27 March 2012 Multi-link piezoelectric structure for vibration energy harvesting
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Work in piezoelectric vibration energy harvesting has typically focused on single member cantilevered structures with transverse tip displacement at a known frequency, taking advantage of the optimal coupling characteristics of piezoceramics in the 3-1 bending mode. Multi-member designs could be advantageous in delivering power to a load in environments with random or wide-band vibrations. The design presented in this work consists of two hinged piezoceramic (PZT-5A) beams x-poled for series operation. Each beam measures 31.8mm x 12.7mm x 0.38mm and consists of two layers of nickel-plated piezoceramic adhered to a brass center shim. The hinge device consists of two custom-machined aluminum attachments epoxied to the end of a beam and connected using a 1.59mm diameter alloy steel dowel. A stainless steel torsion spring is placed over the pin and attached to the aluminum body to provide a restoring torque when under rotation. The design is modeled using the piezoelectric constitutive equations to solve for voltage and power for a set of electromechanical boundary conditions. Experimental measurements on the design are achieved by bolting one end of the structure to a vibration shaker and fixing the other to a rigid framework of industrial aluminum framing material. For a given frequency of vibration, power output of the structure can be obtained by measuring voltage drop across a resistive load.
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Rameen M. Aryanpur, Robert D. White, "Multi-link piezoelectric structure for vibration energy harvesting", Proc. SPIE 8341, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2012, 83411Y (27 March 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.915438; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.915438

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