Thermoelectric Power in Black Phosphorus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saito, Yu; Iizuka, Takahiko; Koretsune, Takashi; Arita, Ryotaro; Shimizu, Sunao; Iwasa, Yoshihiro

    2016-08-01

    The electric field effect is a useful means of elucidating intrinsic material properties as well as for designing functional devices. The electric-double-layer transistor (EDLT) enables the control of carrier density in a wide range, which is recently proved to be an effective tool for the investigation of thermoelectric properties. Here, we report the gate-tuning of thermoelectric power in a black phosphorus (BP) single crystal flake with the thickness of 40 nm. Using an EDLT configuration, we successfully control the thermoelectric power (S), and find that the S of ion-gated BP reached +510 $\\mu$V/K at 210 K in the hole depleted state, which is much higher than the reported bulk single crystal value of +340 $\\mu$V/K at 300 K. We compared this experimental data with the first-principles-based calculation and found that this enhancement is qualitatively explained by the effective thinning of the conduction channel of the BP flake and non-uniformity of the channel owing to the gate operation in a depletion mode. Our results provide new opportunities for further engineering BP as a thermoelectric material in nanoscale.

  5. Gate-Tuned Thermoelectric Power in Black Phosphorus.

    PubMed

    Saito, Yu; Iizuka, Takahiko; Koretsune, Takashi; Arita, Ryotaro; Shimizu, Sunao; Iwasa, Yoshihiro

    2016-08-10

    The electric field effect is a useful means of elucidating intrinsic material properties as well as for designing functional devices. The electric-double-layer transistor (EDLT) enables the control of carrier density in a wide range, which is recently proved to be an effective tool for the investigation of thermoelectric properties. Here, we report the gate-tuning of thermoelectric power in a black phosphorus (BP) single crystal flake with the thickness of 40 nm. Using an EDLT configuration, we successfully control the thermoelectric power (S) and find that the S of ion-gated BP reached +510 μV/K at 210 K in the hole depleted state, which is much higher than the reported bulk single crystal value of +340 μV/K at 300 K. We compared this experimental data with the first-principles-based calculation and found that this enhancement is qualitatively explained by the effective thinning of the conduction channel of the BP flake and nonuniformity of the channel owing to the gate operation in a depletion mode. Our results provide new opportunities for further engineering BP as a thermoelectric material in nanoscale. PMID:27462825

  6. Electric energy production by particle thermionic-thermoelectric power generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oettinger, P. E.

    1980-01-01

    Thermionic-thermoelectric power generators, composed of a thin layer of porous, low work function material separating a heated emitter electrode and a cooler collector electrode, have extremely large Seebeck coefficients of over 2 mV/K and can provide significant output power. Preliminary experiments with 20-micron thick (Ba Sr Ca)O coatings, limited by evaporative loss to temperatures below 1400 K, have yielded short circuit current densities of 500 mA/sq cm and power densities of 60 mW/ sq cm. Substantially more output is expected with cesium-coated refractory oxide particle coatings operating at higher temperatures. Practical generators will have thermal-to-electrical efficiencies of 10 to 20%. Further increases can be gained by cascading these high-temperature devices with lower temperature conventional thermoelectric generators.

  7. A Thermoelectric Generation System and Its Power Electronics Stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Junling; Sun, Kai; Ni, Longxian; Chen, Min; Kang, Zhengdong; Zhang, Li; Xing, Yan; Zhang, Jianzhong

    2012-06-01

    The electricity produced by a thermoelectric generator (TEG) must satisfy the requirements of specific loads given the signal level, stability, and power performance. In the design of such systems, one major challenge involves the interactions between the thermoelectric power source and the power stage and signal-conditioning circuits of the load, including DC-DC conversion, the maximum power point tracking (MPPT) controller, and other power management controllers. In this paper, a survey of existing power electronics designs for TEG systems is presented first. Second, a flat, wall-like TEG system consisting of 32 modules is experimentally optimized, and the improved power parameters are tested. Power-conditioning circuitry based on an interleaved boost DC-DC converter is then developed for the TEG system in terms of the tested power specification. The power electronics design features a combined control scheme with an MPPT and a constant output voltage as well as the low-voltage and high-current output characteristics of the TEG system. The experimental results of the TEG system with the power electronics stage and with purely resistive loads are compared. The comparisons verify the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed design. Finally, the thermal-electric coupling effects caused by current-related heat source terms, such as the Peltier effect etc., are reported and discussed, and the potential influence on the power electronics design due to such coupling is analyzed.

  8. Measurements of the reactor neutron power in absolute units

    SciTech Connect

    Lebedev, G. V.

    2015-12-15

    The neutron power of the reactor of the Yenisei space nuclear power plant is measured in absolute units using the modernized method of correlation analysis during the ground-based tests of the Yenisei prototypes. Results of the experiments are given. The desired result is obtained in a series of experiments carried out at the stage of the plant preparation for tests. The acceptability of experimental data is confirmed by the results of measuring the reactor neutron power in absolute units at the nominal level by the thermal balance during the life cycle tests of the ground prototypes.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Yanliang; Butt, Darryl; Agarwal, Vivek

    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.

  10. Gated Si nanowires for large thermoelectric power factors

    SciTech Connect

    Neophytou, Neophytos; Kosina, Hans

    2014-08-18

    We investigate the effect of electrostatic gating on the thermoelectric power factor of p-type Si nanowires (NWs) of up to 20 nm in diameter in the [100], [110], and [111] crystallographic transport orientations. We use atomistic tight-binding simulations for the calculation of the NW electronic structure, coupled to linearized Boltzmann transport equation for the calculation of the thermoelectric coefficients. We show that gated NW structures can provide ∼5× larger thermoelectric power factor compared to doped channels, attributed to their high hole phonon-limited mobility, as well as gating induced bandstructure modifications which further improve mobility. Despite the fact that gating shifts the charge carriers near the NW surface, surface roughness scattering is not strong enough to degrade the transport properties of the accumulated hole layer. The highest power factor is achieved for the [111] NW, followed by the [110], and finally by the [100] NW. As the NW diameter increases, the advantage of the gated channel is reduced. We show, however, that even at 20 nm diameters (the largest ones that we were able to simulate), a ∼3× higher power factor for gated channels is observed. Our simulations suggest that the advantage of gating could still be present in NWs with diameters of up to ∼40 nm.

  11. Economic analysis of municipal wastewater utilization for thermoelectric power production

    SciTech Connect

    Safari, I.; Walker, M.; Abbasian, J.; Arastoopour, H.; Hsieh, M-K.; Theregowda, R.; Dzombak, D.; Miller, D.

    2011-01-01

    The thermoelectric power industry in the U.S. uses a large amount of freshwater. The large water demand is increasingly a problem, especially for new power plant development, as availability of freshwater for new uses diminishes in the United States. Reusing non-traditional water sources, such as treated municipal wastewater, provides one option to mitigate freshwater usage in the thermoelectric power industry. The amount of freshwater withdrawal that can be displaced with non-traditional water sources at a particular location requires evaluation of the water management and treatment requirements, considering the quality and abundance of the non-traditional water sources. This paper presents the development of an integrated costing model to assess the impact of degraded water treatment, as well as the implications of increased tube scaling in the main condenser. The model developed herein is used to perform case studies of various treatment, condenser cleaning and condenser configurations to provide insight into the ramifications of degraded water use in the cooling loops of thermoelectric power plants. Further, this paper lays the groundwork for the integration of relationships between degraded water quality, scaling characteristics and volatile emission within a recirculating cooling loop model.

  12. High-power-density spot cooling using bulk thermoelectrics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yan; Shakouri, Ali; Zeng, Gehong

    2004-10-01

    We demonstrate a three-dimensional (3D) bulk silicon microcooler, which has the advantages of high cooling power densities and is less dependent on thermoelectric element's thickness as compared with the same device with one-dimensional (1D) geometry. We measured a maximum cooling of 1.2°C for a 40×40μm2 area bulk silicon microcooler device, which is equivalent to an estimated cooling power density of 580W/cm2. In this unique geometry, both current and heat spreading in 3D allows the maximum cooling temperature to exceed the conventional 1D thermoelectric model's theoretical limit 0.5ZTc2.

  13. Modelling of some parameters from thermoelectric power plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popa, G. N.; Diniş, C. M.; Deaconu, S. I.; Maksay, Şt; Popa, I.

    2016-02-01

    Paper proposing new mathematical models for the main electrical parameters (active power P, reactive power Q of power supplies) and technological (mass flow rate of steam M from boiler and dust emission E from the output of precipitator) from a thermoelectric power plants using industrial plate-type electrostatic precipitators with three sections used in electrical power plants. The mathematical models were used experimental results taken from industrial facility, from boiler and plate-type electrostatic precipitators with three sections, and has used the least squares method for their determination. The modelling has been used equations of degree 1, 2 and 3. The equations were determined between dust emission depending on active power of power supplies and mass flow rate of steam from boiler, and, also, depending on reactive power of power supplies and mass flow rate of steam from boiler. These equations can be used to control the process from electrostatic precipitators.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  15. A high-throughput thermoelectric power-factor screening tool for rapid construction of thermoelectric property diagrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otani, M.; Lowhorn, N. D.; Schenck, P. K.; Wong-Ng, W.; Green, M. L.; Itaka, K.; Koinuma, H.

    2007-09-01

    The authors have developed a high-throughput screening tool that maps out thermoelectric power factors of combinatorial composition-spread film libraries. The screening tool allows one to measure the electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient of over 1000 sample points within 6h. Seebeck coefficients of standard films measured with the screening tool are in good agreement with those measured by traditional thermoelectric measurement apparatus. The rapid construction of thermoelectric property diagrams is illustrated for two systems: (Zn, Al)-O binary composition-spread film on Al2O3 (0001) and (Ca,Sr,La)3Co4O9 ternary composition-spread film on Si (100).

  16. Power Delivery from an Actual Thermoelectric Generation System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaibe, Hiromasa; Kajihara, Takeshi; Nagano, Kouji; Makino, Kazuya; Hachiuma, Hirokuni; Natsuume, Daisuke

    2014-06-01

    Similar to photovoltaic (PV) and fuel cells, thermoelectric generators (TEGs) supply direct-current (DC) power, essentially requiring DC/alternating current (AC) conversion for delivery as electricity into the grid network. Use of PVs is already well established through power conditioning systems (PCSs) that enable DC/AC conversion with maximum-power-point tracking, which enables commercial use by customers. From the economic, legal, and regulatory perspectives, a commercial PCS for PVs should also be available for TEGs, preferably as is or with just simple adjustment. Herein, we report use of a PV PCS with an actual TEG. The results are analyzed, and proper application for TEGs is proposed.

  17. Most efficient quantum thermoelectric at finite power output.

    PubMed

    Whitney, Robert S

    2014-04-01

    Machines are only Carnot efficient if they are reversible, but then their power output is vanishingly small. Here we ask, what is the maximum efficiency of an irreversible device with finite power output? We use a nonlinear scattering theory to answer this question for thermoelectric quantum systems, heat engines or refrigerators consisting of nanostructures or molecules that exhibit a Peltier effect. We find that quantum mechanics places an upper bound on both power output and on the efficiency at any finite power. The upper bound on efficiency equals Carnot efficiency at zero power output but decays with increasing power output. It is intrinsically quantum (wavelength dependent), unlike Carnot efficiency. This maximum efficiency occurs when the system lets through all particles in a certain energy window, but none at other energies. A physical implementation of this is discussed, as is the suppression of efficiency by a phonon heat flow.

  18. Modular Analysis of Automobile Exhaust Thermoelectric Power Generation System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Y. D.; Zhang, Y.; Su, C. Q.

    2015-06-01

    In this paper, an automobile exhaust thermoelectric power generation system is packaged into a model with its own operating principles. The inputs are the engine speed and power, and the output is the power generated by the system. The model is divided into two submodels. One is the inlet temperature submodel, and the other is the power generation submodel. An experimental data modeling method is adopted to construct the inlet temperature submodel, and a theoretical modeling method is adopted to construct the power generation submodel. After modeling, simulation is conducted under various engine operating conditions to determine the variation of the power generated by the system. Finally, the model is embedded into a Honda Insight vehicle model to explore the energy-saving effect of the system on the vehicle under Economic Commission for Europe and cyc-constant_60 driving cycles.

  19. Thermoelectric power factor performance of Bi85Sb15/graphene composite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Asfoury, Mohamed S.; Nasr, Mohamed N. A.; Nakamura, Koichi; Abdel-Moneim, Ahmed

    2016-04-01

    Composite materials based on Bi85Sb15 with commercial graphene (Gr) nanoparticles have been synthesized by mechanical alloying and hot isostatic pressing. The effect of different amount of Gr nanoparticles (x = 0.02, 0.04, 0.06, and 0.08 wt %) on the thermoelectric properties of (Bi85Sb15)1- x Gr x composite was investigated. X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy were carried out for the structure characterization of the composites. Transport properties, including electrical resistivity, Seebeck coefficient, and calculated power factor, were investigated and their variations were discussed with regard to microstructures in the temperature range of 173-373 K. Resistivity significantly declines in the sample with x = 0.04 wt % Gr, and the enhancement was 7% at 230 K and reached about 7.6% at room temperature. With 0.08 wt % Gr, a high absolute value of the Seebeck coefficient was observed. The power factor reaches its maximum of 3.7 × 10-3 W·m-1·K-2 with x = 0.08 wt % at 173 K. The results reflect that this synthesis process can be a powerful method of obtaining homogeneous Bi-Sb thermoelectric composite materials rapidly and at low cost. In addition, the demand for uniform coherent composites was significant because of their high-performance transport properties.

  20. Concentrated Solar Thermoelectric Power (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2012-09-01

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is one of the 2012 SunShot CSP R&D awardees for their advanced power cycles. This fact sheet explains the motivation, description, and impact of the project.

  1. Design and analysis of solar thermoelectric power generation system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  2. Thermopower and thermoelectric power factor of Zk parafermion quantum dots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgiev, Lachezar S.

    2015-10-01

    Using the conformal field theory approach to the thermoelectric characteristics of fractional quantum Hall states, previously developed in Georgiev (2015) [10], we show that the thermoelectric power factor of Coulomb-blockaded islands, realized by point contacts in Fabry-Pérot interferometers in the Zk parafermion Hall states, could give reliable signatures for distinguishing the topological orders of different quantum Hall states having identical electric properties. For example, while the conductance peak patterns in the Coulomb blockade regime for such states are practically indistinguishable for vn ≪vc even at finite temperature, where vn and vc are the Fermi velocities of the neutral and charged modes respectively, the power factors PT of the corresponding states are much more sensitive to the neutral modes. In particular, the smaller r =vn /vc the bigger the asymmetries in the power factor which combined with the thermal broadening of the conductance peaks due to the neutral modes' multiplicities could give us the ultimate tool to figure out which of the competing quantum Hall universality classes are indeed realized in the experiments. We give a complete description of the power factor profiles in the Z3 and Z4 parafermion states with arbitrary number of quasiparticles localized in the bulk which could be useful for comparison with the experiments.

  3. Application of the thermoelectric MEMS microwave power sensor in a power radiation monitoring system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bo, Gao; Jing, Yang; Si, Jiang; Debo, Wang

    2016-08-01

    A power radiation monitoring system based on thermoelectric MEMS microwave power sensors is studied. This monitoring system consists of three modules: a data acquisition module, a data processing and display module, and a data sharing module. It can detect the power radiation in the environment and the date information can be processed and shared. The measured results show that the thermoelectric MEMS microwave power sensor and the power radiation monitoring system both have a relatively good linearity. The sensitivity of the thermoelectric MEMS microwave power sensor is about 0.101 mV/mW, and the sensitivity of the monitoring system is about 0.038 V/mW. The voltage gain of the monitoring system is about 380 times, which is relatively consistent with the theoretical value. In addition, the low-frequency and low-power module in the monitoring system is adopted in order to reduce the electromagnetic pollution and the power consumption, and this work will extend the application of the thermoelectric MEMS microwave power sensor in more areas. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 11304158), the Province Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu (No. BK20140890), the Open Research Fund of the Key Laboratory of MEMS of Ministry of Education, Southeast University (No. 3206005302), and the Scientific Research Foundation of Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications (Nos. NY213024, NY215139).

  4. Analytical predictions of RTG power degradation. [Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noon, E. L.; Raag, V.

    1979-01-01

    The DEGRA computer code that is based on a mathematical model which predicts performance and time-temperature dependent degradation of a radioisotope thermoelectric generator is discussed. The computer code has been used to predict performance and generator degradation for the selenide Ground Demonstration Unit (GDS-1) and the generator used in the Galileo Project. Results of parametric studies of load voltage vs generator output are examined as well as the I-V curve and the resulting predicted power vs voltage. The paper also discusses the increased capability features contained in DEGRA2 and future plans for expanding the computer code performance.

  5. Effect of strain on thermoelectric power of suspended graphene

    SciTech Connect

    Vaidya, R. G.; Sankeshwar, N. S. Mulimani, B. G.

    2013-12-04

    Thermoelectric power, S, of suspended graphene in the presence of strain is investigated. The electrons are considered to be scattered by in-plane and flexural phonons. The dominant contribution to S of non-strained and strained suspended graphene (SG) is found to be from the phonon drag component, S{sub g} for T < 90K. For T > 150 K contribution from diffusion thermopower becomes important. The effect of strain is found to be suppress S{sub d} and to alter its behavior, the effect being larger at higher temperatures.

  6. Investigation of Maximum Power Point Tracking for Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillip, Navneesh; Maganga, Othman; Burnham, Keith J.; Ellis, Mark A.; Robinson, Simon; Dunn, Julian; Rouaud, Cedric

    2013-07-01

    In this paper, a thermoelectric generator (TEG) model is developed as a tool for investigating optimized maximum power point tracking (MPPT) algorithms for TEG systems within automotive exhaust heat energy recovery applications. The model comprises three main subsystems that make up the TEG system: the heat exchanger, thermoelectric material, and power conditioning unit (PCU). In this study, two MPPT algorithms known as the perturb and observe (P&O) algorithm and extremum seeking control (ESC) are investigated. A synchronous buck-boost converter is implemented as the preferred DC-DC converter topology, and together with the MPPT algorithm completes the PCU architecture. The process of developing the subsystems is discussed, and the advantage of using the MPPT controller is demonstrated. The simulation results demonstrate that the ESC algorithm implemented in combination with a synchronous buck-boost converter achieves favorable power outputs for TEG systems. The appropriateness is by virtue of greater responsiveness to changes in the system's thermal conditions and hence the electrical potential difference generated in comparison with the P&O algorithm. The MATLAB/Simulink environment is used for simulation of the TEG system and comparison of the investigated control strategies.

  7. Alkali Metal Thermoelectric Conversion (AMTEC) for space nuclear power systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bankston, C. P.; Cole, T.; Khanna, S. K.; Thakoor, A. P.

    Performance parameters of the Alkali Metal Thermoelectric Converter (AMTEC) for a 100 kW electric power system have been calculated at four technological levels assuming a heat pipe-cooled nuclear reactor heat source. The most advanced level considered would operate between 1180 K converter temperature and 711 K radiator temperature at 16 percent efficiency, and would weigh 1850 kg with a radiator area of 43 sq m. In addition, electrode research studies for the AMTEC systems have been conducted utilizing an experimental test cell of Bankston et al. (1983) and Mo and several Mo-Ti electrodes. It was found that the Mo-Ti electrodes offered no improvement in lifetime characteristics over the pure Mo electrodes, however, oxygen treatment of a degraded Mo electrode restored its specific power output to 90 percent of its original specific power and maintained this level for 60 hr, thus offering a potential for lifetime stability.

  8. Radiatively coupled thermionic and thermoelectric power system concept

    SciTech Connect

    Shimada, K.; Ewell, R.

    1981-01-01

    This study shows that the large power systems utilizing radiatively coupled thermionic or thermoelectric converters could be designed so that the power subsystem could be contained in a space shuttle bay as a part of an electrically propelled spacecraft. The radiatively coupled system requires a large number of individual converters since the transferred heat is smaller than with the conductively coupled system, but the advantages of the new system indicates merit for further study. The advantages are (1) good electrical isolation between converters and the heat source, (2) physical separation of converters from the heat source (making the system fabrication manageable), (3) elimination of radiator heat pipes, which are required in an all heat pipe power systems. 4 refs.

  9. Flexible power fabrics made of carbon nanotubes for harvesting thermoelectricity.

    PubMed

    Kim, Suk Lae; Choi, Kyungwho; Tazebay, Abdullah; Yu, Choongho

    2014-03-25

    Thermoelectric energy conversion is very effective in capturing low-grade waste heat to supply electricity particularly to small devices such as sensors, wireless communication units, and wearable electronics. Conventional thermoelectric materials, however, are often inadequately brittle, expensive, toxic, and heavy. We developed both p- and n-type fabric-like flexible lightweight materials by functionalizing the large surfaces and junctions in carbon nanotube (CNT) mats. The poor thermopower and only p-type characteristics of typical CNTs have been converted into both p- and n-type with high thermopower. The changes in the electronic band diagrams of the CNTs were experimentally investigated, elucidating the carrier type and relatively large thermopower values. With our optimized device design to maximally utilize temperature gradients, an electrochromic glucose sensor was successfully operated without batteries or external power supplies, demonstrating self-powering capability. While our fundamental study provides a method of tailoring electronic transport properties, our device-level integration shows the feasibility of harvesting electrical energy by attaching the device to even curved surfaces like human bodies. PMID:24517397

  10. Flexible power fabrics made of carbon nanotubes for harvesting thermoelectricity.

    PubMed

    Kim, Suk Lae; Choi, Kyungwho; Tazebay, Abdullah; Yu, Choongho

    2014-03-25

    Thermoelectric energy conversion is very effective in capturing low-grade waste heat to supply electricity particularly to small devices such as sensors, wireless communication units, and wearable electronics. Conventional thermoelectric materials, however, are often inadequately brittle, expensive, toxic, and heavy. We developed both p- and n-type fabric-like flexible lightweight materials by functionalizing the large surfaces and junctions in carbon nanotube (CNT) mats. The poor thermopower and only p-type characteristics of typical CNTs have been converted into both p- and n-type with high thermopower. The changes in the electronic band diagrams of the CNTs were experimentally investigated, elucidating the carrier type and relatively large thermopower values. With our optimized device design to maximally utilize temperature gradients, an electrochromic glucose sensor was successfully operated without batteries or external power supplies, demonstrating self-powering capability. While our fundamental study provides a method of tailoring electronic transport properties, our device-level integration shows the feasibility of harvesting electrical energy by attaching the device to even curved surfaces like human bodies.

  11. Thermoelectrical power analysis of precipitation in 6013 aluminum alloy

    SciTech Connect

    Abdala, M.R.W.S.; Garcia de Blas, J.C. Acselrad, O.

    2008-03-15

    The 6013 aluminum alloy was first developed for application in the aircraft industry and, more recently, as a replacement option for the use of the 6061 alloy in the automotive industry. The present work describes the evolution of the process of formation and dissolution of different kinds of precipitates in 6013 aluminum alloy, subjected to different conditions of heat treatment, using for this purpose measurements of thermoelectrical power, Vickers microhardness and differential scanning calorimeter (DSC). Although in the last years many works have been published on the use of thermoelectrical power (TEP) measurements for the analysis of precipitation process in traditional alloys such as 6061, there is still little information related to 6013 alloy. The results obtained are compared with a previous characterization work on the same alloy using transmission electron microscopy. It was observed that TEP measurements are very sensitive to precipitation phenomena in this alloy, and it has been found that there is an inverse relation between TEP and Vickers microhardness values, which allowed proposing a precipitation sequence for 6013 aluminum alloy.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  13. Thermoelectric energy harvesting as a wireless sensor node power source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knight, C.; Davidson, J.

    2010-04-01

    Size and power requirements of wireless sensor nodes are gradually decreasing and this has allowed data collection across a range of spatial and temporal ranges. These nodes have power requirements that often necessitate batteries as an energy source. As the power requirements decrease for these sensors, alternative energy sources become more attractive. One such technology is thermal energy harvesting. Thermal energy harvesting requires a differential temperature between a heat source and a cool sink. As heat energy flows from source to the sink, energy can be harvested and utilized to power sensor nodes. By exploiting the temperature difference between a sun-warmed plate and a heat sink immersed in water, electrical energy can be harvested. The proposed concept utilizes a thermoelectric device to convert solar energy into electrical power. Initial experiments were carried out at the CSIRO Energy Centre for a variety of winter time intervals in 2009, with peak power outputs in the order of 50mW. Results indicate such a system could power a wireless sensor node continuously at ocean, lake and river water interfaces. We are presently in the process of evaluating the concept by powering a CSIRO FleckTM wireless node to transmit water temperature and battery voltage data.

  14. Individual Module Maximum Power Point Tracking for Thermoelectric Generator Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vadstrup, Casper; Schaltz, Erik; Chen, Min

    2013-07-01

    In a thermoelectric generator (TEG) system the DC/DC converter is under the control of a maximum power point tracker which ensures that the TEG system outputs the maximum possible power to the load. However, if the conditions, e.g., temperature, health, etc., of the TEG modules are different, each TEG module will not produce its maximum power. If each TEG module is controlled individually, each TEG module can be operated at its maximum power point and the TEG system output power will therefore be higher. In this work a power converter based on noninverting buck-boost converters capable of handling four TEG modules is presented. It is shown that, when each module in the TEG system is operated under individual maximum power point tracking, the system output power for this specific application can be increased by up to 8.4% relative to the situation when the modules are connected in series and 16.7% relative to the situation when the modules are connected in parallel.

  15. High-power thermoelectric generators based on nanostructured silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pennelli, G.; Macucci, M.

    2016-05-01

    The low thermal conductivity of silicon nanowires and nanostructures opens interesting opportunities for energy harvesting through the direct, high-efficiency, conversion of waste heat into electrical power. We present solutions for the fabrication and interconnection of a high number of suspended silicon nanostructures, within CMOS compatible top-down processes. Mechanical stability and thermoelectric properties of these devices will be analysed by means of finite element simulations, and opportunities for practical applications will be discussed. It will be shown that, despite the reduced dimensions needed for a strong suppression of thermal conductivity, a considerable amount of electrical power can be delivered to the load as a result of the presence of many interconnected devices on the same chip.

  16. Enhanced thermoelectric power of single-wall carbon nanotube film blended with ionic liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horike, Shohei; Misaki, Masahiro; Koshiba, Yasuko; Saito, Takeshi; Ishida, Kenji

    2016-03-01

    We have investigated the thermoelectric power of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) with an ionic liquid (IL). The SWCNT/IL films showed simultaneous increase in electrical conductivity and the Seebeck coefficient compared with the pristine SWCNT. No thermoelectric power was observed for the IL. The X-ray diffraction pattern and impedance diagram showed a unique behavior with the concentration of IL, which implies that the interaction between the SWCNTs and IL enhances the thermoelectric power of the SWCNTs. As a result of the simultaneous increase in these parameters, the power factor exhibited a 10-fold increase.

  17. Ultrahigh-Power-Factor Carbon Nanotubes and an Ingenious Strategy for Thermoelectric Performance Evaluation.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Wenbin; Fan, Qingxia; Zhang, Qiang; Li, Kewei; Cai, Le; Gu, Xiaogang; Yang, Feng; Zhang, Nan; Xiao, Zhuojian; Chen, Huiliang; Xiao, Shiqi; Wang, Yanchun; Liu, Huaping; Zhou, Weiya; Xie, Sishen

    2016-07-01

    An ingenious strategy is put forward to evaluate accurately the thermoelectric performance of carbon nanotube (CNT) thin films, including thermal conductivity, electrical conductivity, and Seebeck coefficient in the same direction. The results reveal that the as-prepared CNT interconnected films and CNT fibers possess enormous potential of thermoelectric applications because of their ultrahigh power factors. PMID:27199099

  18. Precision Absolute Beam Current Measurement of Low Power Electron Beam

    SciTech Connect

    Ali, M. M.; Bevins, M. E.; Degtiarenko, P.; Freyberger, A.; Krafft, G. A.

    2012-11-01

    Precise measurements of low power CW electron beam current for the Jefferson Lab Nuclear Physics program have been performed using a Tungsten calorimeter. This paper describes the rationale for the choice of the calorimeter technique, as well as the design and calibration of the device. The calorimeter is in use presently to provide a 1% absolute current measurement of CW electron beam with 50 to 500 nA of average beam current and 1-3 GeV beam energy. Results from these recent measurements will also be presented.

  19. Cascaded Thermoelectric Converters for Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Genk, Mohamed S.; Saber, Hamed H.

    2004-02-01

    Three Cascaded Thermoelectric Converters (CTCs) are optimized for potential use in Multi-Mission Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems (MM-ARPS) for electrical powers up to 1 kWe, or even higher, in support of 7-10 year missions. The peak efficiencies of these CTCs of 9.43% to 14.32% are 40% to 110% higher than that of SiGe in State-of-the-Art (SOA) Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs). Such high efficiencies would significantly reduce the amount of 238PuO2 fuel and the total system mass for a lower mission cost. Each CTC is comprised of a SiGe top unicouple that is thermally, but not electrically, coupled to a bottom unicouple with one of the following three choices of thermoelectric materials: (a) p-leg of TAGS-85 and n-leg of 2N-PbTe (b) p-leg of CeFe3.5Co0.5Sb12 and n-leg of CoSb3; and (c) segmented p-leg of CeFe3.5Co0.5Sb12 and Zn4Sb3 and n-leg of CoSb3. The length of the top and bottom unicouples is 10 mm, but the cross-sectional areas of the n- and p-legs of the unicouples are optimized for maximum efficiency operation. They vary with the thermal power inputs of 1, 2, and 3 Wth per SiGe unicouple, and the heat rejection temperature of 375 K, 475 K, and 575 K, from the bottom unicouple. Such geometrical optimization is at nominal hot shoe temperature of 1273 K for the SiGe unicouple and cold shoe temperature of either 780 K or 980 K, depending on the materials of the bottom unicouples. The hot shoe temperature of the bottom unicouples is 20 K lower than the cold shoe of the top SiGe unicouple, but the rate of heat input is the same as the rate of heat rejection from the top unicouple. The present results are conservative as they assume a contact resistance of 150 μΩ-cm2 per leg for the top and the bottom unicouples in the CTCs; however, decreasing this resistance to 50 μΩ-cm2 per leg could increase the current efficiency estimates by an additional 1 - 2 percentage points.

  20. Hardware Implementation of Maximum Power Point Tracking for Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maganga, Othman; Phillip, Navneesh; Burnham, Keith J.; Montecucco, Andrea; Siviter, Jonathan; Knox, Andrew; Simpson, Kevin

    2014-06-01

    This work describes the practical implementation of two maximum power point tracking (MPPT) algorithms, namely those of perturb and observe, and extremum seeking control. The proprietary dSPACE system is used to perform hardware in the loop (HIL) simulation whereby the two control algorithms are implemented using the MATLAB/Simulink (Mathworks, Natick, MA) software environment in order to control a synchronous buck-boost converter connected to two commercial thermoelectric modules. The process of performing HIL simulation using dSPACE is discussed, and a comparison between experimental and simulated results is highlighted. The experimental results demonstrate the validity of the two MPPT algorithms, and in conclusion the benefits and limitations of real-time implementation of MPPT controllers using dSPACE are discussed.

  1. RTGs - The powering of Ulysses. [Radio-isotope Thermoelectric Generator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mastal, E. F.; Campbell, R. W.

    1990-01-01

    The radio-isotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) for Ulysses' electronic supply is described noting that lack of sufficient sunlight renders usual solar cell power generation ineffective due to increased distance from sun. The history of the RTG in the U.S.A. is reviewed citing the first RTG launch in 1961 with an electrical output of 2.7 W and the improved Ulysses RTG, which provides 285 W at mission beginning and 250 W at mission end. The RTG concept is discussed including the most recent RTG technology developed by the DOE, the General Purpose Heat Source RTG (GPHS-RTG). The system relies upon heat generated by radioactive decay using radioactive plutonium-238, which is converted directly to energy using the Seebeck method.

  2. Thermoelectric power of supported graphene - An iterative approach

    SciTech Connect

    Rizwana Begum, K.; Sankeshwar, N. S.

    2015-06-24

    Thermoelectric power, S, of graphene supported on SiO{sub 2} substrate is studied for 10K < T < 400K within the framework of Boltzmann transport formalism by an iterative method. Numerical calculations of diffusion thermopower, S{sub d}, as a function of temperature, are presented assuming the electrons to be scattered by impurities, vacancies, surface roughness, acoustic phonons, inelastic optical phonons and surface polar optical phonons. For the range of temperatures considered, S{sub d} is found to be dominated by impurities for T < 40K and by acoustic phonon and vacancy scatterings for T > 40K. The optical phonons are found to influence S{sub d} for T > 300K. Our calculations, assuming the drag component to be negligible, obtain good agreement with the recent experimental data.

  3. Si Thermoelectric Power Generator with an Unconventional Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  4. High efficiency thermoelectric power generation using Zintl-type materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey (Inventor); Gascoin, Franck (Inventor); Brown, Shawna (Inventor); Kauzlarich, Susan (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    The invention disclosed herein relates to thermoelectrically-active p-type Zintl phase materials as well as devices utilizing such compounds. Such thermoelectric materials and devices may be used to convert thermal energy into electrical energy, or use electrical energy to produce heat or refrigeration. Embodiments of the invention relate to p-type thermoelectric materials related to the compound Yb.sub.14MnSb.sub.11.

  5. Experimental investigation on thermoelectric generator of micro hybrid power source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shang, Yonghong; Li, Yanqiu; Yu, Hongyun; Sun, Hongguang; Su, Bo

    2007-12-01

    The micro power system, which is composed of photovoltaic solar cell, heat conductor, thermoelectric generator (TEG) module and fin heat sink has been developed in our laboratory. A photovoltaic silicon solar cell of the P-N junction type is sensitive to radiant energy of wavelength from 5,000 Å to 12,000 Å. Radiation under and within this range is converted not only into electric energy but also into heat energy. The wavelength longer than this range is also converted into heat energy, which degrades the conversion efficiency of the solar cell. TEG produces electrical power from temperature difference via Seebeck effect that can be put under the solar cell to absorb the heat. The heat energy can be converted into electrical power. It was found that when TEG surface area was 150mm×60mm, it could generate 0.24V output voltage and 4.18mA short circuit at ambient temperature varying between 5-10°C at winter. It also could generate 1.3V output voltage and 16mA short circuit at ambient temperature varying between 30-36°C at summer. In fact we can use a dc-dc boost up converter to enlarge the output voltage to meet the requirements of wireless sensor network nodes or its recharging battery. It will be an alternative power source for many portable electronic types of equipment.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  7. A Thermoelectric Generator Using Engine Coolant for Light-Duty Internal Combustion Engine-Powered Vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Shiho; Park, Soonseo; Kim, Sunkook; Rhi, Seok-Ho

    2011-05-01

    We proposed and fabricated a thermoelectric generator (TEG) using the engine water coolant of passenger vehicles. The experimental results revealed that the maximum output power from the proposed thermoelectric generator was ~75 W, the calculated thermoelectric module efficiency of the TEG was ~2.1%, and the overall efficiency of electric power generation from the waste heat of the engine coolant was ~0.3% in the driving mode at 80 km/h. The conventional radiator can thus be replaced by the proposed TEG without additional devices or redesign of the engine water cooling system of the existing radiator.

  8. Half-Heusler Alloys for Efficient Thermoelectric Power Conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Long; Zeng, Xiaoyu; Tritt, Terry M.; Poon, S. Joseph

    2016-07-01

    Half-Heusler (HH) phases (space group F43m, Clb) are increasingly gaining attention as promising thermoelectric materials in view of their thermal stability and environmental benignity as well as efficient power output. Until recently, the verifiable dimensionless figure of merit (ZT) of HH phases has remained moderate near 1, which limits the power conversion efficiency of these materials. We report herein ZT ˜ 1.3 in n-type (Hf,Zr)NiSn alloys near 850 K developed through elemental substitution and simultaneous embedment of nanoparticles in the HH matrix, obtained by annealing the samples close to their melting temperatures. Introduction of mass fluctuation and scattering centers play a key role in the high ZT measured, as shown by the reduction of thermal conductivity and increase of thermopower. Based on computation, the power conversion efficiency of a n-p couple module based on the new n-type (Hf,Zr,Ti)NiSn particles-in-matrix composite and recently reported high-ZT p-type HH phases is expected to reach 13%, comparable to that of state-of-the-art materials, but with the mentioned additional materials and environmental attributes. Since the high efficiency is obtained without tuning the microstructure of the HH phases, it leaves room for further optimization.

  9. Half-Heusler Alloys for Efficient Thermoelectric Power Conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Long; Zeng, Xiaoyu; Tritt, Terry M.; Poon, S. Joseph

    2016-11-01

    Half-Heusler (HH) phases (space group F43m, Clb) are increasingly gaining attention as promising thermoelectric materials in view of their thermal stability and environmental benignity as well as efficient power output. Until recently, the verifiable dimensionless figure of merit ( ZT) of HH phases has remained moderate near 1, which limits the power conversion efficiency of these materials. We report herein ZT ˜ 1.3 in n-type (Hf,Zr)NiSn alloys near 850 K developed through elemental substitution and simultaneous embedment of nanoparticles in the HH matrix, obtained by annealing the samples close to their melting temperatures. Introduction of mass fluctuation and scattering centers play a key role in the high ZT measured, as shown by the reduction of thermal conductivity and increase of thermopower. Based on computation, the power conversion efficiency of a n-p couple module based on the new n-type (Hf,Zr,Ti)NiSn particles-in-matrix composite and recently reported high- ZT p-type HH phases is expected to reach 13%, comparable to that of state-of-the-art materials, but with the mentioned additional materials and environmental attributes. Since the high efficiency is obtained without tuning the microstructure of the HH phases, it leaves room for further optimization.

  10. Cost-efficiency trade-off and the design of thermoelectric power generators.

    PubMed

    Yazawa, Kazuaki; Shakouri, Ali

    2011-09-01

    The energy conversion efficiency of today's thermoelectric generators is significantly lower than that of conventional mechanical engines. Almost all of the existing research is focused on materials to improve the conversion efficiency. Here we propose a general framework to study the cost-efficiency trade-off for thermoelectric power generation. A key factor is the optimization of thermoelectric modules together with their heat source and heat sinks. Full electrical and thermal co-optimization yield a simple analytical expression for optimum design. Based on this model, power output per unit mass can be maximized. We show that the fractional area coverage of thermoelectric elements in a module could play a significant role in reducing the cost of power generation systems.

  11. Cost-Efficiency Trade-off and the Design of Thermoelectric Power Generators

    SciTech Connect

    Yazawa, Kazuaki; Shakouri, Ali

    2011-07-27

    The energy conversion efficiency of today’s thermoelectric generators is significantly lower than that of conventional mechanical engines. Almost all of the existing research is focused on materials to improve the conversion efficiency. Here we propose a general framework to study the cost-efficiency trade-off for thermoelectric power generation. A key factor is the optimization of thermoelectric modules together with their heat source and heat sinks. Full electrical and thermal co-optimization yield a simple analytical expression for optimum design. Based on this model, power output per unit mass can be maximized. We show that the fractional area coverage of thermoelectric elements in a module could play a significant role in reducing the cost of power generation systems.

  12. Cost-efficiency trade-off and the design of thermoelectric power generators.

    PubMed

    Yazawa, Kazuaki; Shakouri, Ali

    2011-09-01

    The energy conversion efficiency of today's thermoelectric generators is significantly lower than that of conventional mechanical engines. Almost all of the existing research is focused on materials to improve the conversion efficiency. Here we propose a general framework to study the cost-efficiency trade-off for thermoelectric power generation. A key factor is the optimization of thermoelectric modules together with their heat source and heat sinks. Full electrical and thermal co-optimization yield a simple analytical expression for optimum design. Based on this model, power output per unit mass can be maximized. We show that the fractional area coverage of thermoelectric elements in a module could play a significant role in reducing the cost of power generation systems. PMID:21793542

  13. Thermoelectric power enhancement by way of flow impedance for fixed thermal input conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaral, Calil; Brandão, Caio; Sempels, Éric V.; Lesage, Frédéric J.

    2014-12-01

    Liquid-to-liquid thermoelectric generators are now being considered for the purpose of converting low cost heat to electricity for local energy uses. The importance in investigating their system efficiency lies in the fact that the generator's purpose is to maintain a heat source and a heat sink for its embedded thermoelectric modules. Of particular importance is the generator's ability to maintain an asymmetric thermal field across its embedded modules since this mechanism partially dictates the devices' thermal to electric conversion efficiency. Indeed, since the modules' semiconductor materials' ability to generate an electromotive force is dependent on the quality of the thermal dipole across the material, gains in thermoelectric generator energy conversion efficiency are made possible with thermal system management. In an effort to improve the system conversion efficiency of a liquid-to-liquid thermoelectric generator (TEG), the present work builds upon recent advancements in TEG inner pipe flow optimisation by investigating the thermoelectric power enhancement brought upon by flow impeding panel inserts in a thermoelectric generator's flow channels for fixed thermal input conditions and with respect to varying insert panel densities. The pumping penalty associated with the flow impedance is measured in order to present and to discuss the net thermoelectric power enhancement.

  14. Thermal analysis of thermoelectric power generator; Including thermal stresses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Merbati, Abdulrahman Salman

    In recent years, the energy demand is increasing leads to use and utilization of clean energy becomes target of countries all over the world. Thermoelectric generator is one type of clean energy generators which is a solid-state device that converts heat energy into electrical energy through the Seebeck effect. With availability of, heat from different sources such as solar energy and waste energy from systems, thermoelectric research becomes important research topic and researchers investigates efficient means of generating electricity from thermoelectric generators. One of the important problems with a thermoelectric is development of high thermal stresses due to formation of temperature gradient across the thermoelectric generator. High thermal stress causes device failure through cracks or fractures and these short comings may reduce the efficiency or totally fail the device. In this thesis work, thermodynamic efficiency and thermal stresses developed in thermoelectric generator are analyzed numerically. The bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3) properties are used in simulation. Stress levels in thermoelectric device pins are computed for various pin geometric configurations. MASTER.

  15. Enhanced thermoelectric power in two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenide monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Jiang; Kanahashi, Kaito; Cuong, Nguyen Thanh; Chen, Chang-Hsiao; Li, Lain-Jong; Okada, Susumu; Ohta, Hiromichi; Takenobu, Taishi

    2016-07-01

    The carrier-density-dependent conductance and thermoelectric properties of large-area Mo S2 and WS e2 monolayers are simultaneously investigated using the electrolyte gating method. The sign of the thermoelectric power changes across the transistor off-state in the ambipolar WS e2 transistor as the majority carrier density switches from electron to hole. The thermopower and thermoelectric power factor of monolayer samples are one order of magnitude larger than that of bulk materials, and their carrier-density dependences exhibit a quantitative agreement with the semiclassical Mott relation based on the two-dimensional energy band structure, concluding the thermoelectric properties are enhanced by the low-dimensional effect.

  16. Irreversibilities and efficiency at maximum power of heat engines: the illustrative case of a thermoelectric generator.

    PubMed

    Apertet, Y; Ouerdane, H; Goupil, C; Lecoeur, Ph

    2012-03-01

    Energy conversion efficiency at maximum output power, which embodies the essential characteristics of heat engines, is the main focus of the present work. The so-called Curzon and Ahlborn efficiency η(CA) is commonly believed to be an absolute reference for real heat engines; however, a different but general expression for the case of stochastic heat engines, η(SS), was recently found and then extended to low-dissipation engines. The discrepancy between η(CA) and η(SS) is here analyzed considering different irreversibility sources of heat engines, of both internal and external types. To this end, we choose a thermoelectric generator operating in the strong-coupling regime as a physical system to qualitatively and quantitatively study the impact of the nature of irreversibility on the efficiency at maximum output power. In the limit of pure external dissipation, we obtain η(CA), while η(SS) corresponds to the case of pure internal dissipation. A continuous transition between from one extreme to the other, which may be operated by tuning the different sources of irreversibility, also is evidenced.

  17. Irreversibilities and efficiency at maximum power of heat engines: the illustrative case of a thermoelectric generator.

    PubMed

    Apertet, Y; Ouerdane, H; Goupil, C; Lecoeur, Ph

    2012-03-01

    Energy conversion efficiency at maximum output power, which embodies the essential characteristics of heat engines, is the main focus of the present work. The so-called Curzon and Ahlborn efficiency η(CA) is commonly believed to be an absolute reference for real heat engines; however, a different but general expression for the case of stochastic heat engines, η(SS), was recently found and then extended to low-dissipation engines. The discrepancy between η(CA) and η(SS) is here analyzed considering different irreversibility sources of heat engines, of both internal and external types. To this end, we choose a thermoelectric generator operating in the strong-coupling regime as a physical system to qualitatively and quantitatively study the impact of the nature of irreversibility on the efficiency at maximum output power. In the limit of pure external dissipation, we obtain η(CA), while η(SS) corresponds to the case of pure internal dissipation. A continuous transition between from one extreme to the other, which may be operated by tuning the different sources of irreversibility, also is evidenced. PMID:22587047

  18. Nature of the Thermoelectric Power in Bipolar Semiconductors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Titov, O. Yu; Bulat, L. P.; Gurevich, Yu. G.

    2016-08-01

    Thermoelectricity increasingly draws the attention of researchers because it can provide us with methods to generate environmentally clean energy and solid-state cooling. However, some problems in thermoelectricity's physics remain unsolved. In this paper, a new approach to thermoelectric phenomena is presented, one that uses a linear description of the nonequilibrium charge carrier transport. The role of nonequilibrium carriers of both surface and bulk recombination processes has been shown to be crucial even within the linear approximation. Electron and hole quasi-Fermi levels originated from the thermal field are explicitly obtained in the case of a thermoelectric current flowing through an external circuit; the necessary corresponding boundary conditions are obtained. For the first time, it is shown that the quasi-Fermi level of one of the carriers can be a nonmonotonous function of spatial coordinates. General expressions for the thermoelectric current, the thermo-electromotive force (thermo-emf), and the electrical resistance of bipolar semiconductors have been obtained. Also for the first time, the influence of both surface recombination and surface resistance in thermoelectric phenomena was taken into account.

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

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  20. Spin-on-doping for output power improvement of silicon nanowire array based thermoelectric power generators

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, B. Fobelets, K.

    2014-06-07

    The output power of a silicon nanowire array (NWA)-bulk thermoelectric power generator (TEG) with Cu contacts is improved by spin-on-doping (SOD). The Si NWAs used in this work are fabricated via metal assisted chemical etching (MACE) of 0.01–0.02 Ω cm resistivity n- and p-type bulk, converting ~4% of the bulk thickness into NWs. The MACE process is adapted to ensure crystalline NWs. Current-voltage and Seebeck voltage-temperature measurements show that while SOD mainly influences the contact resistance in bulk, it influences both contact resistance and power factor in NWA-bulk based TEGs. According to our experiments, using Si NWAs in combination with SOD increases the output power by an order of 3 under the same heating power due to an increased power factor, decreased thermal conductivity of the NWA and reduced Si-Cu contact resistance.

  1. Thermoelectric power systems and the energy-water nexus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Michael Edward

    The goal of this Thesis is the development of a comprehensive methodology to evaluate the total cost of water use in the recirculating cooling loops of thermoelectric power plants. This methodology expands upon the work presented in the literature to improve estimations of the economic impact of condenser fouling. The methods developed in this Thesis are incorporated into a user friendly Combined Cost Model (CCM) interface that will allow future researchers, students and plant personnel to perform the same comparative analyses presented herein. The objective of this Thesis is the application of the CCM to determine the economic viability of treated municipal wastewater (MWW) use to replace freshwater for cooling in power plants with recirculating cooling systems. To accomplish this objective, a set of case study evaluations are included to (1) evaluate the sensitivity of the economic impact of fouling to condenser design and operation, (2) determine the cost of treated MWW use in pulverized coal power plants, and (3) compare the relative cost of degraded water use in advanced power systems such as IGCC and oxy-combustion. The results of these evaluations show that current freshwater prices do not provide an economic incentive to switch to the use of treated MWW water. However, results indicate that the breakeven differential price of freshwater, at which the total costs of using freshwater and treated MWW are equal, is only 0.52 /1000Gal. (USD 2009). In addition, the use of treated MWW for cooling is shown to be a better economic alternative to dry air cooling technology (DACT) for the conservation of freshwater resources. Cost-to-conservation estimates of treated MWW use are 1.1 /1000 Gal., in contrast to 5.6 $/1000 Gal. for DACT. This Thesis also presents a novel, hybrid coal conversion concept, the dry gasification oxy-combustion (DGOC) power cycle. This process is similar to oxy-combustion, in that it maintains a concentrated CO2 flue stream and does not

  2. Large theoretical thermoelectric power factor of suspended single-layer MoS{sub 2}

    SciTech Connect

    Babaei, Hasan E-mail: babaei@auburn.edu; Khodadadi, J. M.; Sinha, Sanjiv

    2014-11-10

    We have calculated the semi-classical thermoelectric power factor of suspended single-layer (SL)- MoS{sub 2} utilizing electron relaxation times derived from ab initio calculations. Measurements of the thermoelectric power factor of SL-MoS{sub 2} on substrates reveal poor power factors. In contrast, we find the thermoelectric power factor of suspended SL-MoS{sub 2} to peak at ∼2.8 × 10{sup 4} μW/m K{sup 2} at 300 K, at an electron concentration of 10{sup 12} cm{sup −2}. This figure is higher than that in bulk Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}, for example. Given its relatively high thermal conductivity, suspended SL-MoS{sub 2} may hold promise for in-plane thin-film Peltier coolers, provided reasonable mobilities can be realized.

  3. A Digital Coreless Maximum Power Point Tracking Circuit for Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Shiho; Cho, Sungkyu; Kim, Namjae; Baatar, Nyambayar; Kwon, Jangwoo

    2011-05-01

    This paper describes a maximum power point tracking (MPPT) circuit for thermoelectric generators (TEG) without a digital controller unit. The proposed method uses an analog tracking circuit that samples the half point of the open-circuit voltage without a digital signal processor (DSP) or microcontroller unit for calculating the peak power point using iterative methods. The simulation results revealed that the MPPT circuit, which employs a boost-cascaded-with-buck converter, handled rapid variation of temperature and abrupt changes of load current; this method enables stable operation with high power transfer efficiency. The proposed MPPT technique is a useful analog MPPT solution for thermoelectric generators.

  4. Drought Risk Modeling for Thermoelectric Power Plants Siting using an Excess Over Threshold Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Bekera, Behailu B; Francis, Royce A; Omitaomu, Olufemi A

    2014-01-01

    Water availability is among the most important elements of thermoelectric power plant site selection and evaluation criteria. With increased variability and changes in hydrologic statistical stationarity, one concern is the increased occurrence of extreme drought events that may be attributable to climatic changes. As hydrological systems are altered, operators of thermoelectric power plants need to ensure a reliable supply of water for cooling and generation requirements. The effects of climate change are expected to influence hydrological systems at multiple scales, possibly leading to reduced efficiency of thermoelectric power plants. In this paper, we model drought characteristics from a thermoelectric systems operational and regulation perspective. A systematic approach to characterise a stream environment in relation to extreme drought occurrence, duration and deficit-volume is proposed and demonstrated. This approach can potentially enhance early stage decisions in identifying candidate sites for a thermoelectric power plant application and allow investigation and assessment of varying degrees of drought risk during more advanced stages of the siting process.

