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Title: High-efficiency thermophotovoltaic energy conversion enabled by a metamaterial selective emitter

Thermophotovoltaics (TPV) is the process by which photons radiated from a thermal emitter are converted into electrical power via a photovoltaic cell. Selective thermal emitters that can survive at temperatures at or above ~1000°C have the potential to greatly improve the efficiency of TPV energy conversion by restricting the emission of photons with energies below the photovoltaic (PV) cell bandgap energy. In this work, we demonstrated TPV energy conversion using a high-temperature selective emitter, dielectric filter, and 0.6 eV In 0.68Ga 0.32As photovoltaic cell. We fabricated a passivated platinum and alumina frequency-selective surface by conventional stepper lithography. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of TPV energy conversion using a metamaterial emitter. The emitter was heated to >1000°C, and converted electrical power was measured. After accounting for geometry, we demonstrated a thermal-to-electrical power conversion efficiency of 24.1±0.9% at 1055°C. We separately modeled our system consisting of a selective emitter, dielectric filter, and PV cell and found agreement with our measured efficiency and power to within 1%. Our results indicate that high-efficiency TPV generators are possible and are candidates for remote power generation, combined heat and power, and heat-scavenging applications.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [3] ; ORCiD logo [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [1]
  1. Physical Sciences Inc., Andover, MA (United States)
  2. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
  3. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
SAND-2018-10586J
Journal ID: ISSN 2334-2536; 668166
Grant/Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000; NA0003525
Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Optica
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 5; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2334-2536
Publisher:
Optical Society of America
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
30 DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION
OSTI Identifier:
1420681
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1477426

Woolf, David N., Kadlec, Emil A., Bethke, Don, Grine, Albert D., Nogan, John J., Cederberg, Jeffrey G., Bruce Burckel, D., Luk, Ting Shan, Shaner, Eric A., and Hensley, Joel M.. High-efficiency thermophotovoltaic energy conversion enabled by a metamaterial selective emitter. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1364/OPTICA.5.000213.
Woolf, David N., Kadlec, Emil A., Bethke, Don, Grine, Albert D., Nogan, John J., Cederberg, Jeffrey G., Bruce Burckel, D., Luk, Ting Shan, Shaner, Eric A., & Hensley, Joel M.. High-efficiency thermophotovoltaic energy conversion enabled by a metamaterial selective emitter. United States. doi:10.1364/OPTICA.5.000213.
Woolf, David N., Kadlec, Emil A., Bethke, Don, Grine, Albert D., Nogan, John J., Cederberg, Jeffrey G., Bruce Burckel, D., Luk, Ting Shan, Shaner, Eric A., and Hensley, Joel M.. 2018. "High-efficiency thermophotovoltaic energy conversion enabled by a metamaterial selective emitter". United States. doi:10.1364/OPTICA.5.000213.
@article{osti_1420681,
title = {High-efficiency thermophotovoltaic energy conversion enabled by a metamaterial selective emitter},
author = {Woolf, David N. and Kadlec, Emil A. and Bethke, Don and Grine, Albert D. and Nogan, John J. and Cederberg, Jeffrey G. and Bruce Burckel, D. and Luk, Ting Shan and Shaner, Eric A. and Hensley, Joel M.},
abstractNote = {Thermophotovoltaics (TPV) is the process by which photons radiated from a thermal emitter are converted into electrical power via a photovoltaic cell. Selective thermal emitters that can survive at temperatures at or above ~1000°C have the potential to greatly improve the efficiency of TPV energy conversion by restricting the emission of photons with energies below the photovoltaic (PV) cell bandgap energy. In this work, we demonstrated TPV energy conversion using a high-temperature selective emitter, dielectric filter, and 0.6 eV In0.68Ga0.32As photovoltaic cell. We fabricated a passivated platinum and alumina frequency-selective surface by conventional stepper lithography. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of TPV energy conversion using a metamaterial emitter. The emitter was heated to >1000°C, and converted electrical power was measured. After accounting for geometry, we demonstrated a thermal-to-electrical power conversion efficiency of 24.1±0.9% at 1055°C. We separately modeled our system consisting of a selective emitter, dielectric filter, and PV cell and found agreement with our measured efficiency and power to within 1%. Our results indicate that high-efficiency TPV generators are possible and are candidates for remote power generation, combined heat and power, and heat-scavenging applications.},
doi = {10.1364/OPTICA.5.000213},
journal = {Optica},
number = 2,
volume = 5,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {2}
}

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