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Opt Express. 2018 May 14;26(10):A462-A479. doi: 10.1364/OE.26.00A462.

Specular side reflectors for high efficiency thermal-to-optical energy conversion.


The performance of incandescent light bulbs and thermophotovoltaic devices is fundamentally limited by our ability to tailor the emission spectrum of the thermal emitter. While much work has focused on improving the spectral selectivity of emitters and filters, relatively low view factors between the emitter and filter limit the efficiency of the systems. In this work, we investigate the use of specular side reflectors between the emitter and filter to increase the effective view factor and thus system efficiency. Using an analytical model and experiments, we demonstrate significant gains in efficiency (>10%) for systems converting broadband thermal radiation to a tailored spectrum using low-cost and easy-to-implement specular side reflectors.


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