Inorganic/Organic Flexible Nanocomposites with High Thermoelectric Figure of Merit
79269S Thermoelectric waste heat recovery from automobiles would increase fuel economy by 2-10%. However, the thermoelectric figure of merit for existing materials, including advanced low dimensional materials, is relatively small. Therefore, the overall energy conversion efficiency is too low to make waste heat recovery in automobiles economically feasible. Furthermore, manufacturing costs for low dimensional materials would be high. This project will fabricate nanocomposites of thermoeleric particles with high Seebeck coefficient embedded into a low thermal conductivity and electrically conducting polymer matrix. The three material properties affecting the thermoelectric figure of merit will be decoupled, and each property will be independently optimized to increase the figure of merit without affecting the other properties. Consequently,a much higher thermoelectric figure of merit should be achieveable. Phase I will experimentally demonstrate the fabrication of nonconventional thermoelectric nanocomposites by employing an advanced sonoreactor technology. The physical, chemical, and thermoelectric properties of produced nanocomposites will be characterized with respect to charge transport, Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, charge carrier concentration, microstructures, chemical composition, and impurity effects. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: The proposed nanocomposite thermoelectric materials should exhibit exceptionally high figure of merit. The materials should have great commercial potential for the compact, reliable, quiet, and economical waste heat recovery in automobiles and industrial processes.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Aspen Systems Inc.
184 Cedar Hill Streel Marlborough, MA 01752
Number of Employees: