Having Particular Bonding Material For Junction Patents (Class 136/237)
  • Patent number: 10998484
    Abstract: Provided is a semiconductor device manufacturing method which can suppress the occurrence of positional deviation or inclination of a semiconductor element when the semiconductor element is fixed so as to be sandwiched-between two insulating substrates. The semiconductor device manufacturing method includes: obtaining a laminated body in which a semiconductor element is temporarily adhered on a first electrode formed on a first insulating substrate with a first pre-sintering layer sandwiched therebetween; temporarily adhering the semiconductor element on a second electrode formed on a second insulating substrate with a second pre-sintering layer sandwiched therebetween, the second pre-sintering layer being provided on a side opposite to the first pre-sintering layer, to obtain a semiconductor device precursor; and simultaneously heating the first pre-sintering layer and the second pre-sintering layer, to bond the semiconductor element to the first electrode and the second electrode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2021
    Assignee: NITTO DENKO CORPORATION
    Inventors: Keisuke Okumura, Satoshi Honda
  • Patent number: 10396267
    Abstract: A thermoelectric conversion element includes: a magnetic body having a magnetization; and an electromotive body formed of material exhibiting a spin orbit coupling and jointed to the magnetic body. The magnetic body has an upper joint surface jointed to the electromotive body. The upper joint surface has concavities and convexities.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventors: Akihiro Kirihara, Masahiko Ishida, Shigeru Koumoto
  • Patent number: 10189119
    Abstract: An object of the invention is to provide a lead-free solder for die bonding having a high heat resistance temperature and an improved wetting property. Provided are a solder alloy for die bonding which contains 0.05% by mass to 3.0% by mass of antimony and the remainder consisting of bismuth and inevitable impurities, and a solder alloy for die bonding which contains 0.01% by mass to 2.0% by mass of germanium and the remainder consisting of bismuth and inevitable impurities.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2019
    Assignees: Nihon Handa Co., Ltd., Fuji Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Takeshi Asagi, Susumu Mitani, Hirohiko Watanabe, Masayoshi Shimoda
  • Patent number: 10147859
    Abstract: A thermoelectric power module capable of suppressing diffusion of not only a material of a solder layer but also a material of a solder joint layer into a thermoelectric element, or suppressing oxidation of the thermoelectric element. The thermoelectric power module includes in sequence: a thermoelectric element consisting essentially of a thermoelectric material containing at least two kinds of elements of bismuth (Bi), tellurium (Te), antimony (Sb), and selenium (Se) as principal components; a first diffusion prevention layer consisting essentially of at least one of molybdenum (Mo) and tungsten (W); a second diffusion prevention layer consisting essentially of at least one of cobalt (Co), titanium (Ti), and an alloy or compound containing them as principal components; and a solder joint layer consisting essentially of at least one of nickel (Ni), tin (Sn), and an alloy or compound containing them as principal components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2018
    Assignee: KELK LTD.
    Inventors: Shinichi Fujimoto, Hiroyuki Matsunami
  • Patent number: 9947855
    Abstract: A thermoelectric conversion element includes: a magnetic body having a magnetization; and an electromotive body formed of material exhibiting a spin orbit coupling and jointed to the magnetic body. The magnetic body has an upper joint surface jointed to the electromotive body. The upper joint surface has concavities and convexities.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2018
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventors: Akihiro Kirihara, Masahiko Ishida, Shigeru Koumoto
  • Patent number: 9099601
    Abstract: Materials having improved thermoelectric properties are disclosed. In some embodiments, lead telluride/selenide based materials with improved figure of merit and mechanical properties are disclosed. In some embodiments, the lead telluride/selenide based materials of the present disclosure are p-type thermoelectric materials formed by adding sodium (Na), silicon (Si) or both to thallium doped lead telluride materials. In some embodiments, the lead telluride/selenide based materials are formed by doping lead telluride/selenides with potassium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignees: The Trustees of Boston College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Zhifeng Ren, Qinyong Zhang, Qian Zhang, Gang Chen
  • Patent number: 8795545
