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The efficiency of a thermoelectric device for electricity generation is given by ‘eta’

,
defined as

The ability of a given material to efficiently produce thermoelectric power is related
to its dimensionless figure of merit given by:

Which, depends on the Seebeck coefficient S, thermal conductivity λ, and
electrical conductivity σ, and temperature T.

In an actual thermoelectric device, two materials are used. The maximum efficiency
is then given by

Where, TH is the temperature at the hot junction and T C is the temperature at the
surface being cooled. ZT is the modified dimensionless figure of merit, which takes
into consideration the thermoelectric capacity of both thermoelectric materials
being used in the device and, after geometrical optimization regarding the legs
sections, is defined as

Where, rho is the electrical resistivity, T is the average temperature between the
hot and cold surfaces and the subscripts n and p denote properties related to the nand p-type semiconducting thermoelectric materials, respectively. Since
thermoelectric devices are heat engines, their efficiency is limited by the Carnot
efficiency, hence the TH and TC terms in max efficiency. Regardless, the coefficient of
performance of current commercial thermoelectric refrigerators ranges from 0.3 to
0.6, one-sixth the value of traditional vapour-compression refrigerators.

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2) . ZT – 2. ZT – 2.6) Lead Telluride (PbTe.Tin Selenide (SnSe.