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Sensors 2013, 13(10), 13596-13608; doi:10.3390/s131013596

A Thermoelectric Generator Using Porous Si Thermal Isolation

NCSR Demokritos/IMEL, Terma Patriarchou Gregoriou, Aghia Paraskevi, Athens 15310, Greece
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 August 2013 / Revised: 30 August 2013 / Accepted: 25 September 2013 / Published: 10 October 2013
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
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In this paper we report on a thermoelectric generator (TEG) using thermal isolation provided by a thick porous Si layer locally formed on the Si wafer and thermocouples composed of p-doped polycrystalline Si/Al. The “hot” contacts of the thermocouples lie on the porous Si layer, while the “cold” contacts lie on bulk crystalline Si. A housing was also designed and fabricated in order to transfer any external temperature change on the “hot” contacts of the thermocouples, the “cold” contacts being isolated from the “hot” contacts by a thick resist layer. The fabrication of the sensing element (Si die) is fully compatible with batch Si processing. The output power of the thermoelectric generator depends on the porous Si isolation layer thickness, porosity, structure and morphology. For a mesoporous Si layer of 60% porosity and a macroscopic temperature differential of 10 K, an output power of 0.39 μW/cm2 was measured for a 50 μm thick porous Si layer.
Keywords: thermoelectric generator; porous Si; thermal conductivity thermoelectric generator; porous Si; thermal conductivity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Hourdakis, E.; Nassiopoulou, A.G. A Thermoelectric Generator Using Porous Si Thermal Isolation. Sensors 2013, 13, 13596-13608.

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