Flexible plastics that turn mechanical vibrations into electrical energy could spur the development of self-powered sensors and devices
The shrinking dimensions and decreased power consumption of modern electronic gadgets have created opportunities for energy harvesting processes that tap into free, green energy from the environment. Vibration harvesters, for example, produce small amounts of electricity from everyday mechanical disturbances such as wind currents, traffic noise or footsteps.
Now, Kui Yao and co-workers from the A*STAR Institute of Materials Research and Engineering in Singapore have discovered a way to give lightweight polymer vibration harvesters a hundredfold boost in energy output — a finding that may help to eliminate manual battery recharging in microsensors and mobile devices1.
Many vibration harvesters contain piezoelectric substances that create an electric voltage when mechanically bent. By fabricating piezoelectric materials into cantilevers that resemble a diving board, these devices can oscillate from ambient vibrations and generate electricity. Researchers often use piezoelectric ceramics because they impart large amounts of electrical charges; however, the brittleness of ceramics makes them unsuitable for prolonged and large vibrational movements.
Yao and co-workers investigated a plastic-based piezoelectric material, polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF), which is low cost and readily undergoes mechanical strain. To make efficient vibration harvesters from PVDF, researchers must stack the polymer in multiple layers, improving the output current and reducing the electrical impedance that is inherent to piezoelectric materials. But when too many thin piezoelectric layers are stacked, the cantilever can become too stiff for bending-mode vibrational harvesting.
To optimize piezoelectric harvesting with plastic films, the team deployed an analytical approach. Developing a mathematical model of a multilayered polymer cantilever coated with metal electrodes, the researchers systematically calculated how different material parameters affected the energy output.
Their simulations revealed some often-ignored factors “such as the thinness of electrode coatings and the material’s electrical parameters,” says Yao. “These can have a dramatic effect on the electricity generated by bending multilayer polymers.”
One key parameter identified was the need to match the electrical impedance with an optimum load resistance. The researchers’ analysis showed that the energy output of a 22-layered piezoelectric structure could be from 5 to 400 times higher than a single-layer piezoelectric polymer of similar dimensions.
The team then tested the feasibility of their analytical results by fabricating a PVDF-based vibrational harvester on a flexible aluminum substrate. They used scalable dip-coating procedures to build up polymer multilayers and ensured thin metal electrode coatings with physical vapor deposition techniques.
“Our experimental results are promising and show that, for many practical applications, piezoelectric polymer multilayers may enable harvested energy to replace batteries,” notes Yao.
The Latest on: Energy harvesting
via Google News
The Latest on: Energy harvesting
- Global Energy Harvesting Systems Market Research Report 2021 - Impact of COVID-19 on the Marketon December 3, 2021 at 4:21 am
Pages Report] Check for Discount on Global Energy Harvesting Systems Market Research Report 2021 - Impact of COVID-19 on the Market report by Maia Research. Energy harvesting (also known as power ...
- TW Electronics Chooses Nowi as a Technology Partner to Develop Remote Controls with Unlimited Battery Lifeon December 2, 2021 at 5:13 am
TW Electronics announces today that it is working with Nowi's energy harvesting power management solution to power its TV remote controls, as an option to conventional disposable batteries. By ...
- Professor Mustafa Arafa Awarded for Years of Research on Sustainable Energy Harvestingon December 2, 2021 at 12:18 am
As the need for renewable energy sources becomes more dire, AUC Professor Mustafa Arafa’s research in low-cost, sustainable energy harvesting has become all the more crucial. That’s why AUC awarded ...
- Global Energy Harvesting Market 2021 Size, Share, Comprehensive Research Study, Future Plans, Competitive Landscape and Forecast to 2027on December 1, 2021 at 11:02 am
The latest research study titled Global Energy Harvesting Market Research Report 2021-2027 from MarketandResearch.biz provides readers with details on strategic planning and tactical business ...
- Webinar: The New Energy Landscape—Evolution of the Smart, Resilient Homeon December 1, 2021 at 6:46 am
Reserve your spot for a free webinar exploring the advancing sector of smart home energy systems, with a focus on energy harvesting, usage, monitoring, storage, and load shifting.Lake City, Colo., Dec ...
- Concrete Evidence: Cement-Based Energy Material for Building Net Zero Energy Structureson November 23, 2021 at 8:50 pm
Smart cities that champion sustainable, “net-zero” energy consumption are no longer an all-new concept. However, for the building sector, achieving this ...
- New Scottish consortium launched to support low-level wind energyon November 22, 2021 at 2:47 am
Katrick Technologies, AGS Airports Limited, and the University of Strathclyde, to unlock low-level wind power.
- The rise of 3D printed solar energy treeson November 20, 2021 at 10:06 pm
With the production of artificial electricity harvesting trees that have the potential to be infinitely replicated, we can now produce energy not by wiping out whole forests but rather by adding trees ...
- Global Energy Harvesting System Market grow at 10.2% from 2021 to 2027 | Qualiket Researchon November 10, 2021 at 11:36 pm
Dallas, Texas, United states, Nov. 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Global Energy Harvesting System Market size was valued at USD 452.2 million in 2020 and is expected to grow at a compound annual ...
- Top Countries Data - Energy Harvesting Systems Market | Size, Share, Growth | COVID-19 Impact Covered | 2021-2026on November 10, 2021 at 8:27 pm
Nov 11, 2021 (The Expresswire) -- In 2021, “Energy Harvesting Systems Market“ revenue was Million USD in 2016, grew to Million USD in 2021, and will reach Million USD in 2026, with a Compound ...
via Bing News