High-performance wearable thermoelectric generator with self-healing, recycling, and Lego-like reconfiguring capabilities

Publication Title
Science Advances
Publication/Creation Date
February 10 2021
University Of Colorado Boulder (creator)
Harbin Institute Of Technology (creator)
Southeast University (creator)
Zhejiang University (creator)
Tongji University (creator)
Huazhong University Of Science And Technology (creator)
Wei Ren (creator)
Yan Sun (creator)
Dongliang Zhao (creator)
Ablimit Aili (creator)
Shun Zhang (creator)
Chuanqian Shi (creator)
Jialun Zhang (creator)
Huiyuan Geng (creator)
Jie Zhang (creator)
Lixia Zhang (creator)
Jianliang Xiao (creator)
Ronggui Yang (creator)
Media Type
Journal Article
Persuasive Intent

Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are an excellent candidate for powering wearable electronics and the “Internet of Things,” due to their capability of directly converting heat to electrical energy. Here, we report a high-performance wearable TEG with superior stretchability, self-healability, recyclability, and Lego-like reconfigurability, by combining modular thermoelectric chips, dynamic covalent polyimine, and flowable liquid-metal electrical wiring in a mechanical architecture design of “soft motherboard-rigid plugin modules.” A record-high open-circuit voltage among flexible TEGs is achieved, reaching 1 V/cm2 at a temperature difference of 95 K. Furthermore, this TEG is integrated with a wavelength-selective metamaterial film on the cold side, leading to greatly improved device performance under solar irradiation, which is critically important for wearable energy harvesting during outdoor activities. The optimal properties and design concepts of TEGs reported here can pave the way for delivering the next-generation high-performance, adaptable, customizable, durable, economical, and eco-friendly energy-harvesting devices with wide applications.
HCI Platform
Discursive Type
Location on Body
Moving, Walking
Marketing Keywords

Date archived
February 16 2021
Last edited
February 16 2021
How to cite this entry
University Of Colorado Boulder, Harbin Institute of Technology, Southeast University, Zhejiang University, Tongji University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wei Ren, Yan Sun, Dongliang Zhao, Ablimit Aili, Shun Zhang, Chuanqian Shi, Jialun Zhang, Huiyuan Geng, Jie Zhang, Lixia Zhang, Jianliang Xiao, Ronggui Yang. (February 10 2021). "High-performance wearable thermoelectric generator with self-healing, recycling, and Lego-like reconfiguring capabilities". Science Advances. American Association For The Advancement Of Science. Fabric of Digital Life. https://fabricofdigitallife.com/Detail/objects/5086