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Decarbonized energy and sustainability


Sustainable thermoelectric materials and applications

Significant progress has been made worldwide in the application and fundamental understanding of thermoelectric materials, including new compositional design (entropy engineering), sustainable aspects for new materials with higher ZTs and so on. This symposium will cover recent developments.


The imperative demand for alternative and sustainable energy conversion technologies to reduce our global reliance on fossil fuels leads to research on alternative solar and geothermal energy utilization, as well as other waste heat conversion with thermoelectric devices. Thermoelectricity is the most straightforward technique for direct conversion between heat and electricity. The conversion efficiency of the thermoelectric (TE) device is determined by both the Carnot efficiency and the materials-dependent property ZT of the TE materials. In the last two decades, tremendous efforts in developing high ZT thermoelectric materials have been taken, and the bulk ZT has been reached above 3. Energy converters for renewable or sustainable energy technologies have to be based on materials that are not a burden to the environment, do not contain critical elements and guarantee a short energy payback time. Besides improving the conversion efficiency and other performance factors, sustainability has to be considered when designing novel thermoelectric materials and devices.

This symposium will cover recent developments in the following areas:

  1. processing of sustainable thermoelectric materials (bulk and thin film) including new approaches, such as entropy engineering, additive manufacturing, and so on;
  2. recent advances and new insights in electrical and thermal transport properties in high entropy compounds, such as perovskites, half Heusler, chalcogenides, and etc.;
  3. machine learning to speed up developments of environmentally friendly thermoelectric materials;
  4. new ideas for designing recyclable thermoelectric materials & devices, for instance life cycle assessment.

Hot topics to be covered by the symposium:

  • Novel energy-saving synthesis methods for thermoelectric materials, including bulk and thin film
  • Unconventional thermoelectricity in new thermoelectric materials, including Dirac/Weyl semimetals
  • Phonon and electron transport properties of high entropy thermoelectric
  • Machine learning in developing sustainable thermoelectric materials
  • Designing recyclable thermoelectric materials & devices (life cycle assessment)



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Symposium organizers
Andrei KAVALEUSKIUniversity of Aveiro

CICECO – Aveiro Institute of Materials, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Qian ZHANGHarbin Institute of Technology

D-406, Xili College town of Harbin Institute of Technology, 518055 Shenzhen, P. R. China
Wenjie XIE (Main organizer)Technical University of Darmstadt

Alarich-Weiss-Straße 2, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany