A new research project aims to create devices that harvest energy from vibrations, obviating the need for cables and batteries.
It is envisaged that the devices could be used to provide energy for smart-wireless sensor networks.
The project is a collaboration between the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Meggitt’s sensing-systems company, Ferroperm Piezoceramics, and wind-turbine manufacturer Vestas Wind Systems.
DTU will mainly develop integrated modules; Ferroperm Piezoceramics will produce the miniature devices using its piezoceramic thick film technology; and Vestas will test the first prototypes in its wind turbines.
Energy harvesters are said to have great market potential and can be used in many different applications, so the partners intend to develop strong general marketing and research positions.
The total budget for the programme is £2.9m.
The Danish National Advanced Technology Foundation has committed £1.4m.
‘Even small vibrations in our environment can be transformed into energy,’ said Wanda Wolny, research and development director at Ferroperm Piezoceramics.