Design Study and Implementation of Thermoelectric Generators

There is growing opportunity to increase the overall operating efficiency of large systems through energy scavenging. One approach is waste thermal energy harvesting through the use of thermoelectric generators (TEGs). Using a typical 5 Hp engine as a guide, a TEG system design is needed to extract exhaust thermal energy from the engine during operation. It is expected that commercially available TEGs will be used in this work. Following successful design, a prototype TEG system must be assembled and tested on a small single cylinder engine available as part of Tech’s new small engine test laboratory. Detailed analysis of the TEG system is expected as is an analysis of the TEG effectiveness at recovering waste heat. This project involves work in several engineering areas including heat transfer, electrical, and thermodynamics.

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Leland Weiss