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    5. A flexible thermoelectric generator has been created in Russia


    A flexible thermoelectric generator has been created in Russia

    MOSCOW, December 11. MIET scientists have developed and manufactured using screen printing, based on suspensions created at the university, a flexible generator for converting heat into electricity. According to the authors of the development, the results of the study will help create devices capable of converting heat generated by the human body or various mechanisms into electricity. The results are presented in the Journal of Central South University.
    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are devices capable of generating electric current when exposed to heat. Due to the temperature difference, a flow of charge carriers occurs in the material and an electrical potential difference is formed.
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    Flexible thermoelectric generators are of particular interest to developers, but now they are at the stage of intensive research, in particular, an important task is to find the optimal compositions of thermoelectric materials.

    A team of MIET scientists developed and manufactured a prototype of a flexible thermoelectric generator using screen printing. For this purpose, the university created its own method for forming thermoelements. Suspension compositions proposed for the formation of flexible TEGs include compounds of bismuth, tellurium and antimony. According to scientists, such suspension compositions make it possible to convert one type of energy into another with high efficiency.

    As the university said, during the study, scientists were faced with the problem of choosing a binder to create thermoelement branches.
    “”The electrophysical, thermophysical and other properties of materials significantly depend on the binder in the screen printing method. The binder material must have high electrical conductivity, adhesive properties, high-quality adhesive properties, low thermal conductivity, and also wet the materials well,” said one of the authors of the study, a scientific employee of the Institute of Advanced Materials and Technologies of MIET Alexey Babich.

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    Screen printing technology, potentially used to create flexible TEGs, is of particular interest due to its availability. However, developing such technology requires solving a number of complex problems. Thus, it is necessary to study the properties of new materials that are promising for use, determine the optimal material, develop methods and modes for forming contact layers, and also develop an optimal TEG design. The set of measures taken will allow us to get closer to mass production of devices.

    “The results of the work can be used to create effective flexible thermoelectric generators, the main advantage of which is the ability to take the required shape within certain limits,” Babich emphasized.
    In the future, the MIET research team plans to optimize the development by using materials with various additives to increase the efficiency of the flexible thermoelectric generator prototype.

    MIET is a participant in the state support program for universities of the Russian Federation “Priority-2030” of the national project “Science and Universities”.

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