Electricity Generation from Captured Waste Heat: Development and Market Validation of a Sustainable Energy Source

Student: Mikaela Saugstad, 2017-2018

Sponsor: Prof. Tengfei Luo, Engineering, Notre Dame, IN

This project in collaboration with Dr. Tengfei Luo intends to bring an innovative and improved process to market that captures low grade waste heat and generates electricity through liquid-phase ion stripping and reverse electrodialysis. By creating a concentration gradient through desalination with the use of special organic liquids and captured waste heat, electricity can be produced from specific ion exchange and their reaction at electrodes, even at small temperature differences. While this process exhibits the potential to provide better efficiency and lower costs than existing technologies, it will need to be scaled correctly in order to be successful. Demonstrating a scaled prototype will require investment for development and production of this technology. Essential to this project will be identifying the proper market and estimating its size through customer and market validation of specific industries. Continuous analysis of intellectual property and development of launch strategy will also be vital to the viability of this process.