Semiconductor sales types will get a boot out of this one. How many times have you asked an engineer "What's your power budget for this design?"; only to be met with a chuckled response along the lines of, "We have no power budget. Your chip needs to generate power... hahahah!". Yeah right. Come back from the land of Oz Dorothy. Last we checked defying physics was a tough gig...
Or have these folks been talking to the wonderful wizard himself?
"ENECO has developed the Thermal Chip, a new type of semiconductor device for direct energy conversion, which means it converts one form of energy to another without intermediate steps or moving parts.
Fuel cells convert the chemical energy of a fuel directly to electrical energy.
In contrast, the Thermal Chip converts heat directly to electrical energy.
Fuel cells and Thermal Chips both convert one form of energy directly to another, but the technology is quite different. Thermal Chips have the added advantage of working efficiently using any fuel source.
This technology has two operating modes:
- Power Mode - using the Thermal Chip to convert heat directly to electricity
- Cooling Mode - using the Thermal Chip to convert electricity directly into solid-state cooling/refrigeration"
We know what you're thinking, this is what we've been calling a "TEC" or Peltier cooler for many years now. But the Eneco chip technology page (which needs a serious face-lift by the way) goes on to say...
"ENECO's current models project higher conversion efficiencies for the Cooling Mode than for the Power Mode, and laboratory tests for cooling, at least in some cases, have already yielded cryogenic temperatures (temperatures below -150oC)."
Who needs LN2 with a TEC like that? Bring it on Eneco!