Manipulating Heat: Advanced Thermoelectrics and thermal/electrical cloaking (Thermal Metamaterials)

One of the principal advantages of thermoelelectric devices is their ability to convert heat into electricity and vice versa without any moving parts. Thermoelectric power generation is based on the Seebeck effect, where a voltage is induced when a semiconductor is under temperature gradient. In last two decades, a great effort has been made to enhance the range of high-performance thermoelectric materials for industrial applications [1-3]. There is a critical need for new materials and processes to enable more efficient and economical conversion, transportation, storage and use of thermal energy. On the other hand there is a great interest in heat manipulation research which may soon become new fundamental science and device technology [4-6]. We will present a physical theory and mathematical concepts- transformation thermodynamics [7]- for an investigation of novel opportunities for heat management and conversion of thermal energy in multilayer structures, a novel type of thermal metamaterials (TMM) for heat management, based on bulk and porous semiconducting materials. The combination of these materials with various magnetic and plasmonic nanoinclusions will allow elaboration of a new material platform for the design of next generation thermoelectric devices carrying out direct conversion of waste heat into electricity. Based on the results above a simultaneous thermal and electrical cloaking [8] and suggestions for applications in other areas will be presented.

2 Nov 2017
215 Sharp Lab
Dr. Dimitris Niarchos, Emeritus Director of Research, Scientific Advisor Amen Technologies