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1. L. L. Baranowski, G. J. Snyder, and E. S. Toberer, “ Effective thermal conductivity in thermoelectric materials,” J. Appl. Phys. 113, 204904 (2013).
2. G. J. Snyder and T. S. Ursell, “ Thermoelectric efficiency and compatibility,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 91, 148301 (2003).
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5. Y. Apertet, H. Ouerdane, O. Glavatskaya, C. Goupil, and P. Lecoeur, “ Optimal working conditions for thermoelectric generators with realistic thermal coupling,” Europhys. Lett. 97, 28001 (2012).
6. K. Yazawa and A. Shakouri, “ Optimization of power and efficiency of thermoelectric devices with asymmetric thermal contacts,” J. Appl. Phys. 111, 024509 (2012).
7. R. McCarty, “ Thermoelectric power generator design for maximum power: Its all about ZT,” J. Electron. Mater. 42, 1504 (2013).
8. M. Gomez, R. Reid, B. Ohara, and H. Lee, “ Influence of electrical current variance and thermal resistances on optimum working conditions and geometry for thermoelectric energy harvesting,” J. Appl. Phys. 113, 174908 (2013).
9. S. Kim, “ Analysis and modeling of effective temperature differences and electrical parameters of thermoelectric generators,” Appl. Energy 102, 1458 (2013).
10. P. Castrillo and J. M. Salgado, “ Effective electrical resistance due to current-induced heat flow in thermoelectric generators,” in Proceedings of the 2013 Spanish Conference on Electron Devices (CDE 2013) (2013), p. 151.
11. S. K. Yee, S. LeBlanc, K. E. Goodson, and C. Dames, “ $ per W metrics for thermoelectric power generation: Beyond ZT,” Energy Environ. Sci. 6, 2561 (2013).
12. S. Su, J. Wang, and X. Chen, “ Comment on “Optimal working conditions for thermoelectric generators with realistic thermal coupling” by Y. Apertet et al.,” Europhys. Lett. 101, 68007 (2013).

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In a recent article, Baranowski [J. Appl. Phys. , 204904 (2013)] proposed a model that allegedly facilitates optimization of thermoelectric generators operation as these latter are in contact with hot and cold temperature baths through finite conductance heat exchangers. In this Comment, we argue that the results and analyses presented by these authors are misleading since their model is incomplete and rests on an inappropriate assumption derived from thermoelectric compatibility theory.


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