EPIC Energy Seminar: Thermoelectric Materials and Devices for Energy Harvesting and Thermal Management

April 4, 2017 - 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM

Topic: Thermoelectric Materials and Devices for Energy Harvesting and Thermal Management
Speaker: Dr. Philip Barletta
Program Manager, Micross AIT

Thermoelectric (TE) devices are known for their ability to directly convert thermal energy into electrical energy.  Such devices offer a way to harvest usable power in areas in which copious amounts of waste heat are available, such as power plants or vehicle exhaust manifolds.  TE devices can also be used for thermal management applications.  One of the primary advantages of TE devices -- as compared to competing cooling technologies, such as Stirling coolers -- is that TE devices are smaller, lighter and have no moving parts.  This talk will focus on the basic physics of thermoelectric materials and devices, as well as potential applications.

About the Speaker
Dr. Philip Barletta is a Program Manager at Micross AIT (formerly the Engineering and Applied Physics Division of RTI International) in Research Triangle Park, NC. Actively involved in the field of thermal management of electronic devices using thermoelectric (TE) materials and devices, his primary interest is the growth of bismuth-telluride-based thin-film materials for TE applications; as well as the processing, packaging, and testing of thin-film TE devices. His contributions in these projects have led to several scientific advancements in the state-of-the-art of thin-film TE, including the development of unique bismuth telluride material structures and significant improvements in metal–bismuth-telluride interface resistance. His expertise in the growth and processing of bismuth-telluride-based thin-films has also led to many impressive TE device results, such as a TE module able to actively pump 25X more heat per unit area than that typically seen in commercially available devices. During his career, Dr. Barletta has also studied bulk thermoelectrics, photovoltaics, long-wavelength IR detection, III-nitride growth/processing, and solid-state lighting. His diverse research background includes publications regarding thermoelectrics, III-V material growth, and diamond-like carbon.

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