The technology involves piezoelectric materials, which are known to interconvert mechanical energy and electrical energy.
Would you believe us if we told you that soon you will be able to produce electricity by just walking on the roads? Sounds crazy, right? But a team of researchers from Indian Institute Of Technology, Mandi have found a way to produce electricity on the go – by simply just walking on the road.
This unique idea involves piezoelectric materials, these materials are basically known to interconvert mechanical energy and electrical energy, IIT Mandi’s researchers have developed a way to enhance the power output by 100 folds when subjected to stress.
The researchers have numerically studied piezoelectric materials and have proposed a new arrangement to enhance the electrical output of these materials when subjected to stress. The research paper has been co-authored by researcher scholars Raj Kiran, Sourav Sharma along Anuruddh Kumar.
According to Hindustan Times, Dr. Rajeev Kumar, Associate Professor, School of Engineering, IIT Mandi said, “Such materials can, for example, be used in floor tiles to generate electrical energy from walking or on roads where the weights from the vehicles can power roads lights and signals. However, currently, the electrical energy produced by these materials is very low, which limits their applications in real-life situations.”
He further explained that “Piezoelectric materials can generate electrical energy when a force is applied on them and are thus extremely useful.”
According to the research, Piezoelectric materials can do the reverse as well, it generates mechanical motion in response to electrical energy. Thus improving the mechanical-electrical energy interconversion efficiency can enable engineering applications such as reduction of vibration and advanced technological applications such as positioning and steering of satellite antennas in space.
Meanwhile, Rahul Vaish said, “We have developed a technique known as graded poling to enhance the power output of piezoelectric materials by more than 100 times.”
While the research is still in its beginning stage, and could also take time to be applied practically, it’s a great ‘step’ in the right direction. It’s proof that humanity is working towards a greener future, something which is also the need of the hour.
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