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"Designing Nanocomposite Thermelectric Materials" icon

Designing Nanocomposite Thermelectric Materials

Thermoelectric effects are based on the difference between the average energy of the conduction electrons (or holes) and the Fermi energy. A thermoelectric material can be configured into a device for solid-state refrigeration or electrical power generation. Although these devices are presently restricted to niche applications - including beverage coolers, temperature control of communications lasers, and radioisotope thermoelectric generators for deep space probes –there is great potential for widespread application if the materials can be improved. In particular, an increase in the materials’ dimensionless figure-of-merit, ZT, from today’s values of ~1 to values above 4 would enable replacement of compressor based refrigeration with a solid-state alternative. Applications such as... Show More


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