  5. Ultrahigh power factor and thermoelectric performance in hole-doped single-crystal SnSe.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Li-Dong; Tan, Gangjian; Hao, Shiqiang; He, Jiaqing; Pei, Yanling; Chi, Hang; Wang, Heng; Gong, Shengkai; Xu, Huibin; Dravid, Vinayak P; Uher, Ctirad; Snyder, G Jeffrey; Wolverton, Chris; Kanatzidis, Mercouri G

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric technology, harvesting electric power directly from heat, is a promising environmentally friendly means of energy savings and power generation. The thermoelectric efficiency is determined by the device dimensionless figure of merit ZT(dev), and optimizing this efficiency requires maximizing ZT values over a broad temperature range. Here, we report a record high ZT(dev) ∼1.34, with ZT ranging from 0.7 to 2.0 at 300 to 773 kelvin, realized in hole-doped tin selenide (SnSe) crystals. The exceptional performance arises from the ultrahigh power factor, which comes from a high electrical conductivity and a strongly enhanced Seebeck coefficient enabled by the contribution of multiple electronic valence bands present in SnSe. SnSe is a robust thermoelectric candidate for energy conversion applications in the low and moderate temperature range.

  6. The thermoelectric power and the Lorenz number for the infinite U Hubbard model using orthofermion approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mishra, A. K.; Kishore, R.

    2016-08-01

    We have obtained the exact expressions for the thermoelectric power and the Lorenz number for the infinite U Hubbard model using orthofermion approach. It is found that in one dimension, our results coincide with that of known exact results. In limiting cases, our exact expressions reduce to the known exact results at low and high temperature limits. We present our calculations for one and two dimensions for square as well as triangular lattices. A comparison between the thermoelectric power and Lorenz number for a free Fermi gas and noninteracting orthofermions has also been provided.

  7. Model of Heat Exchangers for Waste Heat Recovery from Diesel Engine Exhaust for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baker, Chad; Vuppuluri, Prem; Shi, Li; Hall, Matthew

    2012-06-01

    The performance and operating characteristics of a hypothetical thermoelectric generator system designed to extract waste heat from the exhaust of a medium-duty turbocharged diesel engine were modeled. The finite-difference model consisted of two integrated submodels: a heat exchanger model and a thermoelectric device model. The heat exchanger model specified a rectangular cross-sectional geometry with liquid coolant on the cold side, and accounted for the difference between the heat transfer rate from the exhaust and that to the coolant. With the spatial variation of the thermoelectric properties accounted for, the thermoelectric device model calculated the hot-side and cold-side heat flux for the temperature boundary conditions given for the thermoelectric elements, iterating until temperature and heat flux boundary conditions satisfied the convection conditions for both exhaust and coolant, and heat transfer in the thermoelectric device. A downhill simplex method was used to optimize the parameters that affected the electrical power output, including the thermoelectric leg height, thermoelectric n-type to p-type leg area ratio, thermoelectric leg area to void area ratio, load electrical resistance, exhaust duct height, coolant duct height, fin spacing in the exhaust duct, location in the engine exhaust system, and number of flow paths within the constrained package volume. The calculation results showed that the configuration with 32 straight fins was optimal across the 30-cm-wide duct for the case of a single duct with total height of 5.5 cm. In addition, three counterflow parallel ducts or flow paths were found to be an optimum number for the given size constraint of 5.5 cm total height, and parallel ducts with counterflow were a better configuration than serpentine flow. Based on the reported thermoelectric properties of MnSi1.75 and Mg2Si0.5Sn0.5, the maximum net electrical power achieved for the three parallel flow paths in a counterflow arrangement was 1

  8. Thermoelectric Alloys and Devices for Radioisotope Space Power Systems: State of the Art and Current Developments

    SciTech Connect

    Barnett, W.; Dick, P.; Beaudry, B.; Gorsuch, P.; Skrabek, E.

    1989-01-01

    Lead telluride and silicon germanium type alloys have served over the past several decades as the preferred thermoelectric conversion materials for U. S. radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) power systems for planetary deep space exploration missions. The Pioneer missions to Jupiter and Jupiter/Saturn and the Viking Mars Lander missions employed TAGS-2N (lead and germanium telluride derivatives) power conversion devices. Since 1976, silicon germanium (SiGe) alloys, incorporated into the unicouple device, have evolved as the thermoelectric materials of choice for U. S. RTG powered space missions. These include the U. S. Air Force Lincoln Experimental Satellites 8 & 9 for communications, in 1976, followed in 1977 by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Voyager 1 and 2 planetary missions. In 1989, advanced SiGe RTGs were used to power the Galileo exploration of Jupiter and, in 1990, will be used to power the Ulysses investigation of the Sun. In addition, SiGe technology has been chosen to provide RTG power for the 1995 Comet Rendezvous and Asteroid Flyby mission and the 1996 Cassini Saturn orbiter mission. Summaries of the flight performance data for these systems are presented.; Current U. S. Department of Energy thermoelectric development activities include (1) the development of conversion devices based on hi-density, close packed couple arrays and (2) the development of improved performance silicon germanium type thermoelectric materials. The silicon germanium type "multicouple", being developed in conjunction with the Modular RTG program, is discussed in a companion paper. A lead telluride type close-packed module, discussed herein, offers the promise of withstanding high velocity impacts and, thus, is a candidate for a Mars Penetrator application.; Recent projects sponsored by the U. S. Department of Energy, including the Improved Thermoelectric Materials and Modular Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator programs, have shown that improvements

  9. Band structure engineering through orbital interaction for enhanced thermoelectric power factor

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu, Hong; Sun, Wenhao; Ceder, Gerbrand; Armiento, Rickard; Lazic, Predrag

    2014-02-24

    Band structure engineering for specific electronic or optical properties is essential for the further development of many important technologies including thermoelectrics, optoelectronics, and microelectronics. In this work, we report orbital interaction as a powerful tool to finetune the band structure and the transport properties of charge carriers in bulk crystalline semiconductors. The proposed mechanism of orbital interaction on band structure is demonstrated for IV-VI thermoelectric semiconductors. For IV-VI materials, we find that the convergence of multiple carrier pockets not only displays a strong correlation with the s-p and spin-orbit coupling but also coincides with the enhancement of power factor. Our results suggest a useful path to engineer the band structure and an enticing solid-solution design principle to enhance thermoelectric performance.

  10. Thermoelectric Power Generator Design for Maximum Power: It's All About ZT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCarty, R.

    2013-07-01

    There is a significant amount of literature that discusses thermoelectric power generator (TEG) design, but much of it overly simplifies the design space and therefore the results have limited use in designing real-life systems. This paper develops a more comprehensive model of the thermal and electrical interactions of a TEG in a system with known hot-side and cold-side thermal resistances and corresponding constant system temperature differential. Two design scenarios are investigated for common TEG system applications. In one method, the power from a TEG is maximized for a given electrical load, simulating a case where the TEG is electrically in series with a known load such as a fan. In the second design scenario, the power from a TEG is maximized for a given electrical load resistance ratio, n (the ratio between the external load resistance and the internal TEG resistance), simulating an application where the TEG is electrically in series with a load-matching converter. An interesting conclusion from this work is that, in the first design scenario, the electrical load resistance ratio, n, that maximizes TEG power occurs at √{1 + ZT} (where ZT is the thermoelectric figure of merit) instead of 1 as reported previously in literature. Equally interesting is that, if you define an analogous thermal resistance ratio, m' (representing the ratio between the TEG thermal resistance at open-circuit conditions and the system thermal resistance), the maximum power in both design scenarios occurs at √{1 + ZT} instead of the commonly cited value of 1. Furthermore, results are presented for real-life designs that incorporate electrical and thermal losses common to realistic TEG systems such as electrical contact resistance and thermal bypass around the TEG due to sealing.

  11. Evaluation of High Step-Up Power Electronics Stages in Thermoelectric Generator Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Kai; Ni, Longxian; Chen, Min; Wu, Hongfei; Xing, Yan; Rosendahl, Lasse

    2013-07-01

    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 efficiency, and input current ripples. The interleaved boost converter with an auxiliary transformer is found to be the most suitable topology for TEG applications, which is verified by experiments.

  12. Radioisotope powered alkali metal thermoelectric converter design for space systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sievers, R. K.; Bankston, C. P.

    1988-01-01

    The design concept of an alkali-metal thermoelectric converter (AMTEC) for 15-30-percent-efficient conversion of heat from the General Purpose (radioisotope) Heat Source (GPHS) on spacecraft is presented. The basic physical principles of the conversion cycle are outlined; a theoretical model is derived; a modular design is described and illustrated with drawings; and the overall AMTEC/GPHS system design is characterized. Predicted performance data are presented in extensive tables and graphs and discussed in detail.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  14. Thermoelectric power of n-InSb in a transverse quantizing magnetic field

    SciTech Connect

    Gadzhialiev, M. M. Bashirov, R. R.; Pirmagomedov, Z. Sh.; Efendieva, T. N.; Mädge, H.; Filar, K.

    2015-07-15

    The thermoelectric power of electronic InSb is investigated in a transverse magnetic field up to 14 T at 80 K. It is established that the experimental results for a quantizing magnetic field agree with theoretical data obtained without accounting for spin splitting of the Landau levels.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  16. Quantum Effects in the Thermoelectric Power Factor of Low-Dimensional Semiconductors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hung, Nguyen T.; Hasdeo, Eddwi H.; Nugraha, Ahmad R. T.; Dresselhaus, Mildred S.; Saito, Riichiro

    2016-07-01

    We theoretically investigate the interplay between the confinement length L and the thermal de Broglie wavelength Λ to optimize the thermoelectric power factor of semiconducting materials. An analytical formula for the power factor is derived based on the one-band model assuming nondegenerate semiconductors to describe quantum effects on the power factor of the low-dimensional semiconductors. The power factor is enhanced for one- and two-dimensional semiconductors when L is smaller than Λ of the semiconductors. In this case, the low-dimensional semiconductors having L smaller than their Λ will give a better thermoelectric performance compared to their bulk counterpart. On the other hand, when L is larger than Λ , bulk semiconductors may give a higher power factor compared to the lower dimensional ones.

  17. Quantum Effects in the Thermoelectric Power Factor of Low-Dimensional Semiconductors.

    PubMed

    Hung, Nguyen T; Hasdeo, Eddwi H; Nugraha, Ahmad R T; Dresselhaus, Mildred S; Saito, Riichiro

    2016-07-15

    We theoretically investigate the interplay between the confinement length L and the thermal de Broglie wavelength Λ to optimize the thermoelectric power factor of semiconducting materials. An analytical formula for the power factor is derived based on the one-band model assuming nondegenerate semiconductors to describe quantum effects on the power factor of the low-dimensional semiconductors. The power factor is enhanced for one- and two-dimensional semiconductors when L is smaller than Λ of the semiconductors. In this case, the low-dimensional semiconductors having L smaller than their Λ will give a better thermoelectric performance compared to their bulk counterpart. On the other hand, when L is larger than Λ, bulk semiconductors may give a higher power factor compared to the lower dimensional ones. PMID:27472126

  18. Quantum Effects in the Thermoelectric Power Factor of Low-Dimensional Semiconductors.

    PubMed

    Hung, Nguyen T; Hasdeo, Eddwi H; Nugraha, Ahmad R T; Dresselhaus, Mildred S; Saito, Riichiro

    2016-07-15

    We theoretically investigate the interplay between the confinement length L and the thermal de Broglie wavelength Λ to optimize the thermoelectric power factor of semiconducting materials. An analytical formula for the power factor is derived based on the one-band model assuming nondegenerate semiconductors to describe quantum effects on the power factor of the low-dimensional semiconductors. The power factor is enhanced for one- and two-dimensional semiconductors when L is smaller than Λ of the semiconductors. In this case, the low-dimensional semiconductors having L smaller than their Λ will give a better thermoelectric performance compared to their bulk counterpart. On the other hand, when L is larger than Λ, bulk semiconductors may give a higher power factor compared to the lower dimensional ones.

  19. Complex oxides useful for thermoelectric energy conversion

    DOEpatents

    Majumdar, Arunava; Ramesh, Ramamoorthy; Yu, Choongho; Scullin, Matthew L.; Huijben, Mark

    2012-07-17

    The invention provides for a thermoelectric system comprising a substrate comprising a first complex oxide, wherein the substrate is optionally embedded with a second complex oxide. The thermoelectric system can be used for thermoelectric power generation or thermoelectric cooling.

  20. RAPID COMMUNICATION: Novel high performance small-scale thermoelectric power generation employing regenerative combustion systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weinberg, F. J.; Rowe, D. M.; Min, G.

    2002-07-01

    Hydrocarbon fuels have specific energy contents some two orders of magnitude greater than any electrical storage device. They therefore proffer an ideal source in the universal quest for compact, lightweight, long-lasting alternatives for batteries to power the ever-proliferating electronic devices. The motivation lies in the need to power, for example, equipment for infantry troops, for weather stations and buoys in polar regions which need to signal their readings intermittently to passing satellites, unattended over long periods, and many others. Fuel cells, converters based on miniaturized gas turbines, and other systems under intensive study, give rise to diverse practical difficulties. Thermoelectric devices are robust, durable and have no moving parts, but tend to be exceedingly inefficient. We propose regenerative combustion systems which mitigate this impediment and are likely to make high performance small-scale thermoelectric power generation applicable in practice. The efficiency of a thermoelectric generating system using preheat when operated between ambient and 1200 K is calculated to exceed the efficiency of the best present day thermoelectric conversion system by more than 20%.

  1. Geographic, technologic, and economic analysis of using reclaimed water for thermoelectric power plant cooling.

    PubMed

    Stillwell, Ashlynn S; Webber, Michael E

    2014-04-15

    Use of reclaimed water-municipal wastewater treatment plant effluent-in nonpotable applications can be a sustainable and efficient water management strategy. One such nonpotable application is at thermoelectric power plants since these facilities require cooling, often using large volumes of freshwater. To evaluate the geographic, technologic, and economic feasibility of using reclaimed water to cool thermoelectric power plants, we developed a spatially resolved model of existing power plants. Our model integrates data on power plant and municipal wastewater treatment plant operations into a combined geographic information systems and optimization approach to evaluate the feasibility of cooling system retrofits. We applied this broadly applicable methodology to 125 power plants in Texas as a test case. Results show that sufficient reclaimed water resources exist within 25 miles of 92 power plants (representing 61% of capacity and 50% of generation in our sample), with most of these facilities meeting both short-term and long-term water conservation cost goals. This retrofit analysis indicates that reclaimed water could be a suitable cooling water source for thermoelectric power plants, thereby mitigating some of the freshwater impacts of electricity generation. PMID:24625241

  2. Geographic, technologic, and economic analysis of using reclaimed water for thermoelectric power plant cooling.

    PubMed

    Stillwell, Ashlynn S; Webber, Michael E

    2014-04-15

    Use of reclaimed water-municipal wastewater treatment plant effluent-in nonpotable applications can be a sustainable and efficient water management strategy. One such nonpotable application is at thermoelectric power plants since these facilities require cooling, often using large volumes of freshwater. To evaluate the geographic, technologic, and economic feasibility of using reclaimed water to cool thermoelectric power plants, we developed a spatially resolved model of existing power plants. Our model integrates data on power plant and municipal wastewater treatment plant operations into a combined geographic information systems and optimization approach to evaluate the feasibility of cooling system retrofits. We applied this broadly applicable methodology to 125 power plants in Texas as a test case. Results show that sufficient reclaimed water resources exist within 25 miles of 92 power plants (representing 61% of capacity and 50% of generation in our sample), with most of these facilities meeting both short-term and long-term water conservation cost goals. This retrofit analysis indicates that reclaimed water could be a suitable cooling water source for thermoelectric power plants, thereby mitigating some of the freshwater impacts of electricity generation.

  3. Analytical and electrical modeling of a MEMS thermoelectric microwave power sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Juzheng; Liao, Xiaoping

    2016-09-01

    A new analytical method which can support full computer-aided circuit design for a microelectromechanical (MEMS) thermoelectric microwave power sensor operable at X-band is presented in this paper. A reduced dimensional form of a heat transfer equation is built in the radial direction based on point heat source approximation and precise volume mesh of the sensor. Frequency dependent losses are discussed to explain the sensitivity degradation with frequency. Based on this analysis, an electrical model for the power sensor is established. This approach facilitates the modeling of the coupled energy domains in the power sensor straightforwardly by means of a computer-aided simulation. Better estimation property is obtained compared to our previous works. Verifications are both conducted through ANSYS simulation and measurements with close agreements are observed. Relative errors between them are smaller than 13%. The deviations are discussed in detail. Fabrication of the thermoelectric power sensor is based on MEMS technology and the GaAs MMIC process.

  4. Oligoyne Molecular Junctions for Efficient Room Temperature Thermoelectric Power Generation.

    PubMed

    Sadeghi, Hatef; Sangtarash, Sara; Lambert, Colin J

    2015-11-11

    Understanding phonon transport at a molecular scale is fundamental to the development of high-performance thermoelectric materials for the conversion of waste heat into electricity. We have studied phonon and electron transport in alkane and oligoyne chains of various lengths and find that, due to the more rigid nature of the latter, the phonon thermal conductances of oligoynes are counterintuitively lower than that of the corresponding alkanes. The thermal conductance of oligoynes decreases monotonically with increasing length, whereas the thermal conductance of alkanes initially increases with length and then decreases. This difference in behavior arises from phonon filtering by the gold electrodes and disappears when higher-Debye-frequency electrodes are used. Consequently a molecule that better transmits higher-frequency phonon modes, combined with a low-Debye-frequency electrode that filters high-energy phonons is a viable strategy for suppressing phonon transmission through the molecular junctions. The low thermal conductance of oligoynes, combined with their higher thermopower and higher electrical conductance lead to a maximum thermoelectric figure of merit of ZT = 1.4, which is several orders of magnitude higher than that of alkanes. PMID:26458053

  5. Influence of germanium nano-inclusions on the thermoelectric power factor of bulk bismuth telluride alloy

    SciTech Connect

    Satyala, Nikhil; Zamanipour, Zahra; Norouzzadeh, Payam; Krasinski, Jerzy S.; Vashaee, Daryoosh; Tahmasbi Rad, Armin; Tayebi, Lobat

    2014-05-28

    Nanocomposite thermoelectric compound of bismuth telluride (Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}) with 5 at. % germanium nano-inclusions was prepared via mechanically alloying and sintering techniques. The influence of Ge nano-inclusions and long duration annealing on the thermoelectric properties of nanostructured Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} were investigated. It was found that annealing has significant effect on the carrier concentration, Seebeck coefficient, and the power factor of the thermoelectric compound. The systematic heat treatment also reduced the density of donor type defects thereby decreasing the electron concentration. While the as-pressed nanocomposite materials showed n-type properties, it was observed that with the increase of annealing time, the nanocomposite gradually transformed to an abundantly hole-dominated (p-type) sample. The long duration annealing (∼500 h) resulted in a significantly enhanced electrical conductivity pertaining to the augmentation in the density and the structural properties of the sample. Therefore, a simultaneous enhancement in both electrical and Seebeck coefficient characteristics resulted in a remarkable increase in the thermoelectric power factor.

  6. Absolute measurement of F2-laser power at 157 nm

    SciTech Connect

    Kueck, Stefan; Brandt, Friedhelm; Kremling, Hans-Albert; Gottwald, Alexander; Hoehl, Arne; Richter, Mathias

    2006-05-10

    We report a comparison of laser power measurements at the F2-laser wavelength oaf nm made at two facilities of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB), the German national metrology institute. At the PTB laboratory at the electron storage ring BESSY II in Berlin, the scale for laser power was directly traced to a cryogenic radiometer operating at 157 nm, whereas at the PTB laser radiometry facility in Braunschweig the calibration of transfer detectors was performed with a newly developed standard for laser power at 157 nm, which is traceable in several steps to a cryogenic radiometer operating at 633 nm. The comparison was performed under vacuum conditions with laser pulse energies of?10 {mu}J, however with different average powers because different primary standard radiometers were used. The relative deviation for the responsivity of the transfer detector was 4.8% and thus within the combined standard uncertainty.

  7. Thermoelectric thin film power generators: self-sustaining power supply for smart systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nurnus, Joachim

    2009-05-01

    Micropelt develops and markets the world's smallest thermoelectric power generation devices. Due to the silicon-wafer based MEMS-like production process elements with a total thickness of 1 mm and a footprint from less than 1 mm² to 25 mm2 can be realized. The fabrication process is based on standard semiconductor equipment and processes. Therefore ramp-up schemes and economies-of-scale close to those of common chip devices apply to Micropelt products. Micropelt thermogenerators produce much higher output voltages than conventional bulk devices which is due to the fact that their micro-structuring technology produces near 8000 p-n thermo-couples per square centimeter, while conventional thermogenerators typically have less than 10 such thermo-couples on the same area. Consequently Micropelt generators are well suited as the core of an integrated power supply for energy-autonomous miniaturized smart systems with average power consumptions of a few Milliwatts. Micropelt Engineering has proven readiness of their devices for use in a multitude of wireless sensor and micro systems, including smart actuators In this paper we will first introduce the Micropelt technology and further discuss energy harvesting opportunities for novel low power devices and wireless applications based on given waste heat reservoirs.

  8. Enhanced thermoelectric power and electronic correlations in RuSe₂

    DOE PAGES

    Wang, Kefeng; Wang, Aifeng; Tomic, A.; Wang, Limin; Abeykoon, A. M. Milinda; Dooryhee, E.; Billinge, S. J.L.; Petrovic, C.

    2015-03-03

    We report the electronic structure, electric and thermal transport properties of Ru₁₋xIrxSe₂ (x ≤ 0.2). RuSe₂ is a semiconductor that crystallizes in a cubic pyrite unit cell. The Seebeck coefficient of RuSe₂ exceeds -200 µV/K around 730 K. Ir substitution results in the suppression of the resistivity and the Seebeck coefficient, suggesting the removal of the peaks in density of states near the Fermi level. Ru₀.₈Ir₀.₂Se₂ shows a semiconductor-metal crossover at about 30 K. The magnetic field restores the semiconducting behavior. Our results indicate the importance of the electronic correlations in enhanced thermoelectricity of RuSb₂.

  9. Enhanced thermoelectric power and electronic correlations in RuSe₂

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Kefeng; Wang, Aifeng; Tomic, A.; Wang, Limin; Abeykoon, A. M. Milinda; Dooryhee, E.; Billinge, S. J.L.; Petrovic, C.

    2015-03-03

    We report the electronic structure, electric and thermal transport properties of Ru₁₋xIrxSe₂ (x ≤ 0.2). RuSe₂ is a semiconductor that crystallizes in a cubic pyrite unit cell. The Seebeck coefficient of RuSe₂ exceeds -200 µV/K around 730 K. Ir substitution results in the suppression of the resistivity and the Seebeck coefficient, suggesting the removal of the peaks in density of states near the Fermi level. Ru₀.₈Ir₀.₂Se₂ shows a semiconductor-metal crossover at about 30 K. The magnetic field restores the semiconducting behavior. Our results indicate the importance of the electronic correlations in enhanced thermoelectricity of RuSb₂.

  10. Improved thermoelectric power output from multilayered polyethylenimine doped carbon nanotube based organic composites

    SciTech Connect

    Hewitt, Corey A.; Montgomery, David S.; Barbalace, Ryan L.; Carlson, Rowland D.; Carroll, David L.

    2014-05-14

    By appropriately selecting the carbon nanotube type and n-type dopant for the conduction layers in a multilayered carbon nanotube composite, the total device thermoelectric power output can be increased significantly. The particular materials chosen in this study were raw single walled carbon nanotubes for the p-type layers and polyethylenimine doped single walled carbon nanotubes for the n-type layers. The combination of these two conduction layers leads to a single thermocouple Seebeck coefficient of 96 ± 4 μVK{sup −1}, which is 6.3 times higher than that previously reported. This improved Seebeck coefficient leads to a total power output of 14.7 nW per thermocouple at the maximum temperature difference of 50 K, which is 44 times the power output per thermocouple for the previously reported results. Ultimately, these thermoelectric power output improvements help to increase the potential use of these lightweight, flexible, and durable organic multilayered carbon nanotube based thermoelectric modules in low powered electronics applications, where waste heat is available.

  11. Improved thermoelectric power output from multilayered polyethylenimine doped carbon nanotube based organic composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hewitt, Corey A.; Montgomery, David S.; Barbalace, Ryan L.; Carlson, Rowland D.; Carroll, David L.

    2014-05-01

    By appropriately selecting the carbon nanotube type and n-type dopant for the conduction layers in a multilayered carbon nanotube composite, the total device thermoelectric power output can be increased significantly. The particular materials chosen in this study were raw single walled carbon nanotubes for the p-type layers and polyethylenimine doped single walled carbon nanotubes for the n-type layers. The combination of these two conduction layers leads to a single thermocouple Seebeck coefficient of 96 ± 4 μVK-1, which is 6.3 times higher than that previously reported. This improved Seebeck coefficient leads to a total power output of 14.7 nW per thermocouple at the maximum temperature difference of 50 K, which is 44 times the power output per thermocouple for the previously reported results. Ultimately, these thermoelectric power output improvements help to increase the potential use of these lightweight, flexible, and durable organic multilayered carbon nanotube based thermoelectric modules in low powered electronics applications, where waste heat is available.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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 ( < or = 10(exp 5) Ohms-sq cm). It can be used to leverage new advances in thin-film and nanostructured materials for the fabrication of new miniature thermoelectric devices. It may also enable monolithic integration of large devices or tandem arrays of devices on flexible or curved surfaces. Under mild testing, a power of 22 mW/sq cm was obtained from small (<100 K) temperature differences. At higher, more realistic temperature differences, approx.500 K, where the efficiency of these materials greatly improves, this power density would scale to between 0.5 and 1 Watt/cm2. These results highlight the excellent potential for the generation and scavenging of electrical power of practical and usable magnitude for remote applications using thermoelectric power generation technologies.

  13. Enhancing efficiency and power of quantum-dots resonant tunneling thermoelectrics in three-terminal geometry by cooperative effects

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang, Jian-Hua

    2014-11-21

    We propose a scheme of multilayer thermoelectric engine where one electric current is coupled to two temperature gradients in three-terminal geometry. This is realized by resonant tunneling through quantum dots embedded in two thermal and electrical resisting polymer matrix layers between highly conducting semiconductor layers. There are two thermoelectric effects, one of which is pertaining to inelastic transport processes (if energies of quantum dots in the two layers are different), while the other exists also for elastic transport processes. These two correspond to the transverse and longitudinal thermoelectric effects, respectively, and are associated with different temperature gradients. We show that cooperation between the two thermoelectric effects leads to markedly improved figure of merit and power factor, which is confirmed by numerical calculation using material parameters. Such enhancement is robust against phonon heat conduction and energy level broadening. Therefore, we demonstrated cooperative effect as an additional way to effectively improve performance of thermoelectrics in three-terminal geometry.

  14. Power factor enhancement in solution-processed organic n-type thermoelectric materials through side chain design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russ, Boris; Robb, Maxwell J.; Brunetti, Fulvio G.; Miller, Levi; Patel, Shrayesh; Ho, Victor; Urban, Jeffrey J.; Chabinyc, Michael L.; Hawker, Craig J.; Segalman, Rachel A.

    2014-03-01

    Building efficient organic thermoelectric architectures requires complementary p-type (hole transporting) and n-type (electron transporting) components. While several high performance hole-transporting polymers have been developed, the design of n-type organics has proven challenging, and thermoelectric studies of organic n-type systems are scarce. We investigate the properties of a series of charged perylene diimide (PDI) derivatives. Charged side chains in these materials enable both water solubility and self-doping. We show that changing the length of the alkyl spacer between the charged end groups and the PDI core dramatically improves thin film thermoelectric properties. The top derivatives in our study demonstrated the highest power factor reported for n-type solution-processed films. By complementing thermoelectric characterization of these variants with insight on the electronic and structural property changes from optical spectroscopy, EPR, and GIWAXS experiments, our findings shape a promising molecular design strategy for future enhancements in thermoelectric performance.

  15. Stochastic Drought Risk Analysis and Projection Methods For Thermoelectric Power Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bekera, Behailu Belamo

    Combined effects of socio-economic, environmental, technological and political factors impact fresh cooling water availability, which is among the most important elements of thermoelectric power plant site selection and evaluation criteria. With increased variability and changes in hydrologic statistical stationarity, one concern is the increased occurrence of extreme drought events that may be attributable to climatic changes. As hydrological systems are altered, operators of thermoelectric power plants need to ensure a reliable supply of water for cooling and generation requirements. The effects of climate change are expected to influence hydrological systems at multiple scales, possibly leading to reduced efficiency of thermoelectric power plants. This study models and analyzes drought characteristics from a thermoelectric systems operational and regulation perspective. A systematic approach to characterize a stream environment in relation to extreme drought occurrence, duration and deficit-volume is proposed and demonstrated. More specifically, the objective of this research is to propose a stochastic water supply risk analysis and projection methods from thermoelectric power systems operation and management perspectives. The study defines thermoelectric drought as a shortage of cooling water due to stressed supply or beyond operable water temperature limits for an extended period of time requiring power plants to reduce production or completely shut down. It presents a thermoelectric drought risk characterization framework that considers heat content and water quantity facets of adequate water availability for uninterrupted operation of such plants and safety of its surroundings. In addition, it outlines mechanisms to identify rate of occurrences of the said droughts and stochastically quantify subsequent potential losses to the sector. This mechanism is enabled through a model based on compound Nonhomogeneous Poisson Process. This study also demonstrates how

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

    SciTech Connect

    David Feldman; Amanda Slough; Gary Garrett

    2008-06-01

    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

  17. Advanced Soldier Thermoelectric Power System for Power Generation from Battlefield Heat Sources

    SciTech Connect

    Hendricks, Terry J.; Hogan, Tim; Case, Eldon D.; Cauchy, Charles J.

    2010-09-01

    The U.S. military uses large amounts of fuel during deployments and battlefield operations. This project sought to develop a lightweight, small form-factor, soldier-portable advanced thermoelectric (TE) system prototype to recover and convert waste heat from various deployed military equipment (i.e., diesel generators/engines, incinerators, vehicles, and potentially mobile kitchens), with the ultimate purpose of producing power for soldier battery charging, advanced capacitor charging, and other battlefield power applications. The technical approach employed microchannel technology, a unique “power panel” approach to heat exchange/TE system integration, and newly-characterized LAST (lead-antimony-silver-telluride) and LASTT (lead-antimony-silver-tin-telluride) TE materials segmented with bismuth telluride TE materials in designing a segmented-element TE power module and system. This project researched never-before-addressed system integration challenges (thermal expansion, thermal diffusion, electrical interconnection, thermal and electrical interfaces) of designing thin “power panels” consisting of alternating layers of thin, microchannel heat exchangers (hot and cold) sandwiching thin, segmented-element TE power generators. The TE properties, structurally properties, and thermal fatigue behavior of LAST and LASTT materials were developed and characterized such that the first segmented-element TE modules using LAST / LASTT materials were fabricated and tested at hot-side temperatures = 400 °C and cold-side temperatures = 40 °C. LAST / LASTT materials were successfully segmented with bismuth telluride and electrically interconnected with diffusion barrier materials and copper strapping within the module electrical circuit. A TE system design was developed to produce 1.5-1.6 kW of electrical energy using these new TE modules from the exhaust waste heat of 60-kW Tactical Quiet Generators as demonstration vehicles.

  18. Progress towards an Optimization Methodology for Combustion-Driven Portable Thermoelectric Power Generation Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Krishnan, Shankar; Karri, Naveen K.; Gogna, Pawan K.; Chase, Jordan R.; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Hendricks, Terry J.

    2012-03-13

    Enormous military and commercial interests exist in developing quiet, lightweight, and compact thermoelectric (TE) power generation systems. This paper investigates design integration and analysis of an advanced TE power generation system implementing JP-8 fueled combustion and thermal recuperation. Design and development of a portable TE power system using a JP-8 combustor as a high temperature heat source and optimal process flows depend on efficient heat generation, transfer, and recovery within the system are explored. Design optimization of the system required considering the combustion system efficiency and TE conversion efficiency simultaneously. The combustor performance and TE sub-system performance were coupled directly through exhaust temperatures, fuel and air mass flow rates, heat exchanger performance, subsequent hot-side temperatures, and cold-side cooling techniques and temperatures. Systematic investigation of this system relied on accurate thermodynamic modeling of complex, high-temperature combustion processes concomitantly with detailed thermoelectric converter thermal/mechanical modeling. To this end, this work reports on design integration of systemlevel process flow simulations using commercial software CHEMCADTM with in-house thermoelectric converter and module optimization, and heat exchanger analyses using COMSOLTM software. High-performance, high-temperature TE materials and segmented TE element designs are incorporated in coupled design analyses to achieve predicted TE subsystem level conversion efficiencies exceeding 10%. These TE advances are integrated with a high performance microtechnology combustion reactor based on recent advances at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Predictions from this coupled simulation established a basis for optimal selection of fuel and air flow rates, thermoelectric module design and operating conditions, and microtechnology heat-exchanger design criteria. This paper will discuss this

  19. Implementation of Thermoelectric Generators in Airliners for Powering Battery-Free Wireless Sensor Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dilhac, Jean-Marie; Monthéard, Romain; Bafleur, Marise; Boitier, Vincent; Durand-Estèbe, Paul; Tounsi, Patrick

    2014-06-01

    In recent years, wireless sensor networks (WSN) have been considered for various aeronautical applications to perform sensing, data processing and wireless transmission of information, without the need to add extra wiring. However, each node of these networks needs to be self-powered. Considering the critical drawbacks associated with the use of electrochemical energy sources such as narrow operating temperature range and limited lifetime, environmental energy capture allows an alternative solution for long-term, deploy and forget, WSN. In this context, thermoelectricity is a method of choice considering the implementation context. In this paper, we present hands-on experience related to on-going implementations of thermoelectric generators (TEG) in airliners. In a first part, we will explain the reasons justifying the choice of ambient energy capture to power WSN in an aircraft. Then, we will derive the general requirements applying to the functional use of TEG. Finally, in the last section, we will illustrate the above issues through practical implementations.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  1. Water, Power, and Stress: Impacts of Thermoelectric Power Generation on Water Basins in the Coterminous U.S

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madden, N. T.; Averyt, K.; Huber-lee, A. T.; Levental, S.; Lewis, A.

    2011-12-01

    Thermoelectric power cooling represents the highest anthropogenic demand for water in the coterminous United States, accounting for over 41% of all freshwater taken from the environment. In watersheds where multiple power plants require water for cooling, these demands can significantly stress local water resources. Our study uses the Water Supply Stress Index, or WaSSI, to calculate the ratio of water demand to water supply for 2,106 8-digit hydrologic units nationwide (Sun et al. 2008). Water demand is determined by withdrawals from seven major user categories (commercial, domestic, industrial, irrigation, livestock, mining, thermoelectric), while supply is the sum of a) surface water supply; b) groundwater supply, based on historic rates of groundwater withdrawal; and c) return flows from major water users, including cities, agriculture and power plants. Water imported from other basins is not taken into account. To identify the basins where thermoelectric water use adds significantly to the water burden, we calculate the WaSSI for each basin nationwide, both with and without power-plant water use included. We find that power plants substantially exacerbate water stress in 44 basins, primarily located in California, the Great Lakes, the South Atlantic-Gulf, and the Colorado River. Our current work explores various indicators of stress in these "hotspots", in terms of water availability, increased water temperatures, and potential impacts to aquatic species.

  2. Psychotropic drug profiles: comparisons by topographic maps of absolute power.

    PubMed

    Coppola, R; Herrmann, W M

    1987-01-01

    In a double-blind fourfold crossover design, 11 subjects were randomly assigned to placebo, 10 mg diazepam, 75 mg amitriptyline, and 75 mg chlorpromazine. During a simple vigilance task, 12 midline and left hemisphere leads were recorded before and 3 h after drug administration. The EEG was quantified by spectrum analysis, the topographic structure displayed by brain mapping techniques, and the results compared with earlier studies which used the same design and drugs. Diazepam showed the expected increase in beta; however, fast beta was increased as much as slow beta. Amitriptyline showed an increase of slow wave power and a reduction of alpha. In contrast to earlier studies, a decrease of fast beta was found. In addition, the spatial pattern of alpha changed from an occipital to a parietal maximum. Chlorpromazine showed an increase in the theta band. In occipital regions, there was a small decrease of fast beta; however, centrally there was an increase of both slow and fast beta. These results were confirmed by a multivariate analysis of variance.

  3. Optimization of power and efficiency of thermoelectric devices with asymmetric thermal contacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yazawa, Kazuaki; Shakouri, Ali

    2012-01-01

    We report the theoretical efficiency of thermoelectric power generation with asymmetric thermal contacts to reservoirs. A key ingredient is the electrical and thermal co-optimization. Generic formula of the maximum power output and the optimum leg length are obtained. The Curzon-Ahlborn limit at maximum power can be rigorously derived when the dimensionless figure-of-merit is very large for any asymmetric thermal contact resistances. The results differ from cyclic thermodynamic engines, and some of the reasons are discussed. We also point out the similarity and differences with single-level quantum dot heat engines, which assume no explicit thermal contact resistance with reservoirs.

  4. Finding the quantum thermoelectric with maximal efficiency and minimal entropy production at given power output

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitney, Robert S.

    2015-03-01

    We investigate the nonlinear scattering theory for quantum systems with strong Seebeck and Peltier effects, and consider their use as heat engines and refrigerators with finite power outputs. This paper gives detailed derivations of the results summarized in a previous paper [R. S. Whitney, Phys. Rev. Lett. 112, 130601 (2014), 10.1103/PhysRevLett.112.130601]. It shows how to use the scattering theory to find (i) the quantum thermoelectric with maximum possible power output, and (ii) the quantum thermoelectric with maximum efficiency at given power output. The latter corresponds to a minimal entropy production at that power output. These quantities are of quantum origin since they depend on system size over electronic wavelength, and so have no analog in classical thermodynamics. The maximal efficiency coincides with Carnot efficiency at zero power output, but decreases with increasing power output. This gives a fundamental lower bound on entropy production, which means that reversibility (in the thermodynamic sense) is impossible for finite power output. The suppression of efficiency by (nonlinear) phonon and photon effects is addressed in detail; when these effects are strong, maximum efficiency coincides with maximum power. Finally, we show in particular limits (typically without magnetic fields) that relaxation within the quantum system does not allow the system to exceed the bounds derived for relaxation-free systems, however, a general proof of this remains elusive.

  5. Cascaded Thermoelectric Conversion-Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems (CTC-ARPSs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Genk, Mohamed S.; Saber, Hamed H.

    2004-02-01

    Conceptual designs of Advanced Radioisotope Power System (ARPS) with Cascaded Thermoelectric Converters (CTCs) are developed and optimized for maximum efficiency operation for End-Of Mission (EOM) electrical power of at least 100 We. These power systems each employs four General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) bricks generating 1000 Wth at Beginning-of-Life (BOL) and 32 Cascaded Thermoelectric Modules (CTMs). Each CTM consists of a top and a bottom array of thermoelectric unicouples, which are thermally, but not electrically, coupled. The top and bottom arrays of the CTMs are connected electrically in series in two parallel strings with the same nominal voltage of > 28 VDC. The SiGe unicouples in the top array of the CTMs are optimized for nominal hot shoe temperature of 1273 K and constant cold shoe temperature of either 780 K or 980 K, depending on the thermoelectric materials of the unicouples in the bottom array. For a SiGe cold junction temperature of 780 K, the unicouples in the bottom array have p-legs of TAGS-85 and n-legs of 2N-PbTe and operate at constant hot junction temperature of 765 K and nominal cold junction temperature of 476.4 K. When the SiGe cold junction temperature is 980 K, the unicouples in the bottom arrays of CTMs have p-legs of CeFe3.5Co0.5Sb12 or CeFe3.5Co0.5Sb12 and Zn4Sb3, segments and n-legs of CoSb3 and operate at constant hot junction temperature of 965 K and nominal cold junction temperatures of 446.5 K or 493.5 K, respectively. The CTC-ARPSs have a nominal efficiency of 10.82% - 10.85% and generate BOL power of 108 We. This system efficiency is ~ 80% higher than that of State-of-the-Art (SOA) Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs), requiring 7 GHPS bricks and generating 105 We at BOL. The CTC-ARPSs have specific powers of 8.2 We/kg to 8.8 We/kg, which are 71% to 83% higher, respectively, than that of the SOA-RTGs, and use ~ 43% less 238PuO2 fuel.

  6. Consideration of Thermoelectric Power Generation by Using Hot Spring Thermal Energy or Industrial Waste Heat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasaki, Keiichi; Horikawa, Daisuke; Goto, Koichi

    2015-01-01

    Today, we face some significant environmental and energy problems such as global warming, urban heat island, and the precarious balance of world oil supply and demand. However, we have not yet found a satisfactory solution to these problems. Waste heat recovery is considered to be one of the best solutions because it can improve energy efficiency by converting heat exhausted from plants and machinery to electric power. This technology would also prevent atmospheric temperature increases caused by waste heat, and decrease fossil fuel consumption by recovering heat energy, thus also reducing CO2 emissions. The system proposed in this research generates electric power by providing waste heat or unharnessed thermal energy to built-in thermoelectric modules that can convert heat into electric power. Waste heat can be recovered from many places, including machinery in industrial plants, piping in electric power plants, waste incineration plants, and so on. Some natural heat sources such as hot springs and solar heat can also be used for this thermoelectric generation system. The generated power is expected to be supplied to auxiliary machinery around the heat source, stored as an emergency power supply, and so on. The attributes of this system are (1) direct power generation using hot springs or waste heat; (2) 24-h stable power generation; (3) stand-alone power system with no noise and no vibration; and (4) easy maintenance attributed to its simple structure with no moving parts. In order to maximize energy use efficiency, the temperature difference between both sides of the thermoelectric (TE) modules built into the system need to be kept as large as possible. This means it is important to reduce thermal resistance between TE modules and heat source. Moreover, the system's efficiency greatly depends on the base temperature of the heat sources and the material of the system's TE modules. Therefore, in order to make this system practical and efficient, it is necessary to

  7. Benzothienobenzothiophene-Based Molecular Conductors: High Conductivity, Large Thermoelectric Power Factor, and One-Dimensional Instability.

    PubMed

    Kiyota, Yasuhiro; Kadoya, Tomofumi; Yamamoto, Kaoru; Iijima, Kodai; Higashino, Toshiki; Kawamoto, Tadashi; Takimiya, Kazuo; Mori, Takehiko

    2016-03-23

    On the basis of an excellent transistor material, [1]benzothieno[3,2-b][1]benzothiophene (BTBT), a series of highly conductive organic metals with the composition of (BTBT)2XF6 (X = P, As, Sb, and Ta) are prepared and the structural and physical properties are investigated. The room-temperature conductivity amounts to 4100 S cm(-1) in the AsF6 salt, corresponding to the drift mobility of 16 cm(2) V(-1) s(-1). Owing to the high conductivity, this salt shows a thermoelectric power factor of 55-88 μW K(-2) m(-1), which is a large value when this compound is regarded as an organic thermoelectric material. The thermoelectric power and the reflectance spectrum indicate a large bandwidth of 1.4 eV. These salts exhibit an abrupt resistivity jump under 200 K, which turns to an insulating state below 60 K. The paramagnetic spin susceptibility, and the Raman and the IR spectra suggest 4kF charge-density waves as an origin of the low-temperature insulating state.

  8. Calculated transport properties of CdO: Thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power factor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindsay, L.; Parker, D. S.

    2015-10-01

    We present first-principles calculations of the thermal and electronic transport properties of the oxide semiconductor CdO. In particular, we find from theory that the accepted thermal conductivity κ value of 0.7 W m-1K-1 is approximately one order of magnitude too small; our calculations of κ of CdO are in good agreement with recent measurements. We also find that alloying of MgO with CdO is an effective means to reduce the lattice contribution to κ , despite MgO having a much larger thermal conductivity. We further consider the electronic structure of CdO in relation to thermoelectric performance, finding that large thermoelectric power factors may occur if the material can be heavily doped p type. This work develops insight into the nature of thermal and electronic transport in an important oxide semiconductor.

  9. Calculated transport properties of CdO: thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power factor

    SciTech Connect

    Lindsay, Lucas R.; Parker, David S.

    2015-10-01

    We present first principles calculations of the thermal and electronic transport properties of the oxide semiconductor CdO. In particular, we find from theory that the accepted thermal conductivity κ value of 0.7 Wm-1K-1 is approximately one order of magnitude too small; our calculations of κ of CdO are in good agreement with recent measurements. We also find that alloying of MgO with CdO is an effective means to reduce the lattice contribution to κ, despite MgO having a much larger thermal conductivity. We further consider the electronic structure of CdO in relation to thermoelectric performance, finding that large thermoelectric power factors may occur if the material can be heavily doped p-type. This work develops insight into the nature of thermal and electronic transport in an important oxide semiconductor.

  10. A miniaturized mW thermoelectric generator for nw objectives: continuous, autonomous, reliable power for decades.

    SciTech Connect

    Aselage, Terrence Lee; Siegal, Michael P.; Whalen, Scott; Frederick, Scott K.; Apblett, Christopher Alan; Moorman, Matthew Wallace

    2006-10-01

    We have built and tested a miniaturized, thermoelectric power source that can provide in excess of 450 {micro}W of power in a system size of 4.3cc, for a power density of 107 {micro}W/cc, which is denser than any system of this size previously reported. The system operates on 150mW of thermal input, which for this system was simulated with a resistive heater, but in application would be provided by a 0.4g source of {sup 238}Pu located at the center of the device. Output power from this device, while optimized for efficiency, was not optimized for form of the power output, and so the maximum power was delivered at only 41mV. An upconverter to 2.7V was developed concurrently with the power source to bring the voltage up to a usable level for microelectronics.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  12. The influence of non-idealities on the thermoelectric power factor of nanostructured superlattices

    SciTech Connect

    Thesberg, Mischa; Pourfath, Mahdi; Kosina, Hans

    2015-12-14

    Cross-plane superlattices composed of nanoscale layers of alternating potential wells and barriers have attracted great attention for their potential to provide thermoelectric power factor improvements and higher ZT figure of merit. Previous theoretical works have shown that the presence of optimized potential barriers could provide improvements to the Seebeck coefficient through carrier energy filtering, which improves the power factor by up to 40%. However, experimental corroboration of this prediction has been extremely scant. In this work, we employ quantum mechanical electronic transport simulations to outline the detrimental effects of random variation, imperfections, and non-optimal barrier shapes in a superlattice geometry on these predicted power factor improvements. Thus, we aim to assess either the robustness or the fragility of these theoretical gains in the face of the types of variation one would find in real material systems. We show that these power factor improvements are relatively robust against: overly thick barriers, diffusion of barriers into the body of the wells, and random fluctuations in barrier spacing and width. However, notably, we discover that extremely thin barriers and random fluctuation in barrier heights by as little as 10% is sufficient to entirely destroy any power factor benefits of the optimized geometry. Our results could provide performance optimization routes for nanostructured thermoelectrics and elucidate the reasons why significant power factor improvements are not commonly realized in superlattices, despite theoretical predictions.

  13. Residential Solar Combined Heat and Power Generation using Solar Thermoelectric Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohara, B.; Wagner, M.; Kunkle, C.; Watson, P.; Williams, R.; Donohoe, R.; Ugarte, K.; Wilmoth, R.; Chong, M. Zachary; Lee, H.

    2015-06-01

    Recent reports on improved efficiencies of solar thermoelectric generation (STEG) systems have generated interest in STEGs as a competitive power generation system. In this paper, the design of a combined cooling and power utilizing concentrated solar power is discussed. Solar radiation is concentrated into a receiver connected to thermoelectric modules, which are used as a topping cycle to generate power and high grade heat necessary to run an absorption chiller. Modeling of the overall system is discussed with experimental data to validate modeling results. A numerical modeling approach is presented which considers temperature variation of the source and sink temperatures and is used to maximize combined efficiency. A system is built with a demonstrated combined efficiency of 32% in actual working conditions with power generation of 3.1 W. Modeling results fell within 3% of the experimental results verifying the approach. An optimization study is performed on the mirror concentration ration and number of modules for thermal load matching and is shown to improve power generation to 26.8 W.

  14. Skutterudite Thermoelectric Generator for Electrical Power Generation from Automotive Waste Heat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meisner, Gregory

    2012-02-01

    Filled skutterudites are state-of-the- art thermoelectric (TE) materials for electrical power generation from waste heat. They have suitable intrinsic transport properties as measured by the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT = S^2σT/κ (S = Seebeck coefficient, σ = electrical conductivity, T = temperature, and κ = thermal conductivity) and good mechanical strength for operation at vehicle exhaust gas temperatures of >550 C. We have demonstrated TE electrical power generation on a production test vehicle equipped with a fully functional prototype TE generator (TEG). It was assembled with TE modules fabricated from filled skutterudites synthesized at GM. Our results and analysis show that improvement in total power generated can be achieved by enhanced thermal and electrical interfaces and contacts. A substantial T decrease along the exhaust gas flow results in a large variation of voltage, current, and power output for each TE module depending on its position in the module array. Total TEG output power depends directly on the position-dependent T profile via the temperature dependence of both ZT and Carnot efficiency. Total TEG power output also depends on how the modules are connected in parallel or series combinations because mismatch in output voltage and/or internal resistance among the modules degrades the performance of the entire array. Uniform T profiles and consistent TE module internal resistances improve overall TEG performance.

  15. The influence of non-idealities on the thermoelectric power factor of nanostructured superlattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thesberg, Mischa; Pourfath, Mahdi; Kosina, Hans; Neophytou, Neophytos

    2015-12-01

    Cross-plane superlattices composed of nanoscale layers of alternating potential wells and barriers have attracted great attention for their potential to provide thermoelectric power factor improvements and higher ZT figure of merit. Previous theoretical works have shown that the presence of optimized potential barriers could provide improvements to the Seebeck coefficient through carrier energy filtering, which improves the power factor by up to 40%. However, experimental corroboration of this prediction has been extremely scant. In this work, we employ quantum mechanical electronic transport simulations to outline the detrimental effects of random variation, imperfections, and non-optimal barrier shapes in a superlattice geometry on these predicted power factor improvements. Thus, we aim to assess either the robustness or the fragility of these theoretical gains in the face of the types of variation one would find in real material systems. We show that these power factor improvements are relatively robust against: overly thick barriers, diffusion of barriers into the body of the wells, and random fluctuations in barrier spacing and width. However, notably, we discover that extremely thin barriers and random fluctuation in barrier heights by as little as 10% is sufficient to entirely destroy any power factor benefits of the optimized geometry. Our results could provide performance optimization routes for nanostructured thermoelectrics and elucidate the reasons why significant power factor improvements are not commonly realized in superlattices, despite theoretical predictions.

  16. Design and Numerical Simulation of a Symbiotic Thermoelectric Power Generation System Fed by a Low-Grade Heat Source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faraji, Amir Yadollah; Singh, Randeep; Mochizuki, Masataka; Akbarzadeh, Aliakbar

    2014-06-01

    All liquid heating systems, including solar thermal collectors and fossil-fueled heaters, are designed to convert low-temperature liquid to high-temperature liquid. In the presence of low- and high-temperature fluids, temperature differences can be created across thermoelectric devices to produce electricity so that the heat dissipated from the hot side of a thermoelectric device will be absorbed by the cold liquid and this preheated liquid enters the heating cycle and increases the efficiency of the heater. Consequently, because of the avoidance of waste heat on the thermoelectric hot side, the efficiency of heat-to-electricity conversion with this configuration is better than that of conventional thermoelectric power generation systems. This research aims to design and analyze a thermoelectric power generation system based on the concept described above and using a low-grade heat source. This system may be used to generate electricity either in direct conjunction with any renewable energy source which produces hot water (solar thermal collectors) or using waste hot water from industry. The concept of this system is designated "ELEGANT," an acronym from "Efficient Liquid-based Electricity Generation Apparatus iNside Thermoelectrics." The first design of ELEGANT comprised three rectangular aluminum channels, used to conduct warm and cold fluids over the surfaces of several commercially available thermoelectric generator (TEG) modules sandwiched between the channels. In this study, an ELEGANT with 24 TEG modules, referred to as ELEGANT-24, has been designed. Twenty-four modules was the best match to the specific geometry of the proposed ELEGANT. The thermoelectric modules in ELEGANT-24 were electrically connected in series, and the maximum output power was modeled. A numerical model has been developed, which provides steady-state forecasts of the electrical output of ELEGANT-24 for different inlet fluid temperatures.

