Germano D’Abramo | Thermionic Emission as a way to Harvest Heat Energy at a Uniform Temperature

The idea of exploiting blackbody radiation through thermionic emission is not new. We mathematically model the charging at a uniform temperature of a capacitor having plates with unequal work functions (dubbed the thermo-charged capacitor, or TCC). According to well-established physical principles and material properties, we expect that the TCC will have a non-zero power output. We show that measuring that power can be a challenge, and the production of usable energy seems out of the question.

Germano D’Abramo is a physicist and worked as a researcher in various research institutes and companies in Rome between 1998–2014 on near-Earth asteroid population modeling and deflection. His research activity and interests also include special relativity, classical electrodynamics, and the history and philosophy of physics. He currently works for the Italian Ministry of Education as a physics teacher. He is the author of the books “The Impact Clan” (2015) and “Probing the Limits” (2017).

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Published on March 16, 2022