Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

 

Nanogenerator Intros New Energy Unit - The Pinch

The first commercially viable nanogenerator, a flexible chip that can produce energy from body movements, has been created, according to lead scientist Zhong Lin Wang, Ph.D.


(Nanogenerator)

"This development represents a milestone toward producing portable electronics that can be powered by body movements without the use of batteries or electrical outlets," said lead scientist Zhong Lin Wang, Ph.D. "Our nanogenerators are poised to change lives in the future. Their potential is only limited by one's imagination."

The latest improvements have resulted in a nanogenerator powerful enough to drive commercial liquid-crystal displays, light-emitting diodes and laser diodes. By storing the generated charges using a capacitor, the output power is capable to periodically drive a sensor and transmit the signal wirelessly.

"If we can sustain the rate of improvement, the nanogenerator may find a broad range of other applications that require more power," he added. Wang cited, for example, personal electronic devices powered by footsteps activating nanogenerators inside the sole of a shoe; implanted insulin pumps powered by a heart beat; and environmental sensors powered by nanogenerators flapping in the breeze.

The key to the technology is zinc oxide (ZnO) nanowires. ZnO nanowires are piezoelectric they can generate an electric current when strained or flexed. That movement can be virtually any body movement, such as walking, a heartbeat, or blood flowing through the body. The nanowires can also generate electricity in response to wind, rolling tires, or many other kinds of movement.

The diameter of a ZnO nanowire is so small that 500 of the wires can fit inside the width of a single human hair. Wang's group found a way to capture and combine the electrical charges from millions of the nanoscale zinc oxide wires. They also developed an efficient way to deposit the nanowires onto flexible polymer chips, each about a quarter the size of a postage stamp. Five nanogenerators stacked together produce about 1 micro Ampere output current at 3 volts about the same voltage generated by two regular AA batteries (about 1.5 volts each).

This is just what you want in your stillsuit, the key piece of Fremen equipment that allows human beings to survive on Dune. According to Frank Herbert, a stillsuit is powered by "motions of the body".

Via Eurekalert.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/31/2011)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

Wearable Energy Harvester
'... he had tightened the chest to gain maximum pumping action from the motion of breathing.' Frank Herbert, 1965.

Video Manicuring ala Schismatrix
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time' - Bruce Sterling

Tailsitter Drone Aircraft For SAR
'...it was so easy for me to remain motionless in midair.' - RH Roman, 1929.

Iron Beam Laser Under Development To Shoot Down Missiles With Lasers
'It was sweeping round swiftly and steadily, this flaming death, this invisible, inevitable sword of heat.' - HG Wells, 1989.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

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.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Current News

Wearable Energy Harvester
'... he had tightened the chest to gain maximum pumping action from the motion of breathing.'

Drones Participate In Buddhist Rites
'...a prayer wheel swung into view and began spinning at a furious pace.'

Anna Indiana AI Singer-Songwriter
'She is a personality-construct, a congeries of software agents'

Video Manicuring ala Schismatrix
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time'

'Feel the AGI' OpenAI Leader Now OpenWorship
'And are all the people willing to be governed by a machine?'

NASA Tests Prototype Europa Lander
Why have legs if they don't walk around?

Tailsitter Drone Aircraft For SAR
'...it was so easy for me to remain motionless in midair.'

Forward CarePod The AI Doctor's Office
'It's an old model,' Rawlins said. 'I'm not sure what to do.'

Mika The Robot-Boss
'the robot-boss was busy at the lip of the new lode instructing and egging the men on to greater speed...'

Yamaha Motoroid 2 No Handlebars Self-Balancing Motorcycle
'He rode the bike with an intense lack of physical grace...'

San Francisco Autobus
'THE autobus turned silently down the wide street...'

Should Your Car Decide If You Can Drive?
'Okay. Maybe the car was right...'

Lucid Dreams On Demand From Prophetic and Card79
'the peeper did not operate by virtue of its machinery alone, but by the reaction of the brain and the body of its user...'

Honda UNI-ONE Hands-Free Wheelchair Follows 100 Year-Old Design
'Noiselessly, on rubber-tired wheels, they journeyed...'

EBS-260 Handjet Free Hand Dot Matrix Printer
'McKie held a chalf-memory stick over the dusted surface.'

Sensitive, Soft Robot Skin
'...tinted material that had all the feel and appearance of human flesh and epidermis.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.