A novel heatsink for thermo-electric power harvesting of structural health monitoring systems

Salvatore Boccardi, Onorio Iervolino, Giovanni Loisi, Francesco Ciampa, Michele Meo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Recent research in energy harvesting is leading to the possibility of developing self-powered structural health monitoring (SHM) systems for aerospace applications. Particularly, temperature gradients originated at different locations of the aircraft can be converted into electric current by using thermoelectric generators (TEGs). TEGs are a suitable option for power harvesting since they (i) can be easily mounted on aircraft components, (ii) are lightweight, (iii) do not contain movable parts and (iv) provide high-energy conversion. TEGs are generally combined with thermal diffusion systems (heatsinks) to dissipate heat from a high temperature surface to the ambient air. The present study investigates the design, manufacturing and testing of a novel air-cooled heatsink used to increase temperature gradients on the surfaces of a commercial TEG element and, in turn, the power generation. In particular, a novel heatsink geometry and hybrid material configuration are analysed to enhance the heat spread in the power harvesting system in order to further improve the TEG performance. Numerical finite element simulations and experimental tests are carried out to assess the characteristics of the novel heatsink in combination with a commercial TEG device. Experimental results reveal that the proposed thermal diffusion system provides higher level of performance in comparison with traditional fin array heatsinks. Moreover, considering 100°C and 25°C as heat source and ambient temperature, respectively, the presented heatsink-TEG arrangement produces enough energy to power an ultrasound SHM system for aerospace applications (output power over 30 mW).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 11th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, IWSHM 2017
Subtitle of host publicationVolume 1
PublisherDEStech Publications
Pages504-511
Number of pages8
Volume1
ISBN (Electronic)9781605953304
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event11th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring 2017: Real-Time Material State Awareness and Data-Driven Safety Assurance, IWSHM 2017: Real-Time Material State Awareness and Data-Driven Safety Assurance - Stanford University, Stanford, USA United States
Duration: 12 Sep 201714 Sep 2017
http://web.stanford.edu/group/sacl/workshop/IWSHM2017/index.html

Conference

Conference11th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring 2017: Real-Time Material State Awareness and Data-Driven Safety Assurance, IWSHM 2017
Abbreviated titleIWSHM 2017
CountryUSA United States
CityStanford
Period12/09/1714/09/17
Internet address

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Information Management
  • Computer Science Applications

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    Boccardi, S., Iervolino, O., Loisi, G., Ciampa, F., & Meo, M. (2017). A novel heatsink for thermo-electric power harvesting of structural health monitoring systems. In Proceedings of the 11th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, IWSHM 2017: Volume 1 (Vol. 1, pp. 504-511). DEStech Publications.