Saving waste energy

Alphabet energy (Based in California, USA) have created a large scale thermoelectric generator – the E1 which turns waste heat into electricity. It is designed to be used in remote mining locations to reduce the amount of waste energy – in a typical 1MW plant emission will be cut by 2.5%.

Alphabet Energy's E1 generator.

The E1 uses the mineral tetrahedrite to turn heat into electrical charge – tetrahedrite has the rare property of being a good electrical conductor and a poor thermal conductor meaning a current can pass through it when it’s heated.

Scaled up versions can be used for larger power stations where as scaled down versions can have a variety of application including car exhausts where they can reduce green house gas emissions by 5% – given the number of vehicles this could have a massive impact. 

For more information Click Here

Written by TreeThinker

Passionate about the Earth and those who inhabit it. An engineer (BEng (Hons), MSEE) from Oxfordshire, UK, specialising in designing for a sustainable future. A member of the Society of Environmental Engineers and a keen environmental advocate who volunteers for several grass roots sustainability groups. I work full time as a project manager for a renewable energy company based in Oxford and also run ‘TreeThinker’ (; converting previous pasture land into a rich permaculture farm growing produce for sale locally. I deliver workshops on sustainable living, including building renewable energy technologies, as well as workshops for schools discussing 'Energy as a resource' amongst other topics. I am qualified in ‘Information, advice and guidance’ (level 4) and experienced at teaching practical skills. I'm also a keen cyclist and have a love of wordplay - writing a blog on etymology (

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