    Abstract: A thermoelectric material and a method of making a thermoelectric material are provided. In certain embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises at least 10 volume percent porosity. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material has a zT greater than about 1.2 at a temperature of about 375 K. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a topological thermoelectric material. In some embodiments, the thermoelectric material comprises a general composition of (Bi1-xSbx)u(Te1-ySey)w, wherein 0?x?1, 0?y?1, 1.8?u?2.2, 2.8?w?3.2. In further embodiments, the thermoelectric material includes a compound having at least one group IV element and at least one group VI element. In certain embodiments, the method includes providing a powder comprising a thermoelectric composition, pressing the powder, and sintering the powder to form the thermoelectric material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Assignees: ZT Plus, The Ohio State University
    Inventors: Joseph P. Heremans, Christopher M. Jaworski, Vladimir Jovovic, Fred Harris
  • Patent number: 8753529
    Abstract: Provided is a clathrate compound represented by a following chemical formula, for example, BaaGabAlcSid (where 7.77?a?8.16, 7.47?b?15.21, 0.28?c?6.92, 30.35?d?32.80, and a+b+c+d=54), and a thermoelectric material containing the clathrate compound. A producing method of the thermoelectric material is also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Assignee: Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Daisuke Kikuchi, Tatsuhiko Eguchi
  • Patent number: 8710348
    Abstract: A thermoelectric device (31) includes a plurality of alternating p-type and n-type semiconductor thermoelectric elements (32, 34, 36; 33, 35 37) the elements (32-37) being separated by electrically and thermally conductive interconnects (40-45), alternating interconnects (40-44) extending in an opposite direction from interconnects (41-45) interspersed therewith. Each thin-film element comprises several hundred thermoelectric alloy A superlattice thin-films interspersed with several hundred thermoelectric alloy B superlattice thin-films, the thin-film elements being between 5 and 25 microns thick and preferably over 10 microns thick. The thin-film elements may be interspersed with opposite type thin-film elements or with opposite type bulk elements (33a, 34a). The interconnects are preferably joined to the elements by diffusion bonding.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 29, 2014
    Inventors: Dirk N. Weiss, Thomas D. Radcliff, Rhonda R. Willigan
  • Patent number: 8563844
    Abstract: Embodiments of a thin-film heterostructure thermoelectric material and methods of fabrication thereof are disclosed. In general, the thermoelectric material is formed in a Group IIa and IV-VI materials system. The thermoelectric material includes an epitaxial heterostructure and exhibits high heat pumping and figure-of-merit performance in terms of Seebeck coefficient, electrical conductivity, and thermal conductivity over broad temperature ranges through appropriate engineering and judicious optimization of the epitaxial heterostructure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignees: Phononic Devices, Inc., Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma
    Inventors: Allen L. Gray, Robert Joseph Therrien, Patrick John McCann
  • Publication number: 20130152990
    Abstract: A solid-liquid interdiffusion bonding structure of a thermoelectric module and a fabricating method thereof are provided. The method includes coating a silver, nickel, or copper layer on surfaces of a thermoelectric component and an electrode plate, and then coating a tin layer. A thermocompression treatment is performed on the thermoelectric component and the electrode plate, such that the melted tin layer reacts with the silver, nickel, or copper layer to form a silver-tin intermetallic compound, a nickel-tin intermetallic compound, or a copper-tin intermetallic compound. After cooling, the thermoelectric component and the electrode plate are bonded together.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 4, 2012
    Publication date: June 20, 2013
    Inventors: Hong-Jen Lai, Jenn-Dong Hwang, Hsu-Shen Chu, Tung-Han Chuang, Chao-Chi Jain, Che-Wei Lin
  • Publication number: 20120160293
    Abstract: A thermoelectric conversion module has a thermoelectric conversion element and an electrode, which are metallurgically bonded together via a porous metal layer. The porous metal layer is made of nickel or silver and has a density ratio of 50 to 90%.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 16, 2011
    Publication date: June 28, 2012
    Applicant: HITACHI POWDERED METALS CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Takahiro JINUSHI, Zenzo ISHIJIMA
  • Patent number: 8044292
