Harvesting Power From Flying Insects
The first successful mechanical energy scavenging from flying insects uses piezoelectric devices in little 'back-packs'.
(Power output from energy harvesting [pdf])
The device was created and described by scientists from the University of Michigan and Western Michigan University.
This paper reports the first effort to generate power from a live insect (Cotinis nitida - Green June Beetle) during its tethered flight, by utilizing piezoelectric devices in the d31 bending mode to convert mechanical vibrations of a beetle into electrical output. We measured available deflection, force and power output from oscillatory movements at different locations on a beetle with an
unmounted piezoelectric beam and showed that up to ~115 micro Watts power generation is possible. Two initial generator prototypes were fabricated, mounted on a beetle, and harvested 11.5 micro Watts and 7.5 micro Watts in device volumes of 11.0 mm3 and 5.6 mm3 respectively,
from 85 Hz-100 Hz wing strokes.
(Final prototype design for insect energy harvesting [pdf])
This work has real applications in the world of HI-MEMS (Hybrid Insect Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems), which create cyborg beetles that can be remote-controlled. DARPA plans to use these insect/device hybrids as remote surveillance and sensing MAVs. The sensors and transponders need power, and harvesting power from the insect's flight is an ideal way to obtain energy, rather than using batteries.
DARPA HI-MEMS program director Amit Lal credits science fiction writer Thomas Easton with the idea for the HI-MEMS cyborg insect program, which recently reported success in embedding control devices in the pupal stage. Lal read Easton's 1990 novel Sparrowhawk, in which animals enlarged by genetic engineering were outfitted with implanted control systems.
Dr. Easton, a professor of science at Thomas College, sees a number of applications for HI-MEMS insects.
Moths are extraordinarily sensitive to sex attractants, so instead of giving bank robbers money treated with dye, they could use sex attractants instead. Then, a moth-based HI-MEMS could find the robber by following the scent."
"[Also,] with genetic engineering DARPA could replace the sex attractant receptor on the moth antennae with receptors for other things, like explosives, drugs or toxins," said Easton.
Via Mechanical energy scavenging from flying insects (pdf).
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/7/2011)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Skin Wearable Harvests Power With Triboelectric Effect
'He had tightened the chest to gain maximum pumping action...'- Frank Herbert, 1965.
Neuroscientist Works Toward Virtual Immortality ala Clarke
'Nothing will be left of Jeserac but a galaxy of electrons frozen in the heart of a crystal.'- Arthur C. Clarke, 1956.
Colloidal Quantum Dots Make Spray-On Solar Cells Possible
'Black Power... you spray it on.'- Larry Niven, 1995
Race Into The Future With Bionic Boots
'The tremendous loping strides afforded by such devices... '- Neal Stephenson, 1995.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Audi's Chairless Chair Lower Body Exoskeleton
'Solved the problem to some extent by devising rigid metallic clothing...'
Self-Deployable Habitat For Extreme Environments
'When you buy one of them, you don't need to tie up to an electric outlet.'
CreoPop 3D Pen Draws In Midair
'It makes drawings in the air...'
Seattle Police Body Cams, Ala Stross, Ala Dick
'Let's hear it for the vague blur!'
Autonomous Cars Will Own Themselves
'The robot drew his cab up before Eric's modest six-room bungalow.'
World's First 3D Printed Villa
'It makes drawings in the air following drawings...'
Hyperloop Track Starts Next Year
Brainflight Brain-Controlled Drone
'Mr Gant, you must think in Russian. Can you do that?'
Students Control Lab Experiments Remotely Via App
'Hello, Europa... Is this your robot I'm looking at, in sector 94?'
ROBEAR Nursing Care Robot
What other robots are strong enough to carry you? Do you want them to do so?
Testing New Spacesuits In 1929 And 2015
'I'm going to pump the air from this room... so that the interior will be like airless and pressure-less space.'
Space Station Kitchens 1929 and 2015
'Plates and cups ... slowly floated down to the floor and were not broken.'
Volvo's 'Drive Me' Program Offers Autonomous Cars In 2017
'She woke just before the signal from the car which would have called her...'
Squad X Core Technologies For Infantry
'You can flip through your several types of radar displays quicker than you can change channels to avoid a commercial...'
Neptune Duo Smartwatch Wearable Wristband
'[He] pressed several buttons on the wide bracelet he wore upon his left wrist...'
FAA Drone Rules Beta Ready For Comments
Drones, big and small, you're going to like them all.
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories