A team of computer researchers from the Michigan State University was successful in creating a device which can charge any kind of gadget using our body’s motion. If successfully implement, electronic devices will not require a battery to function since they will function solely on kinetic energy.
Nelson Sepulveda, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and the study’s senior researcher, declared that the nanogenerator created in the University of Michigan’s computer laboratory would soon replace traditional batteries.
Imagine what it would be like to not having to charge your phone ever again. This will give tech companies an opportunity to add more features to phones or tablets without having to worry about battery drainage.
According to the team who created the nanogenerator, the device feature thin silicon wafer, which houses layers of polypropylene, polyimide, and silver ferroelectret. After the wafer is created, the scientists add charged ions on each layer. As a result, whenever someone swipes this thin surface, it will start producing electrical energy.
Sounds like something out of a science-fiction novel, but the team of scientist proved that not only the nanogenerator works, but that it can be embedded in a wide variety of electronic devices such as LED TVs, smartphones, tablets, and even wireless keyboards.
To test out the capacities of this nanogenerator, the team embedded it in several devices. In the first experiment, the scientists wanted to determine if the generator can power a wide-screen LCD with touch screen. The nanogenerator used in this experiment was not bigger than a finger, but more than enough to power the touchscreen.
In the second test, the researchers connected approximately 25 LED lights to a palm-sized nanogenerator. Again, when someone rubbed or swiped the nanogenerator, the lights would turn on.
Sepulveda, the project’s senior research declared that the nanogenerator becomes even more powerful when it’s folded. Subsequently, the more you fold it, the more electrical energy it produces. The lead scientists believe that the device can be adapted to fit inside a shoe so that every time you walk, your foot produces enough energy to power your smartphone, iPod or your wireless headphones wirelessly.
At the moment, the research team is still performing tests on the newly-crafted nanogenerator, but they are confident that the device will soon be ready for mass production.
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