Analysis of Thermoelectric Energy Harvesting with Graphene Aerogel-Supported Form-Stable Phase Change Materials

Graphene aerogel-supported phase change material (PCM) composites sustain the initial solid state without any leakage problem when they are melted. The high portion of pure PCM in the composite can absorb or release a relatively large amount of heat during heating and cooling. In this study, these form-stable PCM composites were used to construct a thermoelectric power generator for collecting electrical energy under the external temperature change. The Seebeck effect and the temperature difference between the two sides of the thermal device were applied for thermoelectric energy harvesting. Two different PCM composites were used to collect the thermoelectric energy harvesting due to the different phase transition field in the heating and cooling processes. The graphene nano-platelet (GNP) filler was embedded to increase the thermal conductivities of PCM composites. Maximum output current was investigated by utilizing these two PCM composites with different GNP filler ratios. The thermoelectric energy harvesting efficiencies during heating and cooling were 62.26% and 39.96%, respectively. In addition, a finite element method (FEM) numerical analysis was conducted to model the output profiles. 

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