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Thermoelectric generator cooling system and method of control

United States Patent

8,286,424
October 16, 2012
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
An apparatus is provided that includes a thermoelectric generator and an exhaust gas system operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to heat a portion of the thermoelectric generator with exhaust gas flow through the thermoelectric generator. A coolant system is operatively connected to the thermoelectric generator to cool another portion of the thermoelectric generator with coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator. At least one valve is controllable to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in a direction that opposes a direction of the exhaust gas flow under a first set of operating conditions and to cause the coolant flow through the thermoelectric generator in the direction of exhaust gas flow under a second set of operating conditions.
Prior; Gregory P. (Birmingham, MI), Meisner; Gregory P. (Ann Arbor, MI), Glassford; Daniel B. (Dryden, MI)
GM Global Technology Operations LLC (Detroit, MI)
12/ 753,144
April 2, 2010
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT This invention was made with government support under Department of Energy Agreement number DE-FC26-04NT42278. The government may have certain rights in the invention.