You might soon be able to power your laptop by taking a walk
Power developed by a person only by walking? Yes! This is really possible now. Scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have developed a technology that turns human motion into electricity. It can really be termed as a great invention as in addition to organically produce energy, it will also be green as the pollution level is increasing day by day.
A weekly journal Nature Communications, has actually describe how all this works and how it can power a cell phone or other mobile devices- like a laptop computer or GPS system by simply taking a walk.
They have embedded an energy harvester in a shoe. According to them the harvester consists of two small chambers filled with thousands of liquid mini-droplets pushed back and forth when you walk. The fluids flow through flexible plastic tubes with embedded electrodes which directly converts the energy into electric power which is stored in a tiny battery.
There are no wires in this human powered device, and actually connects to a cellular transmitter also embedded in the shoe, using a wireless technology like Bluetooth. This signal is then relayed to the cell tower by a transmitter. Such a system dramatically reduces power consumption of the mobile device and allows it to operate for a much longer time says University of Wisconsin engineer professor Tom Krupenkin. The cell phone will consume very little energy to do that literally tens of times of less - he added.
The components are about the size of a credit card. Krupenkin says the main advantage is the system’s always-ready power. Unlike a traditional battery, the energy harvester never needs to be recharged. Once a person starts walking a standard harvester would start to produce enough power to power a cell phone immediately.
Well the inventors don’t expect the device to replace standard batteries, but rather to reduce our dependence on costly and polluting batteries, especially in portable electronics. Krupenkin also said “It helps you because you don’t rely on the battery that much and it also helps because it greatly increases the reliability of your power system. You make a system which is potentially always available to you.”
He also mentioned that this technology makes sense for any cell phone or laptop users. The users in remote areas of the world where electrical grids for recharging batteries are not available or expensive will be the best consumer of this device.
He expects to have a commercial product on the market in two year.