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Energy Harvesting for Self-powered Distributed Sensors and Sensor Networks

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A new thermoelectric power generator converts waste heat into electrical energy for a variety of self-powered applications in the wireless sensor, automotive, aerospace, industrial and medical device markets. The eTEG HV37 from Nextreme is capable of producing 1.0 mW of output power and an open circuit voltage of 170 mV at a 10K ?T in a footprint of only 6 mm2.  At 50K ?T, the HV37 produces 24 mW of power and an open circuit voltage of 850 mV.

The module is extremely thin: only 0.6 mm high, and can be configured electrically in series to produce higher voltage and power outputs. Nextreme’s eTEG devices generate electricity via the Seebeck Effect where a voltage is produced from the temperature differential produced by heat flow through the device.

The high voltage output of the HV37 is enabled by Nextreme’s proprietary micro-scale thermoelectric technology. Certain applications (e.g., generating power off the heat of the human body, or generating power for wireless sensors) require a high density of thermoelectric elements in order to generate power at low temperature differentials. Nextreme’s patented thermal bump fabrication process can achieve thousands of elements per square centimeter.

Nextreme offers thermal modeling, design and engineering services to deliver fully optimized energy harvesting solutions. Nextreme routinely conducts analytical and numerical thermal modeling at all design levels from component to module to subsystem. Advanced analysis of complex systems, components or packages often requires more detailed modeling to understand heat flow and thermal gradients.

Nextreme, Durham, NC. (919) 597-7300. [www.nextreme.com].