  17. Achieving Maximum Power from Thermoelectric Generators with Maximum-Power-Point-Tracking Circuits Composed of a Boost-Cascaded-with-Buck Converter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Hyunbin; Sim, Minseob; Kim, Shiho

    2015-06-01

    We propose a way of achieving maximum power and power-transfer efficiency from thermoelectric generators by optimized selection of maximum-power-point-tracking (MPPT) circuits composed of a boost-cascaded-with-buck converter. We investigated the effect of switch resistance on the MPPT performance of thermoelectric generators. The on-resistances of the switches affect the decrease in the conversion gain and reduce the maximum output power obtainable. Although the incremental values of the switch resistances are small, the resulting difference in the maximum duty ratio between the input and output powers is significant. For an MPPT controller composed of a boost converter with a practical nonideal switch, we need to monitor the output power instead of the input power to track the maximum power point of the thermoelectric generator. We provide a design strategy for MPPT controllers by considering the compromise in which a decrease in switch resistance causes an increase in the parasitic capacitance of the switch.

  18. Studies on Effective Utilization of SOFC Exhaust Heat Using Thermoelectric Power Generation Technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terayama, Takeshi; Nagata, Susumu; Tanaka, Yohei; Momma, Akihiko; Kato, Tohru; Kunii, Masaru; Yamamoto, Atsushi

    2013-07-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are being researched around the world. In Japan, a compact SOFC system with rated alternative current (AC) power of 700 W has become available on the market, since the base load electricity demand for a standard home is said to be less than 700 W AC. To improve the generating efficiency of SOFC systems in the 700-W class, we focused on thermoelectric generation (TEG) technology, since there are a lot of temperature gradients in the system. Analysis based on simulations indicated the possibility of introducing thermoelectric generation at the air preheater, steam generator, and exhaust outlet. Among these options, incorporating a TEG heat exchanger comprising multiple CoSb3/SiGe-based TEG modules into the air preheater had potential to produce additional output of 37.5 W and an improvement in generating efficiency from 46% to 48.5%. Furthermore, by introducing thermoelectric generation at the other two locations, an increase in maximum output of more than 50 W and generating efficiency of 50% can be anticipated.

  19. Nonequilibrium Thermoelectrics: Low-Cost, High-Performance Materials for Cooling and Power Generation

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Q.

    2011-05-18

    Thermoelectric materials can be made into coolers (TECs) that use electricity to develop a temperature difference, cooling something, or generators (TEGs) that convert heat directly to electricity. One application of TEGs is to place them in a waste heat stream to recuperate some of the power being lost and putting it to use more profitably. To be effective thermoelectrics, however, materials must have both high electrical conductivity and low thermal conductivity, a combination rarely found in nature. Materials selection and processing has led to the development of several systems with a figure of merit, ZT, of nearly unity. By using non-equilibrium techniques, we have fabricated higher efficiency thermoelectric materials. The process involves creating an amorphous material through melt spinning and then sintering it with either spark plasma or a hot press for as little as two minutes. This results in a 100% dense material with an extremely fine grain structure. The grain boundaries appear to retard phonons resulting in a reduced thermal conductivity while the electrons move through the material relatively unchecked. The techniques used are low-cost and scaleable to support industrial manufacturing.

  20. What are the Historical and Future Impacts of Temperature Variability on Thermoelectric Power Plant Performance?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henry, C.; Pratson, L.

    2015-12-01

    Current literature hypothesize that climate change-driven temperature increases will negatively affect the power production capacity of thermoelectric power plants, which currently produce ~88% of electricity used in the United States. This impact can occur through 1) warm cooling water that reduces the quantity of heat removed from the once-through (open-loop) steam system, 2) increased air temperature and/or humidity that decrease the amount of heat absorption in cooling towers/ponds of wet-recirculating (closed-loop) plants, and 3) environmental protection regulations that impose restrictions on both cooling water withdrawal volume and temperature of discharge. However, despite the widespread consensus that temperature and power generation are negatively related, different models yield a range of results and the magnitude of effects is uncertain. In this study, we test current literature's model predictions using historical data by assembling and analyzing a database of relevant parameters from distinct sources. We examine how daily and seasonal changes in cooling water, ambient air, and wet bulb temperatures have historically impacted coal and natural gas power plants in the U.S., focusing on 39 plants over a period up to 14 years. This allows us to assess how future changes in temperatures may affect generation. Our results suggest that water and ambient air temperatures have a lower impact on thermoelectric plant performance than previously predicted. Moreover, we find that recirculating power plants are more resilient to temperature variability than are once-through plants.

  1. Lunar Nuclear Power Plant With Solid Core Reactor, Heatpipes and Thermoelectric Conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sayre, Edwin D.; Ring, Peter J.; Brown, Neil; Elsner, Norbert B.; Bass, John C.

    2008-01-01

    This is a lunar nuclear power plant with the advantages of minimum mass, with no moving parts, no pumped liquid coolant, a solid metal rugged core, with no single point of failure. The electrical output is 100 kilowatts with a 500 kilowatt thermal reactor. The thermoelectric converters surround the potassium heatpipes from the core and water heatpipes surround the converter and connect to the radiator. The solid core reactor is made from HT9 alloy. The fuel is uranium oxide with 90% enrichment. The thermoelectric converter is bonded to the outside of the 1.10 inch ID heat pipe and is 30 inches long. The thermoelectric couple is Si/SiGe-Si/SiC Quantum Well with over 20% efficiency with an 890 K hot side and a 490 K cold side and produces 625 Watts. 176 converters produce 110 kWe. With less than 10% loss in controls this yields 100 kWe for use. The cylindrical thermoelectric converter is designed and fabricated by HIPing to keep brittle materials in compression and to ensure conductivity. The solid core is fabricated by machining the heatpipe tubes with 6 grooves that are diffusion bonded together by HIPing to form the fuel tubes. The maximum temperature of the heat pipes is 940 K and the return flow temperature is 890 K. The reactor core is hexagonal shaped, 61 cm. wide and 76.2 cm high with 12 rotating control drums surrounding it. There is shielding to protect components and human habitation. The radiator is daisy shaped at 45 degrees with each petal 5.5 meters long. The design life is ten years.

  2. Lunar Nuclear Power Plant With Solid Core Reactor, Heatpipes and Thermoelectric Conversion

    SciTech Connect

    Sayre, Edwin D.; Ring, Peter J.; Brown, Neil; Elsner, Norbert B.; Bass, John C.

    2008-01-21

    This is a lunar nuclear power plant with the advantages of minimum mass, with no moving parts, no pumped liquid coolant, a solid metal rugged core, with no single point of failure. The electrical output is 100 kilowatts with a 500 kilowatt thermal reactor. The thermoelectric converters surround the potassium heatpipes from the core and water heatpipes surround the converter and connect to the radiator. The solid core reactor is made from HT9 alloy. The fuel is uranium oxide with 90% enrichment. The thermoelectric converter is bonded to the outside of the 1.10 inch ID heat pipe and is 30 inches long. The thermoelectric couple is Si/SiGe-Si/SiC Quantum Well with over 20% efficiency with an 890 K hot side and a 490 K cold side and produces 625 Watts. 176 converters produce 110 kWe. With less than 10% loss in controls this yields 100 kWe for use. The cylindrical thermoelectric converter is designed and fabricated by HIPing to keep brittle materials in compression and to ensure conductivity. The solid core is fabricated by machining the heatpipe tubes with 6 grooves that are diffusion bonded together by HIPing to form the fuel tubes. The maximum temperature of the heat pipes is 940 K and the return flow temperature is 890 K. The reactor core is hexagonal shaped, 61 cm. wide and 76.2 cm high with 12 rotating control drums surrounding it. There is shielding to protect components and human habitation. The radiator is daisy shaped at 45 degrees with each petal 5.5 meters long. The design life is ten years.

  3. Fabrication and Testing of Thermoelectric Modules and Milliwatt Power Supplies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, Daniel T.; Hiller, Nathan D.; Bass, John C.; Elsner, Norbert B.

    2004-02-01

    This paper reports the recent progress at Hi-Z technology, Inc., following from earlier work in development of milliwatt radioisotope power supplies for space applications. Several generator units have been built and tested. From the results of these tests, from ongoing design and analysis and from continued communication with DOE and with potential users of these generators at NASA, there have been suggested revisions and improvements. In this paper we discuss the most recent testing of power conversion modules and of units representing a Flight System MRPS design, and we describe two improved generator designs and their features.

  4. An experimental setup for the simultaneous measurement of thermoelectric power of two samples from 77 K to 500 K

    SciTech Connect

    Tripathi, T. S.; Bala, M.; Asokan, K.

    2014-08-01

    We report on an experimental setup for the simultaneous measurement of the thermoelectric power (TEP) of two samples in the temperature range from 77 K to 500 K using optimum electronic instruments. The setup consists of two rectangular copper bars in a bridge arrangement for sample mounting, two surface mount (SM) chip resistors for creating alternate temperature gradient, and a type E thermocouple in differential geometry for gradient temperature (ΔT) measurement across the samples. In addition, a diode arrangement has been made for the alternate heating of SM resistors using only one DC current source. The measurement accuracy of ΔT increases with the differential thermocouple arrangement. For the calibration of the setup, measurements of TEP on a high purity (99.99%) platinum wire and type K thermocouple wires Chromel and Alumel have been performed from 77 K to 500 K with respect to copper lead wires. Additionally, this setup can be utilized to calibrate an unknown sample against a sample of known absolute TEP.

  5. Maximum Power Point Tracking with Dichotomy and Gradient Method for Automobile Exhaust Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, W.; Quan, S. H.; Xie, C. J.; Tang, X. F.; Wang, L. L.; Huang, L.

    2016-03-01

    In this study, a direct-current/direct-current (DC/DC) converter with maximum power point tracking (MPPT) is developed to down-convert the high voltage DC output from a thermoelectric generator to the lower voltage required to charge batteries. To improve the tracking accuracy and speed of the converter, a novel MPPT control scheme characterized by an aggregated dichotomy and gradient (ADG) method is proposed. In the first stage, the dichotomy algorithm is used as a fast search method to find the approximate region of the maximum power point. The gradient method is then applied for rapid and accurate tracking of the maximum power point. To validate the proposed MPPT method, a test bench composed of an automobile exhaust thermoelectric generator was constructed for harvesting the automotive exhaust heat energy. Steady-state and transient tracking experiments under five different load conditions were carried out using a DC/DC converter with the proposed ADG and with three traditional methods. The experimental results show that the ADG method can track the maximum power within 140 ms with a 1.1% error rate when the engine operates at 3300 rpm@71 NM, which is superior to the performance of the single dichotomy method, the single gradient method and the perturbation and observation method from the viewpoint of improved tracking accuracy and speed.

  6. Power and efficiency analysis of a realistic resonant tunneling diode thermoelectric

    SciTech Connect

    Agarwal, Akshay; Muralidharan, Bhaskaran

    2014-07-07

    Low-dimensional systems with sharp features in the density of states have been proposed as a means for improving the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Quantum dot systems, which offer the sharpest density of states achievable, however, suffer from low power outputs while bulk (3-D) thermoelectrics, while displaying high power outputs, offer very low efficiencies. Here, we analyze the use of a resonant tunneling diode structure that combines the best of both aspects, that is, density of states distortion with a finite bandwidth due to confinement that aids the efficiency and a large number of current carrying transverse modes that enhances the total power output. We show that this device can achieve a high power output (∼0.3 MW∕m{sup 2}) at efficiencies of ∼40% of the Carnot efficiency due to the contribution from these transverse momentum states at a finite bandwidth of kT∕2. We then provide a detailed analysis of the physics of charge and heat transport with insights on parasitic currents that reduce the efficiency. Finally, a comparison between the resonant tunneling diode and a quantum dot device with comparable bandwidth reveals that a similar performance requires ultra-dense areal quantum dot densities of ∼10{sup 12}/cm{sup 2}.

  7. Power and efficiency analysis of a realistic resonant tunneling diode thermoelectric

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agarwal, Akshay; Muralidharan, Bhaskaran

    2014-07-01

    Low-dimensional systems with sharp features in the density of states have been proposed as a means for improving the efficiency of thermoelectric devices. Quantum dot systems, which offer the sharpest density of states achievable, however, suffer from low power outputs while bulk (3-D) thermoelectrics, while displaying high power outputs, offer very low efficiencies. Here, we analyze the use of a resonant tunneling diode structure that combines the best of both aspects, that is, density of states distortion with a finite bandwidth due to confinement that aids the efficiency and a large number of current carrying transverse modes that enhances the total power output. We show that this device can achieve a high power output (˜0.3 MW/m2) at efficiencies of ˜40% of the Carnot efficiency due to the contribution from these transverse momentum states at a finite bandwidth of kT/2. We then provide a detailed analysis of the physics of charge and heat transport with insights on parasitic currents that reduce the efficiency. Finally, a comparison between the resonant tunneling diode and a quantum dot device with comparable bandwidth reveals that a similar performance requires ultra-dense areal quantum dot densities of ˜ 10 12 / cm 2.

  8. Experimental Study and Optimization of Thermoelectricity-Driven Autonomous Sensors for the Chimney of a Biomass Power Plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodríguez, A.; Astrain, D.; Martínez, A.; Aranguren, P.

    2014-06-01

    In the work discussed in this paper a thermoelectric generator was developed to harness waste heat from the exhaust gas of a boiler in a biomass power plant and thus generate electric power to operate a flowmeter installed in the chimney, to make it autonomous. The main objective was to conduct an experimental study to optimize a previous design obtained after computational work based on a simulation model for thermoelectric generators. First, several places inside and outside the chimney were considered as sites for the thermoelectricity-driven autonomous sensor. Second, the thermoelectric generator was built and tested to assess the effect of the cold-side heat exchanger on the electric power, power consumption by the flowmeter, and transmission frequency. These tests provided the best configuration for the heat exchanger, which met the transmission requirements for different working conditions. The final design is able to transmit every second and requires neither batteries nor electric wires. It is a promising application in the field of thermoelectric generation.

  9. Global thermal pollution of rivers from thermoelectric power plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raptis, C. E.; van Vliet, M. T. H.; Pfister, S.

    2016-10-01

    Worldwide riverine thermal pollution patterns were investigated by combining mean annual heat rejection rates from power plants with once-through cooling systems with the global hydrological-water temperature model variable infiltration capacity (VIC)-RBM. The model simulates both streamflow and water temperature on 0.5° × 0.5° spatial resolution worldwide and by capturing their effect, identifies multiple thermal pollution hotspots. The Mississippi receives the highest total amount of heat emissions (62% and 28% of which come from coal-fuelled and nuclear power plants, respectively) and presents the highest number of instances where the commonly set 3 °C temperature increase limit is equalled or exceeded. The Rhine receives 20% of the thermal emissions compared to the Mississippi (predominantly due to nuclear power plants), but is the thermally most polluted basin in relation to the total flow per watershed, with one third of its total flow experiencing a temperature increase ≥5 °C on average over the year. In other smaller basins in Europe, such as the Weser and the Po, the share of the total streamflow with a temperature increase ≥3 °C goes up to 49% and 81%, respectively, during July–September. As the first global analysis of its kind, this work points towards areas of high riverine thermal pollution, where temporally finer thermal emission data could be coupled with a spatially finer model to better investigate water temperature increase and its effect on aquatic ecosystems.

  10. Modelling and measurement of the absolute level of power radiated by antenna integrated THz UTC photodiodes.

    PubMed

    Natrella, Michele; Liu, Chin-Pang; Graham, Chris; van Dijk, Frederic; Liu, Huiyun; Renaud, Cyril C; Seeds, Alwyn J

    2016-05-30

    We determine the output impedance of uni-travelling carrier (UTC) photodiodes at frequencies up to 400 GHz by performing, for the first time, 3D full-wave modelling of detailed UTC photodiode structures. In addition, we demonstrate the importance of the UTC impedance evaluation, by using it in the prediction of the absolute power radiated by an antenna integrated UTC, over a broad frequency range and confirming the predictions by experimental measurements up to 185 GHz. This is done by means of 3D full-wave modelling and is only possible since the source (UTC) to antenna impedance match is properly taken into account. We also show that, when the UTC-to-antenna coupling efficiency is modelled using the classical junction-capacitance/series-resistance concept, calculated and measured levels of absolute radiated power are in substantial disagreement, and the maximum radiated power is overestimated by a factor of almost 7 dB. The ability to calculate the absolute emitted power correctly enables the radiated power to be maximised through optimisation of the UTC-to-antenna impedance match.

  11. Modelling and measurement of the absolute level of power radiated by antenna integrated THz UTC photodiodes.

    PubMed

    Natrella, Michele; Liu, Chin-Pang; Graham, Chris; van Dijk, Frederic; Liu, Huiyun; Renaud, Cyril C; Seeds, Alwyn J

    2016-05-30

    We determine the output impedance of uni-travelling carrier (UTC) photodiodes at frequencies up to 400 GHz by performing, for the first time, 3D full-wave modelling of detailed UTC photodiode structures. In addition, we demonstrate the importance of the UTC impedance evaluation, by using it in the prediction of the absolute power radiated by an antenna integrated UTC, over a broad frequency range and confirming the predictions by experimental measurements up to 185 GHz. This is done by means of 3D full-wave modelling and is only possible since the source (UTC) to antenna impedance match is properly taken into account. We also show that, when the UTC-to-antenna coupling efficiency is modelled using the classical junction-capacitance/series-resistance concept, calculated and measured levels of absolute radiated power are in substantial disagreement, and the maximum radiated power is overestimated by a factor of almost 7 dB. The ability to calculate the absolute emitted power correctly enables the radiated power to be maximised through optimisation of the UTC-to-antenna impedance match. PMID:27410104

  12. Enhanced Thermoelectric Power in Graphene: Violation of the Mott Relation by Inelastic Scattering.

    PubMed

    Ghahari, Fereshte; Xie, Hong-Yi; Taniguchi, Takashi; Watanabe, Kenji; Foster, Matthew S; Kim, Philip

    2016-04-01

    We report the enhancement of the thermoelectric power (TEP) in graphene with extremely low disorder. At high temperature we observe that the TEP is substantially larger than the prediction of the Mott relation, approaching to the hydrodynamic limit due to strong inelastic scattering among the charge carriers. However, closer to room temperature the inelastic carrier-optical-phonon scattering becomes more significant and limits the TEP below the hydrodynamic prediction. We support our observation by employing a Boltzmann theory incorporating disorder, electron interactions, and optical phonons. PMID:27081996

  13. Thermoelectric power of Ce(In 1- xSn x) 3

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakurai, J.; Murata, K.; Komura, Y.

    1984-01-01

    Thermoelectric power, S, of a pseudo-binary system Ce(In 1- xSn x) 3 was measured in the temperature range from 4.2 to 300 K. S as a function of temperature, T, has common features for all our samples; at low temperature, S is nearly proportional to T, it attains to a large maximum value and then it decreases as further increase of T. These features of S are shown to be understandable on the basis of the model on the intermediate valence state of 4 f-electron of Ce proposed by Newns and Hewson.

  14. Enhanced Thermoelectric Power in Graphene: Violation of the Mott Relation by Inelastic Scattering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghahari, Fereshte; Xie, Hong-Yi; Taniguchi, Takashi; Watanabe, Kenji; Foster, Matthew S.; Kim, Philip

    2016-04-01

    We report the enhancement of the thermoelectric power (TEP) in graphene with extremely low disorder. At high temperature we observe that the TEP is substantially larger than the prediction of the Mott relation, approaching to the hydrodynamic limit due to strong inelastic scattering among the charge carriers. However, closer to room temperature the inelastic carrier-optical-phonon scattering becomes more significant and limits the TEP below the hydrodynamic prediction. We support our observation by employing a Boltzmann theory incorporating disorder, electron interactions, and optical phonons.

  15. Size dependence of thermoelectric power of Au nanoclusters with rough and smooth surface deposited onto highly oriented pyrolytic graphite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borisyuk, P. V.; Krasavin, A. V.; Troyan, V. I.; Lebedinskii, Yu. Yu.; Vasiliev, O. S.

    2015-05-01

    The paper presents the analysis of tunnel current-voltage characteristics of gold nanoclusters deposited onto the highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) surface by pulsed laser deposition. An original technique is suggested which allows recovering of the thermoelectric power value of nanoclusters by analyzing their differential tunneling current-voltage characteristics. It was found that the value of the thermoelectric power of pulsed laser deposited Au nanoclusters decreases with decreasing of their size down to -60 μV/K for cluster's volume of 0.1 nm3. At the same time the thermoelectric power value of thermal evaporated Au nanoclusters which have smooth surface does not reveal the size dependence for clusters with volume down to 0.5 nm3. The analysis of the results and the possible causes of this behavior are discussed.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-08-01

    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.

  17. Thermal Cycling Behavior of Zinc Antimonide Thin Films for High Temperature Thermoelectric Power Generation Applications.

    PubMed

    Shim, Hyung Cheoul; Woo, Chang-Su; Han, Seungwoo

    2015-08-19

    The zinc antimonide compound ZnxSby is one of the most efficient thermoelectric materials known at high temperatures due to its exceptional low thermal conductivity. For this reason, it continues to be the focus of active research, especially regarding its glass-like atomic structure. However, before practical use in actual surroundings, such as near a vehicle manifold, it is imperative to analyze the thermal reliability of these materials. Herein, we present the thermal cycling behavior of ZnxSby thin films in nitrogen (N2) purged or ambient atmosphere. ZnxSby thin films were prepared by cosputtering and reached a power factor of 1.39 mW m(-1) K(-2) at 321 °C. We found maximum power factor values gradually decreased in N2 atmosphere due to increasing resistivity with repeated cycling, whereas the specimen in air kept its performance. X-ray diffraction and electron microscopy observations revealed that fluidity of Zn atoms leads to nanoprecipitates, porous morphologies, and even growth of a coating layer or fiber structures on the surface of ZnxSby after repetitive heating and cooling cycles. With this in mind, our results indicate that proper encapsulation of the ZnxSby surface would reduce these unwanted side reactions and the resulting degradation of thermoelectric performance.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  19. Enhanced power factor and high-pressure effects in (Bi,Sb){sub 2}(Te,Se){sub 3} thermoelectrics

    SciTech Connect

    Ovsyannikov, Sergey V. E-mail: sergey2503@gmail.com; Morozova, Natalia V.; Korobeinikov, Igor V.; Vokhmyanin, Alexander P.; Shchennikov, Vladimir V.; Lukyanova, Lidia N.; Usov, Oleg A.; Kutasov, Vsevolod A.; Manakov, Andrey Y.; Likhacheva, Anna Y.; Ancharov, Alexey I.; Berger, Ivan F.; Kulbachinskii, Vladimir A.; Okada, Taku

    2015-04-06

    We investigated the effects of applied high pressure on thermoelectric, electric, structural, and optical properties of single-crystalline thermoelectrics, Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3}, Bi{sub x}Sb{sub 2−x}Te{sub 3} (x = 0.4, 0.5, 0.6), and Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 2.73}Se{sub 0.27} with the high thermoelectric performance. We established that moderate pressure of about 2–4 GPa can greatly enhance the thermoelectric power factor of all of them. X-ray diffraction and Raman studies on Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and Bi{sub 0.5}Sb{sub 1.5}Te{sub 3} found anomalies at similar pressures, indicating a link between crystal structure deformation and physical properties. We speculate about possible mechanisms of the power factor enhancement and suppose that pressure/stress tuning can be an effective tool for the optimization of the thermoelectric performance.

  20. System Modeling and Validation of a Thermoelectric Fluidic Power Source: Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell and Thermoelectric Generator (PEMFC-TEG)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Min; Andreasen, Søren Juhl; Rosendahl, Lasse; Kær, Søren Knudsen; Condra, Thomas

    2010-09-01

    To facilitate the co-design and co-optimization of fluid or combustion systems and thermoelectric devices, a three-dimensional (3D) thermoelectric generator (TEG) model has been proposed and implemented in a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation environment. The model includes all temperature-dependent characteristics of the materials and nonlinear fluid-thermal- electric multiphysics coupled effects. In this paper, the device-level model is first extended to the module level by taking a general geometry, identifying regions such as positive and negative thermoelements, and assigning properties to them. The system-level model is then demonstrated by coupling the module-level model with a fluidic-thermal system model in a single CFD simulator to predict the generation performance based on the thermal equilibrium that is achieved. The linked models are validated experimentally at the system level using data from three real thermoelectric modules installed on the surface of an exhaust pipe-like rig, where the temperature profile as well as the electricity generated can be measured and compared with the simulation results. The rig is intended not only to verify the proposed system model but also to mimic a practical exhaust recovery apparatus for a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC). Based on the data obtained from the system-level test rig, a novel low-temperature low-cost application for auxiliary electric power appliances based on the waste heat of the PEMFC can be envisaged. Within the common simulator, it is shown that the thermoelectric model can be connected to various continuum-domain CFD models of the fuel cell itself, thus enabling further possibilities to optimize system efficiency and performance.

  1. Semiconducting large bandgap oxides as potential thermoelectric materials for high-temperature power generation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Backhaus-Ricoult, M.; Rustad, J.; Moore, L.; Smith, C.; Brown, J.

    2014-08-01

    Semiconducting large bandgap oxides are considered as interesting candidates for high-temperature thermoelectric power generation (700-1,200 °C) due to their stability, lack of toxicity and low cost, but so far they have not reached sufficient performance for extended application. In this review, we summarize recent progress on thermoelectric oxides, analyze concepts for tuning semiconductor thermoelectric properties with view of their applicability to oxides and determine key drivers and limitations for electrical and thermal transport properties in oxides based on our own experimental work and literature results. For our experimental assessment, we have selected representative multicomponent oxides that range from materials with highly symmetric crystal structure (SrTiO3 perovskite) over oxides with large densities of planar crystallographic defects (Ti n O2 n-1 Magnéli phases with a single type of shear plane, NbO x block structures with intersecting shear planes and WO3- x with more defective block and channel structures) to layered superstructures (Ca3Co4O9 and double perovskites) and also include a wide range of their composites with a variety of second phases. Crystallographic or microstructural features of these oxides are in 0.3-2 nm size range, so that oxide phonons can efficiently interact with them. We explore in our experiments the effects of doping, grain size, crystallographic defects, superstructures, second phases, texturing and (to a limited extend) processing on electric conductivity, Seebeck coefficient, thermal conductivity and figure of merit. Jonker and lattice-versus-electrical conductivity plots are used to compare specific materials and material families and extract levers for future improvement of oxide thermoelectrics. We show in our work that oxygen vacancy doping (reduction) is a more powerful driver for improving the power factor for SrTiO3, TiO2 and NbO x than heterovalent doping. Based on our Seebeck-conductivity plots, we derived

  2. Microcombustor-thermoelectric power generator for 10-50 watt applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, Daniel S.; Cho, Steve T.

    2010-04-01

    Fuel-based portable power systems, including combustion and fuel cell systems, take advantage of the 80x higher energy density of fuel over lithium battery technologies and offer the potential for much higher energy density power sources - especially for long-duration applications, such as unattended sensors. Miniaturization of fuel-based systems poses significant challenges, including processing of fuel in small channels, catalyst poisoning, and coke and soot formation. Recent advances in micro-miniature combustors in the 200Watt thermal range have enabled the development of small power sources that use the chemical energy of heavy fuel to drive thermal-to-electric converters for portable applications. CUBE Technology has developed compact Micro-Furnace combustors that efficiently deliver high-quality heat to optimized thermal-to-electric power converters, such as advanced thermoelectric power modules and Stirling motors, for portable power generation at the 10-50Watt scale. Key innovations include a compact gas-gas recuperator, innovative heavy fuel processing, coke- & soot-free operation, and combustor optimization for low balance-of-plant power use while operating at full throttle. This combustor enables the development of robust, high energy density, miniature power sources for portable applications.

  3. The alkali metal thermoelectric converter /AMTEC/ - A new direct energy conversion technology for aerospace power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bankston, C. P.; Cole, T.; Jones, R.; Ewell, R.

    1982-01-01

    A thermally regenerative electrochemical device for the direct conversion of heat to electrical energy, the alkali metal thermoelectric converter (AMTEC), is characterized by potential efficiencies on the order of 15-40% and possesses no moving parts, making it a candidate for space power system applications. Device conversion efficiency is projected on the basis of experimental voltage vs current curves exhibiting power densities of 0.7 W/sq cm and measured electrode efficiencies of up to 40%. Preliminary radiative heat transfer measurements presented may be used in an investigation of methods for the reduction of AMTEC parasitic radiation losses. AMTEC assumes heat input and rejection temperatures of 900-1300 K and 400-800 K, respectively. The working fluid is liquid sodium, and the porous electrode employed is of molybdenum.

  4. One-dimensional behavior and high thermoelectric power factor in thin indium arsenide nanowires

    SciTech Connect

    Mensch, P.; Karg, S. Schmidt, V.; Gotsmann, B.; Schmid, H.; Riel, H.

    2015-03-02

    Electrical conductivity and Seebeck coefficient of quasi-one-dimensional indium arsenide (InAs) nanowires with 20 nm diameter are investigated. The carrier concentration of the passivated nanowires was modulated by a gate electrode. A thermoelectric power factor of 1.7 × 10{sup −3} W/m K{sup 2} was measured at room temperature. This value is at least as high as in bulk-InAs and exceeds by far typical values of thicker InAs nanowires with three-dimensional properties. The interpretation of the experimental results in terms of power-factor enhancement by one-dimensionality is supported by model calculations using the Boltzmann transport formalism.

  5. Megawatt-Scale Application of Thermoelectric Devices in Thermal Power Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knox, A. R.; Buckle, J.; Siviter, J.; Montecucco, A.; McCulloch, E.

    2013-07-01

    Despite the recent investment in renewable and sustainable energy sources, over 95% of the UK's electrical energy generation relies on the use of thermal power plants utilizing the Rankine cycle. Advanced supercritical Rankine cycle power plants typically have a steam temperature in excess of 600°C at a pressure of 290 bar and yet still have an overall efficiency below 50%, with much of this wasted energy being rejected to the environment through the condenser/cooling tower. This paper examines the opportunity for large-scale application of thermoelectric heat pumps to modify the Rankine cycle in such plants by preheating the boiler feedwater using energy recovered from the condenser system at a rate of approximately 1 MWth per °C temperature rise. A derivation of the improved process cycle efficiency and breakeven coefficient of performance required for economic operation is presented for a typical supercritical 600-MWe installation.

  6. A Power And Thermal System with Thermoelectric Generators At 930 C For Solar Probe Inside 0.1 AU

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Choi, Michael K.; Powers, Edward I. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The Power System for Solar Probe is required to provide an electrical power of 100 W to 200 W over a wide range of radial distances from the Sun. The distance varies from 5.2 AU (i.e., Jupiter gravity assist orbit) and 4 solar radii. The solar intensity varies by nearly 5 orders of magnitude. Radioactive Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) is one way to meet the power requirement. However, the use of an RTG presents a politically expensive risk for the mission. An alternative is a totally non-nuclear and intrinsically conservative method, which uses mostly developed technologies. This paper presents an innovative concept, which uses thermoelectric generators with a high temperature cooling system to meet the power requirement inside 0. 1 AU. In this concept, Silicon Germanium (SiGe)/Gallium Phosphorus (GaP) thermoelectric generators use the infrared radiation from the spacecraft primary heat shield as an energy source, and a liquid sodium high temperature cooling system to maintain the SiGe/GaP thermoelectric generators at 1200 K. It allows a routine access by interplanetary probes to the innermost regions of the heliosphere, which is prudent to the scientific community.

  7. Photo-induced enhancement of the power factor of Cu2S thermoelectric films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lv, Yanhong; Chen, Jikun; Zheng, Ren-Kui; Song, Junqiang; Zhang, Tiansong; Li, Xiaomin; Shi, Xun; Chen, Lidong

    2015-11-01

    Element doping is commonly used to adjust the carrier concentrations in semiconductors such as thermoelectric materials. However, the doping process unavoidably brings in defects or distortions in crystal lattices, which further strongly affects the physical properties of the materials. In this work, high energy photons have been used to activate the carriers in Cu2S thermoelectric films. As a result, the carrier concentrations, and the respective electrical conductivity as well as Seebeck coefficient are further changed. The photon-induced electrical transport properties are further analyzed utilizing a Parallel circuit model. Due to the realization of optimized carrier concentrations by photon activation, the power factor of Cu2S film is improved more than 900 times as compared with the dark data. As compared to the traditional doping process, the approach using photon activation can realize the tuning of carrier concentrations without affecting crystal lattice. This method provides an opportunity to investigate the intrinsic physical properties of semiconductor materials without involving traditional element doping process that usually brings in additional lattice defects or distortions.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  10. Photo-induced enhancement of the power factor of Cu2S thermoelectric films

    PubMed Central

    Lv, Yanhong; Chen, Jikun; Zheng, Ren-Kui; Song, Junqiang; Zhang, Tiansong; Li, Xiaomin; Shi, Xun; Chen, Lidong

    2015-01-01

    Element doping is commonly used to adjust the carrier concentrations in semiconductors such as thermoelectric materials. However, the doping process unavoidably brings in defects or distortions in crystal lattices, which further strongly affects the physical properties of the materials. In this work, high energy photons have been used to activate the carriers in Cu2S thermoelectric films. As a result, the carrier concentrations, and the respective electrical conductivity as well as Seebeck coefficient are further changed. The photon-induced electrical transport properties are further analyzed utilizing a Parallel circuit model. Due to the realization of optimized carrier concentrations by photon activation, the power factor of Cu2S film is improved more than 900 times as compared with the dark data. As compared to the traditional doping process, the approach using photon activation can realize the tuning of carrier concentrations without affecting crystal lattice. This method provides an opportunity to investigate the intrinsic physical properties of semiconductor materials without involving traditional element doping process that usually brings in additional lattice defects or distortions. PMID:26573407

  11. Photo-induced enhancement of the power factor of Cu2S thermoelectric films.

    PubMed

    Lv, Yanhong; Chen, Jikun; Zheng, Ren-Kui; Song, Junqiang; Zhang, Tiansong; Li, Xiaomin; Shi, Xun; Chen, Lidong

    2015-01-01

    Element doping is commonly used to adjust the carrier concentrations in semiconductors such as thermoelectric materials. However, the doping process unavoidably brings in defects or distortions in crystal lattices, which further strongly affects the physical properties of the materials. In this work, high energy photons have been used to activate the carriers in Cu2S thermoelectric films. As a result, the carrier concentrations, and the respective electrical conductivity as well as Seebeck coefficient are further changed. The photon-induced electrical transport properties are further analyzed utilizing a Parallel circuit model. Due to the realization of optimized carrier concentrations by photon activation, the power factor of Cu2S film is improved more than 900 times as compared with the dark data. As compared to the traditional doping process, the approach using photon activation can realize the tuning of carrier concentrations without affecting crystal lattice. This method provides an opportunity to investigate the intrinsic physical properties of semiconductor materials without involving traditional element doping process that usually brings in additional lattice defects or distortions. PMID:26573407

  12. Infrared and thermoelectric power generation in thin atomic layer deposited Nb-doped TiO{sub 2} films

    SciTech Connect

    Mann, Harkirat S.; Lang, Brian N.; Schwab, Yosyp; Scarel, Giovanna; Niemelä, Janne-Petteri; Karppinen, Maarit

    2015-01-15

    Infrared radiation is used to radiatively transfer heat to a nanometric power generator (NPG) device with a thermoelectric Nb-doped TiO{sub 2} film deposited by atomic layer deposition (ALD) as the active element, onto a borosilicate glass substrate. The linear rise of the produced voltage with respect to the temperature difference between the “hot” and “cold” junctions, typical of the Seebeck effect, is missing. The discovery of the violation of the Seebeck effect in NPG devices combined with the ability of ALD to tune thermoelectric thin film properties could be exploited to increase the efficiency of these devices for energy harvesting purposes.

  13. Particle visualization in high-power impulse magnetron sputtering. II. Absolute density dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Britun, Nikolay Palmucci, Maria; Konstantinidis, Stephanos; Snyders, Rony

    2015-04-28

    Time-resolved characterization of an Ar-Ti high-power impulse magnetron sputtering discharge has been performed. The present, second, paper of the study is related to the discharge characterization in terms of the absolute density of species using resonant absorption spectroscopy. The results on the time-resolved density evolution of the neutral and singly-ionized Ti ground state atoms as well as the metastable Ti and Ar atoms during the discharge on- and off-time are presented. Among the others, the questions related to the inversion of population of the Ti energy sublevels, as well as to re-normalization of the two-dimensional density maps in terms of the absolute density of species, are stressed.

  14. Intercomparison of the LBIR Absolute Cryogenic Radiometers to the NIST Optical Power Measurement Standard

    PubMed Central

    Fedchak, James A.; Carter, Adriaan C.; Datla, Raju

    2006-01-01

    The Low Background Infrared calibration (LBIR) facility at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) presently maintains four absolute cryogenic radiometers (ACRs) which serve as standard reference detectors for infrared calibrations performed by the facility. The primary standard for optical power measurements at NIST-Gaithersburg has been the High Accuracy Cryogenic Radiometer (HACR). Recently, an improved radiometer, the Primary Optical Watt Radiometer (POWR), has replaced the HACR as the primary standard. In this paper, we present the results of comparisons between the radiometric powers measured by the four ACRs presently maintained by the LBIR facility to that measured by the HACR and POWR. This was done by using a Si photodiode light-trapping detector as a secondary transfer standard to compare the primary national standards to the ACRs maintained by the LBIR facility. The technique used to compare an ACR to the trap detector is described in detail. The absolute optical power measurements are found to be within 0.1 % of the primary standard for all the ACRs examined in this study. PMID:27274936

  15. Enhanced Molecular Packing of a Conjugated Polymer with High Organic Thermoelectric Power Factor.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wei; Shi, Ke; Wu, Yang; Lu, Zuo-Yu; Liu, Han-Yu; Wang, Jie-Yu; Pei, Jian

    2016-09-21

    The detailed relationship between film morphology and the performance of solution processed n-type organic thermoelectric (TE) devices is investigated. It is interesting to find that the better ordered molecular packing of n-type polymer can be achieved by adding a small fraction of dopant molecules, which is not observed before. The better ordered structure will be favorable for the charge carrier mobility. Meanwhile, dopant molecules improve free carrier concentration via doping reaction. As a result, a significantly enhanced electrical conductivity (12 S cm(-1)) and power factor (25.5 μW m(-1) K(-2)) of TE devices are obtained. Furthermore, the phase separation of conjugated polymer/dopants is observed for the first time with resonant soft X-ray scattering. Our results indicate that the miscibility of conjugated polymers and dopants plays an important role on controlling the morphology and doping efficiency of TE devices.

  16. Anomalously high thermoelectric power factor in epitaxial ScN thin films

    SciTech Connect

    Kerdsongpanya, Sit; Zukauskaite, Agne; Jensen, Jens; Birch, Jens; Lu Jun; Hultman, Lars; Wingqvist, Gunilla; Eklund, Per; Van Nong, Ngo; Pryds, Nini

    2011-12-05

    Thermoelectric properties of ScN thin films grown by reactive magnetron sputtering on Al{sub 2}O{sub 3}(0001) wafers are reported. X-ray diffraction and elastic recoil detection analyses show that the composition of the films is close to stoichiometry with trace amounts ({approx}1 at. % in total) of C, O, and F. We found that the ScN thin-film exhibits a rather low electrical resistivity of {approx}2.94 {mu}{Omega}m, while its Seebeck coefficient is approximately {approx}-86 {mu}V/K at 800 K, yielding a power factor of {approx}2.5 x 10{sup -3} W/mK{sup 2}. This value is anomalously high for common transition-metal nitrides.

  17. Impact test characterization of carbon-carbon composites for the thermoelectric space power system

    SciTech Connect

    Romanoski, G.R.; Pih, Hui

    1995-12-31

    Thirty-eight unique carbon-carbon composite materials of cylindrical architecture were fabricated by commercial vendors for evaluation as alternative impact shell materials for the modular heat source of the thermoelectric space power system. Characterization of these materials included gas gun impact tests where cylindrical specimens containing a mass simulant were fired at 55 m/s to impact a target instrumented to measure force. The force versus time output was analyzed to determine: peak force, acceleration, velocity, and displacement. All impact tests exhibited an equivalence between preimpact momentum and measured impulse. In addition, energy was conserved based on a comparison of preimpact kinetic energy and measured work. Impact test results showed that the currently specified material provided impact energy absorption comparable to the best alternatives considered to date.

  18. Characterization by thermoelectric power of a commercial aluminum-iron-silicon alloy (8011) during isothermal precipitation

    SciTech Connect

    Luiggi A., N.J.

    1998-11-01

    The author has characterized a commercial 8011 (Al-Fe-Si) alloy by studying samples under different initial states of strain hardening and iron and silicon supersaturation using thermoelectric power as a measurement technique. Isothermal kinetics of precipitation are obtained in the temperature range between 225 C and 600 C. He has determined the atom fraction precipitated for each microstructural condition, identifying the dominant alloying additions and evaluating the typical parameters of the precipitated phases, such as, for example, the apparent activation energy. Finally, he determined the time-temperature-transformation (TTT) diagrams. These results prove that iron is the alloying addition that controls the precipitation kinetics of the 8011 alloy in the temperature range studied.

  19. Enhanced Molecular Packing of a Conjugated Polymer with High Organic Thermoelectric Power Factor.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wei; Shi, Ke; Wu, Yang; Lu, Zuo-Yu; Liu, Han-Yu; Wang, Jie-Yu; Pei, Jian

    2016-09-21

    The detailed relationship between film morphology and the performance of solution processed n-type organic thermoelectric (TE) devices is investigated. It is interesting to find that the better ordered molecular packing of n-type polymer can be achieved by adding a small fraction of dopant molecules, which is not observed before. The better ordered structure will be favorable for the charge carrier mobility. Meanwhile, dopant molecules improve free carrier concentration via doping reaction. As a result, a significantly enhanced electrical conductivity (12 S cm(-1)) and power factor (25.5 μW m(-1) K(-2)) of TE devices are obtained. Furthermore, the phase separation of conjugated polymer/dopants is observed for the first time with resonant soft X-ray scattering. Our results indicate that the miscibility of conjugated polymers and dopants plays an important role on controlling the morphology and doping efficiency of TE devices. PMID:27579521

  20. Hybrid thermoelectric piezoelectric generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montgomery, D. S.; Hewitt, C. A.; Carroll, D. L.

    2016-06-01

    This work presents an integration of flexible thermoelectric and piezoelectric materials into a single device structure. This device architecture overcomes several prohibitive issues facing the combination of traditional thermoelectric and piezoelectric generators, while optimizing performance of the combined power output. The structure design uses a carbon nanotube/polymer thin film as a flexible thermoelectric generator that doubles as an electrode on a piezoelectric generator made of poly(vinylidene fluoride). An example 2 × 2 array of devices is shown to generate 89% of the maximum thermoelectric power, and provide 5.3 times more piezoelectric voltage when compared with a traditional device.

  1. Mo(3)Sb(7-x)Te(x) for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snyder, G. Jeffrey; Gascoin, Frank S.; Rasmussen, Julia

    2009-01-01

    Compounds having compositions of Mo(3)Sb(7-x)Te(x) (where x = 1.5 or 1.6) have been investigated as candidate thermoelectric materials. These compounds are members of a class of semiconductors that includes previously known thermoelectric materials. All of these compounds have complex crystalline and electronic structures. Through selection of chemical compositions and processing conditions, it may be possible to alter the structures to enhance or optimize thermoelectric properties.

  2. Power Generation and Peltier Refrigeration by a Tubular π-Type Thermoelectric Module

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakai, Akihiro; Kanno, Tsutomu; Takahashi, Kouhei; Tamaki, Hiromasa; Yamada, Yuka

    2015-11-01

    A tubular configuration is a practical form of thermoelectric (TE) device to generate electric power from fluid heat sources as well as to control the temperature of fluid media by Peltier effect. Here, we report the realization of a tubular π-type TE module which enables both power generation and Peltier refrigeration. The tubular module was obtained by stacking ring-shaped constituents in the axial direction, followed by simultaneous spark plasma sintering and joining processes. The experimentally-observed maximum power-density and efficiency are 0.9 kW/m2 and 2.2%, respectively, when a small temperature difference (Δ T) of 85 K was maintained using hot and cold water. Peltier refrigeration of the tube outer surface is also demonstrated. The obtained maximum Δ T and the cooling power density are Δ T = 49 K and 32.6 kW/m2, respectively. The present results indicate the high feasibility of this tube as a fluid-mediated practical TE module.

  3. A 3D Model of the Thermoelectric Microwave Power Sensor by MEMS Technology.

    PubMed

    Yi, Zhenxiang; Liao, Xiaoping

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, a novel 3D model is proposed to describe the temperature distribution of the thermoelectric microwave power sensor. In this 3D model, the heat flux density decreases from the upper surface to the lower surface of the GaAs substrate while it was supposed to be a constant in the 2D model. The power sensor is fabricated by a GaAs monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) process and micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) technology. The microwave performance experiment shows that the S11 is less than -26 dB over the frequency band of 1-10 GHz. The power response experiment demonstrates that the output voltage increases from 0 mV to 27 mV, while the incident power varies from 1 mW to 100 mW. The measured sensitivity is about 0.27 mV/mW, and the calculated result from the 3D model is 0.28 mV/mW. The relative error has been reduced from 7.5% of the 2D model to 3.7% of the 3D model. PMID:27338395

  4. A 3D Model of the Thermoelectric Microwave Power Sensor by MEMS Technology.

    PubMed

    Yi, Zhenxiang; Liao, Xiaoping

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, a novel 3D model is proposed to describe the temperature distribution of the thermoelectric microwave power sensor. In this 3D model, the heat flux density decreases from the upper surface to the lower surface of the GaAs substrate while it was supposed to be a constant in the 2D model. The power sensor is fabricated by a GaAs monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) process and micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) technology. The microwave performance experiment shows that the S11 is less than -26 dB over the frequency band of 1-10 GHz. The power response experiment demonstrates that the output voltage increases from 0 mV to 27 mV, while the incident power varies from 1 mW to 100 mW. The measured sensitivity is about 0.27 mV/mW, and the calculated result from the 3D model is 0.28 mV/mW. The relative error has been reduced from 7.5% of the 2D model to 3.7% of the 3D model.

  5. A 3D Model of the Thermoelectric Microwave Power Sensor by MEMS Technology

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Zhenxiang; Liao, Xiaoping

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, a novel 3D model is proposed to describe the temperature distribution of the thermoelectric microwave power sensor. In this 3D model, the heat flux density decreases from the upper surface to the lower surface of the GaAs substrate while it was supposed to be a constant in the 2D model. The power sensor is fabricated by a GaAs monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) process and micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) technology. The microwave performance experiment shows that the S11 is less than −26 dB over the frequency band of 1–10 GHz. The power response experiment demonstrates that the output voltage increases from 0 mV to 27 mV, while the incident power varies from 1 mW to 100 mW. The measured sensitivity is about 0.27 mV/mW, and the calculated result from the 3D model is 0.28 mV/mW. The relative error has been reduced from 7.5% of the 2D model to 3.7% of the 3D model. PMID:27338395

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  7. Thick-Film Thermoelectric Microdevices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, J.; Snyder, G.; Herman, J.; Giauque, P.; Phillips, W.; Ryan, M.; Shakkottai, P.; Kolawa, E.; Nicolet, M.

    1999-01-01

    Miniaturized thermoelectric devices integrated into thermal management packages and low power, high voltage, electrical power source systems are of interest for a variety of space and terrestrial applications.

  8. Progress Towards an Optimization Methodology for Combustion-Driven Portable Thermoelectric Power Generation Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krishnan, Shankar; Karri, Naveen K.; Gogna, Pawan K.; Chase, Jordan R.; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Hendricks, Terry J.

    2012-06-01

    There is enormous military and commercial interest in developing quiet, lightweight, and compact thermoelectric (TE) power generation systems. This paper investigates design integration and analysis of an advanced TE power generation system implementing JP-8 fueled combustion and thermal recuperation. In the design and development of this portable TE power system using a JP-8 combustor as a high-temperature heat source, optimal process flows depend on efficient heat generation, transfer, and recovery within the system. The combustor performance and TE subsystem performance were coupled directly through combustor exhaust temperatures, fuel and air mass flow rates, heat exchanger performance, subsequent hot-side temperatures, and cold-side cooling techniques and temperatures. Systematic investigation and design optimization of this TE power system relied on accurate thermodynamic modeling of complex, high-temperature combustion processes concomitantly with detailed TE converter thermal/mechanical modeling. To this end, this paper reports integration of system-level process flow simulations using CHEMCAD™ commercial software with in-house TE converter and module optimization, and heat exchanger analyses using COMSOL™ software. High-performance, high-temperature TE materials and segmented TE element designs are incorporated in coupled design analyses to achieve predicted TE subsystem-level conversion efficiencies exceeding 10%. These TE advances are integrated with a high-performance microtechnology combustion reactor based on recent advances at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Predictions from this coupled simulation approach lead directly to system efficiency-power maps defining potentially available optimal system operating conditions and regimes. Further, it is shown that, for a given fuel flow rate, there exists a combination of recuperative effectiveness and hot-side heat exchanger effectiveness that provides a higher specific power output from

  9. Magnesium and Manganese Silicides For Efficient And Low Cost Thermo-Electric Power Generation

    SciTech Connect

    Trivedi, Sudhir B.; Kutcher, Susan W.; Rosemeier, Cory A.; Mayers, David; Singh, Jogender

    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.

  10. Hybrid energy storage system for wireless sensor node powered by aircraft specific thermoelectric energy harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thangaraj, K.; Elefsiniotis, A.; Aslam, S.; Becker, Th.; Schmid, U.; Lees, J.; Featherston, C. A.; Pullin, R.

    2013-05-01

    This paper describes an approach for efficiently storing the energy harvested from a thermoelectric module for powering autonomous wireless sensor nodes for aeronautical health monitoring applications. A representative temperature difference was created across a thermo electric generator (TEG) by attaching a thermal mass and a cavity containing a phase change material to one side, and a heat source (to represent the aircraft fuselage) to the other. Batteries and supercapacitors are popular choices of storage device, but neither represents the ideal solution; supercapacitors have a lower energy density than batteries and batteries have lower power density than supercapacitors. When using only a battery for storage, the runtime of a typical sensor node is typically reduced by internal impedance, high resistance and other internal losses. Supercapacitors may overcome some of these problems, but generally do not provide sufficient long-term energy to allow advanced health monitoring applications to operate over extended periods. A hybrid energy storage unit can provide both energy and power density to the wireless sensor node simultaneously. Techniques such as acoustic-ultrasonic, acoustic-emission, strain, crack wire sensor and window wireless shading require storage approaches that can provide immediate energy on demand, usually in short, high intensity bursts, and that can be sustained over long periods of time. This application requirement is considered as a significant constraint when working with battery-only and supercapacitor-only solutions and they should be able to store up-to 40-50J of energy.

