|About this Abstract
||2020 TMS Annual Meeting & Exhibition
||Powder Materials for Energy Applications
||Advanced Skutterudite-based Thermoelectric Unicouples by Near Net Shape Powder-based Fabrication for Future Space Power Applications
||Michell Aranda, Sutinee Sujittosakul, George Nakatsukasa, Vilupanur Ravi, Ike Chi
|On-Site Speaker (Planned)
Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs) have provided electrical power for various NASA missions to deep space since 1972. NASA’s Voyager 1 used RTGs and is now headed to Interstellar space after more than 40 years of exploration, the power system of this long mission is critical for Voyager’s success. RTGs use an assembly of thermoelectric unicouples connected electrically in series to convert heat into electricity. The production of these state-of-the-art SiGe-based thermoelectric unicouples was labor intensive and time consuming. Fabrication methods for those couples required complex steps that included powder co-hot pressing, component machining, grinding elements to geometric tolerance, and bonding subassemblies into a device. These time-consuming steps motivate the current development of a new processing approach, with the goal of reducing number of steps while retaining the properties and qualities of advanced Skutterudite-based thermoelectric unicouples. In this study, critical production steps; assembling, processing time and sintering conditions will be discussed.
||Planned: Supplemental Proceedings volume