Nesarajah M.; Frey, G.: Energy Harvesting from Open Fireplaces. 2nd International Congress on Energy Efficiency and Energy Related Materials, Oludeniz, Turkey, Oct. 2014; in: A.Y. Oral et al. (Eds.): 2nd International Congress on Energy Efficiency and Energy Related Materials (ENEFM2014), Springer Proceedings in Energy, Springer International Publishing, pp. 525-531, 2015.


This contribution presents a green barbecue or fireplace, which recovers electrical energy from the heat of the fire by the use of thermoelectric generators (TEGs). TEGs use a temperature difference to generate electrical energy based on the Seebeck effect. To generate a sufficient temperature difference, the fireplace was designed to ensure a good heat transfer to the hot TEG sides. Furthermore, CPU cooling elements using heat pipes were mounted on the cold TEG sides. As a side effect, the recirculation of the preheated air from these coolers into the fire can improve the burning process. The gained energy is used to load a mobile device via an USB plug and to supply 12 V DC via a vehicle plug. Possible applications of the system are of course barbecues where the DC power may be used to support mobile devices or entertainment systems. A more serious application is found in rural areas without electrification where the electricity generated during cooking may replace expensive batteries or environmental unfriendly diesel generators. Moreover, a simulation model for the green barbecue is created. The contribution will describe the construction of the green fireplace and the developed simulation model. Finally the simulation results are compared with real test readings and an outlook on further developments to a controlled fireplace is given.

Keywords: Energy Harvesting, Thermoelectric Generator, Open Fireplace