Future Tech Will Be Powered by Nano-Electricity
It's already used for quartz watches to keep accurate time and for transforming sound waves into electric signals for voice recognition systems.
Jan 12, 2021Updated 3 months ago
Every mechanical movement needs energy to function. Piezoelectricity is the electric charge that accumulates in certain solid materials in response to applied mechanical stress.
Wireless electricity is theoretically possible but it's not yet available in mass-market consumer products.
The quest for Nikola Tesla’s wireless power technology
So, our devices still need to be plugged in to recharge them.
And people buy things that make their lives easier.
Not having to plug phones, computers, and wearables in every day would make it much easier on people.
Especially since people have anxiety about their battery being low or their device shutting down when needed most.
Piezoelectricity is an alternative and natural form of energy.
Piezoelectricity is an electric charge that occurs in some materials from stress or pressure. These solid materials include crystals, ceramics, and even living organisms (i.e., bone, DNA, proteins).
We can use this force to power very small devices, at the nanoscale. Taken together with advances in machine learning, these microscopic movements could be controlled into a symphony of activity that, when added together at larger scales, help us manipulate our world in new ways.
Piezoelectricity was discovered by two scientists in 1880. They were the Curie brothers. Pierre was the prodigy, who showed an early affinity for mathematics and chemistry. Jacques was the older brother who kept him in line.
As with most inventions, their tools were crude in the beginning: glue, magnets, tinfoil, wire. But what they lacked in material, they gained in eagerness.
Through their experiments, they discovered that the physics of this nano-electricity worked both ways. Namely, squeeze a quartz crystal and it produces an electric signal. Apply an electric signal to a quartz crystal and it deforms.
They went on to become professors of physics, chemistry, and mineralogy. How grand the places fascination will take you.
This microbot technology could help us build sustainable cities of the future.
In short, a human's motion, activities, and natural physical charge could power the Apple wearables of the future without the need to ever take them off or plug them in.
Piezoelectric Nanogenerators for Self-Powered Nanodevices
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