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"Researchers at Ohio State University have invented a new material that can generate electricity from heat in hot machine environments at an unprecedented rate.

The new material is called thallium-doped lead telluride.

The development could have a direct application for converting car engine exhaust heat into electricity, according to a statement from the university.

Using thermoelectric materials for generating power is not new. It is the group's improvements on this type of alloy that are newsworthy.

The group, led by Joseph Heremans, Ohio Eminent Scholar in Nanotechnology at Ohio State University, developed a material that is effective between 450 and 950 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature range for most car engines.

"The material does all the work. It produces electrical power just like conventional heat engines--steam, gas, or diesel engines--that are coupled to electrical generators, but it uses electrons as the working fluids instead of water or gases, and makes electricity directly," Heremans said in a statement to the press."

Article continues http://news.cnet.com/8301-17912_3-9999450-72.html?part=rss&subj=news&tag=2547-1_3-0-20


Wouldn't this be incredible in an engine or laptop? Turning excess heat into energy would not only increase mileage (hybrid) but also increase efficiency within the engine! Could you imagine a hybrid Corvette ZR1 with this thing?
 

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this is fascinating, if it truly can yield usable amounts of energy. Couple this with roof mounted solar panels and e-flex, and there is no telling what kind of distance you could get out of a Volt.
 

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I guess they are trying to use a peltier/seebeck effect with this alloy

Typically those devices didn't work amazingly well... remember thermodynamics works on temp differences, you take energy from a hot thing, you dump it in a cold thing and try to extract some work (electricity) in between... let's say you have this thing, but both sides are at 900*F then there is no power...

Also 900*F is very hot, maybe in the exhaust but it is hard even then.



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Thermoelectrics are always good at "WOWing" people, but in reality they are very costly and only recover a small percentage of energy.

Until I see efficiency and cost numbers I would say this is just another baby step where miles are needed.
 

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Thermoelectrics are always good at "WOWing" people, but in reality they are very costly and only recover a small percentage of energy.

Until I see efficiency and cost numbers I would say this is just another baby step where miles are needed.
Hell you could probably get more efficiency out of a small stirling running on the engine coolant :lmao:



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You could combine exhaust heat with A/C cooling to make power. Actually, you might be able to make enough power from the exhaust to run an electric A/C compressor after initial warm-up.
 

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You could combine exhaust heat with A/C cooling to make power. Actually, you might be able to make enough power from the exhaust to run an electric A/C compressor after initial warm-up.
Doubtful. Also, you can't take cold air from the A/C to create your temperature differnece, if thats what you mean. That would be counterproductive (because it would warm up the air).
 
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