  11. Integration of Thermoelectric Generators and Wood Stove to Produce Heat, Hot Water, and Electrical Power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  12. Effect of spin fluctuations on the c-axis thermoelectric power in underdoped La2- xSrxCuO4+δ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ping, Lou

    2001-04-01

    A theory of the thermoelectric power due to the competition between interlayer direct hopping and the hopping assisted by the spin fluctuations has been developed. The prediction of the theory captures the main feature of experiment. Thus we argue that the c-axis thermoelectric power exhibits metallic behavior while the c-axis electronic conductivity appears to be nonmetallic in the underdoped LaSrCuO and may be properly understood within the theory.

  13. Correlation of symptom clusters of schizophrenia with absolute powers of main frequency bands in quantitative EEG

    PubMed Central

    Gross, Andres; Joutsiniemi, Sirkka-Liisa; Rimon, Ranan; Appelberg, Björn

    2006-01-01

    Background Research of QEEG activity power spectra has shown intriguing results in patients with schizophrenia. Different symptom clusters have been correlated to QEEG frequency bands. The findings have been to some extent inconsistent. Replication of the findings of previous research is thus an important task. In the current study we investigated the correlations between the absolute powers of delta, theta, alpha, and beta frequency bands over the fronto-central scalp area (FC) with the PANSS subscales and the Liddle's factors in 16 patients with schizophrenia. The authors hypothesised a priori the correlations reported by Harris et al (1999) of PANSS negative subscale with delta power, Liddle's psychomotor poverty with delta and beta powers, disorganisation with delta power and reality distortion with alpha power on the midline FC. Methods The sample consisted of 16 patients with chronic schizophrenia considered as having insufficient clinical response to conventional antipsychotic treatment and evidencing a relapse. The correlations between quantitative electroencephalography (QEEG) absolute powers of delta (1.5–3.0 Hz), theta (3.0–7.5 Hz), alpha (7.5–12.5 Hz), and beta (12.5–20.0 Hz) frequency bands over the fronto-central scalp area (FC) with PANSS subscales and Liddle's factors (reality distortion, disorganisation, psychomotor poverty) were investigated. Results Significant positive correlations were found between the beta and psychomotor poverty (p < 0.05). Trends towards positive correlations (p < 0.1) were observed between delta and PANSS negative subscale and psychomotor poverty. Alpha did not correlate with reality distortion and delta did not correlate with disorganisation. Post hoc analysis revealed correlations of the same magnitude between beta and psychopathology generally over FC. Conclusion The a priori hypothesis was partly supported by the correlation of the beta and psychomotor poverty. Liddle's factors showed correlations of the same

  14. System and method to improve the power output and longetivity of a radioisotope thermoelectric generator

    SciTech Connect

    Mowery, A.L. Jr.

    1992-12-31

    By using the helium generated by the alpha emissions of a thermoelectric generator during space travel for cooling the thermal degradation of the thermoelectric generator can be slowed. Slowing degradation allows missions to be longer with little additional expense or payload.

  15. System and method to improve the power output and longetivity of a radioisotope thermoelectric generator

    DOEpatents

    Mowery, Jr., Alfred L.

    1993-01-01

    By using the helium generated by the alpha emissions of a thermoelectric generator during space travel for cooling, the thermal degradation of the thermoelectric generator can be slowed. Slowing degradation allows missions to be longer with little additional expense or payload.

  16. Thermoelectric refrigerator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Park, Brian V. (Inventor); Smith, Jr., Malcolm C. (Inventor); McGrath, Ralph D. (Inventor); Gilley, Michael D. (Inventor); Criscuolo, Lance (Inventor); Nelson, John L. (Inventor)

    1996-01-01

    A refrigerator is provided which combines the benefits of superinsulation materials with thermoelectric devices and phase change materials to provide an environmentally benign system that is energy efficient and can maintain relatively uniform temperatures for extended periods of time with relatively low electrical power requirements. The refrigerator includes a thermoelectric assembly having a thermoelectric device with a hot sink and a cold sink. The superinsulation materials include a plurality of vacuum panels. The refrigerator is formed from an enclosed structure having a door. The vacuum panels may be contained within the walls of the enclosed structure and the door. By mounting the thermoelectric assembly on the door, the manufacturer of the enclosed structure is simplified and the overall R rating of the refrigerator increased. Also an electrical motor and propellers may be mounted on the door to assist in the circulation of air to improve the efficiency of the cold sink and the hot sink. A propeller and/or impeller is preferably mounted within the refrigerator to assist in establishing the desired air circulation flow path.

  17. Robust Design of Advanced Thermoelectric Conversion Systems: Probabilistic Design Impacts on Specific Power and Power Flux Optimization

    SciTech Connect

    Hendricks, Terry J.; Karri, Naveen K.

    2008-04-30

    Advanced, direct thermal energy conversion technologies are receiving increased research attention in order to recover waste thermal energy in advanced vehicles and industrial processes. Advanced thermoelectric (TE) systems necessarily require integrated system-level analyses to establish accurate optimum system designs. Past system-level design and analysis has relied on well-defined deterministic input parameters even though many critically important environmental and system design parameters in the above mentioned applications are often randomly variable, sometimes according to complex relationships, rather than discrete, well-known deterministic variables. This work describes new research and development creating techniques and capabilities for probabilistic design and analysis of advanced TE power generation systems to quantify the effects of randomly uncertain design inputs in determining more robust optimum TE system designs and expected outputs. Selected case studies involving stochastic TE .material properties demonstrate key stochastic material impacts on power, optimum TE area, specific power, and power flux in the TE design optimization process. Magnitudes and directions of these design modifications are quantified for selected TE system design analysis cases

  18. Formation of nanodots and enhancement of thermoelectric power induced by ion irradiation in PbTe:Ag composite thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bala, Manju; Meena, Ramcharan; Gupta, Srashti; Pannu, Compesh; Tripathi, Tripurari S.; Varma, Shikha; Tripathi, Surya K.; Asokan, K.; Avasthi, Devesh K.

    2016-07-01

    Present study demonstrates an enhancement in thermoelectric power of 10% Ag doped PbTe (PbTe:Ag) thin films when irradiated with 200 keV Ar ion. X-ray diffraction showed an increase in crystallinity for both PbTe and PbTe:10Ag nano-composite films after Ar ion irradiation due to annealing of defects in the grain boundaries. The preferential sputtering of Pb and Te ions in comparison to Ag ions resulted in the formation of nano-dots. This was further confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Such an enhancement in thermoelectric power of irradiated PbTe:10Ag films in comparison to pristine PbTe:10Ag film is attributed to the decrease in charge carrier concentration that takes part in the transport process via restricting the tunneling of carriers through the wider potential barrier formed at the interface of nano-dots.

  19. Comments on the thermoelectric power of intermetallic rare-earth compounds with well localized 4f shells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szukiel, A. E.

    2016-05-01

    The anomalous temperature variation of the thermoelectric power in the metallic rare-earth compounds with well-localized 4f shells is sometimes interpreted as resulting from the conduction electrons scattering in the Born approximation on the acoustic phonons and on the localized spins in the s-f exchange interaction. Such an interpretation relies on the results of some theoretical works where the sign reversal and the maxima of the thermoelectric power were obtained within these simple models. In the present paper we prove that neither the electron-phonon scattering nor the magnetic s-f scattering in the Born approximation (nor both of them) do lead to the effects mentioned above.

  20. Suitability of a thermoelectric power generator for implantable medical electronic devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Wei, Xiao-Juan; Liu, Jing

    2007-09-01

    Embedding a thermoelectric generator (TEG) in a biological body is a promising way to supply electronic power in the long term for an implantable medical device (IMD). The unique merit of this method lies in its direct utilization of the temperature difference intrinsically existing throughout the whole biological body. However, little is known about the practicability of such a power generation strategy up to now. This paper attempts to evaluate the energy generation capacity of an implanted TEG subject to various physiological or environmental thermal conditions. Through theoretical analysis, it was found that the highest temperature gradient occurs near the skin surface of the human body, which suggested a candidate site for implanting and positioning the TEG. In addition, numerical simulations were performed on three-dimensional bioheat transfer problems in human bodies embedded with TEGs at different implantation depths and configurations. To further enhance energy generation of an implanted TEG, several external technical approaches by intentionally cooling or heating the skin surface were proposed and evaluated. Conceptual experiments either in vitro or in vivo were implemented to preliminarily test the theoretical predictions. Given the fact that an IMD generally require very little working energy, the TEG could serve well as a potential long-term energy supplier for such medical practices.

  1. Evaluating Thermoelectric Power Generation Device Performance Using a Rectangular Microchannel Heat Sink

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rezania, A.; Rosendahl, L. A.

    2011-05-01

    In this work, a microchannel heat sink is applied to a thermoelectric power generation (TEG) device and compared with a traditional heat sink. The advantages and disadvantages of using each heat sink in a TEG device are evaluated. The microchannel hydraulic diameter is 5.33 × 10-4 m and that of the macrochannel is 2.13 × 10-3 m. Pressure drops and heat removed in the micro heat sink configuration are obtained for six different mass flow rates for the laminar and turbulent fluid flow regimes. By computationally applying a constant temperature difference between the hot and cold sides of the TEG, the fluid and thermal parameters are considered for both laminar and turbulent regimes in the channels. Furthermore, using the temperature difference through each TEG, the system efficiency is calculated. The results show that the microchannel heat sink gives a higher pressure drop, but the heat flow across the TEG device and the mass flow rate needed to provide the same generated power are less than for the macrochannel heat sink.

  2. Performance of a flight qualified, thermoelectrically temperature controlled QCM sensor with power supply, thermal controller and signal processor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wallace, D. A.

    1980-01-01

    A thermoelectrically temperature controlled quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) system was developed for the measurement of ion thrustor generated mercury contamination on spacecraft. Meaningful flux rate measurements dictated an accurately held sensing crystal temperature despite spacecraft surface temperature variations from -35 C to +60 C over the flight temperature range. An electronic control unit was developed with magentic amplifier transformer secondary power supply, thermal control electronics, crystal temperature analog conditioning and a multiplexed 16 bit frequency encoder.

  3. Research on a Power Management System for Thermoelectric Generators to Drive Wireless Sensors on a Spindle Unit

    PubMed Central

    Li, Sheng; Yao, Xinhua; Fu, Jianzhong

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:25033189

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

    PubMed

    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.

  5. Study on the Characteristics of an Alkali-Metal Thermoelectric Power Generation System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Wook-Hyun; Hwang, Hyun-Chang; Lee, Ji-Su; Kim, Pan-Jo; Lim, Sang-Hyuk; Rhi, Seok-Ho; Lee, Kye-Bock; Lee, Ki-Woo

    2015-10-01

    In the present study, a numerical simulation and experimental studies of an alkali-metal thermoelectric energy converter (AMTEC) system were carried out. The present, unique AMTEC model consists of an evaporator, a β-alumina solid electrolyte (BASE) tube, a condenser, and an artery cable wick. The key points for operation of the present AMTEC were 1100 K in the evaporator and 600 K in the condenser. A numerical model based on sodium-saturated porous wicks was developed and shown to be able to simulate the AMTEC system. The simulation results show that the AMTEC system can generate up to 100 W with a given design. The AMTEC system developed in the present work and used in the practical investigations could generate an electromotive force of 7 V. Artery wick and evaporator wick structures were simulated for the optimum design. Both sodium-saturated wicks were affected by numerous variables, such as the input heat power, cooling temperature, sodium mass flow rate, and capillary-driven fluid flow. Based on an effective thermal conductivity model, the presented simulation could successfully predict the system performance. Based on the numerical simulation, the AMTEC system operates with efficiency near 10% to 15%. In the case of an improved BASE design, the system could reach efficiency of over 30%. The system was designed for 0.6 V power, 25 A current, and 100 W power input. In addition, in this study, the temperature effects in each part of the AMTEC system were analyzed using a heat transfer model in porous media to apply to the computational fluid dynamics at a predetermined temperature condition for the design of a 100-W AMTEC prototype. It was found that a current density of 0.5 A/cm2 to 0.9 A/cm2 for the BASE is suitable when the temperatures of the evaporator section and condenser section are 1100 K and 600 K, respectively.

  6. Thermoelectric Powers of Cells With NaF-AlF3-Al2O3 Melts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flem, Belinda E.; Xu, Qian; Kjelstrup, Signe; Sterten, Åsmund

    2001-07-01

    A thermodynamic description of the Peltier heat at the aluminum and the oxygen electrode in the system NaF-AlF3-Al2O3 is given. The thermoelectric power in melts with molar ratios n NaF/n AlF3 from 3.0 to 1.0, saturated with alumina are measured. Seebeck coefficients for molten fluoride electrolytes saturated with alumina, electrolytes that are relevant for aluminum electrowinning electrolysis cells, are reported. The results allow determinations of Peltier heats of aluminum, oxygen and carbon electrodes in NaF-AlF3 electrolytes saturated with alumina. For molar ratios of n NaF/n AlF3 between 2.6 and 1.2, there is a Peltier heating of the aluminum cathode. This heating is in the same order of magnitude as the electrolyte Joule heat, when the current density is 0.7 A cm-2. For molar ratio n NaF/n AlF3 equal to 1.0 the Peltier effect at the aluminum electrode approaches zero. From theoretical considerations we expect a drop also for molar ratio 3.0. For the anode we report a Peltier cooling that is larger than the heat produced by the anodic overvoltage, in melts with NaF/AlF3 molar ratio between 2.6 and 1.2 saturated with alumina.

  7. Mercury in coals and fly ashes from Republika and Bobov dol thermoelectric power plants

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kostova, I.; Vassileva, C.; Hower, J.; Mastalerz, Maria; Vassilev, S.; Nikolova, N.

    2011-01-01

    Feed coal and y ash samples were collected at Republika and Bobov Dol thermoelectric power plants (TPPs). The y ashes (FAs) were collected fromthree rows of the hot-side electrostatic precipitators (ESPs) array. Each sam- ple was wet-screened at 100, 200, 325 and 500 mesh. The coals and y ashes were characterized with regard to their petrological and chemical composition (including mercury content) and to their surface area properties. The calculated enrichment factor (EF) shows that the Hg concentrations in the bulk coal samples from Republika and Bobov Dol TPPs are 2.19 and 1.41, respectively. In some coal size fractions the EF can be up to 4 times higher than the Clarke value. The calculated EF for fly ashes shows that the Hg concentrations in the bulk samples studied are lower (between 0.03 and 0.32) than the Clarke value. The most enriched in Hg are the fly ashes from the 3rd ESP row of Republika TPP. The Hg distribution in bulk FAs taken from dierent rows of the electrostatic precipitators of both TPPs studied shows well established tendency of gradual increase in the Hg content from the 1st to the 2nd and 3rd ESP rows. The correlation between Hg content and surface area, mesopore and micropore volume of y ashes was also done in the present investigation.

  8. Study of Aging Effects in 2205 Duplex Stainless Steel Using Thermoelectric Power Measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lara, N.; Ruiz, A.; Carreón, H.; Medina, A.; Sánchez, A.

    2010-02-01

    Thermoelectric power (TEP) measurements have been used as an effective method for evaluating the metallurgical state of various alloys. In the steel industry, some fabrication processes promote phase transformation and second phase precipitations which affect the material properties. Assessment of mechanical properties is critical in order to ensure quality of components. This work was conducted in order to evaluate the influence of the aging state of 2205 duplex stainless steel on TEP values. Commercial 2205 duplex steel was isothermally aged at 650 °C 700 °C and 900 °C at different aging times. TEP measurement technique was applied as a non destructive assessment technique to characterize the aging kinetics of the aged 2205 duplex stainless steel, hardness Rockwell (RC) and Charpy impact test were preformed to observe the effect of aging time on the specimens. Metallographic analysis was used to monitor phase transformation and sigma phase precipitation caused by the spinodal decomposition process of ferrite into secondary austenite and sigma phase. Results indicate that that the TEP is sensitive to gradual microstructural changes produced by the aging treatments.

  9. KINETIC STUDY OF AGING IN A URANIUM-TITANIUM EUTECTOID ALLOY USING THERMOELECTRIC POWER MEASUREMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Herrmann, B.; Gelbstein, Y.; Kimmel, G.; Landau, A.

    2008-02-28

    Considerable attention has been given to the study of microstructure evolution and mechanical properties of dilute U-Ti alloys. A typical procedure of heat treatment of the eutectoid uranium-titanium alloy consists of solution treatment in the {gamma} phase, obtaining of soft {alpha}{sup '} martensitic metastable structure by water quenching to room temperature and precipitation hardening by aging at 300-550 deg. C. Depending on employed temperature and time the aging results in GP zone formation through the precipitation reaction {alpha}{sup '}{yields}{alpha}+{delta}. The {delta} phase is a hexagonal U{sub 2}Ti intermetallic compound, responsible for the significant increase in the level of the micro-strain in the metastable {alpha}{sup '} matrix. Thermoelectric power (TEP) measurements have recently gained a growing attention for the characterization of metallurgical properties in steels and other alloys. These measurements, which are based on the Seebeck effect, are sensitive to changes in the electronic structure of the material as result of various metallurgical processes. In the current research, TEP measurement technique was applied as a non destructive assessment technique to characterize the aging kinetics of the quenched uranium-titanium binary alloy. Good correlation has been found between measured TEP, micro-strain evolution, as obtained by using XRD, and hardness values at different heat treatment stages. A reasonable explanation of the correlation between the crystallography changes, micro-strain, TEP measurements and properties is presented.

  10. STUDY OF AGING EFFECTS IN 2205 DUPLEX STAINLESS STEEL USING THERMOELECTRIC POWER MEASUREMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Lara, N.; Ruiz, A.; Carreon, H.; Medina, A.; Sanchez, A.

    2010-02-22

    Thermoelectric power (TEP) measurements have been used as an effective method for evaluating the metallurgical state of various alloys. In the steel industry, some fabrication processes promote phase transformation and second phase precipitations which affect the material properties. Assessment of mechanical properties is critical in order to ensure quality of components. This work was conducted in order to evaluate the influence of the aging state of 2205 duplex stainless steel on TEP values. Commercial 2205 duplex steel was isothermally aged at 650 deg. C 700 deg. C and 900 deg. C at different aging times. TEP measurement technique was applied as a non destructive assessment technique to characterize the aging kinetics of the aged 2205 duplex stainless steel, hardness Rockwell (RC) and Charpy impact test were preformed to observe the effect of aging time on the specimens. Metallographic analysis was used to monitor phase transformation and sigma phase precipitation caused by the spinodal decomposition process of ferrite into secondary austenite and sigma phase. Results indicate that that the TEP is sensitive to gradual microstructural changes produced by the aging treatments.

  11. Power Generation Characteristics of Mg2Si Uni-Leg Thermoelectric Generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nemoto, T.; Iida, T.; Sato, J.; Sakamoto, T.; Nakajima, T.; Takanashi, Y.

    2012-06-01

    Mg2Si thermoelectric (TE) elements were fabricated by a plasma-activated sintering method using a commercial polycrystalline n-type Mg2Si source produced by the Union Material Co., Ltd. This material typically has a ZT value of ˜0.6. A monobloc plasma-activated sintering technique was used to form Ni electrodes on the TE elements. The dimensions of a single element were 4.0 mm × 4.0 mm × 10 mm, and these were used to construct a TE module comprising nine elements connected in series. To reduce the electrical and thermal contact resistance of the module, each part of the module, i.e., the elements, terminals, and insulating plates, was joined using a Ag-based brazing alloy. In addition, to maintain the temperature difference between the top and bottom of the module, a thermal insulation board was installed in it. The observed values of open-circuit voltage ( V OC) and output power ( P) of a uni-leg structure module were 594 mV and 543 mW, respectively, at a maximum Δ T = 500 K.

  12. Ultrahigh power factor and enhanced thermoelectric performance of individual Te/TiS2 nanocables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Rui; Dui, Jingna; Fu, Yunlong; Xu, Yanling; Zhou, Shaomin

    2016-10-01

    Here, we present the successful fabrication of Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables with enhanced thermoelectric (TE) performance by a two-step route (a facile solvothermal approach for Te nanowires and then the Te nanowires are used as templates for the controllable growth of the Te/TiS2 nanocables), which is scalable for practical nanodevice applications. The heterostructure nanocables of different sizes can be prepared by varying the synthetic composition. Measurements of the Seebeck coefficient (S), electrical conductivity (σ), and thermal conductivity (κ) are carried out on the same nanowires over a temperature range of 2-350 K. The heterostructure nanocables show an ultrahigh power factor (S2 σ) with a maximum value of 0.58 Wm-1 K-2, which comes from a high electrical conductivity and a strongly enhanced Seebeck coefficient. The figure of merit (ZT) can reach 1.91 at room temperature from a single nanocable with a diameter of 60 nm, which is thought to contribute to the formation of the hetero-phase core/shell structure. These results are expected to open up new application possibilities in nanoscale TE devices based on individual Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables.

  13. Multi-parameter Optimization of a Thermoelectric Power Generator and Its Working Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, T.

    2016-09-01

    The global optimal working conditions and optimal couple design for thermoelectric (TE) generators with realistic thermal coupling between the heat reservoirs and the TE couple were studied in the current work. The heat fluxes enforced by the heat reservoirs at the hot and the cold junctions of the TE couple were used in combination with parameter normalization to obtain a single cubic algebraic equation relating the temperature differences between the TE couple junctions and between the heat reservoirs, through the electric load resistance ratio, the reservoir thermal conductance ratio, the reservoir thermal conductance to the TE couple thermal conductance ratio, the Thomson to Seebeck coefficient ratio, and the figure of merit (Z) of the material based on the linear TE transport equations and their solutions. A broad reservoir thermal conductance ranging between 0.01 W/K and 100 W/K and TE element length ranging from 10-7 m to 10-3 m were explored to find the global optimal systems. The global optimal parameters related to the working conditions, i.e., reservoir thermal conductance ratio and electric load resistance ratio, and the optimal design parameter related to the TE couple were determined for a given TE material. These results demonstrated that the internal and external electric resistance, the thermal resistance between the reservoirs, the thermal resistance between the reservoir and the TE couple, and the optimal thermoelement length have to be well coordinated to obtain optimal power production.

  14. Ultrahigh power factor and enhanced thermoelectric performance of individual Te/TiS2 nanocables.

    PubMed

    Li, Rui; Dui, Jingna; Fu, Yunlong; Xu, Yanling; Zhou, Shaomin

    2016-10-14

    Here, we present the successful fabrication of Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables with enhanced thermoelectric (TE) performance by a two-step route (a facile solvothermal approach for Te nanowires and then the Te nanowires are used as templates for the controllable growth of the Te/TiS2 nanocables), which is scalable for practical nanodevice applications. The heterostructure nanocables of different sizes can be prepared by varying the synthetic composition. Measurements of the Seebeck coefficient (S), electrical conductivity (σ), and thermal conductivity (κ) are carried out on the same nanowires over a temperature range of 2-350 K. The heterostructure nanocables show an ultrahigh power factor (S(2) σ) with a maximum value of 0.58 Wm(-1) K(-2), which comes from a high electrical conductivity and a strongly enhanced Seebeck coefficient. The figure of merit (ZT) can reach 1.91 at room temperature from a single nanocable with a diameter of 60 nm, which is thought to contribute to the formation of the hetero-phase core/shell structure. These results are expected to open up new application possibilities in nanoscale TE devices based on individual Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables. PMID:27595302

  15. Ultrahigh power factor and enhanced thermoelectric performance of individual Te/TiS2 nanocables.

    PubMed

    Li, Rui; Dui, Jingna; Fu, Yunlong; Xu, Yanling; Zhou, Shaomin

    2016-10-14

    Here, we present the successful fabrication of Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables with enhanced thermoelectric (TE) performance by a two-step route (a facile solvothermal approach for Te nanowires and then the Te nanowires are used as templates for the controllable growth of the Te/TiS2 nanocables), which is scalable for practical nanodevice applications. The heterostructure nanocables of different sizes can be prepared by varying the synthetic composition. Measurements of the Seebeck coefficient (S), electrical conductivity (σ), and thermal conductivity (κ) are carried out on the same nanowires over a temperature range of 2-350 K. The heterostructure nanocables show an ultrahigh power factor (S(2) σ) with a maximum value of 0.58 Wm(-1) K(-2), which comes from a high electrical conductivity and a strongly enhanced Seebeck coefficient. The figure of merit (ZT) can reach 1.91 at room temperature from a single nanocable with a diameter of 60 nm, which is thought to contribute to the formation of the hetero-phase core/shell structure. These results are expected to open up new application possibilities in nanoscale TE devices based on individual Te/TiS2 heterostructure nanocables.

  16. Low-dimensional transport and large thermoelectric power factors in bulk semiconductors by band engineering of highly directional electronic states.

    PubMed

    Bilc, Daniel I; Hautier, Geoffroy; Waroquiers, David; Rignanese, Gian-Marco; Ghosez, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Thermoelectrics are promising for addressing energy issues but their exploitation is still hampered by low efficiencies. So far, much improvement has been achieved by reducing the thermal conductivity but less by maximizing the power factor. The latter imposes apparently conflicting requirements on the band structure: a narrow energy distribution and a low effective mass. Quantum confinement in nanostructures and the introduction of resonant states were suggested as possible solutions to this paradox, but with limited success. Here, we propose an original approach to fulfill both requirements in bulk semiconductors. It exploits the highly directional character of some orbitals to engineer the band structure and produce a type of low-dimensional transport similar to that targeted in nanostructures, while retaining isotropic properties. Using first-principle calculations, the theoretical concept is demonstrated in Fe2YZ Heusler compounds, yielding power factors 4 to 5 times larger than in classical thermoelectrics at room temperature. Our findings are totally generic and rationalize the search of alternative compounds with similar behavior. Beyond thermoelectricity, these might be relevant also in the context of electronic, superconducting, or photovoltaic applications. PMID:25884131

  17. Low-dimensional transport and large thermoelectric power factors in bulk semiconductors by band engineering of highly directional electronic states.

    PubMed

    Bilc, Daniel I; Hautier, Geoffroy; Waroquiers, David; Rignanese, Gian-Marco; Ghosez, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Thermoelectrics are promising for addressing energy issues but their exploitation is still hampered by low efficiencies. So far, much improvement has been achieved by reducing the thermal conductivity but less by maximizing the power factor. The latter imposes apparently conflicting requirements on the band structure: a narrow energy distribution and a low effective mass. Quantum confinement in nanostructures and the introduction of resonant states were suggested as possible solutions to this paradox, but with limited success. Here, we propose an original approach to fulfill both requirements in bulk semiconductors. It exploits the highly directional character of some orbitals to engineer the band structure and produce a type of low-dimensional transport similar to that targeted in nanostructures, while retaining isotropic properties. Using first-principle calculations, the theoretical concept is demonstrated in Fe2YZ Heusler compounds, yielding power factors 4 to 5 times larger than in classical thermoelectrics at room temperature. Our findings are totally generic and rationalize the search of alternative compounds with similar behavior. Beyond thermoelectricity, these might be relevant also in the context of electronic, superconducting, or photovoltaic applications.

  18. Micro/nanofabricated solid-state thermoelectric generator devices for integrated high voltage power sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, J. P.; Snyder, G. J.; Patel, J.; Huang, C. K.; Ryan, M. A.; Averback, R.; Chen, G.; Hill, C.

    2002-01-01

    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.

  19. Great enhancements in the thermoelectric power factor of BiSbTe nanostructured films with well-ordered interfaces.

    PubMed

    Chang, Hsiu-Cheng; Chen, Chun-Hua; Kuo, Yung-Kang

    2013-08-01

    An innovative concept of twin-enhanced thermoelectricity was proposed to fundamentally resolve the high electrical resistance while not degrading the phonon scattering of the thermoelectric nanoassemblies. Under this frame, a variety of highly oriented and twinned bismuth antimony telluride (BixSb2-xTe3) nanocrystals were successfully fabricated by a large-area pulsed-laser deposition (PLD) technique on insulated silicon substrates at various deposition temperatures. The significant presence of the nonbasal- and basal-plane twins across the hexagonal BiSbTe nanocrystals, which were experimentally and systematically observed for the first time, evidently contributes to the unusually high electrical conductivity of ~2700 S cm(-1) and the power factor of ~25 μW cm(-1) K(-2) as well as the relatively low thermal conductivity of ~1.1 W m(-1) K(-1) found in these nanostructured films. PMID:23803956

  20. YbCu2Si2-LaCu2Si2 Solid Solutions with Enhanced Thermoelectric Power Factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehr, Gloria J.; Morelli, Donald T.; Jin, Hyungyu; Heremans, Joseph P.

    2015-06-01

    Cryogenic Peltier coolers are ideal for cooling infrared sensors on satellites. To make these thermoelectric devices a realistic option for this application, the efficiency of thermoelectric materials at cryogenic temperatures must be substantially enhanced. Intermediate valence Yb-based compounds have large peaks in the Seebeck coefficient at low temperatures; to optimize these materials this must be understood. We created solid solutions between the intermediate valence compound YbCu2Si2 and an isostructural compound LaCu2Si2 to manipulate the temperature at which the Seebeck coefficient peaks and to maximize zT by reduction of lattice thermal conductivity. An enormous power factor of 110 μW/cm K2 at 100 K and a maximum zT of 0.14 at 125 K were achieved for one of these solid solutions.

  1. Advanced Thermoelectric Materials for Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caillat, Thierry; Hunag, C.-K.; Cheng, S.; Chi, S. C.; Gogna, P.; Paik, J.; Ravi, V.; Firdosy, S.; Ewell, R.

    2008-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the progress and processes involved in creating new and advanced thermoelectric materials to be used in the design of new radioiootope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). In a program with Department of Energy, NASA is working to develop the next generation of RTGs, that will provide significant benefits for deep space missions that NASA will perform. These RTG's are planned to be capable of delivering up to 17% system efficiency and over 12 W/kg specific power. The thermoelectric materials being developed are an important step in this process.

  2. High Efficiency Thermoelectric Materials and Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kochergin, Vladimir (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    Growth of thermoelectric materials in the form of quantum well super-lattices on three-dimensionally structured substrates provide the means to achieve high conversion efficiency of the thermoelectric module combined with inexpensiveness of fabrication and compatibility with large scale production. Thermoelectric devices utilizing thermoelectric materials in the form of quantum well semiconductor super-lattices grown on three-dimensionally structured substrates provide improved thermoelectric characteristics that can be used for power generation, cooling and other applications..

  3. Thermoelectric converter

    DOEpatents

    Kim, C.K.

    1974-02-26

    This invention relates in general to thermoelectric units and more particularly to a tubular thermoelectric unit which includes an array of tandemly arranged radially tapered annular thermoelectric pellets having insulation material of a lower density than the thermoelectric pellets positioned between each pellet. (Official Gazette)

  4. n-type thermoelectric material Mg2Sn0.75Ge0.25 for high power generation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Weishu; Kim, Hee Seok; Chen, Shuo; Jie, Qing; Lv, Bing; Yao, Mengliang; Ren, Zhensong; Opeil, Cyril P.; Wilson, Stephen; Chu, Ching-Wu; Ren, Zhifeng

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric power generation is one of the most promising techniques to use the huge amount of waste heat and solar energy. Traditionally, high thermoelectric figure-of-merit, ZT, has been the only parameter pursued for high conversion efficiency. Here, we emphasize that a high power factor (PF) is equivalently important for high power generation, in addition to high efficiency. A new n-type Mg2Sn-based material, Mg2Sn0.75Ge0.25, is a good example to meet the dual requirements in efficiency and output power. It was found that Mg2Sn0.75Ge0.25 has an average ZT of 0.9 and PF of 52 μW⋅cm−1⋅K−2 over the temperature range of 25–450 °C, a peak ZT of 1.4 at 450 °C, and peak PF of 55 μW⋅cm−1⋅K−2 at 350 °C. By using the energy balance of one-dimensional heat flow equation, leg efficiency and output power were calculated with Th = 400 °C and Tc = 50 °C to be of 10.5% and 6.6 W⋅cm−2 under a temperature gradient of 150 °C⋅mm−1, respectively. PMID:25733845

  5. Changes in absolute theta power in bipolar patients during a saccadic attention task.

    PubMed

    Cartier, Consuelo; Diniz, Claudia; Di Girogio, Luiza; Bittencourt, Juliana; Gongora, Mariana; Ken Tanaka, Guaraci; Teixeira, Silmar; Basile, Luis F; Novis, Fernanda; Angélica Silveira, Luciana; da Silva, Rafael de Assis; Cagy, Mauricio; Cheniaux, Elie; Ribeiro, Pedro; Velasques, Bruna

    2015-08-30

    The present study analyzed absolute theta power (ATP) in brain areas involved with attention in the three phase of BD while the patients performing a saccadic attention task. We hypothesized that patients in depression and mania states show a higher ATP compared to euthymic patients, since a higher ATP is indicative of attention deficit. We analyzed the frontal (F7, F3, Fz, F4 and F8) and central (C3, Cz and C4) areas. Thirty bipolar patients were enrolled in this study. The subjects performed a saccadic attention task while their brain activity pattern was recorded using quantitative electroencephalography (20 channels). Our results showed a main effect for group over C3, C4, Cz, F7, F4, F8 electrodes, and a main effect for moment over Cz, F7, F8 electrodes. These results indicate that both task and groups produce changes in theta activity in distinct cortical areas that participate in the organization of attention. Our results therefore demonstrate that, although it is well established in the literature that theta has a relevant role in the attention process, it is necessary to deepen the investigations to better understand the specifics of theta during visual processing tasks that have a demand for attention.

  6. Great enhancements in the thermoelectric power factor of BiSbTe nanostructured films with well-ordered interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Hsiu-Cheng; Chen, Chun-Hua; Kuo, Yung-Kang

    2013-07-01

    An innovative concept of twin-enhanced thermoelectricity was proposed to fundamentally resolve the high electrical resistance while not degrading the phonon scattering of the thermoelectric nanoassemblies. Under this frame, a variety of highly oriented and twinned bismuth antimony telluride (BixSb2-xTe3) nanocrystals were successfully fabricated by a large-area pulsed-laser deposition (PLD) technique on insulated silicon substrates at various deposition temperatures. The significant presence of the nonbasal- and basal-plane twins across the hexagonal BiSbTe nanocrystals, which were experimentally and systematically observed for the first time, evidently contributes to the unusually high electrical conductivity of ~2700 S cm-1 and the power factor of ~25 μW cm-1 K-2 as well as the relatively low thermal conductivity of ~1.1 W m-1 K-1 found in these nanostructured films.An innovative concept of twin-enhanced thermoelectricity was proposed to fundamentally resolve the high electrical resistance while not degrading the phonon scattering of the thermoelectric nanoassemblies. Under this frame, a variety of highly oriented and twinned bismuth antimony telluride (BixSb2-xTe3) nanocrystals were successfully fabricated by a large-area pulsed-laser deposition (PLD) technique on insulated silicon substrates at various deposition temperatures. The significant presence of the nonbasal- and basal-plane twins across the hexagonal BiSbTe nanocrystals, which were experimentally and systematically observed for the first time, evidently contributes to the unusually high electrical conductivity of ~2700 S cm-1 and the power factor of ~25 μW cm-1 K-2 as well as the relatively low thermal conductivity of ~1.1 W m-1 K-1 found in these nanostructured films. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Morphologies, XRD patterns, SEM compositions and room-temperature thermoelectric properties of the series of (015) oriented Bi0.4Sb1.6Te3 nanocolumns (Fig. S1-S3), (00l) oriented

  7. Thermoelectric efficiency of (1 - x)(GeTe) x(Bi2Se0.2Te2.8) and implementation into highly performing thermoelectric power generators.

    PubMed

    Koenig, J; Winkler, M; Dankwort, T; Hansen, A-L; Pernau, H-F; Duppel, V; Jaegle, M; Bartholomé, K; Kienle, L; Bensch, W

    2015-02-14

    Here we report for the first time on a complete simulation assisted "material to module" development of a high performance thermoelectric generator (TEG) based on the combination of a phase change material and established thermoelectrics yielding the compositions (1 - x)(GeTe) x(Bi(2)Se(0.2)Te(2.8)). For the generator design our approach for benchmarking thermoelectric materials is demonstrated which is not restricted to the determination of the intrinsically imprecise ZT value but includes the implementation of the material into a TEG. This approach is enabling a much more reliable benchmarking of thermoelectric materials for TEG application. Furthermore we analyzed the microstructure and performance close to in-operandi conditions for two different compositions in order to demonstrate the sensitivity of the material against processing and thermal cycling. For x = 0.038 the microstructure of the as-prepared material remains unchanged, consequently, excellent and stable thermoelectric performance as prerequisites for TEG production was obtained. For x = 0.063 we observed strain phenomena for the pristine state which are released by the formation of planar defects after thermal cycling. Consequently the thermoelectric performance degrades significantly. These findings highlight a complication for deriving the correlation of microstructure and properties of thermoelectric materials in general.

  8. Electrical Conductivity, Thermoelectric Power, and Equilibration Kinetics of Nb-Doped TiO2.

    PubMed

    Nowotny, Janusz; Bak, Tadeusz; Dickey, Elisabeth C; Sigmund, Wolfgang; Alim, Mohammad A

    2016-09-01

    This work considers the equilibration kinetics of Nb-doped TiO2 single crystal (0.066 atom % Nb) during oxidation and reduction within a wide range of temperature (1073-1298 K) and oxygen activity (10(-14)-10(5) Pa). The associated semiconducting properties were determined using simultaneous measurements of both electrical conductivity and thermoelectric power. It is shown that the chemical diffusion coefficient in the strongly reducing regime, p(O2) < 10(-5) Pa, is 4 orders of magnitude larger than that in the reducing and oxidizing regimes, 10 Pa < p(O2) < 22 kPa. The derived theoretical model considers the gas/solid kinetics for the TiO2/O2 system in terms of two diffusion regimes: the fast regime related to fast defects (oxygen vacancies and titanium interstitials) and leading to quasi-equilibrium, and the slow regime associated with slow defects (titanium vacancies) resulting in the gas/solid equilibrium. It has been shown that incorporation of donor-type elements, such as niobium, and imposition of oxygen activity above a certain critical value, results in a substantial reduction in the concentration of high mobility defects and leads to slowing down the equilibration kinetics. In consequence, the fast kinetic regime is not observed. Comparison of the kinetic data for Nb-doped TiO2 single crystal (this work) and polycrystalline Nb-doped TiO2 (reported before) indicates that the gas/solid kinetics for the polycrystalline specimen at higher oxygen activities is rate controlled by the transport of oxygen within individual grains.

  9. Electrical Conductivity, Thermoelectric Power, and Equilibration Kinetics of Nb-Doped TiO2.

    PubMed

    Nowotny, Janusz; Bak, Tadeusz; Dickey, Elisabeth C; Sigmund, Wolfgang; Alim, Mohammad A

    2016-09-01

    This work considers the equilibration kinetics of Nb-doped TiO2 single crystal (0.066 atom % Nb) during oxidation and reduction within a wide range of temperature (1073-1298 K) and oxygen activity (10(-14)-10(5) Pa). The associated semiconducting properties were determined using simultaneous measurements of both electrical conductivity and thermoelectric power. It is shown that the chemical diffusion coefficient in the strongly reducing regime, p(O2) < 10(-5) Pa, is 4 orders of magnitude larger than that in the reducing and oxidizing regimes, 10 Pa < p(O2) < 22 kPa. The derived theoretical model considers the gas/solid kinetics for the TiO2/O2 system in terms of two diffusion regimes: the fast regime related to fast defects (oxygen vacancies and titanium interstitials) and leading to quasi-equilibrium, and the slow regime associated with slow defects (titanium vacancies) resulting in the gas/solid equilibrium. It has been shown that incorporation of donor-type elements, such as niobium, and imposition of oxygen activity above a certain critical value, results in a substantial reduction in the concentration of high mobility defects and leads to slowing down the equilibration kinetics. In consequence, the fast kinetic regime is not observed. Comparison of the kinetic data for Nb-doped TiO2 single crystal (this work) and polycrystalline Nb-doped TiO2 (reported before) indicates that the gas/solid kinetics for the polycrystalline specimen at higher oxygen activities is rate controlled by the transport of oxygen within individual grains. PMID:27490974

  10. Thermoelectric power source utilizing ambient energy harvesting for remote sensing and transmitting

    DOEpatents

    DeSteese, John G

    2010-11-16

    A method and apparatus for providing electrical energy to an electrical device wherein the electrical energy is originally generated from temperature differences in an environment having a first and a second temperature region. A thermoelectric device having a first side and a second side wherein the first side is in communication with a means for transmitting ambient thermal energy collected or rejected in the first temperature region and the second side is in communication with the second temperature region thereby producing a temperature gradient across the thermoelectric device and in turn generating an electrical current.

  11. Thermoelectric Properties of Silicon Germanium: An Investigation of the Reduction of Lattice Thermal Conductivity and Enhancement of Power Factor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lahwal, Ali Sadek

    Thermoelectric materials are of technological interest owing to their ability of direct thermal-to-electrical energy conversion. In thermoelectricity, thermal gradients can be used to generate an electrical power output. Recent efforts in thermoelectrics are focused on developing higher efficient power generation materials. In this dissertation, the overall goal is to investigate both the n-type and p-type of the state of the art thermoelectric material, silicon germanium (SiGe), for high temperature power generation. Further improvement of thermoelectric performance of Si-Ge alloys hinges upon how to significantly reduce the as yet large lattice thermal conductivity, and optimizing the thermoelectric power factor PF. Our methods, in this thesis, will be into two different approaches as follow: The first approach is manipulating the lattice thermal conductivity of n and p-type SiGe alloys via direct nanoparticle inclusion into the n-type SiGe matrix and, in a different process, using a core shell method for the p-type SiGe. This approach is in line with the process of in-situ nanocomposites. Nanocomposites have become a new paradigm for thermoelectric research in recent years and have resulted in the reduction of thermal conductivity via the nano-inclusion and grain boundary scattering of heat-carrying phonons. To this end, a promising choice of nano-particle to include by direct mixing into a SiGe matrix would be Yttria Stabilized Zirconia ( YSZ). In this work we report the preparation and thermoelectric study of n-type SiGe + YSZ nanocomposites prepared by direct mechanical mixing followed by Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS) processing. Specifically, we experimentally investigated the reduction of lattice thermal conductivity (kappaL) in the temperature range (30--800K) of n-type Si 80Ge20P2 alloys with the incorporation of YSZ nanoparticles (20 ˜ 40 nm diameter) into the Si-Ge matrix. These samples synthesized by SPS were found to have densities > 95% of the

  12. Verification of electron doping in single-layer graphene due to H{sub 2} exposure with thermoelectric power

    SciTech Connect

    Hong, Sung Ju; Kang, Hojin; Soler-Delgado, David; Kim, Kyung Ho; Park, Yung Woo E-mail: kbh37@incheon.ac.kr; Park, Min; Lee, Minwoo; Jeong, Dae Hong; Shin, Dong Seok; Kim, Byung Hoon E-mail: kbh37@incheon.ac.kr; Kubatkin, Sergey

    2015-04-06

    We report the electron doping of single-layer graphene (SLG) grown by chemical vapor deposition (CVD) by means of dissociative hydrogen adsorption. The transfer characteristic showed n-type doping behavior similar to that of mechanically exfoliated graphene. Furthermore, we studied the thermoelectric power (TEP) of CVD-grown SLG before and after exposure to high-pressure H{sub 2} molecules. From the TEP results, which indicate the intrinsic electrical properties, we observed that the CVD-grown SLG is n-type doped without degradation of the quality after hydrogen adsorption. Finally, the electron doping was also verified by Raman spectroscopy.

  13. Thermoelectric power factor of ternary single-crystalline Sb2Te3- and Bi2Te3-based nanowires.

    PubMed

    Bäßler, Svenja; Böhnert, Tim; Gooth, Johannes; Schumacher, Christian; Pippel, Eckhard; Nielsch, Kornelius

    2013-12-13

    Nanowires of bismuth antimony telluride and bismuth telluride selenide (Bi15Sb29Te56 and Bi38Te55Se7) were grown by template-based pulsed electrodeposition. The composition and the crystallinity of the nanowires were determined by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. The thermoelectric properties (Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity) of single p- and n-type nanowires, with diameter 80 nm and 200 nm, respectively, were determined as a function of temperature before and during heating in a helium atmosphere up to 300 K along the growth direction of the nanowires. After additional annealing in a tellurium atmosphere at 525 K, significantly enhanced transport properties are observed. Bulk-like power factors are achieved. In Bi38Te55Se7 nanowires, the Seebeck coefficients increase to -115 μV K(-1) and the thermoelectric power factors increase to 2820 μW K(-2) m(-1) at room temperature. In Bi15Sb29Te56 nanowires, Seebeck coefficients of up to S = +156 μV K(-1) and power factors of up to 1750 μW K(-2) m(-1) are obtained at room temperature.

  14. Solar thermoelectric generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    The methods, the findings and the conclusions of a study for the design of a Solar Thermoelectric Generator (STG) intended for use as a power source for a spacecraft orbiting the planet Mercury are discussed. Several state-of-the-art thermoelectric technologies in the intended application were considered. The design of various STG configurations based on the thermoelectric technology selected from among the various technologies was examined in detail and a recommended STG design was derived. The performance characteristics of the selected STG technology and associated design were studied in detail as a function of the orbital characteristics of the STG in Mercury and throughout the orbit of Mercury around the sun.

  15. Maximum Power Point Tracking Controller for Thermoelectric Generators with Peak Gain Control of Boost DC-DC Converters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Jungyong; Kim, Shiho

    2012-06-01

    An analog maximum power point tracking (MPPT) circuit for a thermoelectric generator (TEG) is proposed. We show that the peak point of the voltage conversion gain of a boost DC-DC converter with an input voltage source having an internal resistor is the maximum power point of the TEG. The key characteristic of the proposed MPPT controller is that the duty ratio of the input clock pulse to the boost DC-DC converter shifts toward the maximum power point of the TEG by seeking the peak gain point of the boost DC-DC converters. The proposed MPPT technique provides a simple and useful analog MPPT solution, without employing digital microcontroller units.

  16. Enhanced thermoelectric power near the quantum phase transition in the itinerant-electron ferromagnet MnSi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, J.-G.; Zhou, F.; Zhou, J.-S.; Goodenough, J. B.; Sui, Y.

    2010-12-01

    The itinerant-electron ferromagnet MnSi is a well-known example that shows a transition from Fermi-liquid Δρ∝T2 to non-Fermi-liquid (NFL) Δρ∝T3/2 behavior when the spiral ferromagnetic transition Tc≈29K at ambient pressure is suppressed to zero by the application of hydrostatic pressures above Pc≈14.6kbar . Several experimental probes have been employed to reveal the intriguing properties near Pc . In this paper, we report the temperature dependence of thermoelectric power S(T) under hydrostatic pressures up to 20 kbar on a single crystal of MnSi. At pressures close to Pc , we observed at low temperatures an unusual enhancement of S(T) , which can be described well with the relationship S/T∝ln(1/T) , a formula that has been proposed to describe a system as a quantum critical point (QCP) is approached. The relationship has previously been observed in systems close to a magnetic QCP, for example, La1.6-xNd0.4SrxCuO4 (x=0.24) . The enhancement of thermoelectric power in MnSi occurs at a temperature above the NFL phase and over a broad pressure range around Pc .

  17. Examination of a Thermally Viable Structure for an Unconventional Uni-Leg Mg2Si Thermoelectric Power Generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakamoto, Tatsuya; Iida, Tsutomu; Taguchi, Yutaka; Kurosaki, Shota; Hayatsu, Yusuke; Nishio, Keishi; Kogo, Yasuo; Takanashi, Yoshifumi

    2012-06-01

    We have fabricated an unconventional uni-leg structure thermoelectric generator (TEG) element using quad thermoelectric (TE) chips of Sb-doped n-Mg2Si, which were prepared by a plasma-activated sintering process. The power curve characteristics, the effect of aging up to 500 h, and the thermal gradients at several points on the module were investigated. The observed maximum output power with the heat source at 975 K and the heat sink at 345 K was 341 mW, from which the Δ T for the TE chip was calculated to be about 333 K. In aging testing in air ambient, a remarkable feature of the results was that there was no notable change from the initial resistance of the TEG module for as long as 500 h. The thermal distribution for the fabricated uni-leg TEG element was analyzed by finite-element modeling using ANSYS software. To tune the calculation parameters of ANSYS, such as the thermal conductance properties of the corresponding coupled materials in the module, precise measurements of the temperature at various probe points on the module were made. Then, meticulous verification between the measured temperature values and the results calculated by ANSYS was carried out to optimize the parameters.

  18. Easy Absolute Values? Absolutely

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Sharon E.; Mittag, Kathleen Cage

    2015-01-01

    The authors teach a problem-solving course for preservice middle-grades education majors that includes concepts dealing with absolute-value computations, equations, and inequalities. Many of these students like mathematics and plan to teach it, so they are adept at symbolic manipulations. Getting them to think differently about a concept that they…

  19. Thermoelectric Energy Conversion: Future Directions and Technology Development Needs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre

    2007-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the process of thermoelectric energy conversion along with key technology needs and challenges. The topics include: 1) The Case for Thermoelectrics; 2) Advances in Thermoelectrics: Investment Needed; 3) Current U.S. Investment (FY07); 4) Increasing Thermoelectric Materials Conversion Efficiency Key Science Needs and Challenges; 5) Developing Advanced TE Components & Systems Key Technology Needs and Challenges; 6) Thermoelectrics; 7) 200W Class Lightweight Portable Thermoelectric Generator; 8) Hybrid Absorption Cooling/TE Power Cogeneration System; 9) Major Opportunities in Energy Industry; 10) Automobile Waste Heat Recovery; 11) Thermoelectrics at JPL; 12) Recent Advances at JPL in Thermoelectric Converter Component Technologies; 13) Thermoelectrics Background on Power Generation and Cooling Operational Modes; 14) Thermoelectric Power Generation; and 15) Thermoelectric Cooling.

  20. Institutional impediments to using alternative water sources in thermoelectric power plants.

    SciTech Connect

    Elcock, D.

    2011-08-03

    This report was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) Existing Plants Research Program, which has an energy-water research effort that focuses on water use at power plants. This study complements the Existing Plants Research Program's overall research effort by evaluating water issues that could impact power plants. Obtaining adequate water supplies for cooling and other operations at a reasonable cost is a key factor in siting new and maintaining existing thermoelectric power plant operations. One way to reduce freshwater consumption is to use alternative water sources such as reclaimed (or recycled) water, mine pool water, and other nontraditional sources. The use of these alternative sources can pose institutional challenges that can cause schedule delays, increase costs, or even require plants to abandon their plans to use alternative sources. This report identifies and describes a variety of institutional challenges experienced by power plant owners and operators across the country, and for many of these challenges it identifies potential mitigating approaches. The information comes from publically available sources and from conversations with power plant owners/operators familiar with using alternative sources. Institutional challenges identified in this investigation include, but are not limited to, the following: (1) Institutional actions and decisions that are beyond the control of the power plant. Such actions can include changes in local administrative policies that can affect the use of reclaimed water, inaccurate growth projections regarding the amount of water that will be available when needed, and agency workloads and other priorities that can cause delays in the permitting and approval processes. (2) Developing, cultivating, and maintaining institutional relationships with the purveyor(s) of the alternative water source, typically a municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), and with the

  1. Calculated transport properties of CdO: thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power factor

    DOE PAGES

    Lindsay, Lucas R.; Parker, David S.

