Recommended Reading

Our Favorite Literature on Thermoelectric & Related Subjects

Thermoelectrics Handbook: Macro to Nano
(2005) by David M. Rowe (Editor)

If you want one book on the field of thermoelectrics, consider this one. Jon Pollock

in 1995, David M. Rowe introduced the bestselling CRC Handbook of Thermoelectrics to wide acclaim. Since then, increasing environmental concerns, desire for long-life electrical power sources, and continued progress in miniaturization of electronics has led to a substantial increase in research activity involving thermoelectrics. Reflecting the latest trends and developments, the Thermoelectrics Handbook: Macro to Nano is an extension of the earlier work and covers the entire range of thermoelectrics disciplines.

Serving as a convenient reference as well as a thorough introduction to thermoelectrics, this book includes contributions from 99 leading authorities from around the world. Its coverage spans from general principles and theoretical concepts to material preparation and measurements; thermoelectric materials; thermoelements, modules, and devices; and thermoelectric systems and applications. Reflecting the enormous impact of nanotechnology on the field-as the thermoelectric properties of nanostructured materials far surpass the performance of conventional materials-each section progresses systematically from macro-scale to micro/nano-scale topics.


Introduction to Thermoelectricity
(2nd edition - 2017) by H. Julian Goldsmid

The 2017 edition of an Introduction to Thermoelectricity is the latest update on work by Professor Julian Goldsmid. The publication draws on his 60+ years experience in the field.

This second edition is a comprehensive introduction to all aspects of thermoelectric energy conversion. It covers both theory and practice. The book is timely as it refers to the many improvements that have come about in the last few years through the use of nanostructures. The concept of semiconductor thermoelements led to major advances during the second half of the twentieth century, making Peltier refrigeration a widely used technique. The latest materials herald thermoelectric generation as the preferred technique for exploiting low-grade heat. The book shows how progress has been made by increasing the thermal resistivity of the lattice until it is almost as large as it is for glass. It points the way towards the attainment of similar improvements in the electronic parameters. It does not neglect practical considerations, such as the desirability of making thermocouples from inexpensive and environmentally acceptable materials.

The second edition was extended to also include recent advances in thermoelectric energy conversion, particularly the production of bulk nanostructures, new materials with higher thermoelectric figures to use the possibility of large scale thermoelectric generation, as part of the worldwide strategy for making better use of energy resources. This book guides the newcomer towards the state of the art and shows the principles for further advancement to those who are already familiar with the subject. The author has been able to draw on his long experience to cover the science and technology in a balanced way while drawing on the expertise of others who have made major contributions to the field.


Thermoelectrics: Fundamentals, Materials Selection, Properties, and Performance
(September, 2018) by N. M. Ravindra (Author), Bhakti Jariwala (Author), Asahel Bañobre (Author), Aniket Maske (Author)

This book provides a concise but comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals and current state of the art in thermoelectrics. Addressing an audience of materials scientists and engineers, the book covers theory, materials selection, and applications, with a wide variety of case studies reflecting the most up-to-date research approaches from the past decade, from single crystal to polycrystalline form and from bulk to thin films to nano dimensions.

The world is facing major challenges for finding alternate energy sources that can satisfy the increasing demand for energy consumption while preserving the environment. The field of thermoelectrics has long been recognized as a potential and ideal source of clean energy. However, the relatively low conversion efficiency of thermoelectric devices has prevented their utility on a large scale.

While addressing the need for thermal management in materials, device components, and systems, thermoelectrics provides a fundamental solution to waste heat recovery and temperature control.

