Thermoelectric energy harvesting on steep rise

Thermoelectric energy harvesting on steep rise

Market news |
In a new report titled “Sub-watt thermoelectric energy harvesting: industry and market analysis”, market research firm Infinergia Consulting reviews the key market segments that will most benefit from this form of energy harvesting.
By eeNews Europe


The Infrastructure & Building, Industry & Professionals, Transportation, and Consumer segments are analyzed through 15 applications drawing up to 500mW such as sensors or other low power devices.

Across these four markets, the company estimates the thermoelectric energy generator (TEG) market will boast a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 31% between 2013 and 2019, exceeding the 20 million-unit mark by 2020.

The TEG industry market forecast (M$), not limited to sub-watt TEG. Source Infinergia.


Very much like vibrational and solar energy harvesters, low power thermoelectric generators offer a maintenance-free alternative to disposable batteries, they can come as a complement or bring new power solutions to static or enclosed applications when no light is available (think underground heat pipes).

Clearly, the Infrastructure & Building market segment takes the lion’s share of the units sold, possibly reaching 12 million low power thermoelectric generators shipped by 2020, followed by the consumer market which has yet to take off but which would experience the fastest growth.

“The market for thermoelectric generators is relatively mature in the Infrastructure & Building market where solar and vibrational or kinetic energy harvesters have opened the door to multiple energy-harvesting approaches”, commented Fabrice Poulin, Infinergia’s CEO.

“Although there is a big potential for thermoelectric harvesters in the consumer and automotive markets, the technology is still emerging if you compare it with more established solar or kinetic energy harvesters. Transport is an obvious application, with wireless sensor nodes performing engine monitoring under the hood, or for aerospatial structural monitoring.

All the sensor nodes could be connected wirelessly and operate based on sub-watt thermoelectric energy harvesting, cutting on cabling costs and weight, but the standards are not ready yet for such safety-critical applications”, told Poulin to eeNews Europe.

“We didn’t mention the medical market as it will not be on the radar for the next 10 years, as thermoelectrics is concerned”, Poulin added. “The consumer market for thermoelectric energy harvesting will likely take-off as the technology matures, to complement other energy harvesting units”, he concluded. Overall, the sub-watt thermoelectric generator market is very fragmented.

TEG forecast on four key segments. Source Infinergia.


The 122-page report pays particular attention to manufacturers of both thermoelectric generators and energy storage solutions, and the full food chain analysis is completed by an overview of the supporting ecosystem. It also includes design services companies, and events that help consolidating this industry.

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