    Abstract: A thermoelectric material comprises core-shell particles having a core formed from a core material and a shell formed from a shell material. In representative examples, the shell material is a material showing an appreciable thermoelectric effect in bulk. The core material preferably has a lower thermal conductivity than the shell material. In representative examples, the core material is an inorganic oxide such as silica or alumina, and the shell material is a chalcogenide semiconductor such as a telluride, for example bismuth telluride. A thermoelectric material including such core-shell particles may have an improved thermoelectric figure of merit compared with a bulk sample of the shell material alone. Embodiments of the invention further include thermoelectric devices using such thermoelectric materials, and preparation techniques.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 25, 2011
    Assignees: Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc., The Administrators of the Tulane Educational Fund
    Inventors: Qiangfeng Xiao, Yunfeng Lu, Junwei Wang, Minjuan Zhang
  • Patent number: 8039728
    Abstract: The invention is directed to a thermoelectric module that utilizes a glass-ceramic material in place of the alumina and aluminum nitride that are commonly used in such modules. The glass-ceramic has a coefficient of thermal expansion of <10×10?7/° C. The p- and n-type thermoelectric materials can be any type of such materials that can withstand an operating environment of up to 1000° C., and they should have a CTE comparable to that of the glass-ceramic. The module of the invention is used to convert the energy wasted in the exhaust heat of hydrocarbon fueled engines to electrical power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 15, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2011
    Assignee: Corning Incorporated
    Inventors: Thierry Luc Alain Dannoux, Paulo Gaspar Jorge Marques
  • Publication number: 20110100410
    Abstract: A low-cost thermoelectric converter element which is not decreased in electrical conductivity and thermal conductivity even under high temperature conditions. The thermoelectric converter element includes a single element including a sintered cell and a pair of electrodes respectively attached to a heating surface that is one surface of the sintered cell and a cooling surface that is a surface opposite to the heating surface, a conductive member for electrical connection with an electrode other than the electrodes, and a metal layer including at least one of gold and platinum. An electrode of the single element is electrically connected with the conductive member through the metal layer.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 28, 2009
    Publication date: May 5, 2011
    Applicant: UNIVERSAL ENTERTAINMENT CORPORATION
    Inventor: Koh Takahashi
  • Patent number: 7932460
    Abstract: Improved thermoelectric assemblies are disclosed, wherein layers of heterostructure thermoelectric materials or thin layers of thermoelectric material form thermoelectric elements. The layers are bound together with agents that improve structural strengths, allow electrical current to pass in a preferred direction, and minimize or reduce adverse affects, such a shear stresses, that might occur to the thermoelectric properties and materials of the assembly by their inclusion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2004
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2011
    Assignee: ZT Plus
    Inventor: Lon E. Bell
  • Patent number: 7696668
    Abstract: A solid state thermoelectric converter includes a thermally insulating separator layer, a semiconducting collector and an electron emitter. The electron emitter comprises a metal nanoparticle layer or plurality of metal nanocatalyst particles disposed on one side of said separator layer. A first electrically conductive lead is electrically coupled to the electron emitter. The collector layer is disposed on the other side of the separator layer, wherein the thickness of the separator layer is less than 1 ?m. A second conductive lead is electrically coupled to the collector layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 13, 2010
    Assignee: UT-Battelle, LLC
    Inventor: Zhiyu Hu
  • Patent number: 7321157
    Abstract: A method of fabricating a CoSb3-based thermoelectric device is disclosed. The method includes providing a high-temperature electrode, providing a buffer layer on the high-temperature electrode, forming composite n-type and p-type layers, attaching the buffer layer to the composite n-type and p-type layers, providing a low-temperature electrode on the composite n-type and p-type layers and separating the composite n-type and p-type layers from each other to define n-type and p-type legs between the high-temperature electrode and the low-temperature electrode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2008
    Assignees: GM Global Technology Operations, Inc., Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences
    Inventors: Lidong Chen, Junfeng Fan, Shengqiang Bai, Jihui Yang
  • Patent number: 6911551
