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Proceedings Paper

Electrical power generation from insect flight
Author(s): Timothy Reissman; Robert B. MacCurdy; Ephrahim Garcia
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Paper Abstract

This article presents an implementation of a miniature energy harvester (weighing 0.292 grams) on an insect (hawkmoth Manduca sexta) in un-tethered flight. The harvester utilizes a piezoelectric transducer which converts the vibratory motion induced by the insect's flight into electrical power (generating up to 59 μWRMS). By attaching a low-power management circuit (weighing 0.200 grams) to the energy harvester and accumulating the converted energy onboard the flying insect, we are able to visually demonstrate pulsed power delivery (averaging 196 mW) by intermittently flashing a light emitting diode. This self-recharging system offers biologists a new means for powering onboard electronics used to study small flying animals. Using this approach, the lifetime of the electronics would be limited only by the lifetime of the individuals, a vast improvement over current methods.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 April 2011
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7977, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2011, 797702 (26 April 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.880702
Show Author Affiliations
Timothy Reissman, Cornell Univ. (United States)
Robert B. MacCurdy, Cornell Univ. (United States)
Ephrahim Garcia, Cornell Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7977:
Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2011
Mehrdad N. Ghasemi-Nejhad, Editor(s)

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