High-Performance Thermogalvanic Cell Based on Organic Nanofluids

HY Sun and JH Pu and GH Tang, ACTA PHYSICO-CHIMICA SINICA, 32, 2555-2562 (2016).

DOI: 10.3866/PKU.WIDG3201606281

The thermoelectric performance of traditional thermogalvanic cells is relatively low and a more efficient conversion mechanism is required. In this paper, the distribution of glycerol/glycerin in an aqueous sodium chloride solution in a carbon nanotube (CNT) is investigated by molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. The distributions of ions, molecule net charge, and electrical potential of the system are markedly affected by temperature. We propose a novel nanofluid thermoelectric conversion method based on the CNT and glycerol/glycerin aqueous sodium chloride solution. The thermoelectric performance of the proposed system is much higher than that of most of current liquid thermogalvanic cells, and the application temperature range is also widened considerably. A preliminary thermal-to-electrical energy conversion experiment based on nanoporous carbon with mixtures of sodium chloride and glycerol is also conducted to qualitatively verify the numerical results.

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