Ferrotec expands into auto with thermoelectric module tech for hybrids and EVs

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 25 Sep 2018


Ferrotec's thermoelectric module assembly models.

Ferrotec, the world’s largest manufacturer of thermoelectric modules (TEM), today announced the expansion of its TEM business into the automobile sector. Specific applications of Ferrotec-TEM technology include cooling and heating of batteries in electric and hybrid vehicles. Ferrotec’s high performance thermo-electric modules are custom-designed devices offering highly responsive temperature control to within 0.1 degree Celsius.

“Ferrotec has a 36 percent share of the global thermoelectric module market,” says Takayuki Hachida, general manager of thermoelectric module sales department. “We expect our thermoelectric modules to find wide ranging applications in the automobiles sector and are aiming to increase our annual sales from the current 5 billion JPY to 20 billion JPY within four years. Our thermoelectric modules show excellent coefficient of performance (COP). Importantly, our technology is applicable for both cooling and heating components in automobiles. Needless to say, we back up our technology with Ferrotec’s global network of technical support.”

Ferrotec thermoelectric modules
Ferrotec is the world’s largest manufacturer of bismuth telluride (Bi-Te) thermoelectric modules (TEM) (Peltier Effect devices). To date, the company’s TEM have mainly been used for cooling chillers, optical communications, biotechnology, air conditioners, as well as a wide range of consumer electronics.

Starting end-2018, the company will focus on applications of Ferrotec-thermoelectric modules in the automobile industry, in particular for electric and hybrid cars.

Specific applications include:
- Cooling laser diodes in head-up displays in automobiles
- Cooling batteries of electric and hybrid cars
- Cool cup holders in car cabins
- Cooling laser devices in LIDAR technology in autonomous vehicles
- Cooling laser diodes in laser headlights

Ferrotec thermoelectric modules are claimed to be highly responsive and offer control to less than 0.1 degree Celsius. Furthermore, Ferrotec offers customised solutions for clients by designing unique thermoelectric modules for specific applications.

Ferrotec thermoelectric modules are suitable for heating batteries in electric cars to overcome the poor performance of batteries in cold weather conditions.

Thermoelectric modules consist of plate like semiconductor Peltier effect devices where the passage of electric currents between two different metals sandwiching bismuth telluride semiconductor plates moves heat between the two junctions.