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Title: Pyroelectric Energy Scavenging Techniques for Self-Powered Nuclear Reactor Wireless Sensor Networks

Recent advances in technologies for harvesting waste thermal energy from ambient environments present an opportunity to implement truly wireless sensor nodes in nuclear power plants. These sensors could continue to operate during extended station blackouts and during periods when operation of the plant s internal power distribution system has been disrupted. The energy required to power the wireless sensors must be generated using energy harvesting techniques from locally available energy sources, and the energy consumption within the sensor circuitry must therefore be low to minimize power and hence the size requirements of the energy harvester. Harvesting electrical energy from thermal energy sources can be achieved using pyroelectric or thermoelectric conversion techniques. Recent modeling and experimental studies have shown that pyroelectric techniques can be cost competitive with thermoelectrics in self powered wireless sensor applications and, using new temperature cycling techniques, has the potential to be several times as efficient as thermoelectrics under comparable operating conditions. The development of a new thermal energy harvester concept, based on temperature cycled pyroelectric thermal-to-electrical energy conversion, is outlined. This paper outlines the modeling of cantilever and pyroelectric structures and single element devices that demonstrate the potential of this technology for the development of high efficiencymore » thermal-to-electrical energy conversion devices.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1185363
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-00OR22725
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nuclear Technology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 188; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 0029-5450
Publisher:
American Nuclear Society (ANS)
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS)
Sponsoring Org:
ORNL LDRD Director's R&D
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; 21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS Energy harvesting; pyroelectric; wireless sensors; nuclear reactors