    Abstract: The present invention relates to substituted boron or aluminum spiro compounds and their use in the electronic industry. The compounds of the invention are used as electron transport material, hole blocking material and/or as host material in organic electroluminescence and/or phosphorescence devices, as electron transport material in photocopiers, as electron acceptor or electron transport material in solar cells, as charge transport material in organic ICs (circuits) and in organic solid-state lasers or organic photodetectors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2005
    Assignee: Covion Organic Semiconductors GmbH
    Inventors: Philipp Stössel, Hubert Spreitzer, Heinrich Becker, Jacqueline Drott
  • Patent number: 6812395
    Abstract: Improved thermoelectric assemblies are disclosed, wherein layers of heterostructure thermoelectric materials or thin layers of thermoelectric material form thermoelectric elements. The layers are bound together with agents that improve structural strengths, allow electrical current to pass in a preferred direction, and minimize or reduce adverse affects, such a shear stresses, that might occur to the thermoelectric properties and materials of the assembly by their inclusion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 2, 2004
    Assignee: BSST LLC
    Inventor: Lon E. Bell
  • Patent number: 6774298
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module which includes case 1, heat-radiation side insulating substrate 4a, heat-absorption side insulating substrate 4b, first soldering layer 5a formed of a first soldering agent to connect the heat-radiation side insulating substrate 4a and the case 1, a plurality of P-type and N-type semiconductor chips interposed between the heat-radiation side insulating substrate 4a and the heat-absorption side insulating substrate 4b, the plurality of P-type and N-type semiconductor chips being arranged alternately, and a second soldering layer 15a (15b) formed of a second soldering agent to connect the heat-radiation side insulating substrate 4a and one end of each of the plural P-type and N-type semiconductor chips (the heat-absorption side insulating substrate 4b and the other end of each of the plural P-type and N-type semiconductor chips), the first soldering agent and the second soldering agent being identical in raw material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 10, 2004
    Assignee: Aisin Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hitoshi Tauchi, Masato Itakura, Hirotsugu Sugiura
  • Patent number: 6759586
    Abstract: Disclosed is a thermoelectric module, comprising a plurality of p-type thermoelectric elements each comprising a p-type semiconductor having a skutterdite crystal structure, a plurality of n-type thermoelectric elements each comprising a n-type semiconductor having a skutterdite crystal structure, at least one first electrode, at least one second electrode, at least one first alloy layer and at least one second alloy layer, wherein said at least one first alloy layer and said at least one second alloy layer contain Sb and at least one transition metal element selected from the group consisting of Ag, Au and Cu.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2002
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2004
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Naoki Shutoh, Hiromitsu Takeda, Naruhito Kondo
  • Patent number: 6727423
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module includes a case, a insulating base plate for a exoergic side, a insulating base plate for endoergic side, a first soldering layer which joins the insulating base plate for the exoergic side to the case via a first soldering material, and a second soldering layer which joins P-type and N-type semiconductor tips to the insulating base plate for an exoenergic side and a insulating base plate for an endoergic side, using second soldering material. The melting point temperature of the first soldering material for the first soldering layer is higher than the melting point temperature of the second material for the second soldering layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2001
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2004
    Assignee: Aisin Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hitoshi Tauchi, Masato Itakura, Hirotsugu Sugiura
  • Patent number: 6700053
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module comprising an N-type thermoelectric element having excellent characteristics in air atmosphere even when the temperature rises to a medium-to-high temperature region of about 500° C. and, further, improving the conversion efficiency of, a thermoelectric module, by the combination of an excellent P-type thermoelectric material and an excellent n-type thermoelectric material containing a compound having a skutterudite structure, the module comprising an N-type thermoelectric elements each containing a compound having a skutterudite structure, P-type thermoelectric elements each connected directly or by way of a metal member to the N-type thermoelectric elements and containing an Mn—Si series compound.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 2, 2004
    Assignee: Komatsu Ltd.
