Energy demands continue to rise worldwide because of increasing development and population. Electricity generation currently accounts for a significant amount of greenhouse gas generation: Worldwide, approximately 35% of global emissions are a result of power generation activities (Source: Chapter 7. Energy Systems in: Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). Electricity generation contributes significantly to the global growth of greenhouse gas emissions, accelerating at a rate of approximately 3.1% per year from 2000-2010 (ibid.). Furthermore, fossil fuel based power generation results in a significant additional negative effects, in the forms of air pollution and resulting chronic health impacts in regions surrounding power generation stations. For this reason, a key priority in the mitigation of anthropogenic global warming is the global transition of energy economies from fossil fuel based power to renewable and non-emitting power sources.
Strategies for decarbonation are diverse and include thermoelectrics, solar, and geothermal power generation. In all of these applications, material thermal conductivity is key to the performance of the material: in the case of thermoelectric and geothermal, the thermal conductivity directly impacts the potential of a candidate region or material for the application. For solar power generation, thermal conductivity is key to thermal management of the devices. Both MTPS and TPS methods can be important to these applications.
Join us to learn about thermal conductivity applications in renewable energy generation.
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