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A new waste heat scavenger

Thin-film thermoelectric power generators based on the Seebeck Effect are said to produce up to 24 mW of power. The devices come from Nextreme Thermal Solutions and carry the moniker eTEG HV37. They target self-powered applications in the wireless sensor, automotive, aerospace, industrial and medical device markets.

The eTEG HV37can produce 1 mW of output power and an open circuit voltage of 170 mV at a delta-T of 10K in a footprint of 6-mm-sq. At 50K delta-T, the HV37 produces 24 mW of power and an open circuit voltage of 850 mV. The module is only 0.6-mm high and can be configured electrically in series to produce higher voltage and power outputs.

Electricity generated via the Seebeck Effect comes where a voltage, the thermoelectric EMF, is created in the presence of a temperature difference between two different metals or semiconductors. The high voltage output of the HV37 comes from proprietary micro-scale thermoelectric technology. Nextreme's patented thermal bump fabrication process can put thousands of elements over a square centimeter of area.

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