Discipline: Technology and Engineering
Subcategory: Civil/Mechanical/Manufacturing Engineering
Room: Marriott Balcony A
Aaron Smith - Virginia State University
A thermoelectric generator is a solid state device that converts heat energy directly to electrical energy. The configuration for energy conversion includes a heat source and a heat sink in contact with the sides of the generator. The heat flows from a heat source of high temperature through the generator to a heat sink of low temperature. As a result, a direct current is produced to a load having a voltage across terminals and the amount of electric power generated is product of the current and voltage. The magnitude of the power is directly related to the temperature difference across the generator. This project resulted on an experimental study being conducted to measure the effect of the contact resistance at the interface surfaces of the generator, heat source, and heat sink on the generator’s performance. Different interface materials were used to measure output power of the generator while keeping the temperature difference between sources constant. It has shown significant improvement on the generator’s output by reducing the interfaces thermal resistance.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): Virginia State University Department of Engineering & Technology. Trojan Center for Undergrad Applied Research (TCUAR)
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Nasser Ghariban, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: Conducted and implemented the research by collecting data using Labview and Microsoft Excel to find ways to apply and improve the performance of a thermoelectric generator for future projects.