'Tiny wind turbine' can collect energy from a walker's swinging arm
(The Guardian, 23 Sep 2020) Researchers say device can generate sustainable power from gentle breeze.
Scientists have developed a “tiny wind turbine” that can scavenge energy from the breeze made while walking.
Imagine rubbing a balloon on your hair for a few seconds – can you hear the crackle of static electricity, see your hair stand on end? That energy, powered by the contact and separation of two materials, can be bottled up and stored for use, according to researchers working on the device.
Scientists in China hope the device can generate sustainable power in a low-cost, efficient manner. Once placed on a person’s swinging arm, the airflow is enough to generate power, the researchers said.
“Our goal is to solve the issues that the traditional wind turbines can’t solve,” said lead author, Dr Ya Yang, of Beijing Institute of Nanoenergy and Nanosystems, in a statement. “Unlike wind turbines that use coils and magnets, where the costs are fixed, we can pick and choose low-cost materials for our device.”