Dresden 2014 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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HL: Fachverband Halbleiterphysik

HL 49: Energy materials: Thermoelectrics

HL 49.2: Vortrag

Dienstag, 1. April 2014, 14:15–14:30, POT 051

Resonant tunneling energy harvestersAndrew N. Jordan1, Björn Sothmann2, •Rafael Sánchez3, and Markus Büttiker21Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Rochester, Rochester, U. S. A — 2Département de Physique Théorique, Université de Genève, Genève, Switzerland — 3Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Madrid, CSIC, 28049, Madrid, Spain

An important task in condensed matter physics is to find new ways to harvest ambient thermal energy, particularly at the smallest length scales where electronics operate. To achieve this goal, there is on one hand the miniaturizing of electrical devices, and on the other, the maximization of either efficiency or power the devices produce. We present the theory of nano heat engines able to efficiently convert heat into electrical power. We propose a resonant tunneling quantum dot engine that can be operated either in the Carnot efficient mode, or maximal power mode. The ability to scale the power by putting many such engines in a "Swiss cheese sandwich" geometry gives a paradigmatic system for harvesting thermal energy at the nanoscale[1].

Alternative configurations based on resonant tunneling through quantum wells provide a comparable thermoelectric performance with the advantage of being easier to construct[2].

[1] A. N. Jordan, B. Sothmann, R. Sánchez, M. Büttiker, Phys. Rev. B 87 (2013) 075312.

[2] B. Sothmann, R. Sánchez, A. N. Jordan, M. Büttiker, New J. Phys. 15 (2013) 095021.

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