Compact, Efficient, Multi-Fueled Thermoelectric Power Generator

Period of Performance: 07/06/2011 - 01/06/2012


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Creare, Inc.
16 Great Hollow Road Array
Hanover, NH 03755
Principal Investigator


Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) offer the potential for simple and efficient conversion of heat directly to electric power. However, efficient and logistically compatible power generation systems that incorporate TEGs present an engineering challenge, requiring an overall design that balances critical trade-offs between TEG performance requirements, combustion efficiency, power conditioning, and thermal management. We propose to develop an innovative power conversion system using a TEG to convert heat from a multi-fuel combustor to electricity. The system will combine state-of-the-art thermoelectric materials with advanced technologies for combustion, power conditioning, and thermal management. In Phase I we will prove the feasibility of our approach by developing an overall system model that includes all critical processes in the power conversion system. We will select combustor and overall system parameters that optimize the system for overall efficiency. We will demonstrate performance of state-of-the-art TEGs under conditions that simulate operation in the optimized system. In Phase II we will build, test, and deliver a complete multi-fuel, 300 We, 28 VDC TEG power system.