Browse Publications Technical Papers 2015-01-0051
2015-03-10

Reducing Automobile CO2 Emissions with an Exhaust Heat Recovery System Utilising Thermoelectric Generators and Heat Pipes 2015-01-0051

Exhaust heat recovery systems are used to make use of otherwise wasted heat from a car engine. The purpose of exhaust heat recovery systems is to reduce the fuel consumption of the car and consequently reduce CO2 emissions. The unique system design described herein utilises thermoelectric generators (TEGs) and heat pipes with its key advantage being it is a passive solid state design. The use of these components creates a few design constraints. For example, both the TEGs and heat pipes have operating temperature limitations. In this paper, a naphthalene heat pipe preheat exchanger is proposed to deal with this problem. Exhaust conditions measured from a representative spark ignition engine were used in a numerical simulation to predict the performance of the exhaust heat recovery system. If 8 modules are used and the engine is producing 8kW of mechanical power, the system is predicted to produce 53.75W of electrical power. The calculated reduction of CO2 emissions is 1.125% under these conditions. If fewer modules are used, less power is produced but the cost per watt decreases.

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