Researcher develop piezoelectric chin strap to harvest energy from chewing
Did you know your jaw movement could help generate natural energy? Just in case you were unaware, engineers at the École de Technologie Supérieure in Montreal, Canada have developed a chin strap which lets user harness natural energy. The chin strap helps convert chewing into electricity. Developed with an idea to replace batteries in smaller accessories like earpieces, hearing aids and small gadgets, with batteries powered by renewable source of energy; engineers have created this strap from piezoelectric material to generate 18 microwatts power from 60 seconds of chewing.
The chin strap is made of specially designed smart material – the material becomes electrically charged when stretched while chewing. Mechanical engineers Dr Aidin Delnavaz and Dr Jeremie Voix, say their strap is perfectly comfortable to wear; and since chin really moves to the furthest while chewing, it is also the most ideal way to harvesting energy enough to power petite gadgets.
Currently the prototype chin strap, Dr Delnavaz has test for hours himself, can generate very insignificant amount of power. According to the engineers their prototype strap will need to be 20 times more efficient to generate power that will be sufficient to power a Bluetooth earpiece of a hearing aid. Dr Delnavaz and Dr Voix, say this can be achieved by adding multiple layers of their smart material to the strap.