Thermoelectric or Seebeck effect devices are beginning to see wide-spread use in metal and alloy sorting and verification processes, prompting the recent approval of ASTM Practice for Thermo-electric Sorting of Electrically Conductive Materials (E 977). This paper briefly explores the history of its use and discusses the theory of the method, while focusing deeper attention on practical applications of the devices and areas of its limitations. Testing requirements, specific material separations and examples, variables, advantages, disadvantages, and traceability are highlighted.
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