Thermoelectricity In Peltier Tiles Essay

1899 words - 8 pages

For all of the modern man’s time, our world has been slowly degrading with our use of crude oils and combustion. The expanding rate of our ecological footprint has been rapidly increasing year after year. Scientists proposed a solution to this problem by discovering new methods of renewable energy that comes with little to no environmental consequence. Whether it is powered by wind, solar rays, or water, we have found new processes that create usable electricity without the pollution and ozone damage that fossil fuels entail. Yet, one method of renewable and clean energy has been left in the dust, this method being thermoelectric power. Over thirty years ago, researchers were franticly exploring this uncharted method, and attempted to create a large variety of ways to utilize it properly. After they exhausted every theory, the field of thermodynamics was declared dead (Wu, 1997). It lie to collect dust and live to only a fraction of its potential. Now, it has been recently rediscovered, and the possibilities of this new source are endless.
In a society that uses such a vast variety of devices and appliances that create waste heat, it would only be practical to create a way to use this excess as energy. Researchers are meticulously working to use thermoelectricity in cars, refrigerators, and boilers, all with the power of excess heat. They envision a world that does not have excess, and in its place, has a recycling closed system. While some scientists are adamant about the wonders that thermoelectricity hold, others question its environmental integrity, and whether the efficiency is great enough to even bother implementing. But, the underlying question still exists, is

thermoelectricity a feasible alternative to energy from fossil fuels, and even further, are other methods of thermoelectricity, such as peltier tiles, efficient?
Historical Overview
The concept of thermoelectricity originated over thirty years ago, and has been growing ever since. It was questioned, theorized, and hypothesized by thousands of scientists and researchers. Thermoelectricity held desirable aspects that more commonly used methods, such as crude oil burning and turbines did not. These characteristics include,” no moving parts, low weight, modularity, covert and silent, high power density, low amortized cost and long service life with no required maintenance.” (Laboratory, 2012). It was overwhelmingly obvious that this method of harvesting energy beat the others out of the park. A turbine for example, would need highly intricate technological equipment that could only be powered by few, in order to work. Maintenance is constantly needed, and in addition turbines are completely immobile. Using thermoelectricity via peltier tiles would eliminate all of these hindering factors. They are simple and universal in their design, make little to no sound, and they have not a single moving part. To further this concept, in the past when, “it was realized that in some...

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