The devices can be used to convert waste-heat into electricity and can also serve a thermoelectric cooler.
Efficient Thermoelectric Converter
2D materials easy to bend and shape devices
Electrical conductance can be tuned by controlling density of electric charges
The invention provides thermoelectric devices similar to conventional Peltier-elements based on folded, multi-layered nanomembranes prepared from 2-dimensional (2D) van der Waals materials. These van der Waals materials (e.g. graphene, hexagonal boron nitride, and transition metal dichalcogenides) have both single atomic layers with strong in-plane covalent bonding and weak bonding across atomic mononolayers. When devices are fabricated by folding monolayers onto themselves and into layered structures (figure). In this configuration, the electric path is shorter and the thermal path is suppressed. Moreover, multiple elements can be combined in series and parallel configurations to produce a useful amount of electricity. Thus, these devices can be used to convert waste-heat into electricity and can also serve a thermoelectric cooler. Potential applications include on-chip local cooling of hot-spots in electronic circuits, miniaturized refrigeration of low-noise amplifiers, thermal energy scavenging to power ubiquitous and wearable sensor networks, and any other commercial application where Peltier junctions are used today.
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