Demonstrating Thermo Electricity using Candles and Peltier Tiles
Lucas Venugopal, Benjamin Jung
Floor Location : J 043 E
The importance of Peltier tiles in electricity generation has long been a controversial topic, hampered in part by a lack of evidence. Inspired by Ann Makosinski's thermoelectric flashlight, we decided to do a similar project to further evaluate the ability of Peltier tiles to generate electricity by creating a temperature difference between candles and the cool air at room temperature. This relatively new method of power generation could provide another safe, renewable source of sustainable electricity. On a small scale, this product can provide an alternative to regular electric-powered equipment. On a larger scale, suburban areas and poor cities could benefit from this technology as they might not be fortunate enough to benefit from hydropower, wind power, and so forth. This technology can be applied in everyday products such as fans and chargers, not to mention the ability to charge them on the go without requiring an electric outlet. Some of the main components required for this project are the following: 9 candles, 9 Peltier tiles, thermoelectric glue, 1 metal tray, an iPhone and 1 litre of cold water. The Peltier tiles were glued using thermoelectric glue to the base of An aluminum piece large enough to cover the base of the tray to be used as a heat conductor. Aluminum is a good choice for a heat conductor as it allows for heat to pass through to Peltier tiles easily without soot. A DC regulator with a USB port was used to keep the voltage at 5v and charge the phone. The 9 candles were placed in the stand directly below the Peltier tiles. 15º celsius water was added to the tray, and measurements were taken with a multimeter and a thermometer. Moreover, we chose to measure the voltage of different numbers of Peltier tiles as our independent variable in the experiment because they are the main factors that the product relies on, and changing how many are used would allow us to evaluate and analyze the importance of them. Over the course of the experiment, trends were observed across many different trials. For example, the average voltage between the Peltier tile's voltage increased by 1 volt each time. For the average voltage counts for three trials of the 5 Peltier tiles, we received 5.26 volts. For 6 Peltier tiles, we received 6.26 volts. These results supported our hypothesis. To be sure, using the Chi-square test, we confirmed that the hypothesis was valid through a series of calculations. The reason behind these results is the way DC voltage works. DC voltage only travels in one direction, and it measures the pressure from an electrical circuit's power source through a conducting loop. When the Peltier tiles are glued together using conductive glue, and the wires of opposite polarity are soldered together, the circuit loop expands and the power source from the Peltier tiles increases. In conclusion, If the number of Peltier tiles used to power a charger is increased, the DC voltage will increase proportionally as measured by a multimeter.