In this present study experimental and finite element analysis of cellulose based electro-active paper energy harvester is presented. Electro-active paper coated with metal electrode is a smart form of cellulose and exhibit piezoelectric effect. Specimens were prepared by depositing electrodes on both sides of the cellulose film. A 50 mm x 50 mm cellulose film coated with aluminum electrodes was bonded on 100 mm x 50 mm x 1 mm aluminum host structure. The voltage output to input acceleration frequency response across a load resistor of 1 MΩ is recorded by conventional energy harvesting experimental setup at the fundamental vibration mode of the EAPap cantilever beam. A coupled piezoelectric-circuit finite element model is developed in which load resistor is directly connected to energy scavenging device. Voltage output FRF is measured for the cases, without proof mass, and by adding a 2 grams proof mass near the tip of the cantilever. The experimental voltage FRF value is 7.6 V/g at 75.1 Hz and is improved to 13.8 V/g at 62.2 Hz when a stainless steel proof mass of 2 grams is added. The presented CPC-FEM model results agree reasonably well with the experimental results. Despite the fact that the electro-mechanical coupling coefficient of electro-active paper is lower than other available piezoelectric materials, it is biocompatible, cheap and naturally occurring polymeric material. It is also very flexible and posses similar piezoelectric characteristics such a PVDF which inspire to use EAPap in energy harvesting applications.
In the recent times, cellulose-based Electro-Active Paper (EAPap) has been investigated to have electro-mechanical coupling and piezoelectric effects which are promising characteristics for a smart material. In this paper, the effects of electrodes of EAPap are investigated for vibration energy harvesting. Although piezopolymers have smaller value of electro-mechanical coupling constants as compared to the piezoceramics, but are very flexible, which motivates to use these materials as potential media for flexible energy harvesting. Cellulose based Electro-active papers are deposited with different metal electrodes like aluminum, gold and silver. The fabricated samples are tested with aluminum cantilever beam under an input excitation. The effects of area of electrodes are also investigated by comparing the output voltage at the different area of electrodes ranging from 400mm2 to 1200mm2. EAPap cantilever are tested at lowest resonant frequency and under varying acceleration amplitude to maximize the output voltage. From the experimental results, it is concluded that the potential of EAPap as a flexible energy harvester are very promising.