Giving Power Walking a Whole New Meaning

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Georgia Institute of Technology researchers have developed a self-charging power cell that uses a piezoelectric membrane to convert mechanical energy to chemical energy, then stores that energy until it can be released as en electrical current. Combining the power generator with the energy storage device, this hybrid is claimed to be more efficient than systems with separate generators and batteries.  When the piezoelectric membrane is flexed, it moves lithium ions in the power cell from one side of the cell to the other. Membranes in shoe heels and soles could produce power when a person walked, powering small electronic devices such as calculators or cell phones. Zhong Lin Wang, a Regents professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering Georgia …

Rice – That’s Nice, and Lights Up, Too

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Rice University announced the development of a spray-on (in this case airbrushed) coating that stores electricity, a bit reminiscent of Stanford’s paper battery on which a coating could be applied to act as a battery. Mitsubishi has demonstrated a paint that could act as an extremely thin-film solar cell, but Rice’s technology shows promise. Five layers comprise the various components of a lithium-ion battery and can seemingly be applied to almost any surface, including in one demonstration, a beer stein – showing an intoxicating range of possibilities. But Pulickel Ajayan, materials science professor has more serious considerations. According to the University’s news.  “This means traditional packaging for batteries has given way to a much more flexible approach that allows all …