    Inventors: Reiko Hara, Ikuto Aoyama, Kenichi Tomita, Kouichi Ishida
  • Patent number: 6593519
    Abstract: An infrared sensor is provided with a thermopile formed with a plurality of thermocouples connected to each other. The thermopile includes hot junctions, cold junctions, and thermoelectric patterns. The thermoelectric patterns are made of thermoelectric materials differing from each other. The hot junctions and the cold junctions are made of a bonding material which differs from the thermoelectric materials. A temperature-compensation resistor film is formed at a corner of the surface of a substrate on which the thermopile is formed, the temperature-compensation resistor film being made of the same material as the bonding material used for the hot junctions and the cold junctions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2003
    Assignee: Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Ryuichi Kubo
  • Patent number: 6563039
    Abstract: A high-efficiency thermoelectric unicouple is used for power generation. The unicouple is formed with a plurality of legs, each leg formed of a plurality of segments. The legs are formed in a way that equalized certain aspects of the different segments. Different materials are also described.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 2001
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2003
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Thierry Caillat, Jean-Pierre Fleurial, Alexander Borshchevsky, G. Jeffrey Snyder, Andrew Zoltan, Leslie Zoltan
  • Patent number: 6452085
    Abstract: A thermoelectric device includes a thermoelectric element composed of principally thermoelectric material, a counter element adhered to the thermoelectric material. A solder layer lies between the thermoelectric element and the counter element and adheres the thermoelectric element to the counter element. A restraining layer prevents the solder ingredient of the solder layer from spreading into the thermoelectric element. The restraining layer is composed of a first layer to prevent the solder ingredient of the solder layer from spreading into the thermoelectric element and a second layer composed of material having a higher wetting property than the first layer with respect to the solder layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2002
    Assignee: Aisin Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hitoshi Tauchi, Satoru Ogawa, Hirotsugu Sugiura, Noburo Ebina
  • Patent number: 6410840
    Abstract: A thermoelectric conversion device is manufactured by the following steps of forming. A metallic material is formed on a substrate. A photosensitive resin pattern is formed on the metallic material. Patterned n-type or p-type thermoelectric material elements having a predetermined thickness and electrode junction layers are formed by plating. Next, the photosensitive resin pattern is dissolved and the metallic material is removed. And the substrate having the p-type thermoelectric material elements and the substrate having the n-type thermoelectric material elements are joined with the electrode junction layers interposed between the each thermoelectric material elements and the opposed substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2002
    Assignee: Seiko Instruments Inc.
    Inventors: Shuzo Sudo, Matsuo Kishi, Hirohiko Nemoto
  • Patent number: 6288321
    Abstract: A device for generating power to run an electronic component. The device includes a heat-conducting substrate (composed, e.g., of diamond or another high thermal conductivity material) disposed in thermal contact with a high temperature region. During operation, heat flows from the high temperature region into the heat-conducting substrate, from which the heat flows into the electrical power generator. A thermoelectric material (e.g., a Bi2Te3-based film or other thermoelectric material) is placed in thermal contact with the heat-conducting substrate. A low temperature region is located on the side of the thermoelectric material opposite that of the high temperature region. The thermal gradient generates electrical power and drives an electrical component.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2001
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Jean-Pierre Fleurial, N. Thomas Olson, Alexander Borshchevsky, Thierry Caillat, Elizabeth Kolawa, M. Amy Ryan, Wayne M. Philips
  • Publication number: 20010017151
    Abstract: The present invention is a thermoelectric device comprising: a thermoelectric element composed of principally thermoelectric material, a counter element adhered to said thermoelectric material, a solder layer lying between said thermoelectric element and said counter element and adhering said thermoelectric element to said counter element, a restraining layer to prevent said solder's ingredient of said solder layer from spreading into said thermoelectric element, wherein said restraining layer comprising a first layer to prevent said solder's ingredient of said solder layer from spreading into said thermoelectric element and a second layer composed of material which gets wetter than said first layer against said solder layer.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 17, 2001
    Publication date: August 30, 2001