    2015-10-01

    We present first principles calculations of the thermal and electronic transport properties of the oxide semiconductor CdO. In particular, we find from theory that the accepted thermal conductivity κ value of 0.7 Wm-1K-1 is approximately one order of magnitude too small; our calculations of κ of CdO are in good agreement with recent measurements. We also find that alloying of MgO with CdO is an effective means to reduce the lattice contribution to κ, despite MgO having a much larger thermal conductivity. We further consider the electronic structure of CdO in relation to thermoelectric performance, finding that large thermoelectric powermore » factors may occur if the material can be heavily doped p-type. This work develops insight into the nature of thermal and electronic transport in an important oxide semiconductor.« less

  2. Large thermoelectric power and figure of merit in a ferromagnetic-quantum dot-superconducting device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwang, Sun-Yong; López, Rosa; Sánchez, David

    2016-08-01

    We investigate the thermoelectric properties of a quantum dot coupled to ferromagnetic and superconducting electrodes. The combination of spin polarized tunneling at the ferromagnetic-quantum dot interface and the application of an external magnetic field that Zeeman splits the dot energy level leads to large values of the thermopower (Seebeck coefficient). Importantly, the thermopower can be tuned with an external gate voltage connected to the dot. We compute the figure of merit that measures the efficiency of thermoelectric conversion and find that it attains high values. We discuss the different contributions from Andreev reflection processes and quasiparticle tunneling into and out of the superconducting contact. Furthermore, we obtain dramatic variations of both the magnetothermopower and the spin Seebeck effect, which suggest that in our device spin currents can be controlled with temperature gradients only.

  3. Development and Demonstration of a Modeling Framework for Assessing the Efficacy of Using Mine Water for Thermoelectric Power Generation

    SciTech Connect

    2010-03-01

    Thermoelectric power plants use large volumes of water for condenser cooling and other plant operations. Traditionally, this water has been withdrawn from the cleanest water available in streams and rivers. However, as demand for electrical power increases it places increasing demands on freshwater resources resulting in conflicts with other off stream water users. In July 2002, NETL and the Governor of Pennsylvania called for the use of water from abandoned mines to replace our reliance on the diminishing and sometimes over allocated surface water resource. In previous studies the National Mine Land Reclamation Center (NMLRC) at West Virginia University has demonstrated that mine water has the potential to reduce the capital cost of acquiring cooling water while at the same time improving the efficiency of the cooling process due to the constant water temperatures associated with deep mine discharges. The objectives of this project were to develop and demonstrate a user-friendly computer based design aid for assessing the costs, technical and regulatory aspects and potential environmental benefits for using mine water for thermoelectric generation. The framework provides a systematic process for evaluating the hydrologic, chemical, engineering and environmental factors to be considered in using mine water as an alternative to traditional freshwater supply. A field investigation and case study was conducted for the proposed 300 MW Beech Hollow Power Plant located in Champion, Pennsylvania. The field study based on previous research conducted by NMLRC identified mine water sources sufficient to reliably supply the 2-3,000gpm water supply requirement of Beech Hollow. A water collection, transportation and treatment system was designed around this facility. Using this case study a computer based design aid applicable to large industrial water users was developed utilizing water collection and handling principals derived in the field investigation and during previous

  4. Measurement of the thermoelectric power factor of films over the 10-400 K range.

    PubMed

    Hossain, Mohammad Abir; Alaie, Seyedhamidreza; Tehrani, Mehran

    2016-04-01

    The design and development of a novel apparatus for the simultaneous measurement of electrical resistivity and Seebeck coefficient of films is reported here. Mounting stage is integrated inside a cryostat chamber enabling measurements over the 10-400 K temperature range, intended for organic thermoelectrics. Finite element method was used to analyze the thermo-mechanical response of the sample holder. The apparatus was validated against high purity nickel film, and a very good agreement was found. PMID:27131711

  5. Power flattening techniques for radioisotopic thermoelectric generators. Interim report 1 December 1983-16 March 1984

    SciTech Connect

    Eastman, G.Y.

    1984-03-11

    The objective of this program is the investigation of a novel means of reducing the potential ecologic hazards that may be associated with radioisotopic thermoelectric generators (RTG's). A number of short lived isotopes have lower toxicities and are more ecologically acceptable than the Plutonium 238 used at present. In addition, the shorter half lives significantly reduce the time period during which isotope encapsulation must be assured (approx. 10 half lives). The technical approach involves the use of a gas controlled heat pipe to maintain a nearly constant heat input to the thermoelectric converter in spite of the decay profile of a short live heat pipe-RTG system is expected to operate over at least two isotope half lives (4:1 turndown ratio), supplying a thermoelectric module with the heat required to generate one watt of electricity. The end product of the program is a proof of principle heat pipe demonstrating the desired heat transport and turndown capability. The program has three items of work: Survey of Technology Base; Design of Proof of Principle Heat Pipe; Heat Pipe Fabrication and Test.

  6. Inhomogeneous thermal conductivity enhances thermoelectric cooling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Tingyu; Zhou, Jun; Li, Nianbei; Yang, Ronggui; Li, Baowen

    2014-12-01

    We theoretically investigate the enhancement of thermoelectric cooling performance in thermoelectric refrigerators made of materials with inhomogeneous thermal conductivity, beyond the usual practice of enhancing thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) of materials. The dissipation of the Joule heat in such thermoelectric refrigerators is asymmetric which can give rise to better thermoelectric cooling performance. Although the thermoelectric figure of merit and the coefficient-of-performance are slightly enhanced, both the maximum cooling power and the maximum cooling temperature difference can be enhanced significantly. This finding can be used to increase the heat absorption at the cold end. We further find that the asymmetric dissipation of Joule heat leads to thermal rectification.

  7. Enhanced thermoelectric performance of rough silicon nanowires.

    PubMed

    Hochbaum, Allon I; Chen, Renkun; Delgado, Raul Diaz; Liang, Wenjie; Garnett, Erik C; Najarian, Mark; Majumdar, Arun; Yang, Peidong

    2008-01-10

    Approximately 90 per cent of the world's power is generated by heat engines that use fossil fuel combustion as a heat source and typically operate at 30-40 per cent efficiency, such that roughly 15 terawatts of heat is lost to the environment. Thermoelectric modules could potentially convert part of this low-grade waste heat to electricity. Their efficiency depends on the thermoelectric figure of merit ZT of their material components, which is a function of the Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistivity, thermal conductivity and absolute temperature. Over the past five decades it has been challenging to increase ZT > 1, since the parameters of ZT are generally interdependent. While nanostructured thermoelectric materials can increase ZT > 1 (refs 2-4), the materials (Bi, Te, Pb, Sb, and Ag) and processes used are not often easy to scale to practically useful dimensions. Here we report the electrochemical synthesis of large-area, wafer-scale arrays of rough Si nanowires that are 20-300 nm in diameter. These nanowires have Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivity values that are the same as doped bulk Si, but those with diameters of about 50 nm exhibit 100-fold reduction in thermal conductivity, yielding ZT = 0.6 at room temperature. For such nanowires, the lattice contribution to thermal conductivity approaches the amorphous limit for Si, which cannot be explained by current theories. Although bulk Si is a poor thermoelectric material, by greatly reducing thermal conductivity without much affecting the Seebeck coefficient and electrical resistivity, Si nanowire arrays show promise as high-performance, scalable thermoelectric materials.

  8. Thermoelectric Power-Generation Characteristics of PEDOT:PSS Thin-Film Devices with Different Thicknesses on Polyimide Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anno, Hiroaki; Nishinaka, Takahiko; Hokazono, Masahiro; Oshima, Nobuaki; Toshima, Naoki

    2015-06-01

    We fabricated cast films of complexes of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) and polystyrene sulfonic acid (PEDOT:PSS) at various thicknesses, t = 3-20 μm, on flexible polyimide substrates, and studied their thermoelectric properties. We also fabricated in-plane film devices consisting of five couples of PEDOT:PSS and Ag electrodes, measuring their output power characteristics as a function of film thickness. The Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity of a PEDOT:PSS film with a thickness of ˜20 μm on a polyimide substrate were ˜15 μV/K and 500 S/cm, respectively, near room temperature. As the film thickness decreased from ˜10 μm to 3 μm, the electrical conductivity increased remarkably to 1200 S/cm, while the Seebeck coefficient remained almost constant with film thickness. The maximum electric power for an in-plane PEDOT:PSS film device with a thickness of 10 μm was 1.3 μW at Δ T = 100 K. Its open-circuit voltage was 7.3 mV, and its internal resistance was 11 Ω. The measured power-generation characteristics of the film device agreed with values estimated from the dependence of thermoelectric properties on film thickness for PEDOT:PSS films on polyimide substrates. Assuming single PEDOT:PSS legs, defined as the direction of heat transport, we estimated the expected electrical power density at Δ T = 100 K as ˜650 μW/cm2 for a film thickness t = 10 μm, and 1400 μW/cm2 for t = 3 μm.

  9. Improvement in thermoelectric power factor of mechanically alloyed p-type SiGe by incorporation of TiB2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Sajid; Dubey, K.; Bhattacharya, Shovit; Basu, Ranita; Bhatt, Ranu; Bohra, A. K.; Singh, Ajay; Aswal, D. K.; Gupta, S. K.

    2016-05-01

    Nearly 60% of the world's useful energy is wasted as heat and recovering a fraction of this waste heat by converting it as useful electrical power is an important area of research[1]. Thermoelectric power generators (TEG) are solid state devices which converts heat into electricity. TEG consists of n and p-type thermoelements connected electrically in series and thermally in parallel[2]. Silicon germanium (SiGe) alloy is one of the conventional high temperature thermoelectric materials and is being used in radio-isotopes based thermoelectric power generators for deep space exploration programs.Temperature (T) dependence of thermoelectric (TE) properties of p-type SiGe and p-type SiGe-x wt.%TiB2 (x=6,8,10%) nanocomposite materials has been studied with in the temperature range of 300 K to 1100 K. It is observed that there is an improvement in the power factor (α2/ρ) of SiGe alloy on addition of TiB2 upto 8 wt.% that is mainly due to increase in the Seebeck coefficient (α) and electrical conductivity (σ) of the alloy.

  10. Development of a portable power system with meso-scale vortex combustor and thermo-electric device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimokuri, D.; Hara, T.; Ishizuka, S.

    2014-11-01

    In this study, a small scale power generation system with a meso-scale vortex combustor has been developed. The system was consisted of a couple of thermo-electric device and a heat medium. The medium was made of duralumin, 40 × 40 × 20 mm and 52 g weight, and the vortex combustion chamber of 7 mm inner diameter was embedded in it. It was found that a stable flame could be established in the narrow 7 mm channel even the mean axial velocity reached 1.2 m/s. And furthermore, the vortex flow significantly enhanced the heat transfer from the burned gas to combustion chamber, and as a result, the medium was heated to 300°C quickly (within 5 minutes) by the combustion of propane / air mixture for 145W input energy. The system could successfully generate 1.98 W (4.3 V and 0.46 A), which corresponded to the energy conversion rate of 0.7 % per unit thermo-electric device.

  11. White Paper for U.S. Army Rapid Equipping Force: Waste Heat Recovery with Thermoelectric and Lithium-Ion Hybrid Power System

    SciTech Connect

    Farmer, J C

    2007-11-26

    By harvesting waste heat from engine exhaust and storing it in light-weight high-capacity modules, it is believed that the need for energy transport by convoys can be lowered significantly. By storing this power during operation, substantial electrical power can be provided during long periods of silent operation, while the engines are not operating. It is proposed to investigate the potential of installing efficient thermoelectric generators on the exhaust systems of trucks and other vehicles to generate electrical power from the waste heat contained in the exhaust and to store that power in advanced power packs comprised of polymer-gel lithium ion batteries. Efficient inexpensive methods for production of the thermoelectric generator are also proposed. The technology that exists at LLNL, as well as that which exists at industrial partners, all have high technology readiness level (TRL). Work is needed for integration and deployment.

  12. Colossal thermoelectric power in charge ordered lanthanum calcium manganites (La{sub 0.5}Ca{sub 0.5}MnO{sub 3})

    SciTech Connect

    Joy, Lija K.; Anantharaman, M. R.; Shanmukharao Samatham, S.; Ganesan, V.; Thomas, Senoy; Al-Harthi, Salim; Liebig, A.; Albrecht, M.

    2014-12-07

    Lanthanum calcium manganites (La{sub 0.5}Ca{sub 0.5}MnO{sub 3}) with a composition close to charge ordering, synthesized by high energy ball milling, was found to exhibit colossal thermoelectric power. Thermoelectric power (TEP) data was systematically analyzed by dividing the entire temperature range (5 K–300 K) into three different regimes to explore different scattering mechanisms involved. Mandal's model has been applied to explain TEP data in the region below the Curie temperature (T{sub C}). It has been found that the variation of thermoelectric power with temperature is pronounced when the system enters the charge ordered region at T < 200 K. For temperatures lower than 120 K, due to the co-existence of charge ordered state with a spin-glass state, the variation of thermoelectric power is maximum and exhibited a peak value of −80 mV/K at 58 K. This has been explained by incorporating Kondo properties of the spin-glass along with magnon scattering. FC-ZFC magnetization measurements indicate the existence of a glassy state in the region corresponding to a maximum value of thermoelectric power. Phonon drag contribution instead of spin-glass contribution is taken into account to explain TEP in the region 120 K < T < T{sub C}. Mott's polaronic contribution of charge carriers are considered to interpret TEP in the high temperature region (T > T{sub C}). The optimal Mn{sup 4+}-Mn{sup 3+} concentration in charge ordered La{sub 0.5}Ca{sub 0.5}MnO{sub 3} was examined by X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy analysis which confirms the charge ordered nature of this compound.

  13. Enhancement of the thermoelectric power by electronic correlations in bad metals: A study of the Kelvin formula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kokalj, J.; McKenzie, Ross H.

    2015-03-01

    In many strongly correlated electron metals the thermoelectric power has a nonmonotonic temperature dependence and values that are orders of magnitude larger than for elemental metals. Inspired by Kelvin, Peterson and Shastry derived a particularly simple expression for the thermopower in terms of the temperature dependence of the chemical potential, now known as the Kelvin formula. We consider a Hubbard model on an anisotropic triangular lattice at half filling, a minimal effective Hamiltonian for several classes of organic charge transfer salts. The finite temperature Lanczos method is used to calculate the temperature dependence of the thermopower using the Kelvin formula. We find that electronic correlations significantly enhance the magnitude of the thermopower and lead to a nonmonotonic temperature dependence. The latter reflects a crossover with increasing temperature from a Fermi liquid to a bad metal. Although, the Kelvin formula gives a semiquantitative description of some experimental results it cannot describe the directional dependence of the sign of the thermopower in some materials.

  14. Non-Fermi-liquid nature and exotic thermoelectric power in the heavy-fermion superconductor UBe13

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimizu, Yusei; Pourret, Alexandre; Knebel, Georg; Palacio-Morales, Alexandra; Aoki, Dai

    2015-12-01

    We report quite exotic thermoelectric power S in UBe13. At 0 T, the negative S /T continues to strongly enhance down to the superconducting transition temperature with no Fermi-liquid behavior. |S /T | is dramatically suppressed and becomes rather modest with increasing field. We have also obtained precise field dependencies of (i) an anomaly in S due to an exotic Kondo effect and (ii) a field-induced anomaly in S /T associated with the anomalous upward Hc 2(T ) . In contrast to the field-sensitive transport property, the normal-state specific heat is magnetically robust, indicating that the largeness of the 5 f density of states remains in high fields. This unusual behavior in UBe13 can be explained by a considerable change in the energy derivative of the conduction-electron lifetime τc(ɛ ) at the Fermi level under magnetic fields.

  15. Facile Surfactant-Free Synthesis of p-Type SnSe Nanoplates with Exceptional Thermoelectric Power Factors.

    PubMed

    Han, Guang; Popuri, Srinivas R; Greer, Heather F; Bos, Jan-Willem G; Zhou, Wuzong; Knox, Andrew R; Montecucco, Andrea; Siviter, Jonathan; Man, Elena A; Macauley, Martin; Paul, Douglas J; Li, Wen-Guang; Paul, Manosh C; Gao, Min; Sweet, Tracy; Freer, Robert; Azough, Feridoon; Baig, Hasan; Sellami, Nazmi; Mallick, Tapas K; Gregory, Duncan H

    2016-05-23

    A surfactant-free solution methodology, simply using water as a solvent, has been developed for the straightforward synthesis of single-phase orthorhombic SnSe nanoplates in gram quantities. Individual nanoplates are composed of {100} surfaces with {011} edge facets. Hot-pressed nanostructured compacts (Eg ≈0.85 eV) exhibit excellent electrical conductivity and thermoelectric power factors (S(2) σ) at 550 K. S(2) σ values are 8-fold higher than equivalent materials prepared using citric acid as a structure-directing agent, and electrical properties are comparable to the best-performing, extrinsically doped p-type polycrystalline tin selenides. The method offers an energy-efficient, rapid route to p-type SnSe nanostructures. PMID:27094703

  16. Terahertz calorimetry: an absolute power meter for terahertz radiation and the absorptivity of the Herschel Space Observatory telescope mirror coating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klaassen, Tjeerd O.; Hovenier, J. Niels; Fischer, Jacqueline; Jakob, Gerd; Poglitsch, Albrecht; Sternberg, Oren

    2004-04-01

    A new calorimetric absolute power meter has been developed for THz radiation. This broad band THz power meter measures average power at ambient temperature and pressure, does not use a window, and is insensitive to polarization and time structure of THz radiation. The operation of the power meter is based on the calorimetric method: in order to determine the power of a beam of THz radiation, the beam is used to illuminate a highly absorbing surface with known BRDF characteristics until a stable temperature is reached. The power in the incident beam can then be determined by measuring the electric power needed to cause the sample temperature rise. The new power meter was used with laser calorimetry to measure the absorptivity, and thus the emissivity, of aluminum-coated silicon carbide mirror samples produced during the coating qualification run of the Herschel Space Observatory telescope to be launched by the European Space Agency in 2007. The samples were measured at 77 Kelvin to simulate the operating temperature of the telescope in its planned orbit around the second Lagrangian point, L2, of the Earth-Sun system. The absorptivity of both clean and dust-contaminated samples was measured at 70, 118, 184 and 496 mm and found to be in the range 0.2 - 0.8%.

  17. A Power Conditioning Stage Based on Analog-Circuit MPPT Control and a Superbuck Converter for Thermoelectric Generators in Spacecraft Power Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Kai; Wu, Hongfei; Cai, Yan; Xing, Yan

    2014-06-01

    A thermoelectric generator (TEG) is a very important kind of power supply for spacecraft, especially for deep-space missions, due to its long lifetime and high reliability. To develop a practical TEG power supply for spacecraft, a power conditioning stage is indispensable, being employed to convert the varying output voltage of the TEG modules to a definite voltage for feeding batteries or loads. To enhance the system reliability, a power conditioning stage based on analog-circuit maximum-power-point tracking (MPPT) control and a superbuck converter is proposed in this paper. The input of this power conditioning stage is connected to the output of the TEG modules, and the output of this stage is connected to the battery and loads. The superbuck converter is employed as the main circuit, featuring low input current ripples and high conversion efficiency. Since for spacecraft power systems reliable operation is the key target for control circuits, a reset-set flip-flop-based analog circuit is used as the basic control circuit to implement MPPT, being much simpler than digital control circuits and offering higher reliability. Experiments have verified the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed power conditioning stage. The results show the advantages of the proposed stage, such as maximum utilization of TEG power, small input ripples, and good stability.

  18. Absolute calibration of optical power for PDT: report of AAPM TG140.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Timothy C; Bonnerup, Chris; Colussi, Valdir C; Dowell, Marla L; Finlay, Jarod C; Lilge, Lothar; Slowey, Thomas W; Sibata, Claudio

    2013-08-01

    This report is primarily concerned with methods for optical calibration of laser power for continuous wave (CW) light sources, predominantly used in photodynamic therapy (PDT). Light power calibration is very important for PDT, however, no clear standard has been established for the calibration procedure nor the requirements of power meters suitable for optical power calibration. The purposes of the report are to provide guidance for establishing calibration procedures for thermopile type power meters and establish calibration uncertainties for most commercially available detectors and readout assemblies. The authors have also provided a review of the use of various power meters for CW and pulsed optical sources, and provided recommended temporal frequencies for optical power meter calibrations and guidance for routine quality assurance procedure.

  19. The ‘thirsty’ water-electricity nexus: field data on the scale and seasonality of thermoelectric power generation’s water intensity in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Daqian; Ramaswami, Anuradha

    2015-02-01

    There is a lack of field data on the water withdrawal and consumption intensity of thermoelectric power plants in China. With China’s ambitious electricity capacity expansion and ever-growing water deficit, the overlooked water dimension of thermoelectric power generation could soon have significant water sustainability implications, and field data on water intensity of thermoelectric power plants will be essential to further our understanding of China’s water-electricity nexus. To address this knowledge gap, this paper presents field data on the water withdrawal intensity and water balance of 19 coal-fired power plants in Shandong, China, categorized by different generator capacities (<100 MW ˜ >600 MW) and boiler technologies (subcritical, supercritical and ultra supercritical). This paper suggests that the annual average water withdrawal intensity of coal-fired power plants in Shandong (1.50-3.75 L kWh-1) is within the range of values reported for other countries, and that the distinction between water withdrawal and water consumption effectively vanishes since very little water is returned from withdrawal. This paper also suggests that there is quite significant seasonality in power plants’ water intensity whereby the water intensity in July can be approximately 15-28% higher than the annual average. The seasonality is on a similar scale across all generator capacities, except for a small co-generation plant (<100 MW), which had substantially lower water intensity in January when a heat exchanger was used to provide heating.

  20. Thermoelectric module

    DOEpatents

    Kortier, William E.; Mueller, John J.; Eggers, Philip E.

    1980-07-08

    A thermoelectric module containing lead telluride as the thermoelectric mrial is encapsulated as tightly as possible in a stainless steel canister to provide minimum void volume in the canister. The lead telluride thermoelectric elements are pressure-contacted to a tungsten hot strap and metallurgically bonded at the cold junction to iron shoes with a barrier layer of tin telluride between the iron shoe and the p-type lead telluride element.

  1. Simulation and Design of Vehicle Exhaust Power Generation Systems: The Interaction Between the Heat Exchanger and the Thermoelectric Modules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Cong; Chen, Gang; Mu, Yu; Liu, Lisheng; Zhai, Pengcheng

    2015-06-01

    Vehicle exhaust power generation systems (VEPGS), mainly consisting of a heat exchanger, cooling system, thermoelectric modules (TEMs), and clamping device, have attracted wide interest and attention for power generation from waste heat. In this work, systematical research was conducted to investigate the thermal performance, power output, and thermal stress of a VEPGS by using the multifield coupling method. Different from previous research, this work simulates a model that integrates the heat exchanger and TEMs, focusing on the effect of the TEMs on the thermal performance of the heat exchanger. It is found that the TEMs have a significant effect on the thermal performance of the heat exchanger. When not considering the effects of the TEMs, the hot-end temperature of the TEMs would be seriously underestimated, which would result in underestimation of the power output of the VEPGS and the level of thermal stress of the TEMs. Meanwhile, when considering the effect of the TEMs, the hot-end temperature distribution exhibits significant changes, and its temperature uniformity is significantly improved. The results suggest that, in VEPGS design and optimization, the interaction between the heat exchanger and TEMs should be considered. This study also contributes to a more accurate assessment method for VEPGS design and simulation.

  2. Enhanced thermoelectric power and electronic correlations in RuSe{sub 2}

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Kefeng Wang, Aifeng; Tomic, A.; Wang, Limin; Petrovic, C.; Abeykoon, A. M. Milinda; Dooryhee, E.; Billinge, S. J. L.

    2015-04-01

    We report the electronic structure, electric and thermal transport properties of Ru{sub 1−x}Ir{sub x}Se{sub 2} (x ≤ 0.2). RuSe{sub 2} is a semiconductor that crystallizes in a cubic pyrite unit cell. The Seebeck coefficient of RuSe{sub 2} exceeds −200 μV/K around 730 K. Ir substitution results in the suppression of the resistivity and the Seebeck coefficient, suggesting the removal of the peaks in density of states near the Fermi level. Ru{sub 0.8}Ir{sub 0.2}Se{sub 2} shows a semiconductor-metal crossover at about 30 K. The magnetic field restores the semiconducting behavior. Our results indicate the importance of the electronic correlations in enhanced thermoelectricity of RuSb{sub 2}.

  3. Enhanced thermoelectric power and electronic correlations in RuSe2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Kefeng; Wang, Aifeng; Tomic, A.; Wang, Limin; Abeykoon, A. M. Milinda; Dooryhee, E.; Billinge, S. J. L.; Petrovic, C.

    2015-04-01

    We report the electronic structure, electric and thermal transport properties of Ru1-xIrxSe2 (x ≤ 0.2). RuSe2 is a semiconductor that crystallizes in a cubic pyrite unit cell. The Seebeck coefficient of RuSe2 exceeds -200 μV/K around 730 K. Ir substitution results in the suppression of the resistivity and the Seebeck coefficient, suggesting the removal of the peaks in density of states near the Fermi level. Ru0.8Ir0.2Se2 shows a semiconductor-metal crossover at about 30 K. The magnetic field restores the semiconducting behavior. Our results indicate the importance of the electronic correlations in enhanced thermoelectricity of RuSb2.

  4. Maximum power output and load matching of a phosphoric acid fuel cell-thermoelectric generator hybrid system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Xiaohang; Wang, Yuan; Cai, Ling; Zhou, Yinghui

    2015-10-01

    Based on the current models of phosphoric acid fuel cells (PAFCs) and thermoelectric generators (TGs), a new hybrid system is proposed, in which the effects of multi-irreversibilities resulting from the activation, concentration, and ohmic overpotentials in the PAFC, Joule heat and heat leak in the TG, finite-rate heat transfer between the TG and the heat reservoirs, and heat leak from the PAFC to the environment are taken into account. Expressions for the power output and efficiency of the PAFC, TG, and hybrid system are analytically derived and directly used to discuss the performance characteristics of the hybrid system. The optimal relationship between the electric currents in the PAFC and TG is obtained. The maximum power output is numerically calculated. It is found that the maximum power output density of the hybrid system will increase about 150 Wm-2, compared with that of a single PAFC. The problem how to optimally match the load resistances of two subsystems is discussed. Some significant results for practical hybrid systems are obtained.

  5. Efficient and Robust Thermoelectric Power Generation Device Using Hot-Pressed Metal Contacts on Nanostructured Half-Heusler Alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joshi, Giri; Poudel, Bed

    2016-06-01

    We report an efficient thermoelectric device with power density of 8.9 W/cm2 and efficiency of 8.9% at 678°C temperature difference using hot-pressed titanium metal contact layers on nanostructured half-Heusler materials. The high power density and efficiency are due to the efficient nanostructured materials and very low contact resistance of ~1 μΩ cm2 between the titanium layer and half-Heusler material. Moreover, the bonding strength between the titanium and half-Heusler is more than 50 MPa, significantly higher compared with conventional contact metallization methods. The low contact resistance and high bonding strength are due to thin-layer diffusion of titanium (<100 μm) into the half-Heusler at high temperature (>600°C). The low contact resistance and high bonding strength result in a stable and efficient power generation device with great potential for use in recovery of waste heat, e.g., in automotive and industrial applications.

  6. Inverse Problems of Thermoelectricity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anatychuk, L. I.; Luste, O. J.; Kuz, R. V.; Strutinsky, M. N.

    2011-05-01

    Classical thermoelectricity is based on the use of the Seebeck and Thomson effects that occur in the near-contact areas between n- and p-type materials. A conceptually different approach to thermoelectric power converter design that is based on the law of thermoelectric induction of currents is also known. The efficiency of this approach has already been demonstrated by its first applications. More than 10 basically new types of thermoelements were discovered with properties that cannot be achieved by thermocouple power converters. Therefore, further development of this concept is of practical interest. This paper provides a classification and theory for solving the inverse problems of thermoelectricity that form the basis for devising new thermoelement types. Computer methods for their solution for anisotropic and inhomogeneous media are elaborated. Regularities related to thermoelectric current excitation in anisotropic and inhomogeneous media are established. The possibility of obtaining eddy currents of a particular configuration through control of the temperature field and material parameters for the creation of new thermo- element types is demonstrated for three-dimensional (3D) models of anisotropic and inhomogeneous media.

  7. High-performance dispenser printed MA p-type Bi(0.5)Sb(1.5)Te(3) flexible thermoelectric generators for powering wireless sensor networks.

    PubMed

    Madan, Deepa; Wang, Zuoqian; Chen, Alic; Wright, Paul K; Evans, James W

    2013-11-27

    This work presents a novel method to synthesize p-type composite thermoelectric materials to print scalable thermoelectric generator (TEG) devices in a cost-effective way. A maximum ZT of 0.2 was achieved for mechanically alloyed (MA) p-type Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 (8 wt % extra Te additive)-epoxy composite films cured at 250 °C. A 50% increase in Seebeck coefficient as a result of adding 8 wt % extra Te in stoichiometric Bi0.5Sb1.5Te3 contributed to the increase in ZT. To demonstrate cost-effective and scalable manufacturing, we fabricated a sixty element thermoelectric generator prototype with 5.0 mm × 600 μm × 120 μm printed dimensions on a custom designed polyimide substrate with thick metal contacts. The prototype TEG device produced a power output of 20.5 μW at 0.15 mA and 130 mV for a temperature difference of 20 K resulting in a device areal power density of 152 μW/cm(2). This power is sufficient for low power applications such as wireless sensor network (WSN) devices.

  8. Techno-Economic Feasibility of Highly Efficient Cost-Effective Thermoelectric-SOFC Hybrid Power Generation Systems

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  9. Development of a small-scale power system with meso-scale vortex combustor and thermo-electric device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimokuri, D.; Hara, T.; Matsumoto, R.

    2015-10-01

    A small-scale vortex combustion power system has been developed using a thermo-electric device (TED). The system consisted of a heat medium, TED, and cooling plates. A vortex combustion chamber (7 mm inner diameter and 27 mm long) was fabricated inside the heat medium (40  ×  40  ×  20 mm and 52 g of duralumin). It was found that a stable propane/air flame could be established in the narrow 7 mm channel even for the large heat input conditions of 213 ~ 355 W. With a couple of TEDs, the maximum of 8.1 W (9.8 V  ×  0.83 A) could be successfully obtained for 355 W heat input, which corresponded to the energy conversion rate of 2.4%. The results of the gas and the combustor wall temperature measurements showed that the heat transfer from the burned gas to combustor wall was significantly enhanced by the vortex flow, which contributed to the relatively high efficiency energy conversion on the vortex combustion power system.

  10. Modal Analysis and Study of the Vibration Characteristics of the Thermoelectric Modules of Vehicle Exhaust Power-Generation Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Gang; Mu, Yu; Zhai, Pengcheng; Yu, Rui; Li, Guodong; Zhang, Qingjie

    2014-06-01

    Thermoelectric (TE) materials and modules are important components of vehicle exhaust power-generation systems. The road and the engine, the main sources of vibration of TE modules, have substantial effects on the vibration characteristics of TE modules. In this work, modal analysis and the vibration characteristics of TE modules were investigated in detail. On the basis of the TE modules and their service environment, simulations for modal analysis were performed by use of the finite-element method, and the natural frequencies and mode shapes of the TE modules were obtained. The numerical results were used to compare the natural frequencies of TE modules under different contact stiffness with the range of excitation frequencies of road and engine, in an attempt to prevent severe resonance. The effects on the vibration characteristics of geometric dimensions, service temperature, and thermal stress of the TE modules are also discussed in detail. The results reveal the vibration characteristics of the TE modules and provide theoretical guidance for structure optimization in the design of vehicle exhaust power-generation systems.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  12. Electronic cooling using thermoelectric devices

    SciTech Connect

    Zebarjadi, M.

    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.

  13. Electronic cooling using thermoelectric devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zebarjadi, M.

    2015-05-01

    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.

  14. Development of a Thermal Buffering Device to Cope with Temperature Fluctuations for a Thermoelectric Power Generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mizuno, Kuniaki; Sawada, Kazunori; Nemoto, Takashi; Iida, Tsutomu

    2012-06-01

    To stabilize the heat input to a thermoelectric generator (TEG) and protect it from large temperature fluctuations, a thermal buffering device (TBD) was fabricated and examined using a typical Bi-Te TEG module and a brand-new Mg2Si TEG module. The TBD comprises two adjoining heat storage containers, each containing different alloys, which can be optimized for the temperature range of the TEG. The combination of two alloys in series diminishes the thermal fluctuations, stabilizing the heat input to the TEG module. This is achieved by having two metallic materials with large enthalpies of fusion that can be placed between the heat source and the TEG. The combination of the two alloys can be optimized for the temperature ranges of Bi-Te, Pb-Te, or Co-Sb. For the Bi-Te TEG, 15Al-85Zn and 30Sn-70Zn alloys were used for the heat source side and the TEG side, respectively. The corresponding alloys for the Mg2Si TEG were 20Ni-80Al and 7Si-93Al. With the use of a TBD, the Bi-Te TEG exhibited no notable damage even in the rather high temperature range beyond ˜573 K. For the Mg2Si TEG, no operational damage of the Mg2Si TEG module was observed even with a temperature of 1020 K.

  15. Origins of enhanced thermoelectric power factor in topologically insulating Bi0.64Sb1.36Te3 thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wei; Chi, Hang; Walrath, J. C.; Chang, A. S.; Stoica, Vladimir A.; Endicott, Lynn; Tang, Xinfeng; Goldman, R. S.; Uher, Ctirad

    2016-01-01

    In this research, we report the enhanced thermoelectric power factor in topologically insulating thin films of Bi0.64Sb1.36Te3 with a thickness of 6-200 nm. Measurements of scanning tunneling spectroscopy and electronic transport show that the Fermi level lies close to the valence band edge, and that the topological surface state (TSS) is electron dominated. We find that the Seebeck coefficient of the 6 nm and 15 nm thick films is dominated by the valence band, while the TSS chiefly contributes to the electrical conductivity. In contrast, the electronic transport of the reference 200 nm thick film behaves similar to bulk thermoelectric materials with low carrier concentration, implying the effect of the TSS on the electronic transport is merely prominent in the thin region. The conductivity of the 6 nm and 15 nm thick film is obviously higher than that in the 200 nm thick film owing to the highly mobile TSS conduction channel. As a consequence of the enhanced electrical conductivity and the suppressed bipolar effect in transport properties for the 6 nm thick film, an impressive power factor of about 2.0 mW m-1 K-2 is achieved at room temperature for this film. Further investigations of the electronic transport properties of TSS and interactions between TSS and the bulk band might result in a further improved thermoelectric power factor in topologically insulating Bi0.64Sb1.36Te3 thin films.

  16. An Analytical Model for the Influence of Contact Resistance on Thermoelectric Efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bjørk, Rasmus

    2016-03-01

    An analytical model is presented that can account for both electrical and hot and cold thermal contact resistances when calculating the efficiency of a thermoelectric generator. The model is compared to a numerical model of a thermoelectric leg for 16 different thermoelectric materials, as well as to the analytical models of Ebling et al. (J Electron Mater 39:1376, 2010) and Min and Rowe (J Power Sour 38:253, 1992). The model presented here is shown to accurately calculate the efficiency for all systems and all contact resistances considered, with an average difference in efficiency between the numerical model and the analytical model of -0.07 ± 0.35pp. This makes the model more accurate than previously published models. The maximum absolute difference in efficiency between the analytical model and the numerical model is 1.14pp for all materials and all contact resistances considered.

  17. Structural and Thermoelectric Properties of Ternary Full-Heusler Alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayashi, K.; Eguchi, M.; Miyazaki, Y.

    2016-09-01

    The thermoelectric properties of ternary full-Heusler alloys, Co2 YZ, which are in a ferromagnetic state up to high temperature above 300 K, were measured and are discussed in terms of the crystal structure and electronic states. Among the full-Heusler alloys studied, the Co2MnSi sample exhibited the highest absolute value of Seebeck coefficient and also the highest electrical conductivity in the temperature range from 300 K to 1023 K. The highest power factor of 2.9 × 10-3 W/m-K2 was obtained for the Co2MnSi sample at 550 K, demonstrating the potential of half-metallic full-Heusler alloys as thermoelectric materials.

  18. Thermoelectric system

    DOEpatents

    Reiners, Eric A.; Taher, Mahmoud A.; Fei, Dong; McGilvray, Andrew N.

    2007-10-30

    In one particular embodiment, an internal combustion engine is provided. The engine comprises a block, a head, a piston, a combustion chamber defined by the block, the piston, and the head, and at least one thermoelectric device positioned between the combustion chamber and the head. In this particular embodiment, the thermoelectric device is in direct contact with the combustion chamber. In another particular embodiment, a cylinder head configured to sit atop a cylinder bank of an internal combustion engine is provided. The cylinder head comprises a cooling channel configured to receive cooling fluid, valve seats configured for receiving intake and exhaust valves, and thermoelectric devices positioned around the valve seats.

  19. Semimetal/Semiconductor Nanocomposites for Thermoelectrics

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Hong; Burke, Peter G.; Gossard, Arthur C.; Zeng, Gehong; Ramu, Ashok T.; Bahk, Je-Hyeong; Bowers, John E.

    2011-04-15

    In this work, we present research on semimetal-semiconductor nanocomposites grown by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) for thermoelectric applications. We study several different III-V semiconductors embedded with semimetallic rare earth-group V (RE-V) compounds, but focus is given here to ErSb:InxGa1-xSb as a promising p-type thermoelectric material. Nano­structures of RE-V compounds are formed and embedded within the III-V semiconductor matrix. By codoping the nanocomposites with the appropriate dopants, both n-type and p-type materials have been made for thermoelectric applications. The thermoelectric properties have been engineered for enhanced thermoelectric device performance. Segmented thermoelectric power generator modules using 50 μm thick Er-containing nanocomposites have been fabricated and measured. Research on different rare earth elements for thermoelectrics is discussed.

  20. Flexible and self-powered temperature–pressure dual-parameter sensors using microstructure-frame-supported organic thermoelectric materials

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Fengjiao; Zang, Yaping; Huang, Dazhen; Di, Chong-an; Zhu, Daoben

    2015-01-01

    Skin-like temperature- and pressure-sensing capabilities are essential features for the next generation of artificial intelligent products. Previous studies of e-skin and smart elements have focused on flexible pressure sensors, whereas the simultaneous and sensitive detection of temperature and pressure with a single device remains a challenge. Here we report developing flexible dual-parameter temperature–pressure sensors based on microstructure-frame-supported organic thermoelectric (MFSOTE) materials. The effective transduction of temperature and pressure stimuli into two independent electrical signals permits the instantaneous sensing of temperature and pressure with an accurate temperature resolution of <0.1 K and a high-pressure-sensing sensitivity of up to 28.9 kPa−1. More importantly, these dual-parameter sensors can be self-powered with outstanding sensing performance. The excellent sensing properties of MFSOTE-based devices, together with their unique advantages of low cost and large-area fabrication, make MFSOTE materials possess promising applications in e-skin and health-monitoring elements. PMID:26387591

  1. Flexible and self-powered temperature-pressure dual-parameter sensors using microstructure-frame-supported organic thermoelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Fengjiao; Zang, Yaping; Huang, Dazhen; di, Chong-An; Zhu, Daoben

    2015-09-01

    Skin-like temperature- and pressure-sensing capabilities are essential features for the next generation of artificial intelligent products. Previous studies of e-skin and smart elements have focused on flexible pressure sensors, whereas the simultaneous and sensitive detection of temperature and pressure with a single device remains a challenge. Here we report developing flexible dual-parameter temperature-pressure sensors based on microstructure-frame-supported organic thermoelectric (MFSOTE) materials. The effective transduction of temperature and pressure stimuli into two independent electrical signals permits the instantaneous sensing of temperature and pressure with an accurate temperature resolution of <0.1 K and a high-pressure-sensing sensitivity of up to 28.9 kPa-1. More importantly, these dual-parameter sensors can be self-powered with outstanding sensing performance. The excellent sensing properties of MFSOTE-based devices, together with their unique advantages of low cost and large-area fabrication, make MFSOTE materials possess promising applications in e-skin and health-monitoring elements.

  2. Thermoelectric Generator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, T.

    1985-01-01

    Small modular alkali metal thermoelectric generator with no moving parts directly converts heat to electrical energy with efficiency of 20 to 40 percent. Unit uses closed regenerative electrochemical concentration cell based on sodium-ion conductor beta alumina.

  3. Thermoelectric Products

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1988-01-01

    Instead of bulky coils and compressors used in conventional refrigeration systems, UST design engineers drew on thermo-electric technology. UST's precision temperature chambers (PTC's) feature small thermoelectric modules that measure not much more than 1 square inch and operate on unique phenomenon of heat exchange. When electric current flows through specialized metallic crystals, heat is produced; when current direction is reversed cooling is produced.

  4. Thermoelectric generator for motor vehicle

    SciTech Connect

    Bass, J.C.

    1997-04-29

    A thermoelectric generator is described for producing electric power for a motor vehicle from the heat of the exhaust gases produced by the engine of the motor vehicle. The exhaust gases pass through a finned heat transfer support structure which has seat positions on its outside surface for the positioning of thermoelectric modules. A good contact cylinder provides a framework from which a spring force can be applied to the thermoelectric modules to hold them in good contact on their seats on the surface of the heat transfer support structure. 8 figs.

  5. Thermoelectric generator for motor vehicle

    DOEpatents

    Bass, John C.

    1997-04-29

    A thermoelectric generator for producing electric power for a motor vehicle from the heat of the exhaust gasses produced by the engine of the motor vehicle. The exhaust gasses pass through a finned heat transfer support structure which has seat positions on its outside surface for the positioning of thermoelectric modules. A good contact cylinder provides a framework from which a spring force can be applied to the thermoelectric modules to hold them in good contact on their seats on the surface of the heat transfer support structure.

  6. Modular Isotopic Thermoelectric Generator

    SciTech Connect

    Schock, Alfred

    1981-01-01

    Advanced RTG concepts utilizing improved thermoelectric materials and converter concepts are under study at Fairchild for DOE. The design described here is based on DOE's newly developed radioisotope heat source, and on an improved silicon-germanium material and multicouple converter module under development at Syncal. Fairchild's assignment was to combine the above into an attractive power system for use in space, and to assess the specific power and other attributes of that design.

  7. Reuse of Treated Internal or External Wastewaters in the Cooling Systems of Coal-Based Thermoelectric Power Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Radisav Vidic; David Dzombak; Ming-Kai Hsieh; Heng Li; Shih-Hsiang Chien; Yinghua Feng; Indranil Chowdhury; Jason Monnell

    2009-06-30

    This study evaluated the feasibility of using three impaired waters - secondary treated municipal wastewater, passively treated abandoned mine drainage (AMD), and effluent from ash sedimentation ponds at power plants - for use as makeup water in recirculating cooling water systems at thermoelectric power plants. The evaluation included assessment of water availability based on proximity and relevant regulations as well as feasibility of managing cooling water quality with traditional chemical management schemes. Options for chemical treatment to prevent corrosion, scaling, and biofouling were identified through review of current practices, and were tested at bench and pilot-scale. Secondary treated wastewater is the most widely available impaired water that can serve as a reliable source of cooling water makeup. There are no federal regulations specifically related to impaired water reuse but a number of states have introduced regulations with primary focus on water aerosol 'drift' emitted from cooling towers, which has the potential to contain elevated concentrations of chemicals and microorganisms and may pose health risk to the public. It was determined that corrosion, scaling, and biofouling can be controlled adequately in cooling systems using secondary treated municipal wastewater at 4-6 cycles of concentration. The high concentration of dissolved solids in treated AMD rendered difficulties in scaling inhibition and requires more comprehensive pretreatment and scaling controls. Addition of appropriate chemicals can adequately control corrosion, scaling and biological growth in ash transport water, which typically has the best water quality among the three waters evaluated in this study. The high TDS in the blowdown from pilot-scale testing units with both passively treated mine drainage and secondary treated municipal wastewater and the high sulfate concentration in the mine drainage blowdown water were identified as the main challenges for blowdown disposal

  8. Thermionic Energy Conversion (TEC) topping thermoelectrics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, J. F.

    1981-01-01

    Performance expectations for thermionic and thermoelectric energy conversion systems are reviewed. It is noted that internal radiation effects diminish thermoelectric figures of merit significantly at 1000 K and substantially at 2000 K; the effective thermal conductivity contribution of intrathermoelectric radiative dissipation increases with the third power of temperature. It is argued that a consideration of thermoelectric power generation with high temperature heat sources should include utilization of thermionic energy conversion (TEC) topping thermoelectrics. However TEC alone or TEC topping more efficient conversion systems like steam or gas turbines, combined cycles, or Stirling engines would be more desirable generally.

  9. Power-Generation Performance of a π-Structured Thermoelectric Module Containing Mg2Si and MnSi1.73

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Tomoyuki; Hatakeyama, Kazuya; Minowa, Masahiro; Mito, Youhiko; Arai, Koya; Iida, Tsutomu; Nishio, Keishi

    2015-10-01

    In recent years, environmental problems, for example global warming and depletion of energy resources, have become serious. Thermoelectric power generation has attracted attention as a means of reducing the effects of such problems. Thermoelectric conversion technology can convert thermal energy directly into electrical energy. Therefore, exhaust heat can be converted into electrical energy. Moreover, it is a clean method of power generation that does not discharge CO2 gas when the electricity is generated. The purpose of this study was to fabricate a thermoelectric (TE) module that can be used at mid-range temperatures of 573-873 K. The component materials selected were Mg2Si as n-type semiconductor and MnSi1.73 as p-type semiconductor. These compounds are non-toxic, environmentally benign, lightweight, and relatively abundant compared with other TE compounds. Ag paste was used to join the components. To prevent diffusion of Ag at the interface of the components and the electrodes, the top and bottom of the components were coated with Ni. The TE module was composed of 12 pairs of elements and Ag seats were used for the electrodes. The dimensions of both p and n-type components were 5.0 mm × 5.0 mm × 6.3 mm. Module size was 36.5 mm × 36.0 mm × 7.0 mm, and alumina was used as substrate. The module was inserted between hot and cold plates, in air, and output power was measured. The open circuit voltage and the maximum output power were 1.6 V and 5.6 W, respectively, at Δ T = 548°C (hot side 587°C; cold side 39°C), and the output power density estimated from these results was 4.4 kW/m2.

  10. Wetland Water Cooling Partnership: The Use of Constructed Wetlands to Enhance Thermoelectric Power Plant Cooling and Mitigate the Demand of Surface Water Use

    SciTech Connect

    Apfelbaum, Steven; Duvall, Kenneth; Nelson, Theresa; Mensing, Douglas; Bengtson, Harlan; Eppich, John; Penhallegon, Clayton; Thompson, Ry

    2013-09-30

    Through the Phase I study segment of contract #DE-NT0006644 with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory, Applied Ecological Services, Inc. and Sterling Energy Services, LLC (the AES/SES Team) explored the use of constructed wetlands to help address stresses on surface water and groundwater resources from thermoelectric power plant cooling and makeup water requirements. The project objectives were crafted to explore and develop implementable water conservation and cooling strategies using constructed wetlands (not existing, naturally occurring wetlands), with the goal of determining if this strategy has the potential to reduce surface water and groundwater withdrawals of thermoelectric power plants throughout the country. Our team’s exploratory work has documented what appears to be a significant and practical potential for augmenting power plant cooling water resources for makeup supply at many, but not all, thermoelectric power plant sites. The intent is to help alleviate stress on existing surface water and groundwater resources through harvesting, storing, polishing and beneficially re-using critical water resources. Through literature review, development of conceptual created wetland plans, and STELLA-based modeling, the AES/SES team has developed heat and water balances for conventional thermoelectric power plants to evaluate wetland size requirements, water use, and comparative cooling technology costs. The ecological literature on organism tolerances to heated waters was used to understand the range of ecological outcomes achievable in created wetlands. This study suggests that wetlands and water harvesting can provide a practical and cost-effective strategy to augment cooling waters for thermoelectric power plants in many geographic settings of the United States, particularly east of the 100th meridian, and in coastal and riverine locations. The study concluded that constructed wetlands can have significant positive

  11. Materials for thermoelectric energy conversion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, C.

    1988-01-01

    The field of thermoelectric energy conversion is reviewed from both a theoretical and an experimental standpoint. The basic theory is introduced and the thermodynamic and solid state views are compared. An overview of the development of thermoelectric materials is presented with particular emphasis being placed on the most recent developments in high-temperature semiconductors. A number of possible device applications are discussed and the successful use and suitability of these devices for space power is manifest.

  12. Gate-Optimized Thermoelectric Power Factor in Ultrathin WSe2 Single Crystals.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Masaro; Iizuka, Takahiko; Saito, Yu; Onga, Masaru; Suzuki, Ryuji; Zhang, Yijin; Iwasa, Yoshihiro; Shimizu, Sunao

    2016-03-01

    We report an electric field tuning of the thermopower in ultrathin WSe2 single crystals over a wide range of carrier concentration by using electric double-layer (EDL) technique. We succeeded in the optimization of power factor not only in the hole but also in the electron side, which has never been chemically accessed. The maximized values of power factor are one-order larger than that obtained by changing chemical composition, reflecting the clean nature of electrostatic doping.

  13. Thermodynamics of Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doak, Jeff W.

    One challenge facing society is the responsible use of our energy resources. Increasing the efficiency of energy generation provides one path to solving this challenge. One commonality among most current energy generation methods is that waste heat is generated during the generation process. Thermoelectrics can provide a solution to increasing the efficiency of power generation and automotive systems by converting waste heat directly to electricity. The current barrier to implementation of thermoelectric systems is the low efficiencies of underlying thermoelectric materials. The efficiency of a thermoelectric material depends on the electronic and thermal transport properties of the material; a good thermoelectric material should be an electronic conductor and a thermal insulator, traits which generally oppose one another. The thermal properties of a thermoelectric material can be improved by forming nanoscale precipitates with the material which scatter phonons, reducing the thermal conductivity. The electronic properties of a thermoelectric material can be improved by doping the material to increase the electronic conductivity or by alloying the material to favorably alter its band structure. The ability of these chemical modifications to affect the thermoelectric efficiency of material are ultimately governed by the chemical thermodynamics of the system. PbTe is a prototypical thermoelectric material: Alloying PbTe with PbS (or other materials) creates nanostructures which scatter phonons and reduce the lattice thermal conductivity. Doping PbTe with Na increases the hole concentration, increasing the electronic conductivity. In this work, we investigate the thermodynamics of PbTe and similar systems using first principles to understand the underlying mechanisms controlling the formation of nanostructures and the amount of doping allowed in these systems. In this work we: 1) investigate the thermodynamics of pseudo-binary alloys of IV--VI systems to identify the

  14. Utilization of municipal wastewater for cooling in thermoelectric power plants: Evaluation of the combined cost of makeup water treatment and increased condenser fouling

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, Michael E.; Theregowda, Ranjani B.; Safari, Iman; Abbasian, Javad; Arastoopour, Hamid; Dzombak, David A.; Hsieh, Ming-Kai; Miller, David C.

    2013-10-01

    A methodology is presented to calculate the total combined cost (TCC) of water sourcing, water treatment and condenser fouling in the recirculating cooling systems of thermoelectric power plants. The methodology is employed to evaluate the economic viability of using treated municipal wastewater (MWW) to replace the use of freshwater as makeup water to power plant cooling systems. Cost analyses are presented for a reference power plant and five different tertiary treatment scenarios to reduce the scaling tendencies of MWW. Results indicate that a 550 MW sub-critical coal fired power plant with a makeup water requirement of 29.3 ML/day has a TCC of $3.0 - 3.2 million/yr associated with the use of treated MWW for cooling. (All costs USD 2009). This translates to a freshwater conservation cost of $0.29/kL, which is considerably lower than that of dry air cooling technology, $1.5/kL, as well as the 2020 conservation cost target set by the U.S. Department of Energy, $0.74/kL. Results also show that if the available price of freshwater exceeds that of secondary-treated MWW by more than $0.13-0.14/kL, it can be economically advantageous to purchase secondary MWW and treat it for utilization in the recirculating cooling system of a thermoelectric power plant.

