Thermoelectric materials

Thermoelectric materials show the thermoelectric effect in a strong or convenient form. The thermoelectric effect refers to phenomena by which either a temperature difference creates an electric potential or an electric potential creates a temperature difference. These phenomena are known more specifically as the Seebeck . This review summaries the thermoelectric phenomena, applications and parameter . They can be used for heat harvesting and refrigeration.

In a thermoelectric material there are free electrons or holes which carry both charge and heat. To a first approximation, the electrons and holes in a thermoelectric semiconductor behave like a gas of charged particles. If a normal ( uncharged) gas is placed in a box within a temperature gradient, where one side is cold and . Such a development is contingent on identifying materials with higher thermoelectric efficiency than available at present, . This property gives rise to two distinct technological applications: the development of temperature gradients for heating and cooling devices and the generation of electrical energy from . A material that can be used to convert thermal energy into electric energy or provide refrigeration directly from electric energy.

The promise of thermoelectric materials has, it seems, run hot and cold over the decades. These materials, which can directly convert heat into electricity (and vice versa), could be a boon for everything from power generation to microprocessor cooling.

But except in a few niche applications, these . One important barrier for adopting these materials beyond niche applications is their low efficiency. He and Tritt review the mechanisms and strategies for improving thermoelectric efficiency. In this review, we discuss heat transfer in thermoelectric materials and devices, especially phonon engineering to reduce the lattice thermal conductivity of thermoelectric materials , which requires a fundamental understanding of nanoscale heat conduction physics. Over the past decade, there has been heightened interest in the field of thermo- electrics, driven by the need for more effi- cient materials for electronic refrigeration and power generation.

Some of the re- search efforts focus on minimizing the lat-. SINTEF offers comprehensive knowledge about thermoelectric materials , modules and systems for use in applications such as sensors, cooling and heating at the micro scale and above, and conversion of heat to electricity. Our capabilities include ingot casting, powder metallurgy, and metallization for the highest performing thermoelectric materials. For these reasons, research in thermoelectric materials is very active worldwide, with the field rapidly advancing into entirely new classes of materials. This encompasses not only a wide range of inorganic materials, but also organic molecules and polymers.

This Special Issue will focus on recent advances in thermoelectric . Nanotechnology can now . Specialised measurement equipment, amongst this several in- house . Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. New and old concepts in thermoelectric materials. Sootsman JR(1), Chung DY, Kanatzidis MG.

Herein we cover the key . NPL is involved in two European projects on the characterisation of thermoelectric materials and devices. Recently, an RTG was also used in Curiosity Mars rover. In these devices, radioactive decay generates heat, which is then transformed to electric power in . This paper considers the state-of-the-art and open scientific and technological questions in thermoelectric materials and devices, from phonon engineering and scattering methods, to new and complex materials and their thermoelectric behavior. The paper also describes recent approaches to create . The energy conversion efficiency is determined by the dimensionless TE figure of merit, ZT. Identifying new approaches to develop energy-saving methods and tap into new renewable energy sources is set to be the greatest challenge of the 21st Century.

INTRODUCTION A thermoelectric material is a material which generates electricity from heat through the Seebeck effect, and pumps heat through the Peltier effect. S, p, and k are thermopower, resistivity, and thermal conductivity. This process involves only the materials, which means that a thermoelectric module has no moving part, creates no soun requires no frequency alteration nor exhaust any waste.