Treballs Finals del Màster d’Energies Renovables i Sostenibilitat Energètica, Facultat de Física, Universitat de Barcelona, Curs: 2013-2014, Tutora: Dra. Mercè Segarra RubíThermoelectric materials are able to take advantage of the waste heat in power plants and convert it into additional electricity; as well as to generate a thermal gradient using an electric current. Due to those characteristics thermoelectric materials are considered as a clean energy. Thermoelectric modules have a low efficiency (15% maximum), and actual lines of research are looking for higher efficiency materials. However, economic and sustainability factors are not taken into account in those investigations, and those can be critical for a large scale implantation. For example, it makes no sense to study materials whose components are not produced in necessary quantities, or even very expensive materials. In this project, some materials efficiency/cost relations are analyzed in order to choose which of them is a potential candidate for a large scale application, considering information about elements annual production or recycling potential. From this research in can be deduced that Zn4Sb3 is a good option if application’s temperature is between 300 K and 700 K due to its cheapness. On the other hand, for high temperature applications (1000 K), silicon-germanium alloys seem to be the best choice
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