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Hybrid energy harvesting using active thermal backplane
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Paper Abstract

In this study, we demonstrate the concept of a new hybrid energy harvesting system by combing solar cells with magneto-thermoelectric generator (MTG, i.e., thermal energy harvesting). The silicon solar cell can easily reach high temperature under normal operating conditions. Thus the heated solar cell becomes rapidly less efficient as the temperature of solar cell rises. To increase the efficiency of the solar cell, air or water-based cooling system is used. To surpass conventional cooling devices requiring additional power as well as large working space for air/water collectors, we develop a new technology of pairing an active thermal backplane (ATB) to solar cell. The ATB design is based on MTG technology utilizing the physics of the 2nd order phase transition of active ferromagnetic materials. The MTG is cost-effective conversion of thermal energy to electrical energy and is fundamentally different from Seebeck TEG devices. The ATB (MTG) is in addition to being an energy conversion system, a very good conveyor of heat through both conduction and convection. Therefore, the ATB can provide dual-mode for the proposed hybrid energy harvesting. One is active convective and conductive cooling for heated solar cell. Another is active thermal energy harvesting from heat of solar cell. These novel hybrid energy harvesting device have potentially simultaneous energy conversion capability of solar and thermal energy into electricity. The results presented can be used for better understanding of hybrid energy harvesting system that can be integrated into commercial applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 April 2016
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 9799, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2016, 97993D (15 April 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2219027
Show Author Affiliations
Hyun-Wook Kim, Korea Polytechnic Univ. (Korea, Republic of)
Dong-Gun Lee, Korea Polytechnic Univ. (Korea, Republic of)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9799:
Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2016
Gyuhae Park, Editor(s)

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