A differential method for measuring cooling performance of a thermoelectric module

Beomjin Kwon, Seung Hyub Baek, Seong Keun Kim, Dow Bin Hyun, Jin Sang Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


An accurate and rapid characterization of a thermoelectric module (TEM) is critical to understand the problems in module design and fabrication. We describe an apparatus and a method that directly measure the cooling performance of a TEM such as current for maximum cooling (Imax), maximum cooling power (Qc,max), and maximum temperature difference (ΔTmax). The apparatus is designed based on a finite element model to ensure a simple heat flow measurement. We evaluate the module performance metrics based on differential measurement between the cooling powers with temperature difference across the module under transient conditions. The use of transient data reduces measurement time, and the use of a differential technique enables compensation of the thermal losses. The measured data fit well with conventional theoretical relations for the TEM performance metrics. We test a commercial TEM and validate the results using the Harman method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-213
Number of pages5
JournalApplied Thermal Engineering
StatePublished - May 30 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Cooling power
  • Differential method
  • Figure of merit
  • Thermoelectric module

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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