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Which are the materials that absorb heat? and can i somehow convert that absorbed heat into a different form of energy? I am looking into trying to absorb the wasted heat dissipated by laptops,severs ,car engines etc . and trap it somewhere and reuse it to make electricity

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    $\begingroup$ What do you mean by "absorb heat"? Any material will have a heat capacity and therefore "absorb" heat (water is pretty good at this). Also, at a phase transition will absorb heat without getting warmer (this is what ice cubes do in your drink). Furthermore, thermoelectric components could be said to "absorb" heat. They need a warm and a cold side and part of the heat being led through it is transformed to electricity. $\endgroup$ – Sebastian Riese May 28 '15 at 15:31
  • $\begingroup$ A side node: There is research for using thermoelectric elements in car exhaust pipes to generate electricity for the car to use. $\endgroup$ – Sebastian Riese May 28 '15 at 15:50
  • $\begingroup$ From what i read on a few websites ,these thermoelectric components work on the Peltier effect ie they transfer heat from one side to another with the consumption of electricity . I looking at something that does the opposite . Generates electricity due to transfer of heat from one side to another $\endgroup$ – ASD May 28 '15 at 15:53
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    $\begingroup$ The Peltier effect is reversible, the reverse is called Seebeck effect. This is analogous to the way you can either build a fridge (doing work you transport heat from cold to warm) or a motor (transporting heat you get work out). Both are of course Carnot limited (respectively, in lack of better language, "inversly Carnot limited")! $\endgroup$ – Sebastian Riese May 28 '15 at 15:59
  • $\begingroup$ But note, while (virtually) all conudctors show the Seebeck effect (to some degree), a thermoelectric generator is not "a material absorbing heat" but a technical device that is quite difficult to design effectively! And you still need to cool the other side, you cannot make the heat vanish! (For the same reason power plants need cooling towers). $\endgroup$ – Sebastian Riese May 28 '15 at 16:02
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  1. All materials absorb heat.

  2. The best conductors of heat are cold objects or metals. (Preferably cold metals)

  3. You cannot trap heat.

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You won't be able to use that heat. Unless you get a very precise and well should I say kind of heat trapping material which is impossible thus, you won't be able to save and use that electricity. If it was possible or that easy then the power plants would have been using it for years however it's not so, even though those plants are funded so much!!

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All the materials absorb heat.Heat transfer from system to surroundings or from one system to another takes place naturally due to difference in their temperatures.Once they are in equilibrium the heat transfer stops.Heat can be converted into other forms of energy e.g. In Thermal power plants heat by combustion of fossil fuels is used to generate electricity.

Heat dissipated by the electronic devices can also be converted into other forms of energy but we need an efficient system for that.

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