Thermoelectric Cooling Through Thermoelectric Materials
Thermoelectric (TE) cooling has been used for thermal management of high-power-dissipating electrical components, with silent, compact, reliable, and durable characteristics and being modulated to maintain a fixed temperature. However, TE coolers currently in use have a coefficient of performance (COP) of only about 0.5. This is quite a low value compared with COPs of other cooling approaches such as air conditioners and refrigerators at levels of 3.0–5.0. With increasing demands for high performance thermoelectric coolers, advanced emerging TE materials provide probability for improving their efficiency. These emerging materials include new families of advanced bulk TE materials based on crystal structures that contain weakly bound atoms or molecules with large vibrational amplitudes at partially filled structural sites acting as effective phonon scatterers, such as skutterudites, clathrates, and oxides; low dimensional materials systems, such as quantum well superlattices, quantum wires, quantum dots, thin film or band engineering structures; as well as nanocomposites, which demonstrates much higher ZT values than that of their bulk counterparts. The nanocomposites can be fabricated inexpensively, quickly, and in a form that is compatible with existing TE device configurations. Further research in this field will allow TE cooling to play a significant role in any future thermal management solution. This chapter will review the principle, design, and application of the TE cooling, as well as the effects of the emerging novel TE materials on its efficiency. The main contents include TE effects, design methodology and multistage architecture of TE cooling devices, and advanced TE materials and future development trends.
KeywordsTiO2 Anisotropy Convection Foam Cobalt
- Bass JC, Allen DT, Ghamaty S, and Elsner NB (2004) New technology for thermoelectric cooling. 20th IEEE SEMI-THERM Symposium. http://www.hi-z.com/papers/IECEC 2004.pdf Accessed on 27 June 2010.
- Buit RJ (1980) A simplified method for thermoelectric heat pump optimization. Third International Conference on Thermoelectric Energy Conversion, Arlington, Texas, May 12–14, 1980.Google Scholar
- Cui Y (2009) Thermoelectric materials: ternary and higher oxides and tellurides. Ph.D thesis. University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. https://www.uwspace.uwaterloo.ca/bitstream/10012/4893/1/Cui_Yanjie.pdf. Accessed on 25 June 2010.
- Da Silva LW et al (2003) Micro thermoelectric cooler fabrication: Growth and characterization of patterned Sb2Te3 and Bi2Te3 films. Proceeding of the 22nd International Conference on Thermoelectrics. La Grande-Motte, France, 2003, pp. 665–668.Google Scholar
- Dresselhaus M (2009) Perspectives on recent advances in thermoelectric materials research. http://www1.eere.energy.gov/vehiclesandfuels/pdfs/thermoelectrics_app_2009/wednesday/dresselhauss.pdf. Accessed on 30 June 2010.
- Dresselhaus MS et al (2005) New directions for nanoscale thermoelectric materials research. http://trs-new.jpl.nasa.gov/dspace/bitstream/2014/39339/1/05-3896.pdf. Accessed on 18 June 2010.
- Ferrotec (2010) Thermoelectric technical reference – Introduction to thermoelectric cooling. http://www.ferrotec.com/technology/thermoelectric/thermalRef01/. Accessed on 26 June 2010.
- Goldsmid H (1986) Electronic refrigeration. Pion, London.Google Scholar
- Kimmel J (1999) Thermoelectric materials. http://physics.ucsd.edu/~phy152/ther.pdf. Accessed on 23 June 2010.
- Marlow Industries, Inc. (1998) Thermoelectric cooling systems design guide. http://www.lot-oriel.com/site/site_down/marlow_designguide_it01.pdf. Accessed on 28 June 2010.
- Ohtaki M (2002) Oxide thermoelectric materials: An overview with some historical and strategic perspectives. Oxide thermoelectrics 2002, pp. 159–180. Research signpost, Trivandrum, INDE (2002) (Monographie).Google Scholar
- Ohta T, Kajikawa T, Uesuqi T, Tokiai T (1992) Thermoelectric material and process for production thereof. US Patent 5108515.Google Scholar
- Rowe DM (1994) CRC handbook of thermoelectrics, CRC Press, Boca Raton.Google Scholar
- Sales BC (2003) Filled skutterudites. In Handbook on the physics and chemistry of rare earths. Vol. 33. edited by K.A. Gschneidner Jr., J.C.G. Bilnzli and V.K. Pecharsky. Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam.Google Scholar
- Simons RE, Chu RC (2000) Application of thermoelectric cooling to electronic equipment: A review and analysis. Annual IEEE Semiconductor Thermal Measurement and Management Symposium 19: 1–9.Google Scholar
- Tervo J, Manninen A, Ilola R, Hänninen H (2009) State-of-the-art of thermoelectric materials processing. http://www.vtt.fi/inf/pdf/workingpapers/2009/W124.pdf. Accessed on 28 June 2010.
- Thiagarajan SJ, Wang W, Yang R (2009) Nanocomposites as high efficiency thermoelectric materials. http://spot.colorado.edu/~yangr/Publications/Yang_Thermoelectric_Nanocomposites_Annul_Review_of_Nanoresearch_2009_Final.pdf. Accessed on 29 June 2010.
- Yang R, Chen G (2005) Nanostructured thermoelectric materials: From superlattice to nanocomposites. http://spot.colorado.edu/~yangr/Publications/J8_MaterialIntegration.pdf. Accessed on 29 June 2010.