There has been talk of the search for an unlimited energy source for decades. So far, there has been little to no progress made in finding such a source. However, scientists have started to focus their attention on recycling energy and maximizing efficiency rather than coming up with an endless supply of energy.
It may soon be possible to turn the human body into a power station. There are now several developing technologies that will harness the body’s heat, movement, vibrations, and metabolism- allowing you to possibly charge your electronics while you walk.
One form of technology focuses on piezoelectricity- electricity resulting from pressure. Piezoelectrical material, when pushed out of shape, generates small amounts of power. If put into a pacemaker, it could potentially allow the heart to power the artificial pacemaker- in a way, the heart would power itself.
Pacemakers only require very small amounts of energy, yet the batteries still manage to run out in a few years. Dr. Amin Karami from the University of Michigan believes that a pacemaker that harvests the energy of the heartbeat itself may allow it to operate for an entire lifetime.
Other forms of this up-and-coming technology include a “power shirt” made of pairs of fibers coated with tiny strips of gold and zinc oxide. The fibers rub together while you move and produce a current.
Prof Zhong Lin Wang, at the Georgia Institute of Technology, says that “we could provide a flexible, foldable and wearable power source that, for example, would allow people to generate their own electrical current while walking”.
Paul Hudson | Elite.