Design and experimental investigation of a thermoelectric self-powered heating system

Alptekin M., ÇALIŞIR T., Baskaya Ş.

ENERGY CONVERSION AND MANAGEMENT, vol.146, pp.244-252, 2017 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


In, this paper, a combustion-driven thermoelectric residential heating system, which uses Bi2Te3-based thermoelectric modules, is designed, constructed, and tested. The thermoelectric modules are integrated into a heat cell of a natural gas-fired heating boiler. The experiments are carried out to examine the influences of the main operating conditions, cold fluid flow rate, temperature difference between the inlet and outlet at the heat cell and different boiler powers, on output power, voltage, current and efficiency of boiler. The two operating parameters such as the cold fluid flow rate and temperature difference are found to significantly affect the output power, and the efficiency of the boiler. The thermoelectric generator unit has a power generation capacity of approximately 36 W. This amount corresponds to about one-third of boiler's requirement. The study shows that if the combi boiler is redesigned, and its efficiency is enhanced, it can generate sufficient electrical power for electrical components of the combi boiler, such as pump, valves, blower, fan, and control panel. The self-powered heating system provides advantages commercially, and can decrease the electrical power consumption. Also, and economical analysis was conducted for the self-powered heating system and the conventional system, and it was seen that the proposed system is economically applicable. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.