    Applicant: AISIN SEIKI KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Hitoshi Tauchi, Satoru Ogawa, Hirotsugu Sugiura, Noburo Ebina
  • Patent number: 6207887
    Abstract: A miniature thermoelectric module for generating electric power from low power heat sources in the range of a fraction of a Watt to a few Watts. The module comprises an array of thermoelectric elements, each element having a cross section of less than 0.001 square inch and a length of at least 0.25 inch. The elements are separated from each other with a polyimide insulator sheet in a checkerboard array. In a preferred embodiment, the modules are fabricated by hot pressing a stack of alternating plates of p and n doped thin plates all separated by thin sheets of a polyimide insulator material to produce a pressed stack of p and n doped layers. The stack is then sliced to produce layered plates which are then stacked with insulating polyimide layers positioned between the layered plates to produce the checkerboard array of p and n thermoelectric elements. Contacts are applied to electrically connect all of the elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Hi-2 Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: John C. Bass, Norbert B. Elsner
  • Patent number: 6103054
    Abstract: A device for generating electrical current in the presence of ambient heat includes an intermediate layer having a predetermined electronegativity value interposed between a first outer layer and a second outer layer, in which the first outer layer has an electronegative value less than the intermediate layer, and the second outer layer has an electronegative value less than the first outer layer. The intermediate layer includes a first binder combination and a second binder combination. The first binder combination contains a polymeric binder and a first electronegative material. The second binder combination contains a polymeric binder and a second electronegative material. The first and second binder combinations have a predetermined electronegative value that is greater than said first and second outer layers. A method of making and a method of activating the device for the generation of electricity are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Tapeswitch Corporation of America
    Inventor: Walter Carl Lovell
  • Patent number: 6103967
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module contains a P-type semiconductor element and an N-type semiconductor element electrically connected in series to each other in a circuit containing a conductor and a solder layer. The solder is formed from a ternary eutectic alloy composition containing bismuth in an amount of from 5 to 70 atomic %, tin in an amount of from 20 to 70 atomic % and antimony in an amount of from 5 to 70 atomic %. The solder composition provides the thermoelectric module with improved high temperature performance and enables the semiconductor elements to be directly contacted with the soldering layer without the necessity of a barrier layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Tellurex Corporation
    Inventors: Charles J. Cauchy, Larry W. Wertenberger
  • Patent number: 6103968
    Abstract: A method of producing a thermal generator has the steps of forming two working branches including a negative branch and a positive branch, so that at least one of the branches is composed of a non-porous semiconductor material, subdividing the one branch composed of semiconductor material into two sections, and providing between the two sections a semiconductor zone having a disordered structure so as to reduce heat conduction between a hot end and a cold end of the thermal generator due to the zone with the disordered structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: White Eagle International Technologies Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Timofei Gutkin
  • Patent number: 5841064
    Abstract: A Peltier effect module comprising a plurality of Peltier effect elements arranged in parallel between a pair of substrates where the Peltier effect elements are connected to connection electrodes disposed on the substrates. The array of Peltier effect elements is sealed off by a hollow seal frame surrounding the Peltier effect element array with a seal formed by a bond between both end edges of the seal frame and the substrates. Because the perimeter around the Peltier effect elements is sealed using a seal frame metalically bonded at both ends to the substrates, resistance to moisture penetration is largely determined by the material from which the seal frame is made. Therefore, by appropriately selecting the seal frame materials, the Peltier effect module can be reliably protected for a long period of time against moisture penetration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 24, 1998
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Works, Ltd.
    Inventors: Nobuteru Maekawa, Katsuyoshi Shimoda, Teruaki Komatsu, Shinya Murase, Hiroaki Okada, Hiroyuki Inoue
  • Patent number: 5824947
    Abstract: A thermoelectric device fabricated of at least two dissimilar thermoelements and at least one of the thermoelements has a conductor in parallel therewith increasing the Figure of Merit. The thermoelements are also surrounded by a conductor along the leg lengths thereby simplifying the manufacturing process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Inventor: Chris Macris
