19 April 2017 An energy harvesting solution based on the post-buckling response of non-prismatic slender beams
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Systems based on post-buckled structural elements have been extensively used in many applications such as actuation, remote sensing and energy harvesting thanks to their efficiency enhancement. The post-buckling snap- through behavior of bilaterally constrained beams has been used to create an efficient energy harvesting mechanism under quasi-static excitations. The conversion mechanism has been used to transform low-rate and low-frequency excitations into high-rate motions. Electric energy can be generated from such high-rate motions using piezoelectric transducers. However, lack of control over the post-buckling behavior severely limits the mechanism’s efficiency. This study aims to maximize the levels of the harvestable power by controlling the location of the snapping point along the beam at different buckling transitions. Since the snap-through location cannot be controlled by tuning the geometry properties of a uniform cross-section beam, non-uniform cross sections are examined. An energy-based theoretical model is herein developed to predict the post-buckling response of non-uniform cross-section beams. The total potential energy is minimized under constraints that represent the physical confinement of the beam between the lateral boundaries. Experimentally validated results show that changing the shape and geometry dimensions of non- uniform cross-section beams allows for the accurate control of the snap-through location at different buckling transitions. A 78.59% increase in harvested energy levels is achieved by optimizing the beam’s shape.
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Pengcheng Jiao, Pengcheng Jiao, Wassim Borchani, Wassim Borchani, Hassene Hasni, Hassene Hasni, Amir H. Alavi, Amir H. Alavi, Nizar Lajnef, Nizar Lajnef, } "An energy harvesting solution based on the post-buckling response of non-prismatic slender beams", Proc. SPIE 10171, Smart Materials and Nondestructive Evaluation for Energy Systems 2017, 101710A (19 April 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2268448; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2268448

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