Thanks to the discovery of a new material by University of Utah engineers, jewelry such as a ring and your body heat could generate enough electricity to power a body sensor, or a cooking pan could charge a cellphone in just a few hours.
The team, led by University of Utah materials science and engineering professor Ashutosh Tiwari, has found that a combination of the chemical elements calcium, cobalt and terbium can create an efficient, inexpensive and bio-friendly material that can generate electricity through a thermoelectric process involving heat and cold air.
Their findings were published in a new paper March 20 in the latest issue of Scientific Reports. The first author on the paper is University of Utah materials science and engineering postdoctoral researcher, Shrikant Saini.
Thermoelectric effect is a process where the temperature difference in a material generates an electrical voltage. When one end of the material is hot and the other end is cold, charge carriers from the hot end move through the material to the cold end, generating an electrical voltage. The material needs less than a one-degree difference in temperature to produce a detectable voltage.
For years, researchers have been looking for the right kind of material that makes the process more efficient and produces more electricity yet is not toxic. There are other materials that can generate power this way, such as cadmium-, telluride- or mercury-based materials, but those are toxic to humans. The unique advantage to this new material by Tiwari’s team is that it is inexpensive to produce and, mostly importantly, bio-friendly and eco-friendly while still being efficient at generating electricity, Tiwari says. Therefore, it could be safe to use with humans.
“There are no toxic chemicals involved,” he says. “It’s very efficient and can be used for a lot of day-to-day applications.”
The applications for this new material are endless, Tiwari says. It could be built into jewelry that uses body heat to power implantable medical devices such as blood-glucose monitors or heart monitors. It could be used to charge mobile devices through cooking pans, or in cars where it draws from the heat of the engine. Airplanes could generate extra power by using heat from within the cabin versus the cold air outside. Power plants also could use the material to produce more electricity from the escaped heat the plant generates.
“In power plants, about 60 percent of energy is wasted,” postdoctoral researcher, Saini, says. “With this, you could reuse some of that 60 percent.”
Finally, Tiwari says it could be used in developing countries where electricity is scarce and the only source of energy is the fire in stoves.
Learn more: LUST FOR POWER
Receive an email update when we add a new THERMOELECTRIC article.
The Latest on: Thermoelectric
via Google News
The Latest on: Thermoelectric
- Thermoelectric Cooling Devices Market by Manufacturers, Countries, Type and Application 2025 | II-VI Marlow, Micropelt, TE Technology, CUI Incon January 31, 2020 at 1:03 pm
Los Angeles, United State, 2020, The new report has been added by qyresearch.com to provide detailed insight into the global Thermoelectric Cooling Devices market. The study will help to get a better ...
- Toward Accelerated Thermoelectric Materials and Process Discoveryon January 30, 2020 at 10:48 pm
Find more information on the Altmetric Attention Score and how the score is calculated. Thermoelectric materials have the ability to convert heat energy to electrical power and vice versa. While the ...
- Band Convergence in Thermoelectric Materials: Theoretical Background and Consideration on Bi–Sb–Te Alloyson January 30, 2020 at 10:43 pm
Article Views are the COUNTER-compliant sum of full text article downloads since November 2008 (both PDF and HTML) across all institutions and individuals. These metrics are regularly updated to ...
- Wearable health tech gets efficiency upgradeon January 30, 2020 at 8:31 am
The technology relies on the same principles governing rigid thermoelectric harvesters that convert heat to electrical energy. Flexible harvesters that conform to the human body are highly desired for ...
- Nanoscale material discovery for thermoelectric energy harvesting and coolingon January 30, 2020 at 5:52 am
The EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Modelling of Heterogeneous Systems (HetSys) training programme is designed to enable students to become high-quality computational scientists who are ...
- Annular flexible thermoelectric devices with integrated-module architectureon January 29, 2020 at 1:24 pm
Organic and composite thermoelectric (TE) materials have witnessed explosive developments in recent years. Design strategy of their flexible devices is vital to achieve high performance and suit ...
- Stretchable fabric generates electric power from woven thermoelectric fiberson January 29, 2020 at 2:19 am
Assembling thermoelectric modules into fabric to harvest energy from body heat could one day power multitudinous wearable electronics. However, the invalid 2D architecture of fabric limits the ...
- Global thermoelectric generators market is expected to grow with a CAGR of 13.6% over the forecast period from 2019-2025on January 27, 2020 at 1:15 pm
/PRNewswire/ -- The report on the global thermoelectric generators market provides qualitative and quantitative analysis for the period from 2017 to 2025.
- Generator powered by body heat gets improvements for use with IoT deviceson January 24, 2020 at 12:41 pm
One of the major breakthroughs of this design was that it resolved the challenge of width by replacing conventional thermoelectric generators with the woven semiconductor strings. Kazuaki Yazawa, a ...
via Bing News