This book summarizes the global efforts that have been made to enhance the figure of merit of various thermoelectric materials by choosing appropriate processes and their influence on properties and performance. However, the continued gap between fundamental theoretical results and actual experimental data of figure of merit and performance continues to challenge the commercial applications of thermoelectrics. This book presents both recent achievements and continuing challenges, and represents essential reading for researchers working in this area in universities, industry, and national labs. (SpringerBriefs in Materials)


Reframing Thermoelectric Fundamentals Within A Temperature-Dependent Context
(2018) by Michael Spry (Author)

For many of those who apply the principles of thermoelectric (TE) technology, temperature dependency is little more than a nuisance which obstructs calculations. In truth, however, the thermal dependency of material properties plays a critical role in thermoelectric interactions, providing the fulcrum for energy balance and stable operations.

In over three decades of work within the field, Michael Spry has worked to bring greater understanding to thermoelectric fundamentals and applications. Toward that end, he has developed computer models which rely upon the codependency of thermal gradients and bulk material properties to explore balanced operation throughout TE elements. Employing these models, he has been able to show how temperature dependencies bring thermal gradients and property manifestations to states of equilibrium. These models have also been leveraged for significant insights into the mechanisms governing material properties, successfully recasting thermoelectric fundamentals into a more intuitive framework.

The author has packaged detailed explanations, formulations, and illustrations to give readers a much better command of solid state power generation, cooling, and heating. Within this innovative work, the author breaks down each of the material properties and the mechanisms which give rise to them. Furthermore, he integrates the functionality of these properties to show how steady-state operation can evolve within each of the three TE technologies. There is thorough coverage of the Seebeck, Peltier, & Thomson Effects, along with thermal conduction and electrical resistivity—all within the full context of temperature dependency. The author has labored to make this one of the most revealing books ever written about the intricacies of thermoelectric science. With meticulous study, readers can gain a much more thorough grasp of critical concepts.

This work supersedes Spry’s 2013 publication: Rethinking Thermoelectric Effects In Seebeck And Peltier Elements: Toward A Unifying Paradigm


Materials, Preparation, and Characterization in Thermoelectrics: Volume 1
(2017) by David Michael Rowe (Editor)

This book includes updated theoretical considerations which provide an insight into avenues of research most likely to result in further improvements in material performance. It details the latest techniques for the preparation of thermoelectric materials employed in energy harvesting, together with advances in the thermoelectric characterisation of nanoscale material. The book reviews the use of neutron beams to investigate phonons, whose behaviour govern the lattice thermal conductivity and includes a chapter on patents.

This work compliments Rowe’s 2012 comprehensive 2-Volume Set: Thermoelectrics and its Energy Harvesting: Modules, Systems, and Applications in Thermoelectrics.


Thermal Design: Heat Sinks, Thermoelectrics, Heat Pipes, Compact Heat Exchangers, and Solar Cells
(2010) by H. S. Lee

This book examines modern thermal devices such as heat sinks, thermoelectric generators and coolers, heat pipes, and heat exchangers as design components in larger systems. These devices are becoming increasingly important and fundamental to sound thermal management design. The author looks at such diverse areas as microelectronic cooling, green or thermal energy conversion, and thermal control and management in space. This book will provide readers with a sound understanding of the basics and is excellent for use as senior undergraduate or the first-year graduate student textbook. The graphical presentation generally provides designers or students with the rich and flexible solutions toward achieving optimal design. A solutions manual is provided.


Nanomaterials for Thermoelectric Devices
(August, 2018) by Yong X. Gan (Editor)

With the increaseing global demand for energy, we are facing a huge challenge of energy sustainability. Renewable energy has attracted an immense amount of interest with regard to solving the sustainbility issue. Among the various renewable energy sources, solar heat and waste heat energy has significant advantages due to its availability. Thermoelectric nanomaterials play an indispensable role in heat-to-electricity energy conversion. A high energy conversion efficiency is critical for practical applications of thermoelectric energy conversion systems, and understanding the fundamentals of energy conversion mechanisms is essential.

This book details thermoelectric energy conversion nanomaterials and the related manufacturing processes. It also introduces the latest research progress in thermoelectric energy conversion nanomaterials. It is a great reference for readers from both academia and industry.


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