  15. Band engineering of thermoelectric materials.

    PubMed

    Pei, Yanzhong; Wang, Heng; Snyder, G J

    2012-12-01

    Lead chalcogenides have long been used for space-based and thermoelectric remote power generation applications, but recent discoveries have revealed a much greater potential for these materials. This renaissance of interest combined with the need for increased energy efficiency has led to active consideration of thermoelectrics for practical waste heat recovery systems-such as the conversion of car exhaust heat into electricity. The simple high symmetry NaCl-type cubic structure, leads to several properties desirable for thermoelectricity, such as high valley degeneracy for high electrical conductivity and phonon anharmonicity for low thermal conductivity. The rich capabilities for both band structure and microstructure engineering enable a variety of approaches for achieving high thermoelectric performance in lead chalcogenides. This Review focuses on manipulation of the electronic and atomic structural features which makes up the thermoelectric quality factor. While these strategies are well demonstrated in lead chalcogenides, the principles used are equally applicable to most good thermoelectric materials that could enable improvement of thermoelectric devices from niche applications into the mainstream of energy technologies. PMID:23074043

  16. Band engineering of thermoelectric materials.

    PubMed

    Pei, Yanzhong; Wang, Heng; Snyder, G J

    2012-12-01

    Lead chalcogenides have long been used for space-based and thermoelectric remote power generation applications, but recent discoveries have revealed a much greater potential for these materials. This renaissance of interest combined with the need for increased energy efficiency has led to active consideration of thermoelectrics for practical waste heat recovery systems-such as the conversion of car exhaust heat into electricity. The simple high symmetry NaCl-type cubic structure, leads to several properties desirable for thermoelectricity, such as high valley degeneracy for high electrical conductivity and phonon anharmonicity for low thermal conductivity. The rich capabilities for both band structure and microstructure engineering enable a variety of approaches for achieving high thermoelectric performance in lead chalcogenides. This Review focuses on manipulation of the electronic and atomic structural features which makes up the thermoelectric quality factor. While these strategies are well demonstrated in lead chalcogenides, the principles used are equally applicable to most good thermoelectric materials that could enable improvement of thermoelectric devices from niche applications into the mainstream of energy technologies.

  17. Nanowire Thermoelectric Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Borshchevsky, Alexander; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Herman, Jennifer; Ryan, Margaret

    2005-01-01

    Nanowire thermoelectric devices, now under development, are intended to take miniaturization a step beyond the prior state of the art to exploit the potential advantages afforded by shrinking some device features to approximately molecular dimensions (of the order of 10 nm). The development of nanowire-based thermoelectric devices could lead to novel power-generating, cooling, and sensing devices that operate at relatively low currents and high voltages. Recent work on the theory of thermoelectric devices has led to the expectation that the performance of such a device could be enhanced if the diameter of the wires could be reduced to a point where quantum confinement effects increase charge-carrier mobility (thereby increasing the Seebeck coefficient) and reduce thermal conductivity. In addition, even in the absence of these effects, the large aspect ratios (length of the order of tens of microns diameter of the order of tens of nanometers) of nanowires would be conducive to the maintenance of large temperature differences at small heat fluxes. The predicted net effect of reducing diameters to the order of tens of nanometers would be to increase its efficiency by a factor of .3. Nanowires made of thermoelectric materials and devices that comprise arrays of such nanowires can be fabricated by electrochemical growth of the thermoelectric materials in templates that contain suitably dimensioned pores (10 to 100 nm in diameter and 1 to 100 microns long). The nanowires can then be contacted in bundles to form devices that look similar to conventional thermoelectric devices, except that a production version may contain nearly a billion elements (wires) per square centimeter, instead of fewer than a hundred as in a conventional bulk thermoelectric device or fewer than 100,000 as in a microdevice. It is not yet possible to form contacts with individual nanowires. Therefore, in fabricating a nanowire thermoelectric device, one forms contacts on nanowires in bundles of the

  18. Small-scale energy harvesting through thermoelectric, vibration, and radiofrequency power conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudak, Nicholas S.; Amatucci, Glenn G.

    2008-05-01

    As sensors for a wide array of applications continue to shrink and become integrated, increasing attention has been focused on creating autonomous devices with long-lasting power supplies. To achieve this, energy will have to be harvested from the sensors' environment. An energy harvesting device can power the sensor either directly or in conjunction with a battery. Presented herein is a review of three types of energy harvesting with focus on devices at or below the cm3 scale. The harvesting technologies discussed are based on the conversion of temperature gradients, mechanical vibrations, and radiofrequency waves. Operation principles, current state of the art, and materials issues are presented. In addition, requirements and recent developments in power conditioning for such devices are discussed. Future challenges specific to miniaturization are outlined from both the materials and device perspectives.

  19. Photo-controllable thermoelectric properties with reversibility and photo-thermoelectric effects of tungsten trioxide accompanied by its photochromic phenomenon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azuma, Chiori; Kawano, Takuto; Kakemoto, Hirofumi; Irie, Hiroshi

    2014-11-01

    The addition of photo-controllable properties to tungsten trioxide (WO3) is of interest for developing practical applications of WO3 as well as for interpreting such phenomena from scientific viewpoints. Here, a sputtered crystalline WO3 thin film generated thermoelectric power due to ultraviolet (UV) light-induced band-gap excitation and was accompanied by a photochromic reaction resulting from generating W5+ ions. The thermoelectric properties (electrical conductivity (σ) and Seebeck coefficient (S)) and coloration of WO3 could be reversibly switched by alternating the external stimulus between UV light irradiation and dark storage. After irradiating the film with UV light, σ increased, whereas the absolute value of S decreased, and the photochromic (coloration) reaction was detected. Notably, the opposite behavior was exhibited by WO3 after dark storage, and this reversible cycle could be repeated at least three times. Moreover, photo-thermoelectric effects (photo-conductive effect (photo-conductivity, σphoto) and photo-Seebeck effect (photo-Seebeck coefficient, Sphoto)) were also detected in response to visible-light irradiation of the colored WO3 thin films. Under visible-light irradiation, σphoto and the absolute value of Sphoto increased and decreased, respectively. These effects are likely attributable to the excitation of electrons from the mid-gap visible light absorption band (W5+ state) to the conduction band of WO3. Our findings demonstrate that the simultaneous, reversible switching of multiple properties of WO3 thin film is achieved by the application of an external stimulus and that this material exhibits photo-thermoelectric effects when irradiated with visible-light.

  20. Photo-controllable thermoelectric properties with reversibility and photo-thermoelectric effects of tungsten trioxide accompanied by its photochromic phenomenon

    SciTech Connect

    Azuma, Chiori; Kawano, Takuto; Kakemoto, Hirofumi; Irie, Hiroshi

    2014-11-07

    The addition of photo-controllable properties to tungsten trioxide (WO{sub 3}) is of interest for developing practical applications of WO{sub 3} as well as for interpreting such phenomena from scientific viewpoints. Here, a sputtered crystalline WO{sub 3} thin film generated thermoelectric power due to ultraviolet (UV) light-induced band-gap excitation and was accompanied by a photochromic reaction resulting from generating W{sup 5+} ions. The thermoelectric properties (electrical conductivity (σ) and Seebeck coefficient (S)) and coloration of WO{sub 3} could be reversibly switched by alternating the external stimulus between UV light irradiation and dark storage. After irradiating the film with UV light, σ increased, whereas the absolute value of S decreased, and the photochromic (coloration) reaction was detected. Notably, the opposite behavior was exhibited by WO{sub 3} after dark storage, and this reversible cycle could be repeated at least three times. Moreover, photo-thermoelectric effects (photo-conductive effect (photo-conductivity, σ{sub photo}) and photo-Seebeck effect (photo-Seebeck coefficient, S{sub photo})) were also detected in response to visible-light irradiation of the colored WO{sub 3} thin films. Under visible-light irradiation, σ{sub photo} and the absolute value of S{sub photo} increased and decreased, respectively. These effects are likely attributable to the excitation of electrons from the mid-gap visible light absorption band (W{sup 5+} state) to the conduction band of WO{sub 3}. Our findings demonstrate that the simultaneous, reversible switching of multiple properties of WO{sub 3} thin film is achieved by the application of an external stimulus and that this material exhibits photo-thermoelectric effects when irradiated with visible-light.

  1. Fitting of Diverging Thermoelectric Power in a Strongly Interacting 2D Electron System of Si-MOSFETs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hyun-Tak

    2013-03-01

    The diverging-effective mass (DEM) in a metallic system is evidence of strong correlation between fermions in strongly correlated systems. The identification of the DEM still remains to be revealed The effective mass, m* =mo/(1-ρ4) where ρ is band filling helps clarify the diverging thermoelectric power, S, measured in inhomogeneous Si-MOSFET systems. As a carrier density ns decreases, S increases rapidly This is regarded as the metal-insulator transition (MIT) near nc ~ 79x10-1cm-2, where nc is about 0.02% to nSi ~ 3.4x10-14cm-2 in Si. This can be solved in assuming that ρ = nc/ns increases as ns decreases. nc is an excited(doped) carrier density in the semiconductor induced by gate and can be also regarded as a metallic carrier density, that is, nc ≡ nseminon = nmetal. ns is given as ntot ≡ ns = nc + nseminon where nseminon is a carrier density in a nonmetallic phase. The carrier density measured by Hall effect is the sum of carriers both induced by gate field and generated by MIT. Moreover, a larger metallic phase is not made due to a conducting path in the field-effect structure after a metallic phase is formed. Thus, increasing ns indicates increasing nnon; this corresponds to an over-doping to increase inhomogeneity. It's fitting is given from S = (απ3 kB2T/3e)(1/EF)= (α 8π3kB2T/3h2)(m*/e*nc) =So(1/ ρ) (1/(1-ρ4)) , where e* = ρ e, ρ = nc/ns, T =0.8K, m* =mo/(1-ρ4), α = 0.6, and So = (α 8π3kB2T/3h2)(mo/enc) ~12.36 are used. The data S are closely fitted by m*

  2. Modular Isotopic Thermoelectric Generator

    SciTech Connect

    Schock, Alfred

    1981-04-03

    Advanced RTG concepts utilizing improved thermoelectric materials and converter concepts are under study at Fairchild for DOE. The design described here is based on DOE's newly developed radioisotope heat source, and on an improved silicon-germanium material and a multicouple converter module under development at Syncal. Fairchild's assignment was to combine the above into an attractive power system for use in space, and to assess the specific power and other attributes of that design. The resultant design is highly modular, consisting of standard RTG slices, each producing ~24 watts at the desired output voltage of 28 volt. Thus, the design could be adapted to various space missions over a wide range of power levels, with little or no redesign. Each RTG slice consists of a 250-watt heat source module, eight multicouple thermoelectric modules, and standard sections of insulator, housing, radiator fins, and electrical circuit. The design makes it possible to check each thermoelectric module for electrical performance, thermal contact, leaktightness, and performance stability, after the generator is fully assembled; and to replace any deficient modules without disassembling the generator or perturbing the others. The RTG end sections provide the spring-loaded supports required to hold the free-standing heat source stack together during launch vibration. Details analysis indicates that the design offers a substantial improvement in specific power over the present generator of RTGs, using the same heat source modules. There are three copies in the file.

  3. Heterogeneous oxidation of SO{sub 2} in the radiation chemical purification of exhaust gases of thermoelectric power plants from oxides of nitrogen and sulfur

    SciTech Connect

    Gerasimova, T.S.; Gerasimov, G.Ya.; Tokmacheva, I.P.

    1992-09-01

    Questions associated with numerical modeling of the heterogeneous oxidation of SO{sub 2} in exhaust gases of thermoelectric power plants, induced by irradiation of the gas with a flux of fast electrons, are discussed. In constructing a mathematical model of the process it is considered that a phase equilibrium exists between the gas and the aerosol drops formed in the gas under the radiation influence, and the rate of the process is determined by the rate of liquid-phase oxidation of SO{sub 2} by nitrogen dioxide in dissolved form. 7 refs., 4 figs.

  4. Some Effects of Exposure to Exhaust-gas Streams on Emittance and Thermoelectric Power of Bare-wire Platinum Rhodium - Platinum Thermocouples

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glawe, George E; Shepard, Charles E

    1954-01-01

    Thermocouples were exposed to exhaust gases from the combustion of propane, 72-octane gasoline, and JP-4 fuel. Exposure increased the emissivity of the thermocouple wire, which increased its radiation error. Two methods are presented for determining the emittance of the wires. The emissivity of a clean platinum rhodium-platinum thermocouple was approximately 0.2 in the temperature range investigated, while the emittance of an exposed thermocouple coated with exhaust residue was about 0.5. The exposure caused negligible change in the thermoelectric power of the thermocouples.

  5. Fermi surface reconstruction in (Ba1-xKx)Fe2As2 (0.44 ≤ x ≤ 1) probed by thermoelectric power measurements

    SciTech Connect

    Hodovanets, Halyna; Liu, Yong; Jesche, Anton; Ran, Sheng; Mun, Eun Deok; Lograsso, Thomas A; Bud'ko, Sergey L; Canfield, Paul C

    2014-06-01

    We report in-plane thermoelectric power measurements on single crystals of (Ba1-xKx)Fe2As2(0.44≤x≤1). We observe a minimum in the S|T=const versus x at x~0.55 that can be associated with the change in the topology of the Fermi surface, a Lifshitz transition, related to the electron pockets at the center of M point crossing the Fermi level. This feature is clearly observable below ~75 K. Thermoelectric power also shows a change in the x~0.8–0.9 range, where the maximum in the thermoelectric power collapses into a plateau. This Lifshitz transition is most likely related to the reconstruction of the Fermi surface associated with the transformation of the hole pockets at the M point into four blades as observed by ARPES measurements.

  6. Control system for thermoelectric refrigerator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nelson, John L. (Inventor); Criscuolo, Lance (Inventor); Gilley, Michael D. (Inventor); Park, Brian V. (Inventor)

    1996-01-01

    Apparatus including a power supply (202) and control system is provided for maintaining the temperature within an enclosed structure (40) using thermoelectric devices (92). The apparatus may be particularly beneficial for use with a refrigerator (20) having superinsulation materials (46) and phase change materials (112) which cooperate with the thermoelectric device (92) to substantially enhance the overall operating efficiency of the refrigerator (20). The electrical power supply (202) and control system allows increasing the maximum power capability of the thermoelectric device (92) in response to increased heat loads within the refrigerator (20). The electrical power supply (202) and control system may also be used to monitor the performance of the cooling system (70) associated with the refrigerator (20).

  7. Methods for estimating water consumption for thermoelectric power plants in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Diehl, Timothy H.; Harris, Melissa; Murphy, Jennifer C.; Hutson, Susan S.; Ladd, David E.

    2013-01-01

    Heat budgets were constructed for the first four generation-type categories; data at solar thermal plants were insufficient for heat budgets. These heat budgets yielded estimates of the amount of heat transferred to the condenser. The ratio of evaporation to the heat discharged through the condenser was estimated using existing heat balance models that are sensitive to environmental data; this feature allows estimation of consumption under different climatic conditions. These two estimates were multiplied to yield an estimate of consumption at each power plant.

  8. Compositional ordering and stability in nanostructured, bulk thermoelectric alloys.

    SciTech Connect

    Hekmaty, Michelle A.; Faleev, S.; Medlin, Douglas L.; Leonard, F.; Lensch-Falk, J.; Sharma, Peter Anand; Sugar, J. D.

    2009-09-01

    Thermoelectric materials have many applications in the conversion of thermal energy to electrical power and in solid-state cooling. One route to improving thermoelectric energy conversion efficiency in bulk material is to embed nanoscale inclusions. This report summarize key results from a recently completed LDRD project exploring the science underpinning the formation and stability of nanostructures in bulk thermoelectric and the quantitative relationships between such structures and thermoelectric properties.

  9. Nanostructures having high performance thermoelectric properties

    DOEpatents

    Yang, Peidong; Majumdar, Arunava; Hochbaum, Allon I; Chen, Renkun; Delgado, Raul Diaz

    2014-05-20

    The invention provides for a nanostructure, or an array of such nanostructures, each comprising a rough surface, and a doped or undoped semiconductor. The nanostructure is an one-dimensional (1-D) nanostructure, such a nanowire, or a two-dimensional (2-D) nanostructure. The nanostructure can be placed between two electrodes and used for thermoelectric power generation or thermoelectric cooling.

  10. Nanostructures having high performance thermoelectric properties

    DOEpatents

    Yang, Peidong; Majumdar, Arunava; Hochbaum, Allon I.; Chen, Renkun; Delgado, Raul Diaz

    2015-12-22

    The invention provides for a nanostructure, or an array of such nanostructures, each comprising a rough surface, and a doped or undoped semiconductor. The nanostructure is an one-dimensional (1-D) nanostructure, such a nanowire, or a two-dimensional (2-D) nanostructure. The nanostructure can be placed between two electrodes and used for thermoelectric power generation or thermoelectric cooling.

  11. Thermoelectric Development at Hi-Z Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Kushch, Aleksandr S.; Bass, John C.; Ghamaty, Saeid; Elsner, Norbert B.; Bergstrand, Richard A.; Furrow, David; Melvin, Mike

    2002-08-25

    An improved Thermoelectric Generator (TEG) for the Heavy Duty Class Eight Diesel Trucks is under development at Hi-Z Technology. The current TEG is equipped with the improved HZ-14 Thermoelectric module, which features better mechanical properties as well as higher electric power output. Also, the modules are held in place more securely.

  12. High temperature thermoelectrics

    SciTech Connect

    Moczygemba, Joshua E.; Biershcenk, James L.; Sharp, Jeffrey W.

    2014-09-23

    In accordance with one embodiment of the present disclosure, a thermoelectric device includes a plurality of thermoelectric elements that each include a diffusion barrier. The diffusion barrier includes a refractory metal. The thermoelectric device also includes a plurality of conductors coupled to the plurality of thermoelectric elements. The plurality of conductors include aluminum. In addition, the thermoelectric device includes at least one plate coupled to the plurality of thermoelectric elements using a braze. The braze includes aluminum.

  13. P, T-dependence of the thermoelectric power of minerals; relations to chemical differentiation, hydration, oxidation and reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schloessin, H. H.

    1982-07-01

    The thermoelectric power (T.E.P.) or Seebeck effect of minerals is best characterized by the fact that a great many of the Earth's important minerals are semiconducting oxides. Outside the very active research area concerned with oxide semiconductors there have been few determinations of the T.E.P. of minerals, let alone their P, T-dependence. Most minerals have low electrical conductivities and relatively high thermal conductivities, and despite very high Seebeck voltages, are thus generally rather inefficient T.E.P. generators. Measurements of the T.E.P. tie in well with studies of the electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, optical absorption, and diffusion. They provide significant information on the charge carrier concentrations, type of conduction mechanism, band structure, and phonon scattering. Junctions capable of generating T.E.P. include those between materials of different chemical composition, different content and concentration of impurities and defects, different crystal structure or orientation, different states of stress and strain, and reactive junctions or chains of junctions. Considering the local balance of flux of heat and other forms of energy through any of the conduction channels we may visualize as traversing the minerals in the mantle, surely, the conduction channels must involve all of the different types of heterogeneous junctions between minerals. We are, therefore, interested to investigate to what extent, in channels or media subjected to gradients of temperature, electric potential, concentration of chemical constituents and stress or strain, the heat flux density is not identical with the total energy flux density. Measurements of the Seebeck coefficient ( S = d E/d T) and preliminary interpretations are discussed with reference to: (1) a simple oxide relative to Pt (corundum); (2) a complex oxide relative to Pt (garnet, almandite); (3) a couple formed of two oxides (corundum-almandite); (4) a couple formed of two minerals

  14. Thermoelectric power generator module of 16x16 Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and 0.6%ErAs:(InGaAs){sub 1-x}(InAlAs){sub x} segmented elements

    SciTech Connect

    Zeng Gehong; Bahk, Je-Hyeong; Bowers, John E.; Lu Hong; Gossard, Arthur C.; Singer, Suzanne L.; Majumdar, Arun; Bian, Zhixi; Zebarjadi, Mona; Shakouri, Ali

    2009-08-24

    We report the fabrication and characterization of thermoelectric power generator modules of 16x16 segmented elements consisting of 0.8 mm thick Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} and 50 {mu}m thick ErAs:(InGaAs){sub 1-x}(InAlAs){sub x} with 0.6% ErAs by volume. An output power up to 6.3 W was measured when the heat source temperature was at 610 K. The thermoelectric properties of (InGaAs){sub 1-x}(InAlAs){sub x} were characterized from 300 up to 830 K. The finite element modeling shows that the performance of the generator modules can further be enhanced by improving the thermoelectric properties of the element materials, and reducing the electrical and thermal parasitic losses.

  15. Colossal thermoelectric power in charge-ordered Li-doped La0.75Li0.25MnO3 manganite system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taran, Subhrangsu; Sun, C. P.; Yang, H. D.; Chatterjee, S.

    2016-05-01

    A detail study of transport and magnetic properties of La1-xLixMnO3+δ (0.05 ≤ x ≤ 0.3) system synthesized by wet-chemical mixing route has been done. The room temperature x-ray powder diffraction (XRD) data show single phase behavior of all samples except x = 0.3. Rietveld refinement of XRD data shows structural transition from rhombohedral (R3-C) to orthorhombic (Pnma) symmetry occurs at the Li-doping level x > 0.2 with both the lattice parameter and unit-cell volume decrease with increase of `x'. All the samples show ferromagnetic (FM) behavior while metallic behavior are shown by the samples up to Li-concentration x = 0.2. With further Li doping i.e. for x = 0.25, the sample shows insulating behavior accompanied by charge-order transition around T ~ 225K. Metallic part of the resistivity data of the samples is best fitted with an expression ρ(T) = ρ0 + ρ4.5T4.5 + C/ sinh2(hvs/2kBT) containing small-polaron contribution (last term). Most interesting finding in the present study is the observation of large anomalous decrease in thermoelectric power (S) below 100K shown by the sample with x = 0.25. Probable mechanisms responsible for the observed colossal thermoelectric power have been discussed.

  16. Highly Efficient Multilayer Thermoelectric Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boufelfel, Ali

    2006-01-01

    Multilayer thermoelectric devices now at the prototype stage of development exhibit a combination of desirable characteristics, including high figures of merit and high performance/cost ratios. These devices are capable of producing temperature differences of the order of 50 K in operation at or near room temperature. A solvent-free batch process for mass production of these state-of-the-art thermoelectric devices has also been developed. Like prior thermoelectric devices, the present ones have commercial potential mainly by virtue of their utility as means of controlled cooling (and/or, in some cases, heating) of sensors, integrated circuits, and temperature-critical components of scientific instruments. The advantages of thermoelectric devices for such uses include no need for circulating working fluids through or within the devices, generation of little if any noise, and high reliability. The disadvantages of prior thermoelectric devices include high power consumption and relatively low coefficients of performance. The present development program was undertaken in the hope of reducing the magnitudes of the aforementioned disadvantages and, especially, obtaining higher figures of merit for operation at and near room temperature. Accomplishments of the program thus far include development of an algorithm to estimate the heat extracted by, and the maximum temperature drop produced by, a thermoelectric device; solution of the problem of exchange of heat between a thermoelectric cooler and a water-cooled copper block; retrofitting of a vacuum chamber for depositing materials by sputtering; design of masks; and fabrication of multilayer thermoelectric devices of two different designs, denoted I and II. For both the I and II designs, the thicknesses of layers are of the order of nanometers. In devices of design I, nonconsecutive semiconductor layers are electrically connected in series. Devices of design II contain superlattices comprising alternating electron

  17. Thermoelectric generator

    DOEpatents

    Pryslak, N.E.

    1974-02-26

    A thermoelectric generator having a rigid coupling or stack'' between the heat source and the hot strap joining the thermoelements is described. The stack includes a member of an insulating material, such as ceramic, for electrically isolating the thermoelements from the heat source, and a pair of members of a ductile material, such as gold, one each on each side of the insulating member, to absorb thermal differential expansion stresses in the stack. (Official Gazette)

  18. Stabilization of Thermoelectric Properties of the Cu/Bi0.48Sb1.52Te3 Composite for Advantageous Power Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Dewen; Xu, Jingtao; Liu, Zhu; Liu, Guoqiang; Shao, Hezhu; Tan, Xiaojian; Jiang, Haochuan; Jiang, Jun

    2016-09-01

    Bi2Te3 thermoelectric materials have been developed for refrigeration around room temperature. But the ZT values decrease quickly above 400 K, which need to be improved for applications in power generation. In the present work, P-type Cu/BiSbTe alloys have been prepared via a zone melting method followed by spark plasma sintering. Due to the effects of Cu powders, the as-prepared materials exhibit a shift of the peak Seebeck coefficient value towards higher temperature and suppressed lattice thermal conductivity with increasing Cu powders. A peak ZT value as high as 0.87 has been obtained around 500 K in the BiSbTe alloy with 1 wt.% Cu powder addition, and the ZT values stabilize above 0.8 from 375 K to 550 K. This high and stable value for BiSbTe alloys at such a high temperature is very attractive for its application in power generation devices.

  19. Investigation on magnetic, electrical and thermoelectric power of Bi-substituted La0.8Ca0.2MnO3 manganites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manjunatha, S. O.; Rao, Ashok; Awana, V. P. S.; Okram, G. S.

    2015-11-01

    In the present work, the structural, magnetic, magneto-transport and thermoelectric properties of polycrystalline compounds of La0.8-xBixCa0.2MnO3(0≤x≤0.1) compounds are reported. Structure refinement using Rietveld method confirms that the samples are single phased and crystallize in rhombohedral structure with R-3C space group. Magnetic studies reveal that the pristine sample exhibits TC at 221 K and it shift towards lower temperature with Bi doping. Deviation of the temperature dependent of inverse susceptibility curves from the Curie-Weiss law confirms the existence of Griffiths-like phase. All the samples exhibit metal to insulator transition at temperature TMI, which is found to decrease with increase in Bi doping which is consistent with the magnetic studies. Magneto-resistance MR% data shows that its peak value increases with Bi-doping. The analysis of electrical resistivity data in the metallic region (TTMI) is well described using Small polaron hopping (SPH) and Mott's variable range hopping (VRH) models. Analysis of thermoelectric power data in the high temperature region suggests that the SPH mechanism is operative in this regime, while the analysis of low temperature data reveals that the electron-magnon scattering is dominant in the region.

  20. CHARACTERIZATION OF THE LEVEL OF PLASTIC DEFORMATION IN COLD-ROLLED TI-6AL-4V SAMPLES BY THERMOELECTRIC POWER MEASUREMENTS

    SciTech Connect

    Carreon, H.; Medina, A.; Ruiz, A.

    2009-03-03

    This paper presents experimental data that illustrates the intrinsic sensitivity of the thermoelectric contact technique based on the Seebeck effect, in order to detect the presence of anisotropy due to plastic deformation produced by the manufacturing process of cold working at different degrees of reduction in thickness, namely 40, 60 and 80% in Ti-6AL-4V. The results describe the behaviour of the thermoelectric power (TEP) coefficient with respect to the anisotropy and microstructure in a highly textured material that presents both morphological and crystallographic texture. Ultrasonic measurements of shear wave velocity were also conducted in order to obtain a direct correlation between the presence of a significant anisotropy in the cold-rolled Ti-6AL-4V samples and the TEP measurements, before and after heat treatment (annealing). TEP measurements offer a means to assess the evolution of the level of plastic deformation, which allows for a better correlation between texture-induced anisotropy and the material microstructural and properties.

  1. Scanning near-field thermoelectric microscopy for subsurface nanoscale thermoelectric behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, K. Q.; Zeng, H. R.; Zhao, K. Y.; Li, G. R.; Shi, X.; Chen, L. D.

    2016-05-01

    A novel scanning near-field thermoelectric microscopy (STeM) was proposed and developed for characterizing subsurface, nanoscale Seebeck coefficient of thermoelectric energy materials. In STeM, near-field evanescent thermal wave was induced around the thermal probe's contact with the thermoelectric sample's surface via a periodically modulated heated thermal probe, giving rise to a thermoelectric near-field interaction with simultaneous excitation of three harmonic signals for local Seebeck coefficient derivation. The near-field STeM was capable of characterizing local Seebeck coefficient of thermoelectric materials with high lateral resolution at nanometer scale and more importantly provides a convenient, powerful tool for quantitative characterization of subsurface nanoscale thermoelectric properties.

  2. A Monolithic Oxide-Based Transversal Thermoelectric Energy Harvester

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-03-01

    We report the fabrication and properties of a monolithic transversal thermoelectric energy harvester based on the combination of a thermoelectric oxide and a metal. The fabrication of the device is done with a ceramic multilayer technology using printing and co-firing processes. Five transversal devices were combined to a meander-like thermoelectric generator. Electrical measurements and finite element calculations were performed to characterize the resulting thermoelectric generator. A maximum experimental electrical power output of 30.2 mW at a temperature difference of {Δ }T = 208 K was found. The prepared monolithic thermoelectric generator provides at {Δ }T = 35 K sufficient energy to drive a simple electronic sensor application.

  3. Alumina Paste Sublimation Suppression Barrier for Thermoelectric Device

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paik, Jong-Ah (Inventor); Caillat, Thierry (Inventor)

    2014-01-01

    Alumina as a sublimation suppression barrier for a Zintl thermoelectric material in a thermoelectric power generation device operating at high temperature, e.g. at or above 1000K, is disclosed. The Zintl thermoelectric material may comprise Yb.sub.14MnSb.sub.11. The alumina may be applied as an adhesive paste dried and cured on a substantially oxide free surface of the Zintl thermoelectric material and polished to a final thickness. The sublimation suppression barrier may be finalized by baking out the alumina layer on the Zintl thermoelectric material until it becomes substantially clogged with ytterbia.

  4. Fluorinated porphyrin tweezer: a powerful reporter of absolute configuration for erythro and threo diols, amino alcohols, and diamines.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiaoyong; Tanasova, Marina; Vasileiou, Chrysoula; Borhan, Babak

    2008-02-13

    A general and sensitive nonempirical protocol to determine the absolute configurations of erythro and threo diols, amino alcohols, and diamines is reported. Binding of diols to the porphyrin tweezer system is greatly enhanced by increasing the Lewis acidity of the metalloporphyrin. Supramolecular complexes formed between the porphyrin tweezer host and chiral substrates exhibited exciton-coupled bisignate CD spectra with predictable signs based on the substituents on the chiral center. The working model suggests that the observed helicity of the porphyrin tweezer is dictated via steric differentiation experienced by the porphyrin ring bound to each chiral center. A variety of erythro and threo substrates were investigated to verify this chiroptical method. Their absolute configurations were unequivocally determined, and thus a general mnemonic is provided for the assignment of chirality.

  5. Thermoelectric device with multiple, nanometer scale, elements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre (Inventor); Ryan, Margaret A. (Inventor); Borshchevsky, Alexander (Inventor); Herman, Jennifer (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A thermoelectric device formed of nanowires on the nm scale. The nanowires are preferably of a size that causes quantum confinement effects within the wires. The wires are connected together into a bundle to increase the power density.

  6. Absolute Summ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, Alfred, Jr.

    Summ means the entirety of the multiverse. It seems clear, from the inflation theories of A. Guth and others, that the creation of many universes is plausible. We argue that Absolute cosmological ideas, not unlike those of I. Newton, may be consistent with dynamic multiverse creations. As suggested in W. Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, and with the Anthropic Principle defended by S. Hawking, et al., human consciousness, buttressed by findings of neuroscience, may have to be considered in our models. Predictability, as A. Einstein realized with Invariants and General Relativity, may be required for new ideas to be part of physics. We present here a two postulate model geared to an Absolute Summ. The seedbed of this work is part of Akhnaton's philosophy (see S. Freud, Moses and Monotheism). Most important, however, is that the structure of human consciousness, manifest in Kenya's Rift Valley 200,000 years ago as Homo sapiens, who were the culmination of the six million year co-creation process of Hominins and Nature in Africa, allows us to do the physics that we do. .

  7. Improved Thermoelectric Devices: Advanced Semiconductor Materials for Thermoelectric Devices

    SciTech Connect

    2009-12-11

    Broad Funding Opportunity Announcement Project: Phononic Devices is working to recapture waste heat and convert it into usable electric power. To do this, the company is using thermoelectric devices, which are made from advanced semiconductor materials that convert heat into electricity or actively remove heat for refrigeration and cooling purposes. Thermoelectric devices resemble computer chips, and they manage heat by manipulating the direction of electrons at the nanoscale. These devices aren’t new, but they are currently too inefficient and expensive for widespread use. Phononic Devices is using a high-performance, cost-effective thermoelectric design that will improve the device’s efficiency and enable electronics manufacturers to more easily integrate them into their products.

  8. Thermoelectric Properties of n-type SnSe Single Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Phuong; Duong, Anh Tuan; Rhim, S. H.; Nguyen, Van Quang; Duong, Van Thiet; Shin, Yooleemi; Cho, Sunglae; Kwon, Suyong; Song, Jae Yong; Park, Hyun Min

    Although thermoelectric materials are well known for their reliability and have been used for many years, even in the field of space engineering, their performance is quite small due to low energy conversion efficiency. Dimensionless figure of merit, ZT = S2. σ.T.κ-1 (where S, σ, T, κ are Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity, absolute temperature and thermal conductivity, respectively) is conveniently used to evaluate the conversion efficiency of a thermoelectric materials. Recently, the highest value of ZT to date has been reported for single crystal SnSe, ZT = 2.6 along the b axis of unit cell at 923 K. This temperature is rather high and the range of temperature for high reported ZT is quite narrow. Here we report an attempt to modify the thermoelectric properties of SnSe by using group V and VII as n-type dopant. A negative value of Seebeck coefficient was observed and the power factor reached a peak of 10 μW.K-2.cm-1 at around 600 K. The maximum n-type ZT was 0.57 at 650 K. We will discuss on dopant dependent thermoelectric properties of n-type SnSe single crystals.

  9. Thermoelectric Magnetohydrodynamic Flow During Crystal Growth with a Moderate or Weak Magnetic Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khine, Y. Y.; Walker, John S.; Szofran, Frank R.; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    This paper treats a steady, axisymmetric melt motion in a cylindrical ampoule with a uniform, axial magnetic field and with an electric current due to a radial temperature variation along the crystal-melt interface, where the values of the absolute thermoelectric power for the crystal and melt are different. The radial component of the thermoelectric current in the melt produces an azimuthal body force, and the axial variation of the centrifugal force due to the azimuthal motion drives a meridional circulation with radial and axial velocities. For moderate magnetic field strengths, the azimuthal velocity and magnetic field produce a radial induced electric field which partially cancels the Seebeck electromotive force in the melt, so that the thermoelectric current and the melt motion are coupled. For weak magnetic fields, the thermoelectric current is decoupled from the melt motion, which is an ordinary hydrodynamic flow driven by a known azimuthal body force. The results show how the flow varies with the strength of the magnetic field and with the magnitude of the temperature variation along the crystal-melt interface. They also define the parameter ranges for which the simpler weak-field decoupled analysis gives accurate predictions.

  10. An Innovative System for the Efficient and Effective Treatment of Non-Traditional Waters for Reuse in Thermoelectric Power Generation

    SciTech Connect

    John Rodgers; James Castle

    2008-08-31

    This study assessed opportunities for improving water quality associated with coal-fired power generation including the use of non-traditional waters for cooling, innovative technology for recovering and reusing water within power plants, novel approaches for the removal of trace inorganic compounds from ash pond effluents, and novel approaches for removing biocides from cooling tower blowdown. This research evaluated specifically designed pilot-scale constructed wetland systems for treatment of targeted constituents in non-traditional waters for reuse in thermoelectric power generation and other purposes. The overall objective of this project was to decrease targeted constituents in non-traditional waters to achieve reuse criteria or discharge limitations established by the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) and Clean Water Act (CWA). The six original project objectives were completed, and results are presented in this final technical report. These objectives included identification of targeted constituents for treatment in four non-traditional water sources, determination of reuse or discharge criteria for treatment, design of constructed wetland treatment systems for these non-traditional waters, and measurement of treatment of targeted constituents in non-traditional waters, as well as determination of the suitability of the treated non-traditional waters for reuse or discharge to receiving aquatic systems. The four non-traditional waters used to accomplish these objectives were ash basin water, cooling water, flue gas desulfurization (FGD) water, and produced water. The contaminants of concern identified in ash basin waters were arsenic, chromium, copper, mercury, selenium, and zinc. Contaminants of concern in cooling waters included free oxidants (chlorine, bromine, and peroxides), copper, lead, zinc, pH, and total dissolved solids. FGD waters contained contaminants of concern including arsenic, boron, chlorides, selenium, mercury

  11. Oxide Thermoelectrics

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, David J

    2008-01-01

    Thermoelectricity in oxides, especially NaxCoO2 and related materials, is discussed from the point of view of first principles calculations and Boltzmann transport theory. The electronic structure of this material is exceptional in that it has a combination of very narrow bands and strong hybridization between metal d states and ligand p states. As shown within the framework of conventional Boltzmann transport theory, this leads to high Seebeck coefficients even at metallic carrier densities. This suggests a strategy of searching for other narrow band oxides that can be doped metallic with mobile carriers. Some possible avenues for finding such materials are suggested.

  12. Design Calculations for Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeldin, B.

    1983-01-01

    Nine simplified analytic models based on average properties accurately predict heat rates for silicon/germanium thermoelectric generators. Solutions from simplified models were compared with those obtained using sophisticated numerical analysis. Maximum errors in calculated heat rate range from about 4 percent to about 0.2 percent. Models also used to calculate power delivered to load and thermodynamic efficiency.

  13. Thermoelectric generator apparatus and operation method

    SciTech Connect

    Lowther, F.E.

    1984-07-31

    A method of operating a thermoelectric generator includes: cyclically producing increasing then decreasing temperature differences in the thermoelectric material of the generator; and generating a cyclically increasing then decreasing electrical generator output signal, in response to such temperature differences, to transmit electrical power generated by the generator from the generator. Part of the thermoelectric material reaches temperatures substantially above the melting temperature of the material. The thermoelectric material of the generator forms a part of a closed electrical loop about a transformer core so that the inductor voltage for the loop serves as the output signal of the generator. A thermoelectric generator, which can be driven by the described method of operation, incorporates fins into a thermopile to conduct heat toward or away from the alternating spaces between adjacent layers of different types of thermoelectric material. The fins extend from between adjacent layers, so that they can also conduct electrical current between such layers, perpendicularly to the direction of stacking of the layers. The exhaust from an internal combustion engine can be employed to drive the thermoelectric generator, and, also, to act as a driver for a thermoelectric generator in accordance with the method of operation initially described.

  14. NDE evaluation of the intergranular corrosion susceptibility of a 2205 duplex stainless steel using thermoelectric power and double loop electrochemical potentiokinetic reactivation methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz, N.; Carreón, H.; Ruiz, A.

    2013-01-01

    There is a need for a nondestructive technique to assess rapidly and with confidence the degree of sensitization (DOS) in duplex stainless steel (DSS). In this investigation, we present the use of thermoelectric power (TEP) measurements as nondestructive method for the determination of DOS in isothermally aged 2205 DSS at 700°C for different aging times. The DOS of the aged samples was first established by performing the double loop electrochemical potentiokinetic reactivation (DL-EPR) test. The microstructural evolution was evaluated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Experimental results indicate that TEP coefficient is sensitive to gradual microstructural changes produced by thermal aging and can be used to monitor IGC sensitization of 2205 duplex stainless steel.

  15. Radioisotope Power System Delivery, Ground Support and Nuclear Safety Implementation: Use of the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator for the NASA's Mars Science Laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    S.G. Johnson; K.L. Lively; C.C. Dwight

    2014-07-01

    Radioisotope power systems have been used for over 50 years to enable missions in remote or hostile environments. They are a convenient means of supplying a few milliwatts up to a few hundred watts of useable, long-term electrical power. With regard to use of a radioisotope power system, the transportation, ground support and implementation of nuclear safety protocols in the field is a complex process that requires clear identification of needed technical and regulatory requirements. The appropriate care must be taken to provide high quality treatment of the item to be moved so it arrives in a condition to fulfill its missions in space. Similarly it must be transported and managed in a manner compliant with requirements for shipment and handling of special nuclear material. This presentation describes transportation, ground support operations and implementation of nuclear safety and security protocols for a radioisotope power system using recent experience involving the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator for National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Mars Science Laboratory, which launched in November of 2011.

  16. Photo- and gas-tuned, reversible thermoelectric properties and anomalous photo-thermoelectric effects of platinum-loaded tungsten trioxide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suzuki, Kenta; Watanabe, Takuya; Kakemoto, Hirofumi; Irie, Hiroshi

    2016-06-01

    We report the photo- and gas-controllable properties of platinum-loaded tungsten trioxide (Pt/WO3), which is of interest for developing practical applications of WO3 as well as for interpreting such phenomena from scientific viewpoints. Here, a Pt/WO3 thin film generated a thermoelectric power due to the ultraviolet-light-induced band-gap excitation (photochromic (PC) reaction) and/or dark storage in formic acid vapor (gaschromic (GC) reaction) in the absence of O2, resulting from the generation of W5+ ions. After such chromic reactions, the electrical conductivity (σ) is increased, whereas the absolute value of the Seebeck coefficient (S) is decreased. The changes in σ and S and their rate of change for consistency increased in the order of: during the PC reaction < during the GC reaction < during simultaneous PC and GC reactions. The opposite behaviors, a decrease in σ and an increase in S, were exhibited by Pt/WO3 in the presence of O2 after dark storage or visible-light irradiation. This reversible cycle could be repeated. Moreover, anomalous, nontrivial photo-thermoelectric effects (a photoconductive effect (photoconductivity, σphoto) and a photo-Seebeck effect (photo-Seebeck coefficient, Sphoto)) were also detected in response to the visible-light irradiation of Pt/WO3 in the absence of O2 after chromic reactions. Under visible-light irradiation, both σphoto and the absolute value of Sphoto are increased. After the irradiation, both values were decreased, that is, σ and the absolute value of S were smaller than σphoto and the absolute value of Sphoto, respectively. These effects are likely to be due to the photoinduced charge carriers and the accumulated electrons in Pt contributing to the increase in σphoto. In addition, electrons are extracted from the W5+ state, decreasing the number of W5+ in HxWO3 and thus contributing to the increase in Sphoto. After light irradiation, the accumulated electrons in Pt are returned to the energetically favorable W

  17. The F1 Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) : a Power Subsystem Enabler for the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Loren; Moreno, Victor; Zimmerman, Robert

    2013-01-01

    The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) spacecraft carrying the Curiosity rover launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) on November 26, 2011. Following an 8.5-month cruise and after a successful Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) phase, the Curiosity rover arrived at the surface of Mars on August 6, 2012 UTC. At the core of the Curiosity rover power subsystem is the F1 Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) supplied by the Department of Energy. Integration of the F1 MMRTG into the MSL spacecraft has provided the first opportunity to architect a power subsystem that also included a Solar Array (during the cruise phase of the mission and up to the initial stage of the EDL phase) and secondary Li-ion batteries for operation during the planned one Martian year surface phase of the mission. This paper describes the F1 MMRTG functional features as an enabler of the MSL mission and as a novel component of the MSL power subsystem architecture.

  18. Effective thermal conductivity in thermoelectric materials

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  19. Effective thermal conductivity in thermoelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baranowski, Lauryn L.; Jeffrey Snyder, G.; Toberer, Eric S.

    2013-05-01

    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" (κeff) 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 κeff 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 κeff predicts the heat fluxes within these devices to 5% of the exact value.

  20. Thermoelectric materials and devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Park, Yeonjoon (Inventor); Choi, Sang H. (Inventor); King, Glen C. (Inventor); Elliott, James R. (Inventor); Talcott, Noel A. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    New thermoelectric materials comprise highly [111]-oriented twinned group IV alloys on the basal plane of trigonal substrates, which exhibit a high thermoelectric figure of merit and good material performance, and devices made with these materials.

  1. Thermoelectricity at the molecular scale: a large Seebeck effect in endohedral metallofullerenes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, See Kei; Buerkle, Marius; Yamada, Ryo; Asai, Yoshihiro; Tada, Hirokazu

    2015-12-01

    Single molecule devices provide a unique system to study the thermoelectric energy conversion at an atomistic level and can provide valuable information for the design of organic thermoelectric materials. Here we present a comprehensive study of the thermoelectric transport properties of molecular junctions based on C82, Gd@C82, and Ce@C82. We combine precise scanning tunneling microscope break-junction measurements of the thermopower and conductance with quantitatively accurate self-energy-corrected first-principles transport calculations. We find that all three fullerene derivatives give rise to a negative thermopower (n-conducting). The absolute value, however, is much larger for the Gd@C82 and Ce@C82 junctions. The conductance, on the other hand, remains comparable for all three systems. The power factor determined for the Gd@C82 based junction is so far the highest obtained for a single-molecule device. Although the encapsulated metal atom does not directly contribute to the transport, we show that the observed enhancement of the thermopower for Gd@C82 and Ce@C82 is elucidated by the substantial changes in the electronic- and geometrical structure of the fullerene molecule induced by the encapsulated metal atom.Single molecule devices provide a unique system to study the thermoelectric energy conversion at an atomistic level and can provide valuable information for the design of organic thermoelectric materials. Here we present a comprehensive study of the thermoelectric transport properties of molecular junctions based on C82, Gd@C82, and Ce@C82. We combine precise scanning tunneling microscope break-junction measurements of the thermopower and conductance with quantitatively accurate self-energy-corrected first-principles transport calculations. We find that all three fullerene derivatives give rise to a negative thermopower (n-conducting). The absolute value, however, is much larger for the Gd@C82 and Ce@C82 junctions. The conductance, on the other hand

  2. Component for thermoelectric generator

    DOEpatents

    Purdy, David L.

    1977-01-01

    In a thermoelectric generator, a component comprises a ceramic insulator, having over limited areas thereof, each area corresponding to a terminal end of thermoelectric wires, a coating of a first metal which adheres to the insulator, and an electrical thermoelectric junction including a second metal which wets said first metal and adheres to said terminal ends but does not wet said insulator, and a cloth composed of electrically insulating threads interlaced with thermoelectric wires.

  3. The 5-kwe reactor thermoelectric system summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vanosdol, J. H. (Editor)

    1973-01-01

    Design of the 5-kwe reactor thermoelectric system was initiated in February 1972 and extended through the conceptual design phase into the preliminary design phase. Design effort was terminated in January, 1973. This report documents the system and component requirements, design approaches, and performance and design characteristics for the 5-kwe system. Included is summary information on the reactor, radiation shields, power conversion systems, thermoelectric pump, radiator/structure, liquid metal components, and the control system.

  4. POTENTIAL THERMOELECTRIC APPLICATIONS IN DIESEL VEHICLES

    SciTech Connect

    Crane, D

    2003-08-24

    Novel thermodynamic cycles developed by BSST provide improvements by factors of approximately 2 in cooling, heating and power generation efficiency of solid-state thermoelectric systems. The currently available BSST technology is being evaluated in automotive development programs for important new applications. Thermoelectric materials are likely to become available that further increase performance by a comparable factor. These major advancements should allow the use of thermoelectric systems in new applications that have the prospect of contributing to emissions reduction, fuel economy, and improved user comfort. Potential applications of thermoelectrics in diesel vehicles are identified and discussed. As a case in point, the history and status of the Climate Controlled Seat (CCS) system from Amerigon, the parent of BSST, is presented. CCS is the most successful and highest production volume thermoelectric system in vehicles today. As a second example, the results of recent analyses on electric power generation from vehicle waste heat are discussed. Conclusions are drawn as to the practicality of waste power generation systems that incorporate BSST's thermodynamic cycle and advanced thermoelectric materials.

  5. Thermoelectric Generator for a Stationary Diesel Plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anatychuk, L. I.; Rozver, Yu. Yu.; Velichuk, D. D.

    2011-05-01

    This paper describes the development and testing of a thermoelectric generator (TEG) using the exhaust heat of a 50-kW stationary diesel power plant. The generator consists of six units that represent primary generators for each diesel engine cylinder. Each primary generator comprises five sections with gas heat exchangers, thermoelectric modules, and liquid heat exchangers. The sections were optimized for the exhaust gas operating temperatures. The generator electric power was 2.1 kW at rated power of 2.2 kW, corresponding to 4.4% of the diesel plant electric power.

  6. Absolute determination of power density in the VVER-1000 mock-up on the LR-0 research reactor.

    PubMed

    Košt'ál, Michal; Švadlenková, Marie; Milčák, Ján

    2013-08-01

    The work presents a detailed comparison of calculated and experimentally determined net peak areas of selected fission products gamma lines. The fission products were induced during a 2.5 h irradiation on the power level of 9.5 W in selected fuel pins of the VVER-1000 Mock-Up. The calculations were done with deterministic and stochastic (Monte Carlo) methods. The effects of different nuclear data libraries used for calculations are discussed as well. The Net Peak Area (NPA) may be used for the determination of fission density across the mock-up. This fission density is practically identical to power density.

  7. Characterisation and evaluation of the emissions from the combustion of Orimulsion-400, coal and heavy fuel oil in a thermoelectric power plant.

    PubMed

    Rotatori, M; Guerriero, E; Sbrilli, A; Confessore, L; Bianchini, M; Marino, F; Petrilli, L; Allegrini, I

    2003-08-01

    An experimental campaign was carried out in a thermoelectric power plant in Southern Italy in order to evaluate the emissions released during the utilisation of three different fuels, Orimulsion-400, coal and heavy fuel oil (HFO) with high content of sulphur. Macropollutant concentrations in the exhaust gases were recorded by the continuous monitoring system and the Institute on Atmospheric Pollution of the Italian National Research Council (CNR) carried out samplings and analysis of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), Polychlorodibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDD) and Polychlorodibenzofurans (PCDF), halogenidric acids and metals. The pollutant concentrations, mass flows and emission factors were compared. Each fuel met the air emission limits for all the pollutants. Coal showed the highest emission levels, whilst HFO and Orimulsion were fairly similar. NOx, SO2 and particulate matter showed constant concentration for all the fuels, while Orimulsion and HFO SO2 concentrations were critical at the highest operating power. Orimulsion showed the lowest PAHs values and PCDDs and PCDFs were much lower than the limits, for all the fuels. Particular attention must be paid with vanadium and nickel during Orimulsion utilisation. For these metals mass balances were carried out.

  8. Segmented Thermoelectric Multicouple Converter Technology Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mondt, Jack; Johnson, Ken; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; El Genk, Mohamed; Frye, Patrick; Determan, Bill

    2005-02-01

    The primary objectives of the segmented thermoelectric multicouple converter (STMC) technology development effort are: to define a conceptual design for a passive, low mass (3000 kg), long life (15 years) thermoelectric advanced Space Reactor Power System that provides 100kWe 400 Volt dc power for a 6000 volt dc electric propulsion system, to prepare a preliminary design of the power conversion system and to prepare technology development plan to advance power conversion system technology to TRL 6. The SRPS consists of a heat pipe cooled reactor radiatively couple to high efficiency solid-state segmented thermoelectric multicouple converters which are conductively coupled to a low mass heat pipe radiator. The SRPS conceptual design as well as the Power Conversion System preliminary design is complete and their description reported in this paper.

