Ef­fi­cient con­ver­sion

Down to Earth - - SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY -

Nearly two-thirds of en­ergy pro­duced through fos­sil fuel com­bus­tion or in coal plants gets wasted as heat. This waste could be re­duced. A new ma­te­rial, tin se­lenide, has been cre­ated to help con­vert heat en­ergy into elec­tri­cal. Be­ing the most poor con­duc­tor of heat known so far, tin se­lenide is the most ef­fi­cient ma­te­rial for this pur­pose. It also has good elec­tri­cal con­duc­tiv­ity. These prop­er­ties make it very use­ful for ther­mo­elec­tric de­vices, au­to­mo­bile in­dus­try and re­finer­ies. Na­ture,April16(on­line)

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