TESil - Thermoelectric Silicides

More than 60% of all the energy produced in the world today ends up in the environment as waste heat. One way to utilize some of this energy is with Thermoelectric Generators.

Partners: TEGma, Sintef, UiO, UiA
Funding period: 2017 - 2019
Main goal: To demonstrate a TEG based on silicides with considerable lower price than todays TEG technology.

A TEG-system has no moving parts, requires very little maintenance and, due to its modular design, can be fitted to almost any heat source regardless of size. The core of a TEG is thermoelectric materials that converts a heat flow into electric current. The higher the temperature difference, the more electricity is generated. However, todays TEG technology is relatively expensive, since rare, expensive and toxic materials are used that only can withstand modest temperatures of a few hundred degrees.

In our project, we will develop next generation thermoelectric materials based on cheap and harmless silicon, which mixed with other elements forms silicides. These silicides can also handle higher temperatures than many of todays materials, and will therefore convert heat to electricity more efficient.

By utilizing Elkems knowledge and expertise in production of advanced silicon-based materials with very low energy cost, we wish to develop new materials and advanced production processes for making thermoelectric silicides. TEGma will handle these silicides further to integrate them in TEG that can be used for waste heat recovery purposes. Furthermore, Sintef, UiO and UiA will contribute with important modelling, characterisation and measurement of the silicides to achieve the highest possible efficiency and durability.