  9. Water withdrawals for irrigation, municipal, mining, thermoelectric-power, and drainage uses in Arizona outside of active management areas, 1991-2000

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tadayon, Saeid

    2005-01-01

    Economic development in Arizona is largely influenced by access to adequate water supplies owing to the State's predominantly semiarid to arid climate. Water demand is met by pumping ground water from aquifers or by con-veying surface water through a system of reservoirs and canals. Water-withdrawal data provide important information on how water demand affects the State's water resources. Information on water withdrawals also can help planners and managers assess the effectiveness of water-management policies, regulations, and conservation activities. This report includes water-withdrawal data for irrigation, municipal, mining, thermoelectric-power, and drainage uses for 1991-2000, and describes the methods used to collect, compile, and estimate the data. Data are reported for the Arizona Department of Water Resources ground-water basins outside of Active Management Areas. Because of the climate, ground water and surface water are used to irrigate nearly all agricultural fields in Arizona. Irrigation accounted for the largest use of water in the study area during 1991-2000. The amount of water withdrawn for irrigation varies greatly from year to year for some of the basins, primarily because of differences in the consumptive water requirement for different crops and because of changes in irrigated acreage. The population of Arizona increased about 35 percent from 1991 to 2000-from about 3.79 million in 1991 to about 5.13 million in 2000. Correspondingly, water withdrawal for municipal use increased steadily in most of the basins during 1991-2000. Ground-water withdrawals for mining did not show any consistent trends during 1991-2000. Increases and decreases in withdrawals for mining were most likely due to variations in mineral production. Mineral prices and competition from mining in other States and foreign countries probably result in annual increases or decreases in mineral production in Arizona. Between 1991 and 2000, ground-water withdrawals for

  10. Thermoelectric Properties of Complex Oxide Heterostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cain, Tyler Andrew

    Thermoelectrics are a promising energy conversion technology for power generation and cooling systems. The thermal and electrical properties of the materials at the heart of thermoelectric devices dictate conversion efficiency and technological viability. Studying the fundamental properties of potentially new thermoelectric materials is of great importance for improving device performance and understanding the electronic structure of materials systems. In this dissertation, investigations on the thermoelectric properties of a prototypical complex oxide, SrTiO3, are discussed. Hybrid molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) is used to synthesize La-doped SrTiO3 thin films, which exhibit high electron mobilities and large Seebeck coefficients resulting in large thermoelectric power factors at low temperatures. Large interfacial electron densities have been observed in SrTiO3/RTiO 3 (R=Gd,Sm) heterostructures. The thermoelectric properties of such heterostructures are investigated, including the use of a modulation doping approach to control interfacial electron densities. Low-temperature Seebeck coefficients of extreme electron-density SrTiO3 quantum wells are shown to provide insight into their electronic structure.

  11. High Performance Oxides-Based Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Guangkun; Lan, Jinle; Zeng, Chengcheng; Liu, Yaochun; Zhan, Bin; Butt, Sajid; Lin, Yuan-Hua; Nan, Ce-Wen

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric materials have attracted much attention due to their applications in waste-heat recovery, power generation, and solid state cooling. In comparison with thermoelectric alloys, oxide semiconductors, which are thermally and chemically stable in air at high temperature, are regarded as the candidates for high-temperature thermoelectric applications. However, their figure-of-merit ZT value has remained low, around 0.1-0.4 for more than 20 years. The poor performance in oxides is ascribed to the low electrical conductivity and high thermal conductivity. Since the electrical transport properties in these thermoelectric oxides are strongly correlated, it is difficult to improve both the thermoelectric power and electrical conductivity simultaneously by conventional methods. This review summarizes recent progresses on high-performance oxide-based thermoelectric bulk-materials including n-type ZnO, SrTiO3, and In2O3, and p-type Ca3Co4O9, BiCuSeO, and NiO, enhanced by heavy-element doping, band engineering and nanostructuring.

  12. Thermoelectric Outer Planets Spacecraft (TOPS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    The research and advanced development work is reported on a ballistic-mode, outer planet spacecraft using radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) power. The Thermoelectric Outer Planet Spacecraft (TOPS) project was established to provide the advanced systems technology that would allow the realistic estimates of performance, cost, reliability, and scheduling that are required for an actual flight mission. A system design of the complete RTG-powered outer planet spacecraft was made; major technical innovations of certain hardware elements were designed, developed, and tested; and reliability and quality assurance concepts were developed for long-life requirements. At the conclusion of its active phase, the TOPS Project reached its principal objectives: a development and experience base was established for project definition, and for estimating cost, performance, and reliability; an understanding of system and subsystem capabilities for successful outer planets missions was achieved. The system design answered long-life requirements with massive redundancy, controlled by on-board analysis of spacecraft performance data.

  13. Printable Graphene-based Thermoelectric Device with High Temperature Capability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Tian; Chen, Yanan; Drew, Dennis; Hu, Liangbing; NanomaterialsEmerging Devices Collaboration

    Thermoelectric devices are of particular interest due to their capability to convert heat into electrical power. We demonstrate the use of a Graphene-based thermoelectric device that can generate output voltages of hundreds of millivolts with an illuminating Graphene strip as the blackbody source. Our proposed device is superior for thermoelectric conversion mainly due to its high temperature capability that yields a maximum Carnot efficiency limit of 90% (referenced to room temperature) and a high Seebeck coefficient. Our device is also macroscopic with good mechanical strength and stabilized performance, making it attractive for large scale and reliable thermoelectric devices.

  14. Thermoelectricity in atom-sized junctions at room temperatures.

    PubMed

    Tsutsui, Makusu; Morikawa, Takanori; Arima, Akihide; Taniguchi, Masateru

    2013-01-01

    Atomic and molecular junctions are an emerging class of thermoelectric materials that exploit quantum confinement effects to obtain an enhanced figure of merit. An important feature in such nanoscale systems is that the electron and heat transport become highly sensitive to the atomic configurations. Here we report the characterization of geometry-sensitive thermoelectricity in atom-sized junctions at room temperatures. We measured the electrical conductance and thermoelectric power of gold nanocontacts simultaneously down to the single atom size. We found junction conductance dependent thermoelectric voltage oscillations with period 2e(2)/h. We also observed quantum suppression of thermovoltage fluctuations in fully-transparent contacts. These quantum confinement effects appeared only statistically due to the geometry-sensitive nature of thermoelectricity in the atom-sized junctions. The present method can be applied to various nanomaterials including single-molecules or nanoparticles and thus may be used as a useful platform for developing low-dimensional thermoelectric building blocks. PMID:24270238

  15. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K. H.; Fischer, Karl F. F.; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B.

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials. PMID:26948043

  16. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K H; Fischer, Karl F F; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B

    2016-01-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials. PMID:26948043

  17. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K. H.; Fischer, Karl F. F.; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B.

    2016-03-01

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials.

  18. Designing high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through orbital engineering.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiawei; Song, Lirong; Madsen, Georg K H; Fischer, Karl F F; Zhang, Wenqing; Shi, Xun; Iversen, Bo B

    2016-03-07

    Thermoelectric technology, which possesses potential application in recycling industrial waste heat as energy, calls for novel high-performance materials. The systematic exploration of novel thermoelectric materials with excellent electronic transport properties is severely hindered by limited insight into the underlying bonding orbitals of atomic structures. Here we propose a simple yet successful strategy to discover and design high-performance layered thermoelectric materials through minimizing the crystal field splitting energy of orbitals to realize high orbital degeneracy. The approach naturally leads to design maps for optimizing the thermoelectric power factor through forming solid solutions and biaxial strain. Using this approach, we predict a series of potential thermoelectric candidates from layered CaAl2Si2-type Zintl compounds. Several of them contain nontoxic, low-cost and earth-abundant elements. Moreover, the approach can be extended to several other non-cubic materials, thereby substantially accelerating the screening and design of new thermoelectric materials.

  19. Strongly-disordered hybridization and non-Fermi liquid behavior in CePt4Ge12-xSbx studied with thermoelectric power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, Benjamin; Huang, Kevin; Maple, M. Brian

    2014-03-01

    Non-Fermi liquid (NFL) behavior is commonly associated with the presence of a nearby quantum critical point, but can also be observed in other scenarios. In a clean system, hybridization between localized and itinerant electron states can be characterized by a single Kondo temperature TK, but introducing chemical disorder can lead to a wide distribution of TK values. Given sufficient disorder, the resulting distribution will tend to include an appreciable number of localized electron states which are characterized by TK ~ 0 K, and NFL behavior emerges. A Kondo-disorder type of NFL behavior was recently reported in the filled skutterudite system CePt4Ge12-xSbx in the vicinity of x = 1 . We performed a study of the thermoelectric power S(T) for this system and observed an evolution of S(T) with x that is dramatic and broadly consistent with the boundaries of the proposed phase diagram. The effect of disordered hybridization is clearly observed in a low-temperature feature in S(T) in the range 0 . 5 <= x <= 1 . 5 and NFL behavior is also observed at x = 1. These results clearly demonstrate how sensitively S(T) is able to probe a Kondo disorder system. Research was performed with support from the US DOE grant DE-FG02-04-ER46105.

  20. Nonlinear Hall effect for materials with weak thermoelectric power coefficients: preliminary comparisons between theoretical results of the thermodynamic field theory and experimental data.

    PubMed

    Sonnino, Giorgio; Peeters, Philippe

    2004-09-01

    This paper forms a part of a series of manuscripts which we intend to submit for publication in the near future, aiming to test the validity of the thermodynamic field theory (TFT), previously formulated, comparing the theoretical results with experimental data. In this particular case, we shall analyze the Hall effect. As known, when a magnetic field is applied at right angles to the direction of an electric current or a thermal gradient, galvano- and thermomagnetic effects appear in the material. In this paper, we shall show that if we study these effects in nonlinear regime, the TFT foresees an interesting effect: the nonlinear Hall effect. This prediction is herein submitted to experimental verifications. In this paper, we shall analyze this effect studying materials with weak thermoelectric power coefficients. We shall show the agreement between the theoretical predictions of the TFT and experiments. Experimental curves related to the nonlinear Hall effect allow us to determine the order of magnitude of the constant chi introduced in the TFT.

  1. Magnetotransport and thermoelectric power of La 2/3Ba 1/3Mn 1- xSb xO 3 ( x=0-0.05) manganite perovskites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sen, Vikram; Panwar, Neeraj; Rao, Ashok; Hsu, C. K.; Kuo, Y. K.; Agarwal, S. K.

    2008-01-01

    The effect of Sb +5-doping on the magnetotransport and thermoelectric power of La 2/3Ba 1/3Mn 1- xSb xO 3 ( x=0-0.05) perovskite manganites is reported here. Two insulator-metal (I-M) transitions have been observed in the electrical resistivity-temperature ρ(T) behavior of the undoped sample La 2/3Ba 1/3MnO 3. Both the transitions (at T and T) shift to lower temperatures with doping but to a different extent. T decreases faster while T remains almost invariant up to 3% of doping and then decreases. With increasing Sb +5 content, the intrinsic magnetoresistance (MR at T) gets suppressed whereas the extrinsic magnetoresistance at lower temperatures gets enhanced. The thermoelectric behavior S(T) of the pristine sample shows a peak at T while for the doped samples the peak gets suppressed. All the samples exhibit a crossover in their S(T) behavior from positive to negative at a temperature T∗, indicating that the dominant carrier in these compounds changes from hole to electron above T∗. Transport behavior above T (the paramagnetic insulating region) is explained on the basis of the small polaron hopping model while the electron-magnon scattering process has been invoked to explain the thermoelectric power and electrical resistivity behavior in the ferromagnetic regime.

  2. Architectural innovation foresight of thermoelectric generator charger integrated portable power supply for portable consumer electronic device in metropolitan market: The case study of Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maolikul, S.; Kiatgamolchai, S.; Chavarnakul, T.

    2012-06-01

    In the context of information and communication technology (ICT) trend for worldwide individuals, social life becomes digital and portable consumer electronic devices (PCED) powered by conventional power supply from batteries have been evolving through miniaturization and various function integration. Thermoelectric generators (TEG) were hypothesized for its potential role of battery charger to serve the shining PCED market. Hence, this paper, mainly focusing at the metropolitan market in Thailand, aimed to conduct architectural innovation foresight and to develop scenarios on potential exploitation approach of PCED battery power supply with TEG charger converting power from ambient heat source adjacent to individual's daily life. After technical review and assessment for TEG potential and battery aspect, the business research was conducted to analyze PCED consumer behavior for their PCED utilization pattern, power supply lack problems, and encountering heat sources/sinks in 3 modes: daily life, work, and leisure hobbies. Based on the secondary data analysis from literature and National Statistical Office of Thailand, quantitative analysis was applied using the cluster probability sampling methodology, statistically, with the sample size of 400 at 0.05 level of significance. In addition, the qualitative analysis was conducted to emphasize the rationale of consumer's behavior using in-depth qualitative interview. Scenario planning technique was also used to generate technological and market trend foresight. Innovation field and potential scenario for matching technology with market was proposed in this paper. The ingredient for successful commercialization of battery power supply with TEG charger for PCED market consists of 5 factors as follows: (1) PCED characteristic, (2) potential ambient heat sources/sinks, (3) battery module, (4) power management module, and the final jigsaw (5) characteristic and adequate arrangement of TEG modules. The foresight outcome for

  3. Determination of critical assembly absolute power using post-irradiation activation measurement of week-lived fission products.

    PubMed

    Košťál, Michal; Švadlenková, Marie; Milčák, Ján; Rypar, Vojtěch; Koleška, Michal

    2014-07-01

    The work presents a detailed comparison of calculated and experimentally determined net peak areas of longer-living fission products after 100 h irradiation on a reactor with power of ~630 W and several days cooling. Specifically the nuclides studied are (140)Ba, (103)Ru, (131)I, (141)Ce, (95)Zr. The good agreement between the calculated and measured net peak areas, which is better than in determination using short lived (92)Sr, is reported. The experiment was conducted on the VVER-1000 mock-up installed on the LR-0 reactor. The Monte Carlo approach has been used for calculations. The influence of different data libraries on results of calculation is discussed as well.

  4. Anomalous enhancement of the thermoelectric power in gallium-doped p-(Bi{sub 1-x}Sb{sub x}){sub 2}Te{sub 3} single crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Kulbachinskii, V. A. Kytin, V. G.; Tarasov, P. M.

    2010-04-15

    The effect of gallium on the temperature dependences (5 K {<=} T {<=} 300 K) of Seebeck coefficient {alpha}, electrical conductivity {sigma}, thermal conductivity k, and thermoelectric efficiency Z of mixed p-(Bi{sub 0.5}Sb{sub 0.5}){sub 2}Te{sub 3} semiconductor single crystals is studied. The hole concentration decreases upon gallium doping; that is, gallium causes a donor effect. The Seebeck coefficient increases anomalously, i.e., much higher than it should be at the detected decrease in the hole concentration. This leads to an enhancement of the thermoelectric power. The observed changes in the Seebeck coefficient indicate a noticeable gallium-induced change in the density of states in the valence band.

  5. Thermoelectric materials having porosity

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  6. Thermoelectricity at the molecular scale: a large Seebeck effect in endohedral metallofullerenes.

    PubMed

    Lee, See Kei; Buerkle, Marius; Yamada, Ryo; Asai, Yoshihiro; Tada, Hirokazu

    2015-12-28

    Single molecule devices provide a unique system to study the thermoelectric energy conversion at an atomistic level and can provide valuable information for the design of organic thermoelectric materials. Here we present a comprehensive study of the thermoelectric transport properties of molecular junctions based on C(82), Gd@C(82), and Ce@C(82). We combine precise scanning tunneling microscope break-junction measurements of the thermopower and conductance with quantitatively accurate self-energy-corrected first-principles transport calculations. We find that all three fullerene derivatives give rise to a negative thermopower (n-conducting). The absolute value, however, is much larger for the Gd@C(82) and Ce@C(82) junctions. The conductance, on the other hand, remains comparable for all three systems. The power factor determined for the Gd@C(82) based junction is so far the highest obtained for a single-molecule device. Although the encapsulated metal atom does not directly contribute to the transport, we show that the observed enhancement of the thermopower for Gd@C(82) and Ce@C(82) is elucidated by the substantial changes in the electronic- and geometrical structure of the fullerene molecule induced by the encapsulated metal atom. PMID:26583505

  7. Thermoelectricity at the molecular scale: a large Seebeck effect in endohedral metallofullerenes.

    PubMed

    Lee, See Kei; Buerkle, Marius; Yamada, Ryo; Asai, Yoshihiro; Tada, Hirokazu

    2015-12-28

    Single molecule devices provide a unique system to study the thermoelectric energy conversion at an atomistic level and can provide valuable information for the design of organic thermoelectric materials. Here we present a comprehensive study of the thermoelectric transport properties of molecular junctions based on C(82), Gd@C(82), and Ce@C(82). We combine precise scanning tunneling microscope break-junction measurements of the thermopower and conductance with quantitatively accurate self-energy-corrected first-principles transport calculations. We find that all three fullerene derivatives give rise to a negative thermopower (n-conducting). The absolute value, however, is much larger for the Gd@C(82) and Ce@C(82) junctions. The conductance, on the other hand, remains comparable for all three systems. The power factor determined for the Gd@C(82) based junction is so far the highest obtained for a single-molecule device. Although the encapsulated metal atom does not directly contribute to the transport, we show that the observed enhancement of the thermopower for Gd@C(82) and Ce@C(82) is elucidated by the substantial changes in the electronic- and geometrical structure of the fullerene molecule induced by the encapsulated metal atom.

  8. Electrostatic control of thermoelectricity in molecular junctions.

    PubMed

    Kim, Youngsang; Jeong, Wonho; Kim, Kyeongtae; Lee, Woochul; Reddy, Pramod

    2014-11-01

    Molecular junctions hold significant promise for efficient and high-power-output thermoelectric energy conversion. Recent experiments have probed the thermoelectric properties of molecular junctions. However, electrostatic control of thermoelectric properties via a gate electrode has not been possible due to technical challenges in creating temperature differentials in three-terminal devices. Here, we show that extremely large temperature gradients (exceeding 1 × 10(9) K m(-1)) can be established in nanoscale gaps bridged by molecules, while simultaneously controlling their electronic structure via a gate electrode. Using this platform, we study prototypical Au-biphenyl-4,4'-dithiol-Au and Au-fullerene-Au junctions to demonstrate that the Seebeck coefficient and the electrical conductance of molecular junctions can be simultaneously increased by electrostatic control. Moreover, from our studies of fullerene junctions, we show that thermoelectric properties can be significantly enhanced when the dominant transport orbital is located close to the chemical potential (Fermi level) of the electrodes. These results illustrate the intimate relationship between the thermoelectric properties and charge transmission characteristics of molecular junctions and should enable systematic exploration of the recent computational predictions that promise extremely efficient thermoelectric energy conversion in molecular junctions. PMID:25282046

  9. Transient Thermoelectric Solution Employing Green's Functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mackey, Jon; Sehirlioglu, Alp; Dynys, Fred

    2014-01-01

    The study works to formulate convenient solutions to the problem of a thermoelectric couple operating under a time varying condition. Transient operation of a thermoelectric will become increasingly common as thermoelectric technology permits applications in an increasing number of uses. A number of terrestrial applications, in contrast to steady-state space applications, can subject devices to time varying conditions. For instance thermoelectrics can be exposed to transient conditions in the automotive industry depending on engine system dynamics along with factors like driving style. In an effort to generalize the thermoelectric solution a Greens function method is used, so that arbitrary time varying boundary and initial conditions may be applied to the system without reformulation. The solution demonstrates that in thermoelectric applications of a transient nature additional factors must be taken into account and optimized. For instance, the materials specific heat and density become critical parameters in addition to the thermal mass of a heat sink or the details of the thermal profile, such as oscillating frequency. The calculations can yield the optimum operating conditions to maximize power output andor efficiency for a given type of device.

  10. Thermoelectric heat exchange element

    DOEpatents

    Callas, James J.; Taher, Mahmoud A.

    2007-08-14

    A thermoelectric heat exchange module includes a first substrate including a heat receptive side and a heat donative side and a series of undulatory pleats. The module may also include a thermoelectric material layer having a ZT value of 1.0 or more disposed on at least one of the heat receptive side and the heat donative side, and an electrical contact may be in electrical communication with the thermoelectric material layer.

  11. Control Strategy for a 42-V Waste-Heat Thermoelectric Vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Y. D.; Fan, W.; Tang, Z. B.; Chang, X. Y.; Ling, K.; Su, C. Q.

    2013-07-01

    A 42-V waste-heat thermoelectric vehicle is employed as a potential application of thermoelectric generators for fuel economy improvement and emissions reduction. The 42-V waste-heat thermoelectric vehicle currently in development employs an assemblage driving system consisting of a waste-heat thermoelectric generator, a 42-V powernet, and an integrated starter and generator (ISG). The waste-heat thermoelectric generator also functions as a power supply. To optimize the utilization of the waste-heat energy generated by the thermoelectric generator, an electric assist control strategy and a torque split control strategy are proposed herein. Through the development of relevant systems and strategies, including the thermoelectric generator and an electric bus system, two vehicle models are established and compared using the ADVISOR platform based on MATLAB/Simulink. The calculation results show improved fuel economy and emissions performance resulting from the integration of the torque split control strategy into the 42-V waste-heat thermoelectric vehicle.

  12. Teaching Absolute Value Meaningfully

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wade, Angela

    2012-01-01

    What is the meaning of absolute value? And why do teachers teach students how to solve absolute value equations? Absolute value is a concept introduced in first-year algebra and then reinforced in later courses. Various authors have suggested instructional methods for teaching absolute value to high school students (Wei 2005; Stallings-Roberts…

  13. Tailored semiconducting carbon nanotube networks with enhanced thermoelectric properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avery, Azure D.; Zhou, Ben H.; Lee, Jounghee; Lee, Eui-Sup; Miller, Elisa M.; Ihly, Rachelle; Wesenberg, Devin; Mistry, Kevin S.; Guillot, Sarah L.; Zink, Barry L.; Kim, Yong-Hyun; Blackburn, Jeffrey L.; Ferguson, Andrew J.

    2016-04-01

    Thermoelectric power generation, allowing recovery of part of the energy wasted as heat, is emerging as an important component of renewable energy and energy efficiency portfolios. Although inorganic semiconductors have traditionally been employed in thermoelectric applications, organic semiconductors garner increasing attention as versatile thermoelectric materials. Here we present a combined theoretical and experimental study suggesting that semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes with carefully controlled chirality distribution and carrier density are capable of large thermoelectric power factors, higher than 340 μW m-1 K-2, comparable to the best-performing conducting polymers and larger than previously observed for carbon nanotube films. Furthermore, we demonstrate that phonons are the dominant source of thermal conductivity in the networks, and that our carrier doping process significantly reduces the thermal conductivity relative to undoped networks. These findings provide the scientific underpinning for improved functional organic thermoelectric composites with carbon nanotube inclusions.

  14. Tailored semiconducting carbon nanotube networks with enhanced thermoelectric properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avery, Azure D.; Zhou, Ben H.; Lee, Jounghee; Lee, Eui-Sup; Miller, Elisa M.; Ihly, Rachelle; Wesenberg, Devin; Mistry, Kevin S.; Guillot, Sarah L.; Zink, Barry L.; Kim, Yong-Hyun; Blackburn, Jeffrey L.; Ferguson, Andrew J.

    2016-04-01

    Thermoelectric power generation, allowing recovery of part of the energy wasted as heat, is emerging as an important component of renewable energy and energy efficiency portfolios. Although inorganic semiconductors have traditionally been employed in thermoelectric applications, organic semiconductors garner increasing attention as versatile thermoelectric materials. Here we present a combined theoretical and experimental study suggesting that semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes with carefully controlled chirality distribution and carrier density are capable of large thermoelectric power factors, higher than 340 μW m‑1 K‑2, comparable to the best-performing conducting polymers and larger than previously observed for carbon nanotube films. Furthermore, we demonstrate that phonons are the dominant source of thermal conductivity in the networks, and that our carrier doping process significantly reduces the thermal conductivity relative to undoped networks. These findings provide the scientific underpinning for improved functional organic thermoelectric composites with carbon nanotube inclusions.

  15. Tailored semiconducting carbon nanotube networks with enhanced thermoelectric properties

    DOE PAGES

    Avery, Azure D.; Zhou, Ben H.; Lee, Jounghee; Lee, Eui -Sup; Miller, Elisa M.; Ihly, Rachelle; Wesenberg, Devin; Mistry, Kevin S.; Guillot, Sarah L.; Zink, Barry L.; et al

    2016-04-04

    Thermoelectric power generation, allowing recovery of part of the energy wasted as heat, is emerging as an important component of renewable energy and energy efficiency portfolios. Although inorganic semiconductors have traditionally been employed in thermoelectric applications, organic semiconductors garner increasing attention as versatile thermoelectric materials. Here we present a combined theoretical and experimental study suggesting that semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes with carefully controlled chirality distribution and carrier density are capable of large thermoelectric power factors, higher than 340 μW m-1 K-2, comparable to the best-performing conducting polymers and larger than previously observed for carbon nanotube films. Furthermore, we demonstrate thatmore » phonons are the dominant source of thermal conductivity in the networks, and that our carrier doping process significantly reduces the thermal conductivity relative to undoped networks. As a result, these findings provide the scientific underpinning for improved functional organic thermoelectric composites with carbon nanotube inclusions.« less

  16. Thermoelectric properties optimization of Al-doped ZnO thin films prepared by reactive sputtering Zn-Al alloy target

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Ping; Li, Ying-zhen; Zheng, Zhuang-hao; Lin, Qing-yun; Luo, Jing-ting; Liang, Guang-xing; Zhang, Miao-qin; Chen, Min-cong

    2013-11-01

    Al-doped ZnO (AZO) has practical applications in the industry for thermoelectric generation, owing to its nontoxicity, low-cost and stability at high temperatures. In this study, AZO thin films with high quality were deposited on BK7 glass substrates at room-temperature by direct current reactive magnetron sputtering using Zn-Al alloy target. The deposited thin films were annealed at various temperatures ranging from 623 K to 823 K with a space of 50 K. It is found that the absolute value of Seebeck coefficient of AZO thin film annealed at 723 K increases stably with increasing of measuring temperature and reaches a value of ∼60 μV/K at 575 K. After that, Al-doping content was varied to further optimize the thermoelectric properties of AZO thin films. The power factor of AZO thin films with Al content of 3 wt% increased with increase of measuring temperature and the maximum power factor of 1.54 × 10-4 W m-1K-2 was obtained at 550 K with the maximum absolute values of Seebeck coefficient of 99 μV/K, which is promising for high temperature thermoelectric application.

  17. Alternative Approaches to Group IV Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snedaker, Matthew Loren

    In the pursuit of energy efficiency, there is a demand for systems capable of recovering waste heat. A temperature gradient across a thermoelectric material results in the thermal diffusion of charge carriers from the hot side to the cold side, giving rise to a voltage that can be used to convert waste heat to electricity. Silicon germanium (SiGe) alloys are the standard materials used for thermoelectric generators at high temperatures. We report an alternative method for preparing p-type Si1- xGex alloys from a boron-doped silica-germania nanocomposite. This is the first demonstration of the thermoelectric properties of SiGe-based thermoelectrics prepared at temperatures below the alloy's melting point through a magnesiothermic reduction of the (SiO 2)1-x(GeO2) x. We observe a thermoelectric power factor that is competitive with the literature record for the conventionally prepared SiGe. The large grain size in our hot pressed SiGe limits the thermoelectric figure of merit to 0.5 at 800°C for an optimally doped p-type Si80Ge 20 alloy. A phosphorus-doped oxide can yield n-type Si1- xGex; however, the current processing method introduces a background boron content that compensates ~10% of the donor impurities and limits the thermoelectric power factor. Spark plasma sintering of the nano-Si1-xGe x yields a heterogeneous alloy with thermal conductivity lower than that of the hot pressed homogeneous alloy due to a reduction in the average crystallite size. Magnesiothermic reduction in the presence of molten salts allows some control over crystallite growth and the extent of Si-Ge alloying.

  18. Method of operating a thermoelectric generator

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  19. Thermoelectric Thin Film Devices for Energy Harvesting with the Heat Dissipated from High-Power Light-Emitting Diodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jae-Hwan; Kim, Woo-Jun; Oh, Tae-Sung

    2016-07-01

    We examined the power-generation characteristics of thin-film devices using the heat dissipated from high-power light-emitting diodes. The thin-film device was fabricated around an light-emitting diode (LED) chip by electrodepositing four pairs of the 10 μm-thick Bi2Te3 and Sb2Te3 films using either the high resistive Ti seed layer or the more conductive Ti/Cu/Au seed layer. The seed layer effect was more profound for the output power of the thin-film device than its output voltage. The open circuit voltages of 0.61 mV at Δ T for 4.1 K and 0.52 mV at Δ T for 4.9 K were obtained for the thin-film devices fabricated on the highly resistive Ti seed layer and the more conductive Ti/Cu/Au seed layer, respectively. Compared to 0.64 nW at Δ T for 4.1 K for the device processed on the more resistive Ti seed layer, a large maximum output power of 33.6 nW was obtained at Δ T of 4.9 K for the device built on the less resistive Ti/Cu/Au seed layer.

  20. New Composite Thermoelectric Materials for Macro-size Applications

    ScienceCinema

    Dresselhaus, Mildred [MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States

    2016-07-12

    A review will be given of several important recent advances in both thermoelectrics research and industrial thermoelectric applications, which have attracted much attention, increasing incentives for developing advanced materials appropriate for large-scale applications of thermoelectric devices. One promising strategy is the development of materials with a dense packing of random nanostructures as a route for the sacle-up of thermoelectrics applications. The concepts involved in designing composite materials containing nanostructures for thermoelectric applications will be discussed in general terms. Specific application is made to the Bi{sub 2}Te{sub 3} nanocomposite system for use in power generation. Also emphasized are the scientific advantages of the nanocomposite approach for the simultaneous increase in the power factor and decrease of the thermal conductivity, along with the practical advantages of having bulk samples for property measurements and device applications. A straightforward path is identified for the scale-up of thermoelectric materials synthesis containing nanostructured constituents for use in thermoelectric applications. We end with some vision of where the field of thermoelectrics is now heading.

  1. Determination of Thermoelectric Module Efficiency A Survey

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Hsin; McCarty, Robin; Salvador, James R.; Yamamoto, Atsushi; Konig, Jan

    2014-01-01

    The development of thermoelectrics (TE) for energy conversion is in the transition phase from laboratory research to device development. There is an increasing demand to accurately determine the module efficiency, especially for the power generation mode. For many thermoelectrics, the figure of merit, ZT, of the material sometimes cannot be fully realized at the device level. Reliable efficiency testing of thermoelectric modules is important to assess the device ZT and provide the end-users with realistic values on how much power can be generated under specific conditions. We conducted a general survey of efficiency testing devices and their performance. The results indicated the lack of industry standards and test procedures. This study included a commercial test system and several laboratory systems. Most systems are based on the heat flow meter method and some are based on the Harman method. They are usually reproducible in evaluating thermoelectric modules. However, cross-checking among different systems often showed large errors that are likely caused by unaccounted heat loss and thermal resistance. Efficiency testing is an important area for the thermoelectric community to focus on. A follow-up international standardization effort is planned.

  2. Thermoelectric transport phenomena in semiconducting nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornett, Jane

    The efficiencies of state-of-the-art thermoelectric devices made from bulk materials remain too low for widespread application. Early predictions by Hicks and Dresselhaus indicated that one potential route for improving the thermoelectric properties of materials was through nanostructuring. This predicted improvement was due to two effects: an increase in the thermoelectric power factor and a decrease in the lattice thermal conductivity. In this thesis, new models are developed for calculation of the thermoelectric transport properties of nanostructures. The results of these models are in line with what has been seen experimentally in the field of nanostructured thermoelectrics: the power factor of nanostructures falls below the bulk value for sizes accessible by current experimental techniques. While this is demonstrated first for a particular system (cylindrical InSb nanowires), this result is shown to hold true regardless of the dimensionality of the system, the material of interest or the temperature. Using the analytical forms of the transport properties of nanostructured systems, we derive universal scaling relations for the power factor which further point to the fundamental and general nature of this result. Calculations done for nanostructured systems in which the scattering time is a function of carrier energy indicate that the introduction of nanoscale grain boundaries can lead to improvements in the power factor. We present experimental methods for the fabrication and characterization of porous bismuth-antimony-telluride (Bi2-xSbxTe3 ) thin films using a templated deposition technique. Preliminary results from this experimental work indicate that the nanostructured morphology of the templates used for the deposition of porous films limits diffusion during grain growth, and thus the crystal structure of these porous films differs from that of films deposited on dense substrates. For fundamental investigation of the effects of porosity on thermoelectric

  3. Layered Bi2Se3 nanoplate/polyvinylidene fluoride composite based n-type thermoelectric fabrics.

    PubMed

    Dun, Chaochao; Hewitt, Corey A; Huang, Huihui; Xu, Junwei; Montgomery, David S; Nie, Wanyi; Jiang, Qike; Carroll, David L

    2015-04-01

    In this study, we report the fabrication of n-type flexible thermoelectric fabrics using layered Bi2Se3 nanoplate/polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) composites as the thermoelectric material. These composites exhibit room temperature Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity values of -80 μV K(-1) and 5100 S m(-1), respectively, resulting in a power factor approaching 30 μW m(-1)K(-2). The temperature-dependent thermoelectric properties reveal that the composites exhibit metallic-like electrical conductivity, whereas the thermoelectric power is characterized by a heterogeneous model. These composites have the potential to be used in atypical applications for thermoelectrics, where lightweight and flexible materials would be beneficial. Indeed, bending tests revealed excellent durability of the thermoelectric fabrics. We anticipate that this work may guide the way for fabricating high performance thermoelectric fabrics based on layered V-VI nanoplates.

  4. Layered Bi2Se3 nanoplate/polyvinylidene fluoride composite based n-type thermoelectric fabrics.

    PubMed

    Dun, Chaochao; Hewitt, Corey A; Huang, Huihui; Xu, Junwei; Montgomery, David S; Nie, Wanyi; Jiang, Qike; Carroll, David L

    2015-04-01

    In this study, we report the fabrication of n-type flexible thermoelectric fabrics using layered Bi2Se3 nanoplate/polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) composites as the thermoelectric material. These composites exhibit room temperature Seebeck coefficient and electrical conductivity values of -80 μV K(-1) and 5100 S m(-1), respectively, resulting in a power factor approaching 30 μW m(-1)K(-2). The temperature-dependent thermoelectric properties reveal that the composites exhibit metallic-like electrical conductivity, whereas the thermoelectric power is characterized by a heterogeneous model. These composites have the potential to be used in atypical applications for thermoelectrics, where lightweight and flexible materials would be beneficial. Indeed, bending tests revealed excellent durability of the thermoelectric fabrics. We anticipate that this work may guide the way for fabricating high performance thermoelectric fabrics based on layered V-VI nanoplates. PMID:25798653

  5. High Temperature Integrated Thermoelectric Ststem and Materials

    SciTech Connect

    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

  6. Towards a Microbial Thermoelectric Cell

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Barreiro, Raúl; Abendroth, Christian; Vilanova, Cristina; Moya, Andrés; Porcar, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    Microbial growth is an exothermic process. Biotechnological industries produce large amounts of heat, usually considered an undesirable by-product. In this work, we report the construction and characterization of the first microbial thermoelectric cell (MTC), in which the metabolic heat produced by a thermally insulated microbial culture is partially converted into electricity through a thermoelectric device optimized for low ΔT values. A temperature of 41°C and net electric voltage of around 250–600 mV was achieved with 1.7 L baker’s yeast culture. This is the first time microbial metabolic energy has been converted into electricity with an ad hoc thermoelectric device. These results might contribute towards developing a novel strategy to harvest excess heat in the biotechnology industry, in processes such as ethanol fermentation, auto thermal aerobic digestion (ATAD) or bioremediation, which could be coupled with MTCs in a single unit to produce electricity as a valuable by-product of the primary biotechnological product. Additionally, we propose that small portable MTCs could be conceived and inoculated with suitable thermophilic of hyperthermophilic starter cultures and used for powering small electric devices. PMID:23468862

  7. Towards a microbial thermoelectric cell.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Barreiro, Raúl; Abendroth, Christian; Vilanova, Cristina; Moya, Andrés; Porcar, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    Microbial growth is an exothermic process. Biotechnological industries produce large amounts of heat, usually considered an undesirable by-product. In this work, we report the construction and characterization of the first microbial thermoelectric cell (MTC), in which the metabolic heat produced by a thermally insulated microbial culture is partially converted into electricity through a thermoelectric device optimized for low ΔT values. A temperature of 41°C and net electric voltage of around 250-600 mV was achieved with 1.7 L baker's yeast culture. This is the first time microbial metabolic energy has been converted into electricity with an ad hoc thermoelectric device. These results might contribute towards developing a novel strategy to harvest excess heat in the biotechnology industry, in processes such as ethanol fermentation, auto thermal aerobic digestion (ATAD) or bioremediation, which could be coupled with MTCs in a single unit to produce electricity as a valuable by-product of the primary biotechnological product. Additionally, we propose that small portable MTCs could be conceived and inoculated with suitable thermophilic of hyperthermophilic starter cultures and used for powering small electric devices.

  8. Significant enhancement of thermoelectric properties and metallization of Al-doped Mg{sub 2}Si under pressure

    SciTech Connect

    Morozova, Natalia V.; Korobeinikov, Igor V.; Karkin, Alexander E.; Shchennikov, Vladimir V.; Ovsyannikov, Sergey V. E-mail: sergey2503@gmail.com; Takarabe, Ken-ichi; Mori, Yoshihisa; Nakamura, Shigeyuki

    2014-06-07

    We report results of investigations of electronic transport properties and lattice dynamics of Al-doped magnesium silicide (Mg{sub 2}Si) thermoelectrics at ambient and high pressures to and beyond 15 GPa. High-quality samples of Mg{sub 2}Si doped with 1 at. % of Al were prepared by spark plasma sintering technique. The samples were extensively examined at ambient pressure conditions by X-ray diffraction studies, Raman spectroscopy, electrical resistivity, magnetoresistance, Hall effect, thermoelectric power (Seebeck effect), and thermal conductivity. A Kondo-like feature in the electrical resistivity curves at low temperatures indicates a possible magnetism in the samples. The absolute values of the thermopower and electrical resistivity, and Raman spectra intensity of Mg{sub 2}Si:Al dramatically diminished upon room-temperature compression. The calculated thermoelectric power factor of Mg{sub 2}Si:Al raised with pressure to 2–3 GPa peaking in the maximum the values as high as about 8 × 10{sup −3} W/(K{sup 2}m) and then gradually decreased with further compression. Raman spectroscopy studies indicated the crossovers near ∼5–7 and ∼11–12 GPa that are likely related to phase transitions. The data gathered suggest that Mg{sub 2}Si:Al is metallized under moderate pressures between ∼5 and 12 GPa.

  9. ABSOLUTE POLARIMETRY AT RHIC.

    SciTech Connect

    OKADA; BRAVAR, A.; BUNCE, G.; GILL, R.; HUANG, H.; MAKDISI, Y.; NASS, A.; WOOD, J.; ZELENSKI, Z.; ET AL.

    2007-09-10

    Precise and absolute beam polarization measurements are critical for the RHIC spin physics program. Because all experimental spin-dependent results are normalized by beam polarization, the normalization uncertainty contributes directly to final physics uncertainties. We aimed to perform the beam polarization measurement to an accuracy Of {Delta}P{sub beam}/P{sub beam} < 5%. The absolute polarimeter consists of Polarized Atomic Hydrogen Gas Jet Target and left-right pairs of silicon strip detectors and was installed in the RHIC-ring in 2004. This system features proton-proton elastic scattering in the Coulomb nuclear interference (CNI) region. Precise measurements of the analyzing power A{sub N} of this process has allowed us to achieve {Delta}P{sub beam}/P{sub beam} = 4.2% in 2005 for the first long spin-physics run. In this report, we describe the entire set up and performance of the system. The procedure of beam polarization measurement and analysis results from 2004-2005 are described. Physics topics of AN in the CNI region (four-momentum transfer squared 0.001 < -t < 0.032 (GeV/c){sup 2}) are also discussed. We point out the current issues and expected optimum accuracy in 2006 and the future.

  10. Fluctuation conductivity effects on thermoelectric power of granular Bi/sub 1. 75/Pb/sub 0. 25/Ca/sub 2/Sr/sub 2/Cu/sub 3/O/sub 10/ superconductor

    SciTech Connect

    Laurent, C.; Patapis, S.K.; Luo, H.L.; Politis, C.; Durczewski, K.

    1989-04-10

    The authors report precise measurements of the thermoelectric power (TEP) of granular superconducting Bi/sub 1.75/Pb/sub 0.25/Ca/sub 2/Sr/sub 2/Cu/sub 3/O/sub 10/. The TEP is strictly linear at high temperature. Superconductivity fluctuations set in at about 140 K. From the temperature derivative of the excess TEP (with respect to a straight line at ''high temperature''), the critical behavior is obtained in the mean field regime, and is found identical to that of the temperature derivative of the excess electrical resistivity.

  11. Improved Performance of an Air Cooled Condenser (ACC) Using SPX Wind Guide Technology at Coal-Based Thermoelectric Power Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Ken Mortensen

    2010-12-31

    This project added a new airflow enhancement technology to an existing ACC cooling process at a selected coal power plant. Airflow parameters and efficiency improvement for the main plant cooling process using the applied technology were determined and compared with the capabilities of existing systems. The project required significant planning and pre-test execution in order to reach the required Air Cooled Condenser system configuration for evaluation. A host Power Plant ACC system had to be identified, agreement finalized, and addition of the SPX ACC Wind Guide Technology completed on that site. Design of the modification, along with procurement, fabrication, instrumentation, and installation of the new airflow enhancement technology were executed. Baseline and post-modification cooling system data was collected and evaluated. The improvement of ACC thermal performance after SPX wind guide installation was clear. Testing of the improvement indicates there is a 5% improvement in heat transfer coefficient in high wind conditions and 1% improvement at low wind speed. The benefit increased with increasing wind speed. This project was completed on schedule and within budget.

  12. Eosinophil count - absolute

    MedlinePlus

    Eosinophils; Absolute eosinophil count ... the white blood cell count to give the absolute eosinophil count. ... than 500 cells per microliter (cells/mcL). Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk ...

  13. Development of segmented thermoelectric multicouple converter technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Johnson, Kenneth; Sakamoto, Jeff; Huang, Chen-Kuo; Snyder, Jeff; Mondt, Jack; Blair, Richard; Frye, Patrick; Stapfer, Gerhard; Caillat, Thierry; Determan, William; Heshmatpour, Ben; Brooks, Michael; Tuttle, Karen

    2006-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, and Teledyne Energy Systems, Inc., have teamed together under JPL leadership to develop the next generation of advanced thermoelectric space reactor power conversion systems. The program goals are to develop the technologies needed to achieve a space nuclear power system specific mass goal of less than 30 kg/kW at the 100 kW power level with a greater than 15 year lifetime.

  14. Thermoelectric devices and applications for the same

    DOEpatents

    DeSteese, John G [Kennewick, WA; Olsen, Larry C [Richland, WA; Martin, Peter M [Kennewick, WA

    2010-12-14

    High performance thin film thermoelectric couples and methods of making the same are disclosed. Such couples allow fabrication of at least microwatt to watt-level power supply devices operating at voltages greater than one volt even when activated by only small temperature differences.

  15. Performance testing of thermoelectric generators at JPL

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rouklove, P.; Truscello, V.

    1974-01-01

    Results of life tests of thermoelectric generators ranging in output power from 800 microwatts to 170 watts. Emphasis is placed on the results obtained from tests of three advanced prototypes - a high-performance generator, a transit-type generator, and a ring converter. In addition, the results of life tests of a number of generators representing Nimbus, Pioneer, and Viking technology are presented.

  16. Thermoelectric devices and applications for the same

    DOEpatents

    Olsen, Larry C.; DeSteese, John G.; Martin, Peter M.; Johnston, John W.; Peters, Timothy J.

    2016-03-08

    High performance thin film thermoelectric couples and methods of making the same are disclosed. Such couples allow fabrication of at least microwatt to watt-level power supply devices operating at voltages greater than one volt even when activated by only small temperature differences.

  17. Effect of Ag doping and annealing on thermoelectric properties of PbTe

    SciTech Connect

    Bala, Manju Tripathi, T. S.; Avasthi, D. K.; Asokan, K.; Gupta, Srashti

    2015-06-24

    The present study reveals that annealing Ag doped PbTe thin films enhance thermoelectric properties. Phase formation was identified by using X-ray diffraction measurement. Annealing increases the crystallinity of both undoped and Ag doped PbTe. Electrical resistivity and thermoelectric power measurements are done using four probe and bridge method respectively. The increase in thermoelectric power of Ag doped PbTe is 29 % in comparison to undoped PbTe and it further increases to 34 % after annealing at 250{sup o} C for 1 hour whereas thermoelectric power increases by 14 % on annealing undoped PbTe thin films at same temperature.

  18. Internal convection in thermoelectric generator models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Apertet, Y.; Ouerdane, H.; Goupil, C.; Lecæur, Ph

    2012-11-01

    Coupling between heat and electrical currents is at the heart of thermoelectric processes. In a thermoelectric system this may be seen, from a thermal viewpoint, as an additional thermal flux linked to the appearance of an electrical current. Since this additional flux is associated with the global displacement of charge carriers in the system, it can be qualified as convective in opposition to the conductive part related to both phonon transport and heat transport by electrons under open circuit condition as, e.g., in the Wiedemann-Franz relation. In this article we demonstrate that considering the convective part of the thermal flux allows both new insight into the thermoelectric energy conversion and the derivation of the maximum power condition for generators with realistic thermal coupling.

  19. Nano-materials for enhanced thermoelectric efficiencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boukai, Akram

    2010-04-01

    Energy is the ultimate currency that drives the world economy. Without energy, the global economy would cease to function normally. Most of the world's energy comes from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. Unfortunately, these fossil fuels are limited and pollute the atmosphere. The rising costs and demand of energy products and the alarming rate of global warming have focused research efforts into alternative forms of renewable energy. Thermoelectrics are one class of renewable energy producing devices. Thermoelectrics operate by converting temperature differences into electrical power and vice versa. They find limited use due to their low efficiencies and high cost. This article will review the operation of thermoelectrics and their current state-of-the-art. It will also explore future promising research endeavors that aim to increase their efficiency.

  20. The best thermoelectric.

    PubMed Central

    Mahan, G D; Sofo, J O

    1996-01-01

    What electronic structure provides the largest figure of merit for thermoelectric materials? To answer that question, we write the electrical conductivity, thermopower, and thermal conductivity as integrals of a single function, the transport distribution. Then we derive the mathematical function for the transport distribution, which gives the largest figure of merit. A delta-shaped transport distribution is found to maximize the thermoelectric properties. This result indicates that a narrow distribution of the energy of the electrons participating in the transport process is needed for maximum thermoelectric efficiency. Some possible realizations of this idea are discussed. PMID:11607692

  1. Refractory semiconductors for high temperature thermoelectric energy conversion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Charles

    1987-01-01

    Thermoelectric energy conversion utilizing nuclear heat sources has been employed for several decades to generate power for deep space probes. In the past, lead telluride and, more recently, silicon-germanium alloys have been the prime choices as thermoelectric materials for this application. Currently, a number of refractory semiconductors are under investigation at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in order to produce power sources of higher conversion efficiency and, thus, lower mass per unit of power output. Included among these materials are improved Si-Ge alloys, rare earth compounds and boron-rich borides. The criteria used to select thermoelectric materials, in general, and the above materials, in particular, will be discussed. The current state of the art and the accomplishments to date in thermoelectric materials research will be reviewed.

  2. Compatibility of Segments of Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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

  3. Absolute flux scale for radioastronomy

    SciTech Connect

    Ivanov, V.P.; Stankevich, K.S.

    1986-07-01

    The authors propose and provide support for a new absolute flux scale for radio astronomy, which is not encumbered with the inadequacies of the previous scales. In constructing it the method of relative spectra was used (a powerful tool for choosing reference spectra). A review is given of previous flux scales. The authors compare the AIS scale with the scale they propose. Both scales are based on absolute measurements by the ''artificial moon'' method, and they are practically coincident in the range from 0.96 to 6 GHz. At frequencies above 6 GHz, 0.96 GHz, the AIS scale is overestimated because of incorrect extrapolation of the spectra of the primary and secondary standards. The major results which have emerged from this review of absolute scales in radio astronomy are summarized.

  4. Studies on magneto-resistance, magnetization and thermoelectric power of Cr substituted La0.65Ca0.35Mn1-xCrxO3 (0≤x≤0.07) manganites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manjunatha, S. O.; Rao, Ashok; Babu, P. D.; Tarachand; Okram, G. S.

    2015-10-01

    A systematic investigation has been carried out on effect of Cr-doping on structural, magneto-resistance, magnetic and thermoelectric power properties of La0.65Ca0.35Mn1-xCrxO3 compounds. Samples were prepared using conventional solid state reaction method. The XRD analysis using Rietveld refinement reveals that the samples are single phased. Temperature dependent electrical resistivity measurements show the existence of the expected metal-insulator transition (TMI) which is followed by a small hump at temperatures lower than TMI. With the application of magnetic field, resistivity of all the samples is found to decrease and TMI is observed to shift towards higher temperature. This is attributed to induced magnetic ordering of the localized t2g spins and increased electron transfer integral between Mn3+/Mn4+ via oxygen by the application of magnetic field. MR% is observed to increase with the increasing Cr concentration. Magnetic studies show that the Curie temperature, TC and magnetic moment decreases with Cr-content which is consistent with the electrical studies. Electrical resistivity and thermoelectric power data have been analyzed using theoretical models and both suggest that the small polaron hopping (SPH) model is operative in the high temperature insulating region for the entire series of samples.

  5. Correlation of radiation-induced changes in microstructure/microchemistry, density and thermo-electric power of type 304L and 316 stainless steels irradiated in the Phénix reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Renault Laborne, Alexandra; Gavoille, Pierre; Malaplate, Joël; Pokor, Cédric; Tanguy, Benoît

    2015-05-01

    Annealed specimens of type 304L and 316 stainless steel and cold-worked 316 specimens were irradiated in the Phénix reactor in the temperature range 381-394 °C and to different damage doses up to 39 dpa. The microstructure and microchemistry of both 304L and 316 have been examined using the combination of the different techniques of TEM to establish the void swelling and precipitation behavior under neutron irradiation. TEM observations are compared with results of measurements of immersion density and thermo-electric power obtained on the same irradiated stainless steels. The similarities and differences in their behavior on different scales are used to understand the factors in terms of the chemical composition and metallurgical state of steels, affecting the precipitation under irradiation and the swelling behavior. Irradiation induces the formation of some precipitate phases (e.g., M6C and M23C6-type carbides, and γ'- and G-phases), Frank loops and cavities. According to the metallurgical state and chemical composition of the steel, the amount of each type of radiation-induced defects is not the same, affecting their density and thermo-electric power.

  6. Thermoelectric Generators used as Cryogenic Heat Engines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, D. E.; Ordonez, C. A.

