Voice-based phone recharging

May 10, 2011 by Katie Gatto weblog
Voice-based phone recharging
Image credit: Vagamundos/Flickr

(PhysOrg.com) -- The noise that we produce can be a lot of things. It can be a valid means of communication. It can be an annoyance when you are trying to get to bed at night. It can be a migraine waiting to happen, and depending on who you ask, it can even be a form of pollution. But, could that annoying loud man next to you on the subway, or your can't keep it down neighbors TV, be a potential source of renewable-energy?

Sang-Woo Kim, a researcher at the Institute of Nanotechnology at Sungkyunkwan University in Seoul thinks that it just might be.

He is working in a field known as energy scavenging in which power is made by the day-to-day life of humans. Other forms of scavenged energy include California's current proposal to grab vibrational energy from cars driving on the highways as a source of power. These types of innovation have the possibility to give us that do not require putting up solar panels or in areas where this type of construction may not always be possible.

You may be wondering how this sound-based technology would work. Well, the proposed technology would convert sound into the kind of energy that a phone can use by pairing the electrodes with strands of zinc oxide. When the noise comes at the phone, a pad designed to absorb the noise would capture it, and vibrate the phone (or other device in question), which would make the fibers expand and contract. It is this expanding and contracting that actually generates the power for the battery.

A current was able to convert 100 of sound, the equivalent of city traffic, into 50 millivolts of power.

Explore further: Bringing history and the future to life with augmented reality

More information: chem.skku.edu/graphene/
via Telegraph

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User comments : 8

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ThanderMAX
not rated yet May 10, 2011
what about the wattage ? just mV doesn't give proper energy output.

Can it drive a GSM transceiver ? or charge a battery?
hooloovoo
not rated yet May 10, 2011
50 milliVOLTS of POWER? Are you fucking kidding me?

Hint: power is not measured in volts. You can't get an amount of energy or a power from a statement of voltage and nothing else, so that number is 100% meaningless.
Pete83
not rated yet May 10, 2011
@hooloovoo - Spot on. I'm amazed that it's been published like this, physorg is really just an aggregator, but still, you'd think someone would have caught that.
unknownorgin
not rated yet May 11, 2011
Lets guess it generates 50 miliwatts of power at 4 volts to charge a cell phone battery with no power loss (impossible) and the battery is rated at 1000 mah capacity. So .05 watts/4 volts =.0125 amps or 12.5 milliamps . 1000ma/12.5ma=80 hours or 3.33 days to charge fully so this is not a pactacal use of this technology. For example; use this to charge a supercapactor in a led flashlight would be a better use that would work because it will only be used for standby/emergency use.
Drew_L
not rated yet May 11, 2011
How big is this device?? What kind of description is this? I'm pretty sure some very important facts are missing. It seems like something I'd write if I didn't do my hw and tried to rush an article during class as everyoe is turning work in.
Jaeherys
not rated yet May 11, 2011
A lot of these types of devices are designed to improve batterly life by adding a constant small current. Why do people keep stressing the point these types of technologies are useless because it will take way to long to completely charge them? With the current phone I have I charge it every 3-4 days. If the device is charging for half of everyday then my charge interval goes up by ~150%. For adding no extra work to me, sounds like a win/win. And when you add extra power from your clothes/movement generating energy, it might be enough to rarely have to charge my phone or reduce the amount I charge my laptop (although these technologies have less of an effect on laptops for obvious resons).
Ricochet
5 / 5 (1) May 11, 2011
I want one of those. That way, whenever my wife goes on a huge diatribe about something, I can hold the phone up to her and say something like, "Well, might as well make some good out of this..."
Vendicar_Decarian
not rated yet May 15, 2011
"A current prototype system was able to convert 100 decibels of sound, the equivalent of city traffic, into 50 millivolts of power." - Article

Millivolts isn't a measure of power.

I have invented a new process to manufacture gasoline. For a dimes worth of electricity I can produce 1.7 inches of gasoline.

Impressive ay?

You would think that science articles would actually avoid making pre-high school level errors in science.

I guess it is too complex for Americans.

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