  • Patent number: 5817188
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module is formed with a solder joint, the solder containing about 50 to 99 weight percent bismuth and about 50 to 1 weight percent antimony, between the thermoelectric elements and the connecting conductors. Also provided is a thermoelectric module having bismuth telluride elements coated with a conductive material that does not require a nickel or other diffusion barrier. Further provided are modules having conductors with a phosphorus-nickel surface. Methods of manufacturing and using such thermoelectric modules are further provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 6, 1998
    Assignee: Melcor Corporation
    Inventors: Michael Yahatz, James Harper
  • Patent number: 5712448
    Abstract: A cooling device for lowering the temperature of a heat-dissipating device. The cooling device includes a heat-conducting substrate (composed, e.g., of diamond or another high thermal conductivity material) disposed in thermal contact with the heat-dissipating device. During operation, heat flows from the heat-dissipating device into the heat-conducting substrate, where it is spread out over a relatively large area. A thermoelectric cooling material (e.g., a Bi.sub.2 Te.sub.3 -based film or other thermoelectric material) is placed in thermal contact with the heat-conducting substrate. Application of electrical power to the thermoelectric material drives the thermoelectric material to pump heat into a second heat-conducting substrate which, in turn, is attached to a heat sink.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 1996
    Date of Patent: January 27, 1998
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Ian W. Vandersande, Richard Ewell, Jean-Pierre Fleurial, Hylan B. Lyon
  • Patent number: 5696348
    Abstract: A thermocouple structure capable of measurement of a high temperature with a high accuracy is constituted of a protective pipe made of a heat-resistant ceramic; a pair of wires differing in kind and extending in the protective pipe from one end thereof to the other end thereof in the longitudinal direction thereof in a state of being spaced away from each other; a thin film constituting a temperature-sensing portion, made of a tungsten alloy, disposed on one end portion of said protective pipe, and connected to the wires; and a covering layer made of a heat-resistant ceramic and covering the thin film in such a way as to disallow exterior exposure of the thin film. The protective pipe is made of Si.sub.3 N.sub.4, and a filling member made of a powder mixture of Si.sub.3 N.sub.4 and TiN is filled in the protective pipe. Alternatively, a pair of printed strips differing in kind may be formed as wires in a protective pipe to provide such a thermocouple structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 9, 1997
    Assignee: Isuzu Ceramics Research Institute Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hideo Kawamura, Hideki Kita
  • Patent number: 5441576
    Abstract: A thermoelectric heat pump which is resistant against thermal stresses incurred during thermal cycling of Thermal Cyclers or the like between cold and hot temperatures of about 0.degree. C. at a ramping rate up to about 1.degree. C. per second has improved joints between the thermoelements and electrical conductors which have low electrical resistance and which substantially reduce fractures during thermal cycling. The joints include a tin-silver-indium solder containing by weight about 95% tin, 3.5% silver, and 1.5% indium, or a tin-silver-cadmium solder containing by weight about 95.5% tin, 3.5% silver, and 1.0% cadmium. A robust nickel diffusion barrier between the joints and thermoelectric elements ends provides additional improvement against joint fracture.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 15, 1995
    Inventors: James L. Bierschenk, Richard A. Howarth, Norbert J. Socolowski
  • Patent number: 5429680
    Abstract: A thermoelectric heat pump including combination adherent and metal migration barrier layers intermediate the ends of the n-type and p-type semi-conductors and the metallic electrical conductors, the layers enhance the adherence to the ends of the semiconductors and prevent migration or diffusion of metal into the semiconductors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 1993
    Date of Patent: July 4, 1995
    Inventor: Dean F. Fuschetti
  • Patent number: 5040381
    Abstract: An apparatus for cooling circuit modules by use of a thermo-electric device which comprises a series of semiconductor regions and etched copper conductors designed to conduct heat in a specified direction by means of the Peltier Effect. The thermo-electric device is sandwiched between two layers of a polymer based, thermally conductive dielectric such as the dielectric used in the manufacture of Thermal Clad.TM.. The hot layer of Thermal Clad.TM. (i.e., the layer that receives heat) is laminated directly to a heat sink. The cold layer of Thermal Clad.TM. is laminated directly to a cold plate which is, in turn, coupled to the circuit module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 19, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 20, 1991
    Assignee: Prime Computer, Inc.
