The thermoelectric properties of ErAs:InGaAlAs were characterized by variable-temperature measurements of thermal conductivity, electrical conductivity, and Seebeck coefficient from 300 K to 600 K, which shows that the ZT(=α 2σ Tκ, where α, σ, κ and T are the Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, and absolute temperature, respectively) of the material is greater than 1 at 600 K. Power generator modules of segmented elements of 300 μm Bi 2Te 3 and 50 μm thickness ErAs:(InGaAs) 1-x (InAlAs) x were fabricated and characterized. The segmented element is 1 mm × 1 mm in area, and each segment can work at different temperature ranges. An output power up to 5.5 W and an open-circuit voltage over 10 V were measured. Theoretical calculations were carried out and the results indicate that the performance of the thermoelectric generator modules can be improved further by improving the thermoelectric properties of the element material, and reducing the electrical and thermal parasitic losses.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors are grateful to Dr. Thierry Caillat at Jet Propulsion Laboratory for the variable temperature measurements of the electrical conductivities of ErAs:(InGaAs)1-x(InAlAs)x samples. We also acknowledge useful discussions with Dr. Mihal Gross. This work is supported by the Office of Naval Research Thermionic Energy Conversion Center MURI, and ONR Contract N00014-05-1-0611.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Materials Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering