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POWER WALK: FOOTSTEPS COULD CHARGE MOBILE ELECTRONICS
MADISON – When you’re on the go and your smartphone battery is low, in the not-so-distant future you could charge it simply by plugging it into your shoe.
An innovative energy harvesting and storage technology developed by University of Wisconsin-Madison mechanical engineers could reduce our reliance on the batteries in our mobile devices, ensuring we have power for our devices no matter where we are.
In a paper published Nov. 16, 2015, in the journal Scientific Reports [http://www.nature.com/articles/srep16537], Tom Krupenkin, a professor of mechanical engineering at UW-Madison, and J. Ashley Taylor, a senior scientist in UW-Madison’s Mechanical Engineering Department, described an energy-harvesting technology that’s particularly well suited for capturing the energy of human motion to power mobile electronic devices.
The technology could enable a footwear-embedded energy harvester that captures energy produced by humans during walking and stores it for later use.