    1997-03-01

    A future experiment is being planned at the University of North Texas to design, build, and test a cryogenic heat engine(C. A. Ordonez, Am. J. Phys. 64), 479 (1996). suitable as an electric-vehicle power system. The power system shall then be installed in a demonstration vehicle. This will be a next-generation vehicle following the current project described in the accompanying poster, ``Experimental Car Which Uses Liquid Nitrogen as Its Fuel" by M. E. Parker et al. The cryogenic heat engine electric vehicle power system will incorporate both a thermoelectric generator and an ambient-temperature turbine or pneumatic-motor/generator. The thermoelectric generator shall use liquid nitrogen (under pressure) as its cold reservoir. Energy is produced with the thermoelectric generator by using the liquid/gas phase change to absorb heat. At the present time a study is being carried out to determine the efficiency of thermoelectric devices which are used as cryogenic heat engines. Initial data is being taken using frozen H_2O and CO2 as cold reservoirs. The results of the study shall be presented.

  7. Solar thermoelectric generator

    DOEpatents

    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.

  8. Catalytic converter with thermoelectric generator

    SciTech Connect

    Parise, R.J.

    1998-07-01

    The unique design of an electrically heated catalyst (EHC) and the inclusion of an ECO valve in the exhaust of an internal combustion engine will meet the strict new emission requirements, especially at vehicle cold start, adopted by several states in this country as well as in Europe and Japan. The catalytic converter (CC) has been a most useful tool in pollution abatement for the automobile. But the emission requirements are becoming more stringent and, along with other improvements, the CC must be improved to meet these new standards. Coupled with the ECO valve, the EHC can meet these new emission limits. In an internal combustion engine vehicle (ICEV), approximately 80% of the energy consumed leaves the vehicle as waste heat: out the tail pipe, through the radiator, or convected/radiated off the engine. Included with the waste heat out the tail pipe are the products of combustion which must meet strict emission requirements. The design of a new CC is presented here. This is an automobile CC that has the capability of producing electrical power and reducing the quantity of emissions at vehicle cold start, the Thermoelectric Catalytic Power Generator. The CC utilizes the energy of the exothermic reactions that take place in the catalysis substrate to produce electrical energy with a thermoelectric generator. On vehicle cold start, the thermoelectric generator is used as a heat pump to heat the catalyst substrate to reduce the time to catalyst light-off. Thus an electrically heated catalyst (EHC) will be used to augment the abatement of tail pipe emissions. Included with the EHC in the exhaust stream of the automobile is the ECO valve. This valve restricts the flow of pollutants out the tail pipe of the vehicle for a specified amount of time until the EHC comes up to operating temperature. Then the ECO valve opens and allows the full exhaust, now treated by the EHC, to leave the vehicle.

  9. Large external ΔT and cooling power densities in thin-film Bi2Te3-superlattice thermoelectric cooling devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bulman, G. E.; Siivola, E.; Shen, B.; Venkatasubramanian, R.

    2006-09-01

    Experimental I-V-Tc-ΔT data of thin-film superlattice thermoelectric modules is used to determine the internal ΔT, cross-plane Seebeck coefficient, effective thermal interface resistance, device ZT, and Qmax. We demonstrate 55K of external cooling at 300K (Tc_min=244.8K), with an estimated heat pumping capacity of 128W /cm2. The average ZT300 for the best superlattice devices is 0.75, compared to 0.66 for a bulk BixSb2-xTe3/Bi2SexTe3-x device. Our model indicates a significantly higher internal ΔT occurs across the active thermoelectric element, which was verified using buried thermocouples.

  10. Nanostructured Interfaces for Thermoelectrics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Y.; Marconnet, A. M.; Panzer, M. A.; Leblanc, S.; Dogbe, S.; Ezzahri, Y.; Shakouri, A.; Goodson, K. E.

    2010-09-01

    Temperature drops at the interfaces between thermoelectric materials and the heat source and sink reduce the overall efficiency of thermoelectric systems. Nanostructured interfaces based on vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (CNTs) promise the combination of mechanical compliance and high thermal conductance required for thermoelectric modules, which are subjected to severe thermomechanical stresses. This work discusses the property require- ments for thermoelectric interface materials, reviews relevant data available in the literature for CNT films, and characterizes the thermal properties of vertically aligned multiwalled CNTs grown on a candidate thermoelectric material. Nanosecond thermoreflectance thermometry provides thermal property data for 1.5- μm-thick CNT films on SiGe. The thermal interface resistances between the CNT film and surrounding materials are the dominant barriers to thermal transport, ranging from 1.4 m2 K MW-1 to 4.3 m2 K MW-1. The volumetric heat capacity of the CNT film is estimated to be 87 kJ m-3 K-1, which corresponds to a volumetric fill fraction of 9%. The effect of 100 thermal cycles from 30°C to 200°C is also studied. These data provide the groundwork for future studies of thermoelectric materials in contact with CNT films serving as both a thermal and electrical interface.

  11. Design of an integrated thermoelectric generator power converter for ultra-low power and low voltage body energy harvesters aimed at ExG active electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ataei, Milad; Robert, Christian; Boegli, Alexis; Farine, Pierre-André

    2015-10-01

    This paper describes a detailed design procedure for an efficient thermal body energy harvesting integrated power converter. The procedure is based on the examination of power loss and power transfer in a converter for a self-powered medical device. The efficiency limit for the system is derived and the converter is optimized for the worst case scenario. All optimum system parameters are calculated respecting the transducer constraints and the application form factor. Circuit blocks including pulse generators are implemented based on the system specifications and optimized converter working frequency. At this working condition, it has been demonstrated that the wide area capacitor of the voltage doubler, which provides high voltage switch gating, can be eliminated at the expense of wider switches. With this method, measurements show that 54% efficiency is achieved for just a 20 mV transducer output voltage and 30% of the chip area is saved. The entire electronic board can fit in one EEG or ECG electrode, and the electronic system can convert the electrode to an active electrode.

  12. Research Update: Oxide thermoelectrics: Beyond the conventional design rules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terasaki, Ichiro

    2016-10-01

    Materials' design for high-performance thermoelectric oxides is discussed. Since chemical stability at high temperature in air is a considerable advantage in oxides, we evaluate thermoelectric power factor in the high temperature limit. We show that highly disordered materials can be good thermoelectric materials at high temperatures, and the effects of strong correlation can further enhance the figure of merit by adding thermopower arising from the spin and orbital degrees of freedom. We also discuss the Kelvin formula as a promising expression for strongly correlated materials and show that the calculation based on the Kelvin formula can be directly compared with the cross-layer thermopower of layered materials.

  13. Enhancement of automotive exhaust heat recovery by thermoelectric devices

    SciTech Connect

    Ibrahim, Essam; Szybist, James P; Parks, II, James E

    2010-01-01

    In an effort to improve automobile fuel economy, an experimental study is undertaken to explore practical aspects of implementing thermoelectric devices for exhaust gas energy recovery. A highly instrumented apparatus consisting of a hot (exhaust gas) and a cold (coolant liquid) side rectangular ducts enclosing the thermoelectric elements has been built. Measurements of thermoelectric voltage output and flow and surface temperatures were acquired and analyzed to investigate the power generation and heat transfer properties of the apparatus. Effects of inserting aluminum wool packing material inside the hot side duct on augmentation of heat transfer from the gas stream to duct walls were studied. Data were collected for both the unpacked and packed cases to allow for detection of packing influence on flow and surface temperatures. Effects of gas and coolant inlet temperatures as well as gas flow rate on the thermoelectric power output were examined. The results indicate that thermoelectric power production is increased at higher gas inlet temperature or flow rate. However, thermoelectric power generation decreases with a higher coolant temperature as a consequence of the reduced hot-cold side temperature differential. For the hot-side duct, a large temperature gradient exists between the gas and solid surface temperature due to poor heat transfer through the gaseous medium. Adding the packing material inside the exhaust duct enhanced heat transfer and hence raised hot-side duct surface temperatures and thermoelectric power compared to the unpacked duct, particularly where the gas-to-surface temperature differential is highest. Therefore it is recommended that packing of exhaust duct becomes common practice in thermoelectric waste energy harvesting applications.

  14. Thermoelectric properties of Al-doped Mg2Si thin films deposited by magnetron sputtering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhi-jian; Zhou, Bai-yang; Li, Jian-xin; Wen, Cui-lian

    2016-11-01

    The Al-doped Mg2Si thin films were fabricated by two-target alternative magnetron sputtering technique, and the influences of different Al doping contents on the thermoelectric properties of Al-doped Mg2Si thin films were investigated. The compositions, crystal structures, electronic transport properties and thermoelectric properties of the thin films were examined using energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Hall coefficient measurement and Seebeck coefficient measurement system, respectively. The EDS results show that the thin films doped with Al target sputtering power of 30 W, 60 W and 90 W have the Al content of 0.68 at.%, 1.56 at.% and 2.85 at.%, respectively. XRD results indicate that the diffraction peaks of Mg2Si become stronger with increasing Al dopant. The results of Hall coefficient measurement and Seebeck coefficient measurement system reveal that all the samples are n-type. The conductivities of Al-doped Mg2Si thin films are significantly greater than that of undoped Mg2Si thin film, and increase with increasing Al doping content. With the increase of temperature, the absolute value of the Seebeck coefficients of Mg2Si base thin films increase firstly and then decrease. The maximum power factor obtained is 3.8 mW m-1 k-2 for 1.56 at.% Al-doped Mg2Si thin film at 573 K.

  15. In-Situ Growth of Yb2O3 Layer for Sublimation Suppression for Yb14MnSb11 Thermoelectric Material for Space Power Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nesbitt, James A.; Opila, Elizabeth J.; Nathal, Michael V.

    2012-01-01

    The compound Yb14MnSb11 is a p-type thermoelectric material of interest to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) as a candidate replacement for the state-of-the-art Si-Ge used in current radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). Ideally, the hot end of this leg would operate at 1000 C in the vacuum of space. Although Yb14MnSb11 shows the potential to double the value of the thermoelectric figure of merit (zT) over that of Si-Ge at 1000 C, it suffers from a high sublimation rate at elevated temperatures and would require a coating in order to survive the required RTG lifetime of 14 years. The purpose of the present work is to measure the sublimation rate of Yb14MnSb11 and to investigate sublimation suppression for this material. This paper reports on the sublimation rate of Yb14MnSb11 at 1000 C (approximately 3 x 10(exp -3) grams per square centimeter hour) and efforts to reduce the sublimation rate with an in situ grown Yb2O3 layer. Despite the success in forming thin, dense, continuous, and adherent oxide scales on Yb14MnSb11, the scales did not prove to be sublimation barriers.

  16. Absolute nuclear material assay

    DOEpatents

    Prasad, Manoj K.; Snyderman, Neal J.; Rowland, Mark S.

    2012-05-15

    A method of absolute nuclear material assay of an unknown source comprising counting neutrons from the unknown source and providing an absolute nuclear material assay utilizing a model to optimally compare to the measured count distributions. In one embodiment, the step of providing an absolute nuclear material assay comprises utilizing a random sampling of analytically computed fission chain distributions to generate a continuous time-evolving sequence of event-counts by spreading the fission chain distribution in time.

  17. Absolute nuclear material assay

    DOEpatents

    Prasad, Manoj K.; Snyderman, Neal J.; Rowland, Mark S.

    2010-07-13

    A method of absolute nuclear material assay of an unknown source comprising counting neutrons from the unknown source and providing an absolute nuclear material assay utilizing a model to optimally compare to the measured count distributions. In one embodiment, the step of providing an absolute nuclear material assay comprises utilizing a random sampling of analytically computed fission chain distributions to generate a continuous time-evolving sequence of event-counts by spreading the fission chain distribution in time.

  18. Boosting thermoelectric efficiency using time-dependent control.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Hangbo; Thingna, Juzar; Hänggi, Peter; Wang, Jian-Sheng; Li, Baowen

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric efficiency is defined as the ratio of power delivered to the load of a device to the rate of heat flow from the source. Till date, it has been studied in presence of thermodynamic constraints set by the Onsager reciprocal relation and the second law of thermodynamics that severely bottleneck the thermoelectric efficiency. In this study, we propose a pathway to bypass these constraints using a time-dependent control and present a theoretical framework to study dynamic thermoelectric transport in the far from equilibrium regime. The presence of a control yields the sought after substantial efficiency enhancement and importantly a significant amount of power supplied by the control is utilised to convert the wasted-heat energy into useful-electric energy. Our findings are robust against nonlinear interactions and suggest that external time-dependent forcing, which can be incorporated with existing devices, provides a beneficial scheme to boost thermoelectric efficiency.

  19. Boosting thermoelectric efficiency using time-dependent control.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Hangbo; Thingna, Juzar; Hänggi, Peter; Wang, Jian-Sheng; Li, Baowen

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric efficiency is defined as the ratio of power delivered to the load of a device to the rate of heat flow from the source. Till date, it has been studied in presence of thermodynamic constraints set by the Onsager reciprocal relation and the second law of thermodynamics that severely bottleneck the thermoelectric efficiency. In this study, we propose a pathway to bypass these constraints using a time-dependent control and present a theoretical framework to study dynamic thermoelectric transport in the far from equilibrium regime. The presence of a control yields the sought after substantial efficiency enhancement and importantly a significant amount of power supplied by the control is utilised to convert the wasted-heat energy into useful-electric energy. Our findings are robust against nonlinear interactions and suggest that external time-dependent forcing, which can be incorporated with existing devices, provides a beneficial scheme to boost thermoelectric efficiency. PMID:26464021

  20. Thermoelectric harvesting of low temperature natural/waste heat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, David Michael

    2012-06-01

    Apart from specialized space requirements current development in applications of thermoelectric generation mainly relate to reducing harmful carbon emissions and decreasing costly fuel consumption through the recovery of exhaust heat from fossil fuel powered engines and emissions from industrial utilities. Focus on these applications is to the detriment of the wider exploitations of thermoelectrics with other sources of heat energy, and in particular natural occurring and waste low temperature heat, receiving little, if any, attention. In this presentation thermoelectric generation applications, both potential and real in harvesting low temperature waste/natural heat are reviewed. The use of thermoelectrics to harvest solar energy, ocean thermal energy, geothermal heat and waste heat are discussed and their credibility as future large-scale sources of electrical power assessed.

  1. Boosting thermoelectric efficiency using time-dependent control

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Hangbo; Thingna, Juzar; Hänggi, Peter; Wang, Jian-Sheng; Li, Baowen

    2015-01-01

    Thermoelectric efficiency is defined as the ratio of power delivered to the load of a device to the rate of heat flow from the source. Till date, it has been studied in presence of thermodynamic constraints set by the Onsager reciprocal relation and the second law of thermodynamics that severely bottleneck the thermoelectric efficiency. In this study, we propose a pathway to bypass these constraints using a time-dependent control and present a theoretical framework to study dynamic thermoelectric transport in the far from equilibrium regime. The presence of a control yields the sought after substantial efficiency enhancement and importantly a significant amount of power supplied by the control is utilised to convert the wasted-heat energy into useful-electric energy. Our findings are robust against nonlinear interactions and suggest that external time-dependent forcing, which can be incorporated with existing devices, provides a beneficial scheme to boost thermoelectric efficiency. PMID:26464021

  2. Boosting thermoelectric efficiency using time-dependent control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Hangbo; Thingna, Juzar; Hänggi, Peter; Wang, Jian-Sheng; Li, Baowen

    2015-10-01

    Thermoelectric efficiency is defined as the ratio of power delivered to the load of a device to the rate of heat flow from the source. Till date, it has been studied in presence of thermodynamic constraints set by the Onsager reciprocal relation and the second law of thermodynamics that severely bottleneck the thermoelectric efficiency. In this study, we propose a pathway to bypass these constraints using a time-dependent control and present a theoretical framework to study dynamic thermoelectric transport in the far from equilibrium regime. The presence of a control yields the sought after substantial efficiency enhancement and importantly a significant amount of power supplied by the control is utilised to convert the wasted-heat energy into useful-electric energy. Our findings are robust against nonlinear interactions and suggest that external time-dependent forcing, which can be incorporated with existing devices, provides a beneficial scheme to boost thermoelectric efficiency.

  3. Thermoelectric Properties of Selenides Spinels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snyder, G.; Caillat, T.; Fleurial, J-P.

    2000-01-01

    Many compounds with the spinel structure type have been analyzed for their thermoelectric properties. Published data was used to augment experimental results presented here to select promising thermoelectric spinels.

  4. Hybrid thermoelectric solar collector design and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, A. S., Jr.; Shaheen, K. E.

    1982-01-01

    A flat-plate solar collector is conceived where energy cascades through thermoelectric power modules generating direct-current electricity. The intent of this work was to choose a collector configuration and to perform a steady-state thermal performance assessment. A set of energy balance equations were written and solved numerically for the purpose of optimizing collector thermal and electrical performance. The collector design involves finned columns of thermoelectric modules imbedded in the absorber plate (hot junction) over a parallel array of vertical tubes. The thermoelectric power output is limited by the small hot-junction/cold-junction temperature difference which can be maintained under steady-state conditions. The electric power per unit tube pass area is found to have a maximum as a function of a geometric parameter, while electric power is maximized with respect to an electric resistance ratio. Although the electric power efficiency is small, results indicate that there is sufficient electric power production to drive a coolant circulator, suggesting the potential for a stand-alone system.

  5. The Absolute Spectrum Polarimeter (ASP)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kogut, A. J.

    2010-01-01

    The Absolute Spectrum Polarimeter (ASP) is an Explorer-class mission to map the absolute intensity and linear polarization of the cosmic microwave background and diffuse astrophysical foregrounds over the full sky from 30 GHz to 5 THz. The principal science goal is the detection and characterization of linear polarization from an inflationary epoch in the early universe, with tensor-to-scalar ratio r much greater than 1O(raised to the power of { -3}) and Compton distortion y < 10 (raised to the power of{-6}). We describe the ASP instrument and mission architecture needed to detect the signature of an inflationary epoch in the early universe using only 4 semiconductor bolometers.

  6. Interpretation of thermoelectric properties of Cu substituted LaCoO{sub 3} ceramics

    SciTech Connect

    Choudhary, K. K.; Kaurav, N.; Sharma, U.; Ghosh, S. K.

    2014-04-24

    The thermoelectric properties of LaCo{sub 1−x}Cu{sub x}O{sub 3−δ} is theoretically analyzed, it is observed that thermoelectric figure of merit ZT (=S{sup 2}σT/κ) is maximized by Cu substitution in LaCoO{sub 3} Ceramics at x=0.15. The lattice thermal conductivity and thermoelectric power were estimated by the scattering of phonons with defects, grain boundaries, electrons and phonons to evaluate the thermoelectric properties. We found that Cu substitution increase the phonon scattering with grain boundaries and defects which significantly increase the thermoelectric power and decrease the thermal conductivity. The present numerical analysis will help in designing more efficient thermoelectric materials.

  7. An electronic cryoprobe for cryosurgery using heat pipes and thermoelectric coolers: a preliminary report.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, A; Hu, J

    1993-01-01

    A hand-held fully electrically powered and programmable cryoprobe for general-purpose cryosurgery and cryotherapy has been developed. By combining the technologies of thermoelectric cooling and heat pipes, the temperature at the tip of the probe can easily reach -50 to -60 degrees C. It can hold below -40 degrees C when it cools a load of 10 W at the tip. Previous efforts developing cryoprobes made of thermoelectric modules have been hindered by the inherent characteristics of commercially available thermoelectric coolers: low efficiency, size and inflexible shape and very sensitive to heat intensity and thermal insulation. Matching thermoelectrics with heat pipes uses the advantages of both technologies. In the cryoprobe the heat pipe is used to focus and transport the cooling power of multi-thermoelectric modules. The heat flux for the thermoelectric modules is reduced and their efficiencies are increased. The transport of heat by a heat pipe also allows flexible access to treated spots of patients.

  8. Investigation of the photovoltaic cell/ thermoelectric element hybrid system performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cotfas, D. T.; Cotfas, P. A.; Machidon, O. M.; Ciobanu, D.

    2016-06-01

    The PV/TEG hybrid system, consisting of the photovoltaic cells and thermoelectric element, is presented in the paper. The dependence of the PV/TEG hybrid system parameters on the illumination levels and the temperature is analysed. The maxim power values of the photovoltaic cell, of the thermoelectric element and of the PV/TEG system are calculated and a comparison between them is presented and analysed. An economic analysis is also presented.

  9. Design of an Integrated Thermoelectric Generator Power Converter for Ultra-Low Power and Low Voltage Body Energy Harvesters aimed at EEG/ECG Active Electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ataei, Milad; Robert, Christian; Boegli, Alexis; Farine, Pierre-André

    2014-11-01

    This paper describes a design procedure for an efficient body thermal energy harvesting integrated power converter. This procedure is based on loss examination for a selfpowered medical device. All optimum system parameters are calculated respecting the transducer constraints and the application form factor. It is found that it is possible to optimize converter's working frequency with proper design of its pulse generator circuit. At selected frequency, it has been demonstrated that wide area voltage doubler can be eliminated at the expense of wider switches. With this method, more than 60% efficiency is achieved in simulation for just 20mV transducer output voltage and 30% of entire chip area is saved.

  10. [Thermoregulating devices for artificial circulation apparatus with thermoelectric elements].

    PubMed

    Efremov, A A; Andrushchenko, L I

    1981-01-01

    The increase of the absolute capacity of temperature control devices used in extracorporeal blood circulation apparatus has necessitated the intensification of heat exchange and, as a consequence, the work of heat exchangers under anisothermal conditions. This concerns mainly thermoelectric temperature control devices. Calculations in the process of their design and, to a greater extent, the optimization of their parameters under the conditions of anisothermality in the soldered joints become far more complicated. The numerical analysis of such thermoelectric device with anisothermal soldered joints has demonstrated the possibility of its analytical optimization by assuming it to be a thermoelectric device working under the average effective values of temperature and the coefficients of electrical characteristics. The results thus obtained allow to considerably decrease labor consumption in designing the above-mentioned devices. PMID:7207094

  11. Transport and first-principles study of novel thermoelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chi, Hang

    Thermoelectric materials can recover waste industrial heat and convert it to electricity as well as provide efficient local cooling of electronic devices. The efficiency of such environmentally responsible and exceptionally reliable solid state energy conversion is determined by the dimensionless figure-of-merit ZT = alpha2 sigmaT/kappa, where alpha is the Seebeck coefficient, sigma is the electrical conductivity, kappa is the thermal conductivity, and T is the absolute temperature. The goal of the thesis is to (i) illustrate the physics to achieve high ZT of advanced thermoelectric materials and (ii) explore fundamental structure and transport properties in novel condensed matter systems, via an approach combining comprehensive experimental techniques and state-of-the-art first-principles simulation methods. Thermo-galvanomagnetic transport coefficients are derived from Onsager's reciprocal relations and evaluated via solving Boltzmann transport equation using Fermi-Dirac statistics, under the relaxation time approximation. Such understanding provides insights on enhancing ZT through two physically intuitive and very effective routes: (i) improving power factor PF = alpha2sigma; and (ii) reducing thermal conductivity kappa, as demonstrated in the cases of Mg2Si1-xSnx solid solution and Ge/Te double substituted skutterudites CoSb3(1-x)Ge1.5x Te1.5x, respectively. Motivated by recent theoretical predictions of enhanced thermoelectric performance in highly mismatched alloys, ZnTe:N molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) films deposited on GaAs (100) substrates are carefully examined, which leads to a surprising discovery of significant phonon-drag thermopower (reaching 1-2 mV/K-1) at ~13 K. Further systematic study in Bi2Te3 MBE thin films grown on sapphire (0001) and/or BaF2 (111) substrates, reveal that the peak of phonon drag can be tuned by the choice of substrates with different Debye temperatures. Moreover, the detailed transport and structure studies of Bi2-xTl xTe3

  12. Analysis of Advanced Thermoelectric Materials and Their Functional Limits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Hyun Jung

    2015-01-01

    The world's demand for energy is increasing dramatically, but the best energy conversion systems operate at approximately 30% efficiency. One way to decrease energy loss is in the recovery of waste heat using thermoelectric (TE) generators. A TE generator is device that generates electricity by exploiting heat flow across a thermal gradient. The efficiency of a TE material for power generation and cooling is determined by the dimensionless Figure of Merit (ZT): ZT = S(exp. 2)sigmaT/?: where S is the Seebeck coefficient, sigma is the electrical conductivity, T is the absolute temperature, and ? is the thermal conductivity. The parameters are not physically independent, but intrinsically coupled since they are a function of the transport properties of electrons. Traditional research on TE materials has focused on synthesizing bulk semiconductor-type materials that have low thermal conductivity and high electrical conductivity affording ZT values of 1. The optimization of the s/? ratio is difficult to achieve using current material formats, as these material constants are complementary. Recent areas of research are focusing on using nanostructural artifacts that introduce specific dislocations and boundary conditions that scatter the phonons. This disrupts the physical link between thermal (phonon) and electrical (electron) transport. The result is that ? is decreased without decreasing s. These material formats give ZT values of up to 2 which represent approximately 18% energy gain from waste heat recovery. The next challenge in developing the next generation of TE materials with superior performance is to tailor the interconnected thermoelectric physical parameters of the material system. In order to approach this problem, the fundamental physics of each parameter S, sigma, and ? need to be physically understood in their context of electron/phonon interaction for the construction of new high ZT thermoelectric devices. Is it possible to overcome the physical limit

  13. Thermoelectric energy converter for generation of electricity from low-grade heat

    DOEpatents

    Jayadev, T.S.; Benson, D.K.

    1980-05-27

    A thermoelectric energy conversion device which includes a plurality of thermoelectric elements is described. A hot liquid is supplied to one side of each element and a cold liquid is supplied to the other side of each element. The thermoelectric generator may be utilized to produce power from low-grade heat sources such as ocean thermal gradients, solar ponds, and low-grade geothermal resources. (WHK)

  14. Superconducting thermoelectric generator

    DOEpatents

    Metzger, J.D.; El-Genk, M.S.

    1994-01-01

    Thermoelectricity is produced by applying a temperature differential to dissimilar electrically conducting or semiconducting materials, thereby producing a voltage that is proportional to the temperature difference. Thermoelectric generators use this effect to directly convert heat into electricity; however, presently-known generators have low efficiencies due to the production of high currents which in turn cause large resistive heating losses. Some thermoelectric generators operate at efficiencies between 4% and 7% in the 800{degrees} to 1200{degrees}C range. According to its major aspects and bradly stated, the present invention is an apparatus and method for producing electricity from heat. In particular, the invention is a thermoelectric generator that juxtaposes a superconducting material and a semiconducting material - so that the superconducting and the semiconducting materials touch - to convert heat energy into electrical energy without resistive losses in the temperature range below the critical temperature of the superconducting material. Preferably, an array of superconducting material is encased in one of several possible configurations within a second material having a high thermal conductivity, preferably a semiconductor, to form a thermoelectric generator.

  15. Thin-film superlattice thermoelectric materials and device technologies for energy harvesting applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stokes, C. David; Duff, Eric A.; Mantini, Mike J.; Grant, Brian A.; Barletta, Philip P.; Venkatasubramanian, Rama

    2010-04-01

    There is increasing need for self-sufficient power sources for wireless sensors and electronics that can extend device performance beyond what is available from conventional batteries. Thermoelectric approaches for developing such power sources using geothermal and body heat are attractive. RTI has developed a prototype "thermal ground stake" wireless sensor node powered by thermoelectric (TE) energy harvesting that lends itself to unattended ground sensors for covert military and intelligence operations where TE powered sensors are concealed in the ground. In another application, RTI International and QUASAR are jointly developing an integrated body-worn biosensor system powered by body heat thermoelectric energy harvesting.

  16. Thermal Expansion Studies of Selected High-Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravi, Vilupanur; Firdosy, Samad; Caillat, Thierry; Brandon, Erik; van der Walde, Keith; Maricic, Lina; Sayir, Ali

    2009-07-01

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) generate electrical power by converting the heat released from the nuclear decay of radioactive isotopes (typically plutonium-238) into electricity using a thermoelectric converter. RTGs have been successfully used to power a number of space missions and have demonstrated their reliability over an extended period of time (tens of years) and are compact, rugged, radiation resistant, scalable, and produce no noise, vibration or torque during operation. System conversion efficiency for state-of-practice RTGs is about 6% and specific power ≤5.1 W/kg. A higher specific power would result in more onboard power for the same RTG mass, or less RTG mass for the same onboard power. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been leading, under the advanced thermoelectric converter (ATEC) project, the development of new high-temperature thermoelectric materials and components for integration into advanced, more efficient RTGs. Thermoelectric materials investigated to date include skutterudites, the Yb14MnSb11 compound, and SiGe alloys. The development of long-lived thermoelectric couples based on some of these materials has been initiated and is assisted by a thermomechanical stress analysis to ensure that all stresses under both fabrication and operation conditions will be within yield limits for those materials. Several physical parameters are needed as input to this analysis. Among those parameters, the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is critically important. Thermal expansion coefficient measurements of several thermoelectric materials under consideration for ATEC are described in this paper. The stress response at the interfaces in material stacks subjected to changes in temperature is discussed, drawing on work from the literature and project-specific tools developed here. The degree of CTE mismatch and the associated effect on the formation of stress is highlighted.

  17. Thermal Expansion Studies of Selected High Temperature Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ravi, Vilupanur; Firdosy, Samad; Caillat, Thierry; Brandon, Erik; Van Der Walde, Keith; Maricic, Lina; Sayir, Ali

    2008-01-01

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) generate electrical power by converting the heat released from the nuclear decay of radioactive isotopes (typically plutonium-238) into electricity using a thermoelectric converter. RTGs have been successfully used to power a number of space missions and have demonstrated their reliability over an extended period of time (tens of years) and are compact, rugged, radiation resistant, scalable, and produce no noise, vibration or torque during operation. System conversion efficiency for state-of-practice RTGs is about 6% and specific power less than or equal to 5.1 W/kg. Higher specific power would result in more on-board power for the same RTG mass, or less RTG mass for the same on-board power. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been leading, under the advanced thermoelectric converter (ATEC) project, the development of new high-temperature thermoelectric materials and components for integration into advanced, more efficient RTGs. Thermoelectric materials investigated to date include skutterudites, the Yb14MnSb11 compound, and SiGe alloys. The development of long-lived thermoelectric couples based on some of these materials has been initiated and is assisted by a thermo-mechanical stress analysis to ensure that all stresses under both fabrication and operation conditions will be within yield limits for those materials. Several physical parameters are needed as input to this analysis. Among those parameters, the coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is critically important. Thermal expansion coefficient measurements of several thermoelectric materials under consideration for ATEC are described in this paper. The stress response at the interfaces in material stacks subjected to changes in temperature is discussed, drawing on work from the literature and project-specific tools developed here. The degree of CTE mismatch and the associated effect on the formation of stress is highlighted.

  18. Nanoscale thermal and thermoelectric transport in silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryu, Hyuk Ju

    Hotspots on microchips are a major challenge for the semiconductor industry. To understand heat conduction from hotspots on silicon, measurements of the thermal resistance and transfer function have been performed using patterned nanoheater/sensor pairs with width from 100 nm up to 5000 nm at temperature range of 30 ˜ 300 K. Calculations of the thermal resistance based on a simple thermal model, considering resistances by spreading, interface, and localized heating match with the measurements. The results reveal several important trends indicating the prevalence of localized heating or sub-continuum transport phenomena in the vicinity of a nanoscale hotspot. Thermoelectric cooling is a possible solution to cope with the hotspot issue. Silicon, in a nanostructured form, is an interesting thermoelectric material, because of significantly reduced thermal conductivity. However, further improvement in thermoelectric efficiency is highly desirable. Thermopower measurements of silicon nanoribbons with an integrated gate have been performed. The gate in the device is used to provide strong carrier confinement and enable tunability of the carrier density over a wide range, which is fully compatible with conventional silicon processing and microelectronics. It therefore offers a promising alternative to doping when considering the thermoelectric engineering of nanostructures. An enhancement of thermoelectric power factor has been observed in silicon nanoribbons. This enhancement can be understood by considering its behavior as a function of carrier density. We identify the underlying mechanisms for the power factor in the nanoribbon, which include quantum confinement, low scattering due to the absence of dopants, and, at low temperatures, a significant phonon drag contribution.

  19. The design of Cu-doped ZnO thermoelectric module (simulation study)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadi, Syamsul; Suratwan, Agus; Kurniawan, Agus; Budiana, Eko Prasetya; Suyitno

    2016-03-01

    The p-type semiconductor of Cu-doped ZnO-based thermoelectric material has already been synthesized and studied as an energy harvester. The next challenge is manufacturing the thermoelectric module in the development of thermoelectric as an eco-friendly material in the future. This research aims to investigate the effect of thermoelectric geometric design on the electrical output power and voltage and to recommend the most appropriate thermoelectric geometric design. The design of thermoelectric generator (TEG) includes the determinations of dimension (width, length, and height), number of modules, and semiconductor materials. The simulation used the coupled-field analysis of ANSYS APDL 14.5 in the steady state condition. The p- and n- type thermoelectric material used Cu-doped ZnO and Al-doped ZnO, respectively. The width of element and the number of thermoelectric module were varied to obtain a thermoelectric design, which produces the largest current, power, and voltage. The result of research shows that the t hermoelectric generator with the element widths of 0.94 mm, 1.125 mm, 1.05 mm, and 1.2 mm generates the largest power output and voltage, namely: 0.32 W and 0.89 V, 0.38 W and 0.98 V, 0.45 W and 1.06 V, and 0.52 W and 1.13 V, respectively.

  20. Modeling of concentrating solar thermoelectric generators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McEnaney, Kenneth; Kraemer, Daniel; Ren, Zhifeng; Chen, Gang

    2011-10-01

    The conversion of solar power into electricity is dominated by non-concentrating photovoltaics and concentrating solar thermal systems. Recently, it has been shown that solar thermoelectric generators (STEGs) are a viable alternative in the non-concentrating regime. This paper addresses the possibility of STEGs being used as the power block in concentrating solar power systems. STEG power blocks have no moving parts, they are scalable, and they eliminate the need for an external traditional thermomechanical generator, such as a steam turbine or Stirling engine. Using existing skutterudite and bismuth telluride materials, concentrating STEGs can have efficiencies exceeding 10% based on a geometric optical concentration ratio of 45.

  1. Thermoelectrically cooled water trap

    DOEpatents

    Micheels, Ronald H.

    2006-02-21

    A water trap system based on a thermoelectric cooling device is employed to remove a major fraction of the water from air samples, prior to analysis of these samples for chemical composition, by a variety of analytical techniques where water vapor interferes with the measurement process. These analytical techniques include infrared spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, ion mobility spectrometry and gas chromatography. The thermoelectric system for trapping water present in air samples can substantially improve detection sensitivity in these analytical techniques when it is necessary to measure trace analytes with concentrations in the ppm (parts per million) or ppb (parts per billion) partial pressure range. The thermoelectric trap design is compact and amenable to use in a portable gas monitoring instrumentation.

  2. Interference enhanced thermoelectricity in quinoid type structures.

    PubMed

    Strange, M; Seldenthuis, J S; Verzijl, C J O; Thijssen, J M; Solomon, G C

    2015-02-28

    Quantum interference (QI) effects in molecular junctions may be used to obtain large thermoelectric responses. We study the electrical conductance G and the thermoelectric response of a series of molecules featuring a quinoid core using density functional theory, as well as a semi-empirical interacting model Hamiltonian describing the π-system of the molecule which we treat in the GW approximation. Molecules with a quinoid type structure are shown to have two distinct destructive QI features close to the frontier orbital energies. These manifest themselves as two dips in the transmission, that remain separated, even when either electron donating or withdrawing side groups are added. We find that the position of the dips in the transmission and the frontier molecular levels can be chemically controlled by varying the electron donating or withdrawing character of the side groups as well as the conjugation length inside the molecule. This feature results in a very high thermoelectric power factor S(2)G and figure of merit ZT, where S is the Seebeck coefficient, making quinoid type molecules potential candidates for efficient thermoelectric devices. PMID:25725747

  3. Interference enhanced thermoelectricity in quinoid type structures

    SciTech Connect

    Strange, M. Solomon, G. C.; Seldenthuis, J. S.; Verzijl, C. J. O.; Thijssen, J. M.

    2015-02-28

    Quantum interference (QI) effects in molecular junctions may be used to obtain large thermoelectric responses. We study the electrical conductance G and the thermoelectric response of a series of molecules featuring a quinoid core using density functional theory, as well as a semi-empirical interacting model Hamiltonian describing the π-system of the molecule which we treat in the GW approximation. Molecules with a quinoid type structure are shown to have two distinct destructive QI features close to the frontier orbital energies. These manifest themselves as two dips in the transmission, that remain separated, even when either electron donating or withdrawing side groups are added. We find that the position of the dips in the transmission and the frontier molecular levels can be chemically controlled by varying the electron donating or withdrawing character of the side groups as well as the conjugation length inside the molecule. This feature results in a very high thermoelectric power factor S{sup 2}G and figure of merit ZT, where S is the Seebeck coefficient, making quinoid type molecules potential candidates for efficient thermoelectric devices.

  4. Shockwave Consolidation of Nanostructured Thermoelectric Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prasad, Narasimha S.; Taylor, Patrick; Nemir, David

    2014-01-01

    Nanotechnology based thermoelectric materials are considered attractive for developing highly efficient thermoelectric devices. Nano-structured thermoelectric materials are predicted to offer higher ZT over bulk materials by reducing thermal conductivity and increasing electrical conductivity. Consolidation of nano-structured powders into dense materials without losing nanostructure is essential towards practical device development. Using the gas atomization process, amorphous nano-structured powders were produced. Shockwave consolidation is accomplished by surrounding the nanopowder-containing tube with explosives and then detonating. The resulting shock wave causes rapid fusing of the powders without the melt and subsequent grain growth. We have been successful in generating consolidated nano-structured bismuth telluride alloy powders by using the shockwave technique. Using these consolidated materials, several types of thermoelectric power generating devices have been developed. Shockwave consolidation is anticipated to generate large quantities of nanostructred materials expeditiously and cost effectively. In this paper, the technique of shockwave consolidation will be presented followed by Seebeck Coefficient and thermal conductivity measurements of consolidated materials. Preliminary results indicate a substantial increase in electrical conductivity due to shockwave consolidation technique.

  5. Enhanced power factor and reduced thermal conductivity of a half-Heusler derivative Ti{sub 9}Ni{sub 7}Sn{sub 8}: A bulk nanocomposite thermoelectric material

    SciTech Connect

    Misra, D. K. E-mail: dakkmisra@gmail.com; Rajput, A.; Bhardwaj, A.; Chauhan, N. S.; Singh, Sanjay

    2015-03-09

    We report a half-Heusler (HH) derivative Ti{sub 9}Ni{sub 7}Sn{sub 8} with VEC = 17.25 to investigate the structural changes for the optimization of high thermoelectric performance. The structural analysis reveals that the resulting material is a nanocomposite of HH and full-Heusler with traces of Ti{sub 6}Sn{sub 5} type-phase. Interestingly, present nanocomposite exhibits a significant decrease in thermal conductivity due to phonon scattering and improvement in the power factor due to combined effect of nanoinclusion-induced electron injection and electron scattering at interfaces, leading to a boost in the ZT value to 0.32 at 773 K, which is 60% higher than its bulk counterpart HH TiNiSn.

  6. Synthetic thermoelectric materials comprising phononic crystals

    DOEpatents

    El-Kady, Ihab F; Olsson, Roy H; Hopkins, Patrick; Reinke, Charles; Kim, Bongsang

    2013-08-13

    Synthetic thermoelectric materials comprising phononic crystals can simultaneously have a large Seebeck coefficient, high electrical conductivity, and low thermal conductivity. Such synthetic thermoelectric materials can enable improved thermoelectric devices, such as thermoelectric generators and coolers, with improved performance. Such synthetic thermoelectric materials and devices can be fabricated using techniques that are compatible with standard microelectronics.

  7. Holey topological thermoelectrics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tretiakov, O. A.; Abanov, Ar.; Sinova, Jairo

    2011-09-01

    We study the thermoelectric properties of three-dimensional topological insulators with many holes (or pores) in the bulk. We show that at high density of these holes, the thermoelectric figure of merit, ZT, can be large due to the contribution of the conducting surfaces and the suppressed phonon thermal conductivity. The maximum efficiency can be tuned by an induced gap in the surface states dispersion through tunneling or external magnetic fields. The large values of ZT, much higher than unity for reasonable parameters, make this system a strong candidate for applications in heat management of nanodevices, especially at low temperatures.

  8. Electronic, phononic, and thermoelectric properties of graphyne sheets

    SciTech Connect

    Sevinçli, Hâldun; Sevik, Cem

    2014-12-01

    Electron, phonon, and thermoelectric transport properties of α-, β-, γ-, and 6,6,12-graphyne sheets are compared and contrasted with those of graphene. α-, β-, and 6,6,12-graphynes, with direction dependent Dirac dispersions, have higher electronic transmittance than graphene. γ-graphyne also attains better electrical conduction than graphene except at its band gap. Vibrationally, graphene conducts heat much more efficiently than graphynes, a behavior beyond an atomic density differences explanation. Seebeck coefficients of the considered Dirac materials are similar but thermoelectric power factors decrease with increasing effective speeds of light. γ-graphyne yields the highest thermoelectric efficiency with a thermoelectric figure of merit as high as ZT = 0.45, almost an order of magnitude higher than that of graphene.

  9. Multiphysics Simulation in the Development of Thermoelectric Energy Harvesting Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nesarajah, Marco; Frey, Georg

    2016-03-01

    This contribution presents a model-based development process for thermoelectric energy harvesting systems. Such systems convert thermal energy into electrical energy and produce enough energy to supply low-power devices. Realizations require three main challenges to be solved: to guarantee optimal thermal connection of the thermoelectric generators, to find a good design for the energy harvesting system, and to find an optimal electrical connection. Therefore, a development process is presented here. The process is divided into different steps and supports the developer in finding an optimal thermoelectric energy harvesting system for a given heat source and given objectives (technical and economical). During the process, several steps are supported by simulation models. Based on developed model libraries in Modelica®/Dymola®, thermal, thermoelectrical, electrical, and control components can be modeled, integrated into different variants, and verified step by step before the system is physically built and finally validated. The process is illustrated by an example through all the steps.

  10. Multilayered carbon nanotube/polymer composite based thermoelectric fabrics.

    PubMed

    Hewitt, Corey A; Kaiser, Alan B; Roth, Siegmar; Craps, Matt; Czerw, Richard; Carroll, David L

    2012-03-14

    Thermoelectrics are materials capable of the solid-state conversion between thermal and electrical energy. Carbon nanotube/polymer composite thin films are known to exhibit thermoelectric effects, however, have a low figure of merit (ZT) of 0.02. In this work, we demonstrate individual composite films of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWNT)/polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) that are layered into multiple element modules that resemble a felt fabric. The thermoelectric voltage generated by these fabrics is the sum of contributions from each layer, resulting in increased power output. Since these fabrics have the potential to be cheaper, lighter, and more easily processed than the commonly used thermoelectric bismuth telluride, the overall performance of the fabric shows promise as a realistic alternative in a number of applications such as portable lightweight electronics.

  11. Thermal Design of a Thermoelectric Micro-Generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hama, S.; Yabuki, T.; Tranchant, L.; Miyazaki, K.

    2015-12-01

    In this study, we fabricated micro thermoelectric power generator using freestanding film substrate, and we evaluated the performance of the generator from the standpoint of thermoelectric performance and thermal design. We fabricated a SiNx free-standing film substrate about 5 μm thick on Si wafer, using MEMS processes. Then, we prepared for both p and n type of bismuth telluride thermoelectric thin films by using a coaxial type vacuum arc evaporation method, and annealed for one hour at 573 K. As an electrode, Cu was deposited using a vacuum deposition method. We fabricated the thermoelectric power generator of 5 mm × 5 mm using a shadow mask for the patterning. The fabricated generator can create temperature difference of 22.3 K due to its high thermal resistance of the structure when the heat source temperature is 373 K. The exergy of the thermoelectric device is up to 7%. Therefore, the generator can convert about 0.4% of thermal energy into electric energy, even though the material performance is low with ZT = 0.28. The conversion efficiency is much higher than that of the conventional Π type thermoelectric module. It was possible to get higher performance by the thermal design, which is a more simple way than an improvement of ZT.

  12. Tuning thermoelectricity in a Bi2Se3 topological insulator via varied film thickness

    DOE PAGES

    Guo, Minghua; Wang, Zhenyu; Xu, Yong; Huang, Huaqing; Zang, Yunyi; Liu, Chang; Duan, Wenhui; Gan, Zhongxue; Zhang, Shou-Cheng; He, Ke; et al

    2016-01-12

    We report thermoelectric transport studies on Bi2Se3 topological insulator thin films with varied thickness grown by molecular beam epitaxy. We find that the Seebeck coefficient and thermoelectric power factor decrease systematically with the reduction of film thickness. These experimental observations can be explained quantitatively by theoretical calculations based on realistic electronic band structure of the Bi2Se3 thin films. Lastly, this work illustrates the crucial role played by the topological surface states on the thermoelectric transport of topological insulators, and sheds new light on further improvement of their thermoelectric performance.

  13. Performance Prediction of Commercial Thermoelectric Cooler Modules using the Effective Material Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, HoSung; Attar, Alaa M.; Weera, Sean L.

    2015-06-01

    This work examines the validity of formulating the effective thermoelectric material properties as a way to predict thermoelectric module performance. The three maximum parameters (temperature difference, current, and cooling power) of a thermoelectric cooler were formulated on the basis of the hot junction temperature. Then, the effective material properties (Seebeck coefficient, electrical resistance, and thermal conductivity) were defined in terms of the three maximum parameters that were taken from either a commercial thermoelectric cooler module or the measurements. It is demonstrated that the simple standard equation with the effective material properties predicts well the performance curves of the four selected commercial products. Normalized parameters over the maximum parameters were also formulated to present the characteristics of the thermoelectric coolers along with the normalized charts. The normalized charts would be universal for a given thermoelectric material.

  14. Absolute biological needs.

    PubMed

    McLeod, Stephen

    2014-07-01

    Absolute needs (as against instrumental needs) are independent of the ends, goals and purposes of personal agents. Against the view that the only needs are instrumental needs, David Wiggins and Garrett Thomson have defended absolute needs on the grounds that the verb 'need' has instrumental and absolute senses. While remaining neutral about it, this article does not adopt that approach. Instead, it suggests that there are absolute biological needs. The absolute nature of these needs is defended by appeal to: their objectivity (as against mind-dependence); the universality of the phenomenon of needing across the plant and animal kingdoms; the impossibility that biological needs depend wholly upon the exercise of the abilities characteristic of personal agency; the contention that the possession of biological needs is prior to the possession of the abilities characteristic of personal agency. Finally, three philosophical usages of 'normative' are distinguished. On two of these, to describe a phenomenon or claim as 'normative' is to describe it as value-dependent. A description of a phenomenon or claim as 'normative' in the third sense does not entail such value-dependency, though it leaves open the possibility that value depends upon the phenomenon or upon the truth of the claim. It is argued that while survival needs (or claims about them) may well be normative in this third sense, they are normative in neither of the first two. Thus, the idea of absolute need is not inherently normative in either of the first two senses. PMID:23586876

  15. Absolute biological needs.

    PubMed

    McLeod, Stephen

    2014-07-01

    Absolute needs (as against instrumental needs) are independent of the ends, goals and purposes of personal agents. Against the view that the only needs are instrumental needs, David Wiggins and Garrett Thomson have defended absolute needs on the grounds that the verb 'need' has instrumental and absolute senses. While remaining neutral about it, this article does not adopt that approach. Instead, it suggests that there are absolute biological needs. The absolute nature of these needs is defended by appeal to: their objectivity (as against mind-dependence); the universality of the phenomenon of needing across the plant and animal kingdoms; the impossibility that biological needs depend wholly upon the exercise of the abilities characteristic of personal agency; the contention that the possession of biological needs is prior to the possession of the abilities characteristic of personal agency. Finally, three philosophical usages of 'normative' are distinguished. On two of these, to describe a phenomenon or claim as 'normative' is to describe it as value-dependent. A description of a phenomenon or claim as 'normative' in the third sense does not entail such value-dependency, though it leaves open the possibility that value depends upon the phenomenon or upon the truth of the claim. It is argued that while survival needs (or claims about them) may well be normative in this third sense, they are normative in neither of the first two. Thus, the idea of absolute need is not inherently normative in either of the first two senses.

  16. Thermoelectric thin film thermal coating systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harpster, J. W.; Bulman, W. E.; Middleton, A. E.; Swinehart, P. R.; Braun, F. D.

    1973-01-01

    Derivation of the fluid loop temperature profile for a model with thermoelectric devices (TED) attached is developed as a function of position, incident radiation intensity, input fluid loop temperature and TED current. The associated temperature of the radiator is also developed so that the temperature difference across the TED can be determined for each position. The temperature difference is used in determining optimum operating conditions and available generated electrical power.

  17. Xenon Filled Silicon Germanium Thermoelectric Generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dewinter, F.

    1972-01-01

    An analysis is presented that shows the desirability and feasibility of using a xenon fill in the initial stages of operation of a silicon-germanium radioisotope thermoelectric generator to be used in outer-planetary exploration. The xenon cover gas offers protection against oxidation and against material sublimation, and allows the generator to deliver required power throughout the prelaunch and launch phases. The protective mechanisms afforded by the xenon cover gas and the mechanization of a xenon supply system are also discussed.

  18. Novel hybrid organic thermoelectric materials:three-component hybrid films consisting of a nanoparticle polymer complex, carbon nanotubes, and vinyl polymer.

    PubMed

    Toshima, Naoki; Oshima, Keisuke; Anno, Hiroaki; Nishinaka, Takahiko; Ichikawa, Shoko; Iwata, Arihiro; Shiraishi, Yukihide

    2015-04-01

    A novel class of hybrid organic thermoelectric materials is demonstrated for the first time for constructing flexible thermoelectric devices on polyimide substrates with high output power by using nanotechnology instead of conducting polymers such as poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene). The hybrid organic thermoelectric materials are composed of nanoparticles of a polymer complex, carbon nanotubes, and poly(vinyl chloride), and show high performance (dimensionless thermoelectric figure-of-merit, ZT ≈ 0.3, based on the thermal conductivity through the film).

  19. New materials and devices for thermoelectric applications

    SciTech Connect

    Fleurial, J.P.; Borshchevsky, A.; Caillat, T.; Ewell, R.

    1997-12-31

    The development of new, more efficient materials and devices is the key to expanding the range of application of thermoelectric generators and coolers. In the last couple of years, efforts to discover breakthrough thermoelectric materials have intensified, in particular in the US. Recent results on novel materials have already demonstrated that dimensionless figure of merit ZT values 40 to 50% larger than 1.0, the current limit, could be obtained in the 475 to 950 K temperature range. New terrestrial power generation applications have been recently described in the literature. There exists a wide range of heat source temperatures for these applications, from low grade waste heat, at 325--350 K, up to 850 to 1,100 K, such as in the heat recovery from a processing plant of combustible solid waste. The automobile industry has also recently developed a strong interest in a waste exhaust heat recovery power source operating in the 375--750 K temperature range to supplement or replace the alternator and thus decrease fuel consumption. Based on results achieved to date at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on novel materials, the performance of an advanced segmented generator design operating in a large 300--945 K temperature gradient is predicted to achieve about 15% conversion efficiency. This would be a very substantial improvement over state-of-the-art (SOA) thermoelectric power converters. Such a terrestrial power generator could be using waste heat or liquid fuels as a heat source. High performance radioisotope generators (RTG) are still of interest for deep space missions but the shift towards small, light spacecraft has developed a need for advanced power sources in the watt to milliwatt range. The powerstick concept would provide a study, compact, lightweight and low cost answer to this need. The development of thin film thermoelectric devices also offer attractive possibilities. The combination of semiconductor technology, thermoelectric films and high thermal

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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