Researchers use 3D printing of Cu2Se thermoelectric materials for power generation
Thermoelectric power generation promises to enable converting heat into electricity without producing pollution. Thermoelectric materials are used in systems for cooling and heating and might be able to regenerate electricity from waste heat. Beomjin Kwon, a Fulton Schools assistant professor mechanical engineering, works to improve energy conversion and transport systems and has developed energy systems and technologies, including wearable thermoelectric generators. He has also been collaborating with researchers at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea to design cellular thermoelectric architectures for efficient and durable power generation, using a 3D printing process of copper selenide thermoelectric materials. In a paper published in the science journal Nature Communications, the research team reports that the 3D printing approach could be used for cost-effective manufacturing of thermoelectric modules that can be used for energy devices, electronics, space and aviation technologies and in automotive industries.