November 10, 2008
New Small-Scale Generator is Developed
U.S. scientists say they've developed a small-scale generator that produces alternating current by the cyclical stretching and releasing of zinc oxide wires.
Georgia Institute of Technology researchers said their so-called "flexible charge pump" generator is the fourth generation of devices designed to produce electrical current by using the piezoelectric properties of zinc oxide structures to harvest mechanical energy from the environment.
"The flexible charge pump offers yet another option for converting mechanical energy into electrical energy," said Professor Zhong Lin Wang. "This adds to our family of very small-scale generators able to power devices used in medical sensing, environmental monitoring, defense technology and personal electronics."
The research that included Rusen Yang and Yong Qin from Georgia Tech and Liming Dai of the University of Dayton is reported in the advance online issue of the journal Nature Nanotechnology.