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Thermoelectric Power Generation Using Waste-Heat Energy as an Alternative Green Technology

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In recent years, an increasing concern of environmental issues of emissions, in particular global warming and the limitations of energy resources has resulted in extensive research into novel technologies of generating electrical power. Thermoelectric power generators have emerged as a promising alternative green technology due to their distinct advantages. Thermoelectric power generation offer a potential application in the direct conversion of waste-heat energy into electrical power where it is unnecessary to consider the cost of the thermal energy input. The application of this alternative green technology in converting waste-heat energy directly into electrical power can also improve the overall efficiencies of energy conversion systems. In this paper, a background on the basic concepts of thermoelectric power generation is presented and recent patents of thermoelectric power generation with their important and relevant applications to waste-heat energy are reviewed and discussed.

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Keywords: Thermoelectric power generation; alternative green technology; direct energy conversion; electrical power; thermoelectric materials; waste-heat recovery

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2009

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  • Recent Patents on Electrical & Electronic Engineering publishes review and research articles, and guest edited thematic issues on recent patents in electrical and electronic engineering. A selection of important and recent patents on electrical and electronic engineering is also included in the journal. The journal is an essential reading for all researchers involved in electrical and electronic engineering science. The journal also covers recent research (where patents have been registered) in fast emerging applications of electrical power supply, electrical systems, power transmission, electromagnetism, motor control process and technologies involved and related to electrical and electronic engineering.
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