Shoes to charge smartphones while walking developed

Engineers have developed a unique energy harvesting and storage technology at Wisconsin University, which allows the capturing energy of human motion for powering mobile electronic devices.

The energy which is generated while walking could be put to use if captured and stored for using later, say researchers.

The technique of ‘Reverse Electrowetting’ was used by lead researchers Tom Krupenkin and J. Ashley Taylor for developing this concept.

In this, there is the interaction of a conductive liquid with a nanofilm-coated surface, and then there is a direct conversion of mechanical energy into electrical energy.

For overcoming problems related to drawing power from different strengths of low-frequency, a bubbler device was developed, which had no moving mechanical parts, but two flat plates that were separated by a small gap which was filled with conductive liquid.

There are tiny holes on the bottom play through which the pressurized gas forms bubbles. The growth of these bubbles happens until they are large enough for touching the top plate, which leads the bubble to collapse.

With this repetitive and rapid growth and collapse of bubbles, the conductive fluid is pushed back and forth, and electrical charge is generated.

The bubbler regularly works for producing high power densities and promises to achieve the highest power density ever achieved, state the researchers.

With a charging cable, various mobile devices can be powered directly by the harvester, and it can be integrated with various electronic devices that are embedded in the shoe, like Wi-Fi hotspot.

The latter doesn’t require any cables, and it cuts the power requirements of mobile wireless devices are cut down dramatically and makes the battery last ten times longer between charges.

Total battery drain stands reduced as the cost of energy of radio-frequency transmission back and forth between the phone. The tower contributes tremendously to the drain.