Hello, I can't into how thermoelectric generators. How the heck do they work? According to this video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzGnNkOxdpI The thermoelectric effect converts heat to electrical power. It does this by having a heat differance accross a material, by heating one side and cooling the other. According the the video both the atoms AND free electrons that accompany those atoms heat up (kinetic energy increases), the electrons bump around more. Due to electrons with higher kinetic energy being at one end, they try to reach equillibrium. As the electrons move from one end of the material to other they carry charge
From what I gather from the video a good thermoelectric material would have a very low electrical resistance (to allow electrons to move to the cold side faster) and a very high thermal resistance (to minimize heat lost through atoms conducting heat).
I thus decided to mod 2 materials into the game that have very low electrical resistance and very high thermal resistance. Obviously computer said no and informed me that my reactor generated more heat than it can dissipate. However if such materials could exist could we harness more than 50% of the total heat energy that flows throught this hypothetical thermoelectric generator, i.e break phyisics?
I don't know much of thermocouples either, the game's tooltip for P type and N type materials says that the ultimate output of a thermocouple is determined by the absolute difference between the two materials' thermoelectric sensitivity. Clicking the "?" button on the bottom-left of either an RTG or TEFR module reports the same thing. A quick search on the infolinks for Material Properties results in a more detailed description of the thermoelectric sensitivity, which is an electrical property. The first thing it says there is that the thermoelectric sensitivity is also known as Seebeck coefficient. Now you have two more keywords to search to expand your knowledge on the subject
As my experience,what makes a good thermocouple material in game is high melt point,high strength to deal with expansion,superconducting and with either very high or very low thermoelectric sensitivity,This could give you a 50%+ efficiency.