Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Less is more in piezoelectric energy harvesting: Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa

Date:
March 2, 2012
Source:
National Physical Laboratory
Summary:
Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa. These materials are used to harvest energy from everyday mechanical vibrations -- such as an air conditioning unit rattling, or a footbridge vibrating as pedestrians walk across it.

Footbridge. Piezoelectric materials can harvest energy from vibrations, such as the slight movement of a footbridge as pedestrians walk across it.
Credit: © Bojan Stepancic / Fotolia

Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa.

These materials are used to harvest energy from everyday mechanical vibrations -- such as an air conditioning unit rattling, or a footbridge vibrating as pedestrians walk across it.

Generally power levels are low, but the environmental benefit of the technology is to replace batteries, and the associated costs of replacement, rather than saving energy per se. For example, researchers are looking to use the technology to power implanted medical devices, where the cost of the operation far outweighs the battery costs.

Piezoelectric energy harvesters are usually vibrating cantilevers covered with a layer of piezoelectric material. The piezoelectric material converts the mechanical strain (e.g. vibrations) into a charge that can power an electrical device. Typically the entire length of the cantilever is covered with piezoelectric material as you would imagine that this would harvest the most energy.

However, NPL scientists have found that, surprisingly, reducing the amount of piezoelectric material covering the cantilever increases the power output. To get the most energy out you only need to cover the cantilever for two thirds of its length.

NPL is working on this European Metrology Research Programme project with seven other national measurement institutes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Physical Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Mark Stewart, Paul M. Weaver, Markys Cain. Charge redistribution in piezoelectric energy harvesters. Applied Physics Letters, 2012; 100 (7): 073901 DOI: 10.1063/1.3685701

Cite This Page:

National Physical Laboratory. "Less is more in piezoelectric energy harvesting: Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 March 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302101815.htm>.
National Physical Laboratory. (2012, March 2). Less is more in piezoelectric energy harvesting: Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302101815.htm
National Physical Laboratory. "Less is more in piezoelectric energy harvesting: Piezoelectric materials convert electrical energy into strain, or vice versa." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302101815.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Manufacturer Prints 3-D Car In Record Time

Manufacturer Prints 3-D Car In Record Time

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) — Automobile manufacturer Local Motors created a drivable electric car using a 3-D printer. Printing the body only took 44 hours. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Refurbished New York Subway Tunnel Unveiled After Sandy Damage

Refurbished New York Subway Tunnel Unveiled After Sandy Damage

Reuters - US Online Video (Sep. 15, 2014) — New York officials unveil subway tunnels that were refurbished after Superstorm Sandy. Nathan Frandino reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Frustration As Drone Industry Outpaces Regulation In U.S.

Frustration As Drone Industry Outpaces Regulation In U.S.

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) — U.S. firms worry they’re falling behind in the marketplace as the FAA considers how to regulate commercial drones. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Gun Innovators Fear Backlash From Gun Rights Advocates

Smart Gun Innovators Fear Backlash From Gun Rights Advocates

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) — Winners of a contest for smart gun design are asking not to be named after others in the industry received threats for marketing similar products. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins