Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship Program

"Thermophotovoltaic system modeling"

About the Project

Project Time & Type:
Fall 2013 - DURI
Research area(s):
Project Description:
Of all the energy used in modern society, well over half is lost as heat. What if we could harvest some of this heat as electricity to run all of modern society with greater efficiency and mobility than before? In this project, we will consider one approach to converting heat into electricity, known as thermophotovoltaics (TPV). TPV works by first concentrating heat to a high temperature, radiating it as thermal photons, and then capturing it with a TPV diode, which acts like a solar cell. In principle, the efficiency of this process can be very high.
Expected Student Contributions:
Undergraduate researchers collaborating with our group would help construct physics-based models of TPV systems, leveraging our previous work in the field. Our eventual goal would be to devise optimal designs for practical and portable TPV systems, which will then be built and tested by our experimental collaborators.
Related Website(s):
Desired Qualifications:
PHYS 272 (Electric & Magnetic Interactions) CS 159 (C Programming for Engineers) or more advanced MA 266 (Ordinary Differential Equations) GPA > 3.5
Estimated Weekly Hours:
Department awards independent research credits for this project?
Yes, 3 credit hours

Professor in Charge

Bermel, Peter
electrical and computer engineering

Student Supervisor

Haejun Chung
Graduate Student

Cooperating Faculty

Sally Bane