These original Kirt's Cogitations™ may be reproduced
(no more than 5, please) provided proper credit is given to me, Kirt Blattenberger.
here to return to the Table of Contents.
Cog·i·ta·tion [koj-i-tey'-shun] – noun: Concerted
reflection; meditation; contemplation.
Kirt [kert] – proper noun: RF Cafe webmaster.
A Cool Concept
If the people at
Research Triangle Institute have their way, you might
just be able to have your cake and eat it too, at least when it comes to keeping ICs cool. A prototype
semiconductor thermoelectric device has been developed that is many times more efficient at cooling that anything
that has preceded it. Their array cools a small block of steel by 15 °F in 2 minutes. It works in reverse, too;
that is to say it generates electric current when exposed to heat. Imagine mating this device to a cell phone PA
and having it boost efficiency by both keeping it cool and feeding the heat-generated current back to the bias
circuits. Visions of grandeur by the inventors foretell of the eventual replacement of conventional refrigerators
and air conditioners. No time line has been proposed, however.