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Vol. 148, No. 1, January 2013, pp. 83-88




 Optimizing Micro-Scale Thermoelectric Model using Finite Element Method

1 Divya Jatain, 2 Ajay Agarwal, 3 Manoj Kumar
1 Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Haryana
House No- 2492, Sector- 9/11, Hisar-125001, Haryana, India
Tel.: +919813915223
2 CSIR-Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute, Pilani, Rajasthan
Tel.: +918058598903
3 Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Haryana
Tel.: +919416926863
E-mail: divya.jatain.88@gmail.com, dr.ajay123@gmail.com, manojtaleja@yahoo.com


Received: 28 September 2012 /Accepted: 24 January 2013 /Published: 31 January 2013

Digital Sensors and Sensor Sysstems


Abstract: The thermoelectric characterization of a micro-scale thermoelectric device using finite element method technique is presented in this paper. Thermoelectric device works on the principle of Seebeck Effect which converts temperature difference across the junction of two different materials into potential difference and hence energy. This work presents the optimization technique for a thermoelectric device by analyzing a single cell structure and proving the concept. A unit cell modeled in our work developed an average output voltage of 5 mV from human-body temperature. The output voltage increases further with increase in temperature difference at a rate of 4 mV/10˚C. The change observed in behavior of thermocouple due to variation in dimensional parameters is evaluated and examined. The simulation results for characterization of thermocouple agreed with the theoretical concepts of operation. A high potential difference for larger lengths of thermocouple and smaller thickness of materials is observed. However, high flow of current was observed in small leg-lengths of larger thickness. The paper presents the characterization techniques and the influencing parameters of thermocouple operation which are important to design a thermoelectric device.


Keywords: Thermoelectric, Seebeck effect, Thermocouple, ANSYS 12.0


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