Thermoelectric measurements are notoriously challenging. In this work, we outline new thermoelectric characterization methods that are experimentally more straightforward and provide much higher accuracy, reducing error by at least a factor of 2. Specifically, three novel measurement methodologies for thermal conductivity are detailed: steady‐state isothermal measurements, scanning hot probe, and lock‐in transient Harman technique. These three new measurement methodologies are validated using experimental measurement results from standards, as well as candidate materials for thermoelectric power generation. We review thermal conductivity measurement results from new half‐Heusler (ZrNiSn‐based) materials, as well as commercial (Bi,Sb)2(Te,Se)3 and mature PbTe samples. For devices, we show characterization of commercial (Bi,Sb)2(Te,Se)3 modules, precommercial PbTe/TAGS modules, and new high accuracy numerical device simulation of Skutterudite devices. Measurements are validated by comparison to well‐established standard reference materials, as well as evaluation of device performance, and comparison to theoretical prediction obtained using measurements of individual properties. The new measurement methodologies presented here provide a new, compelling, simple, and more accurate means of material characterization, providing better agreement with theory.
Part of the book: Thermoelectrics for Power Generation