High Power Density, Lightweight Thermoelectric Metamaterials for Energy Harvesting

Metadata Updated: February 28, 2019

Thermoelectric energy harvesting utilizes materials that generate an electrical current when subjected to a temperature gradient, or simply, a hot and cold source of heat. The temperature gradient source is irrelevant resulting in an exceptionally diverse energy harvesting device. The efficiency of thermoelectric generators however, is lower than comparable alternative energy sources such as photovoltaics. Efforts to increase the efficiency have focused primarily on creating new materials through solid state chemistry. Some minor advances have been made; however, in order to meet the needs of NASA mission activities, the efficiency of thermoelectric generators needs to be increased substantially. Moreover, future power generation systems should exhibit a high power density (watts per area and watts per mass), reduced weight and become a transformational enabling technology that delivers affordable and abundant power. Consequently, this research proposal encompasses a method to substantially increase the thermoelectric power generation efficiency and power density while simultaneously decreasing the thermoelectric material weight. In conclusion, the primary goal of this proposal is to fabricate and test a lightweight thermoelectric metamaterial designed to exhibit high energy conversion efficiency and power density through engineered control over the thermal properties. Additional research goals include the advancement of theoretical understanding of thermoelectric metamaterials, development of computational capabilities for optimization and testing of an actual thermoelectric metamaterial module. The objective of this project is to precisely control the flow of thermal, electrical and thermoelectrical energy by advancing the development of a new class of thermoelectric (TE) materials. The goals of this project are to (1) optimize metamaterial structure so power generation efficiency can be increased; (2) synthesize high power factor materials once deemed inappropriate for efficient thermoelectrical operation due to their large thermal conductivity; (3) assemble and test a thermoelectric module with an optimized TE metamaterial; and then finally, (4) characterize, on a micron scale, the thermal behavior of the metamaterial. Thermal behavior must be experimentally characterized, under a variety of operating conditions, using a research grade infrared (IR) camera. The results will enable validation studies with finite element models.

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Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: U.S. Government Work

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Metadata Created Date August 1, 2018
Metadata Updated Date February 28, 2019

Metadata Source

Harvested from NASA Data.json

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date August 1, 2018
Metadata Updated Date February 28, 2019
Publisher Space Technology Mission Directorate
Unique Identifier TECHPORT_13757
Maintainer Email
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 026:00
Metadata Context https://project-open-data.cio.gov/v1.1/schema/catalog.jsonld
Metadata Catalog ID https://data.nasa.gov/data.json
Schema Version https://project-open-data.cio.gov/v1.1/schema
Catalog Describedby https://project-open-data.cio.gov/v1.1/schema/catalog.json
Harvest Object Id 147ed803-3144-44c0-a37e-d3a184d78bdb
Harvest Source Id 39e4ad2a-47ca-4507-8258-852babd0fd99
Harvest Source Title NASA Data.json
Data First Published 2014-09-01
Homepage URL https://techport.nasa.gov/view/13757
License http://www.usa.gov/publicdomain/label/1.0/
Data Last Modified 2018-07-19
Program Code 026:027
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash f841ce309f131c4e91a523c01b588c29fe5e72ed
Source Schema Version 1.1

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