Thermoelectric Material

Thermoelectric Material

Innovative material for cost-effective thermoelectric generators

Intellectual Property and Innovation Management

Deniz Bayramoglu, +49 6151 16-57215

Robert Heitzmann, +49 6151 16-5722

Status quo

Thermoelectric materials convert heat into electrical energy due to the Seebeck-Effect. Materials used so far mainly consist of lead, tellurium, germanium and bismuth, which are toxic, difficult to obtain, expensive and/or heavy.

Our technology: Phosphide-based thermo-electric material

A compound that is better suited to build thermoeletric generators has been developed. The phosphide is a new compound with a high thermoeletric figure of merit of zT > 0,7. It meets the requirements that are necessary for a p-semiconducting thermoelectric material for applications at intermediate temperatures (400 °C – 700 °C).


  • Cost-effective compound based on easily available and non-toxic materials; allows economic production of thermoelectric generators.
  • Optimization for different applications possible by chemical substitution.
  • Thermally stable.

Current stage of development

Technology-Readiness-Level (TRL): Level 3

The material has been synthesized in laboratory and relevant parameters have been determined.

Application possibilities

Usage in the medium-temperature range (400 °C – 700 °C ), e.g. for waste-heat conversion in exhaust-systems of motor vehicles or in stationary applications (e.g. industry processes).

Commercialization opportunities

For the implementation of the technology, we are looking for interested companies who would like to extend their product portfolio or open up new business fields. There are various possibilities for cooperation between the industrial partner and TU Darmstadt: from an exchange with the know-how carriers of the technology up to a close cooperation in case of further development needs. The technology is protected by intellectual property rights and can be used by the industry partner after a sale or licensing agreement.