A Modular Solar Thermoelectric Generator - Some Design Criteria and Experimental Results 630476

This paper describes an approach for solving the design, manufacturing, and evaluation problems encountered in the development of a prototype solar thermoelectric generator.
The generator, intended as a power supply for interplanetary vehicles and orbital satellites, consists of an array of many low-voltage unit cells each readily lending itself to building block techniques to provide power outputs up to 3 kw.
Performance characteristics based on 100 hr of prototype testing are presented as a function of environmental test conditions and unit life.
A study of methods of maintaining alignment between the array axis and the solar axis is described, along with test data on the effect of misorientation.


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