    Inventor: William A. Hazen
  • Patent number: 4902648
    Abstract: A thermoelectric module comprises a first electrode array having a plurality of electrode pieces and a second electrode array having a plurality of electrode pieces. The first and second electrode arrays are confronted with each other. The electrode pieces of the first electrode array are alternately connected with the electrode pieces of the second electrode array in such a way that one end portion of each electrode piece of the first electrode array is connected with one end portion of an electrode piece of the second electrode array through a thermoelectric element of first conductive type while the other end portion of the each electrode piece of the first electrode array is connected with one end portion of another electrode piece of the second electrode array through a thermoelectric element of second conductive type. The weight per unit output of the thermoelectric module is small.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 1989
    Date of Patent: February 20, 1990
    Assignee: Agency of Industrial Science and Technology
    Inventors: Toshitaka Ohta, Takenobu Kajikawa
  • Patent number: 4805454
    Abstract: A level measuring device comprises an electrical heater, a metallic sheathed thermocouple cable with two thermoelectric elements, a negative temperature coefficient electrical insulant interpositioned between each thermoelectric element and the sheath material of the thermocouple cable such that the thermoelectric elements are not mechanically in contact with each other; an outer cylindrical metallic sheath with one closed and one open end wherein the resistance heater and thermocouple cable are contained; a constant current power supply and a digital millivoltmeter connected to the ends of thermoelectric elements protruding from open end of the outer cylindrical metallic sheath for measuring the loop resistance of the thermoelectric elements; a microprocessor system for computing a length of cable corresponding to the resistance measured using the constant current source and the digital millivoltmeter; and, a power supply for supplying an electrical current to the heater cable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 1986
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1989
    Inventor: Francis E. LeVert
  • Patent number: 4732619
    Abstract: A renewable, elongated thermocouple probe having a first elongated thermocouple element and a second elongated thermocouple element surrounding the first element. Electrical insulation material is positioned between opposed surfaces of the first and second thermocouple elements to electrically insulate the elements from each other. A temperature sensing tip is provided at one end of the probe by grinding the end of the probe with an abrasive material to provide an electrically conductive connection in the form of metallic particles to define a conduction path between the first and second thermocouple elements and over the insulating material. The opposite end of the probe can be connected with a thermocouple reference junction in a conventional manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 22, 1988
    Assignee: Nanmac Corporation
    Inventor: Jacob Nanigian
  • Patent number: 4731127
    Abstract: A thermocouple device for detecting a flame. The device includes an outer thermocouple element having an excellent corrosion resistance and a large thermoelectromotive force, an inner thermocouple element, which is inserted into the outer thermocouple element, having a large thermoelectromotive force, and a junction layer securing end portions of the inner and outer thermocouple element. The junction layer is formed with a soldering material so as to avoid the formation of an alloy of the element materials that would have a poor corrosion resistance normally formed by welding.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 1986
    Date of Patent: March 15, 1988
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventor: Masaru Itoyama
  • Patent number: 4717788
    Abstract: Thermoelectric elements of both P-type and N-type lead tellurides having unique characteristics including, particularly in the case of the P-type, a figure-of-merit 90% above that of the best commercial P-type element, are produced by a new process, involving as key steps chill casting, cold pressing and sintering to 85-90% theoretical density under protective atmosphere.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 5, 1988
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Harry W. Rauch, Sr., Lewis H. Gnau, deceased, June E. Gnau, executrix
  • Patent number: 4714798
    Abstract: The invention is directed to a composite article suitable for use in thermoelectric generators. The article comprises a thin film of titanium nitride as an electrode deposited onto solid electrolyte. The invention is also directed to the method of making same.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 24, 1985
    Date of Patent: December 22, 1987
    Assignee: Ford Motor Company
    Inventors: Robert F. Novak, Duane J. Schmatz, Thomas K. Hunt
  • Patent number: 4647710
    Abstract: A heat sensitive cable capable of generating a temperature representative measurable voltage. The cable includes a pair of thermoelectric conductors disposed in contacting side-by-side relation together with an electrical insulation for passively self-generating a temperature representative measurable voltage between the conductors when the cable is exposed to ambient temperature. A flexible outer jacket formed of an electrically non-conductive material is provided to completely surround the conductors. The electrical insulation causes a change in the temperature representative measurable voltage with an increase or decrease in temperature at every location along the jacket. A change in the temperature representative measurable voltage under such condition is representative of a change in ambient temperature. The electrical insulation also causes a change in the temperature representative measurable voltage with an increase in temperature above the prevailing ambient at any location along the jacket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 1985
    Date of Patent: March 3, 1987
    Assignee: XCO International, Inc.
    Inventor: Bayard C. Davis
  • Patent number: 4638107
    Abstract: A heat sensitive tape capable of generating a temperature representative measurable voltage. The tape includes an elongated flexible strip of electrically non-conductive material. A pair of thermoelectric conductors extend along the strip in spaced apart side-by-side relation. The tape also includes an electrical insulation capable of passively self-generating a temperature representative voltage between the conductors when the tape is exposed to ambient temperature. The insulation causes a change in the temperature representative measurable voltage with an increase or decrease in temperature at every location along the strip. A change in the temperature representative measurable voltage under such condition is representative of a change in ambient temperature. The insulation also causes a change in the temperature representative measurable voltage with an increase in temperature above the prevailing ambient at any location along the strip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 1985
    Date of Patent: January 20, 1987
    Assignee: XCO International, Inc.
    Inventor: Bayard C. Davis