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Generation of Electrical Power Through Radiative Emission from a Thermoradiative Diode
M.P. Nielsen, A. Pusch, M.H. Sazzad, P. Pearce, P.J. Reece, N. Ekins-Daukes
Ray Tracing, Electroluminescence
Evolving and Emerging Technologies: Tandems; Thin Film absorbers; III-V; New Materials and Concepts; Advanced Modelling
Subtopic: New Materials, Devices and Conversion Concepts
Event: 8th World Conference on Photovoltaic Energy Conversion
Session: 2BO.6.6
ISBN: 3-936338-86-8
0,00 EUR
Document(s): presentation


Thermoradiative power generation is achieved through emission from a warm ambient into cold surroundings, a thermodynamically symmetric counterpart to photovoltaic power generation. The thermoradiative diode is a demonstration of this process using a semiconductor device. When a diode at room temperature is exposed to a colder environment, a reverse bias is established spontaneously, allowing an electrical current to flow and deliver electrical power. We report full IV characteristics for HgCdTe diodes held at 20.5°C and exposed to a radiant surface at varying temperatures. Power is generated when the diode faces a cold surface, delivering a positive photocurrent and negative voltage. In the radiative limit, a thermoradiative diode exposed to the cold night sky could deliver electrical power densities of the order of tens of W/m2; the linear behaviour of our IV curves is consistent with Auger mediated generation and recombination processes, reducing the power density to mW/cm2.