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Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries

7/16/2010 01:11 PM EDT
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selinz
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
selinz   7/16/2010 2:01:14 PM
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OK, this sounds like a Christmas present we rec'd in recent years, substituting flashlight for remote control (or actually, battery). Yes, they work. Is it convenient? No. People still generally avoid rechargable batteries unless it's in high usage applications (like flash batteries for cameras, etc.) Until it is painful in the wallet to buy AA's, this noble idea will not be embraced by the masses. I pay 5 cent deposit on Aluminum cans. But none on batteries. Go figure.

LarryM99
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
LarryM99   7/16/2010 4:43:07 PM
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The problem with rechargeable batteries is the hassle factor. If I could recharge batteries in ten seconds rather than two hours I would use them more, and I think others would as well. This is less hassle than buying replacement batteries, so it has a shot at being a real win. Larry M.

Sanjib.A
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Sanjib.A   7/16/2010 4:00:35 PM
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Yeah, that great! I am interested to know what would be the price of these vibration harvester battery substitutes. I would also like to know their life (hopefully much more than the rechargeable batteries). I am assuming that the mechanical dimensions of these products are the same as the AA or AAA size batteries, so that the AA / AAA batteries could be easily replaced by the equivalent vibration batteries, correct? Know all these I think I will be able to make a judgment about whether to use them or not.

Peter Clarke
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Peter Clarke   7/16/2010 8:07:29 PM
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These are mechanical, form-factor and electrically equivalent to AA, AAA batteries. But they only provide power for a very short time before needing another shake/vibration. Lifetime was not disclosed, but it surely should be possible to engineer an electromagnetic induction system and capacitor capable of billions of cycles? I would expect these to be far superior to rechargeable batteries. The question is am I happy to shake, wind a crank or whatever, to channel hop or am I such a couch a potato that I need batteries to do the work for me?

LarryM99
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
LarryM99   7/16/2010 4:40:21 PM
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The first stage is direct replacement of batteries. The real story is devices designed without the need to accomodate user-accessible battery compartments. Consumer remote controls are a volume application, but industrial or military systems can get a real win out of this. Larry M.

kdboyce
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
kdboyce   7/16/2010 8:37:14 PM
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Your earlier comment about battery recharge time is right on. Another article on EE Times about graphene batteries suggest that faster recharge times could be coming soon.

kdboyce
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
kdboyce   7/16/2010 8:31:23 PM
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Basically, this sounds like a good idea. But, how many devices that contain batteries will get a significant and often enough shaking to ensure adequate charge when you need it? Vibrational energy harvesters ARE a good idea. An excellent place to apply them would be on running machinery which vibrates a lot and use sensor devices powered by the harvester to feed performance or maintenance data to a low power, in-factory mesh network as part of the overall factory process control. Same is true on bridges, and moving joints (by design). I hope advances in this field continue.

KB3001
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
KB3001   7/17/2010 8:00:11 PM
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I am definitely happy to shake the remote control a bit before use to avoid the hassle of buying new batteries for such low power functionality. Also, think of the e-waste generated by batteries folks. This is a clean technology with a useful purpose. All for it!

phoenixdave
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
phoenixdave   7/18/2010 10:33:37 PM
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Sounds like a great idea to me. First application might be in the Wii (and other game systems) remote controls, where movement and shaking are part of the normal operating environment. Seems to have great potential...

Kinnar
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Kinnar   7/19/2010 6:26:41 PM
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It is really a great idea, and will eliminate the hassel of changing the batteries and leackage problems. Also some advancements in the technology will help to remove the batteries from mobile/cell phones. This is an excellent idea...

Neo10
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Neo10   7/20/2010 9:28:22 AM
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Too artificial to use and of limited utility. I can put in a couple of AA's in my remote and not worry for a year or two, how can shake and use concept make a dent to this, eh?

GowardJ
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
GowardJ   7/20/2010 9:58:37 AM
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Sounds like another potential disaster scenario like the Wii controllers embedded in the flat screen in the hands of the young. In our house we kill more remotes buy dropping or knocking them off surfaces - would it be fun to see them flying across the room or will these also require retraints

prabhakar_deosthali
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
prabhakar_deosthali   8/2/2010 7:45:23 AM
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This sounds like a very good innovation especially for gadgets like TV remote. It will at least ensure some calories burnt for the couch potatoes apart from saving the hassle of replacing those AA and AAA batteries every now and then. The days of automatic wrist watches which worked on movement of wrist are back! the spring is getting replaced by a capacitor.

t.alex
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
t.alex   8/2/2010 9:45:12 AM
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Ahh this is really useful innovation. Just imagine how many remote controls we have in our house: TV, DVD, Home theatre system, air conditioner, fan... Host costly is this energy harvesting box still?

ChakC
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
ChakC   8/4/2010 8:42:09 AM
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This is a great idea to keep our earth GREEN. When I read the above article, my mind came across a recent news about a football stadium where the audiences can generate electricity for lighting by stepping on and off on where they watch the football game.

ylshih
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
ylshih   8/5/2010 3:46:58 AM
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As with most energy innovations, the cost/payback calculation needs to be run. Many of my remotes seem to work for the shelf life of the batteries (3-5 years), while one remote needs batteries every 6 months. The vibration harvesters would probably not be cost effective for the more efficient/less frequently used remotes; while they would have to be less than 4-6x the cost of AA's or AAA's for the less efficient remotes to break even.

Donscoggin
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Donscoggin   8/12/2010 4:21:27 PM
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Anybody thought of harvesting the hot air that comes out of charley rangle's orifice?

YevgeniT
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
YevgeniT   8/16/2010 7:52:45 AM
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Is the battery replacement unit protected for drop to the floor?

vivekv80
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
vivekv80   8/16/2010 2:22:58 PM
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Excellent idea. I am looking forward to seeing Intel’s wireless power marketed soon http://blogs.intel.com/research/2008/10/rattner_the_promise_of_wireles.php Though this is based on Tesla’s work, it will be cool to such a product. I think to some extent, Palm’s touch charger was a cool device :)

ManasK.RayChaudhuri
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
ManasK.RayChaudhuri   8/18/2010 10:33:25 AM
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THIS IS AN EXCELLENT IDEA PROVIDED A FAST TRICKLE/FLOAT CHARGER IS ACCOMODATED.

Dan Mitten
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
Dan Mitten   8/18/2010 7:44:15 PM
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Leave the remote in the rocking chair, no shaking required! Cool! Can't wait!

_hm
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re: Vibration harvesters designed to replace AA, AAA batteries
_hm   8/24/2010 6:09:46 PM
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This looks very promising work. Vibration harvester will have plethora of applications where its cost will be justified. Fusion of vibration harvester with MEMS may provide solution to micro scale implantable bio-medical devices. With this, you may not need to come back to hospital to change battery after few years. At other end, infant will have their toys always powered. They may not need help from grownups. And there are remotely located sensors in forests and oceans always powered and collecting data. I will eagerly await its availability.

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