This Generator the Size of a Pencil Tip Shakes Up Big Power
Japanese researchers have cooked up a minuscule kinetic battery capable of generating more energy than anything of its kind. Through only the slightest vibrations, the tiny device cranks out 22 milliwatts—20 times more than anything similar before it.
Twenty two milliwatts might not sound like terribly much—certainly a long way from powering your PS3—but could revolutionize the way we use smaller, button-sized batteries—just imagine a tiny way to store and generate power that could be tucked away anywhere. Devices that suck small amounts of juice could power themselves just by being in your pocket.
The secret behind the microgenerator lies in its use of Galfenol, a magnetic material developed by the US Naval Research Laboratory in 1998—it's super tough, and can take temperatures over 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. The tech is still the stuff of lab work at Kanazawa University, but the possibilities for this little wonder—once it gets out of academia and into my pocket—are exciting.