Nict2012 perak piezoelectric research updated


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Nict2012 perak piezoelectric research updated

  1. 1. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23. PIEZOELECTRIC EFFECT IN ENERGY HARVESTING FLOORING SYSTEM: A LITERATURE REVIEW AND FEASIBILITY STUDY Ahmad Haqqi Nazali Bin Abdul Razak 1, Abu Bakar Abdul Hamid2 1 Pusat Pengajian Senibina Dalaman, Fakulti Senibina, Perancangan & Ukur, 40450, UiTM Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia. 2 Pusat Pengajian Senibina Dalaman, Fakulti Senibina, Perancangan & Ukur, 40450, UiTM Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia. of global energy have significantly increased in the recent years as demand rose sharply and supply islimited. Engineers, scientists and researchers are seeking for various alternatives and solutions towards theglobal energy crisis. Concurrently, key players of the architecture, building and construction field are alsoaffected by this matter; not including the increasing price of raw materials but concentrating on sustainablebuilding energy consumption. Regenerative energy has recently been viewed as an alternative to renewableenergy especially to designers and architects across Europe. Regenerative energy established uponpiezoelectric effect borrowed from the sensor and transducer development field holds the key towards potentialsolutions in harvesting energy from human motion. Prior to the introduction of piezoelectricity in pedestrianenergy harvesting field, researchers and designers have ventured into various study to capture these lossenergy. Many methods have been studied such as hydraulic generators (Risen, 2006); heel strike generators(Chapa, 2008 and Ahira, 2008) and dynamo (Wright, 2007). Unfortunately, the study on this potential energyharvesting technique is still at its infant stage; hence an in-depth literature searching is crucial prior to thenecessary experimentation on the piezoelectric effect. Pioneering research on piezoelectric effect has shownsignificant positive result but the developments are widely on the sensor and transducer field. Henceforth thisstudy aims to accommodate the technology inside the building construction sector’s green technology..Keywords: Piezoelectric, energy harvesting, green technology, sustainable interior, regenerative energy.1.0 Background to ResearchThe question of reaping energy from human motions arises from observation made by the researcher on thepossibility to capture energy loss from a walking man. Vast literature searching have resulted in a promisingmethod; piezoelectric effect. Piezoelectricity is widely known to engineers and pure science researchers but astrange term to architects, interior designers and building construction personnel. The concept of piezoelectriceffect can be achieved by adopting a smart material or piezoelectric materials and is described as the relationbetween a mechanical stress and electrical voltage in solids. This process is two-way; where and appliedmechanical stress generates a significant amount of voltage as well as vice versa, applied voltage may shape-shift the solid. Piezoelectricity or smart materials was discovered by Jacques and Pierre Curie in 1880 wherethey found that these materials exhibit unique and interrelated properties. According to Fraden (1996), this smartmaterial has since became basis to a large number of sensor and transducer application in diverse fields such assecurity systems, medical diagnostics devices and non-destructive testing. 1
  2. 2. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.Daisuke (2009) further explains that the piezoelectricity is an effect from a surface electrical charge generatedwhen a certain stress is applied on a smart material. This phenomenon has been successfully been implementedin areas such as ignition system, sonar, acceleration and gyro-sensors. Another technique being implementedfrom piezoelectric effect is to generate electricity which Daisuke considers as an ―untapped energy‖ similar towind and tidal energy. He continues to discuss the energy harvesting technique can be implemented fromvibrations created in structures like bridges and railway stations.It is also known that piezoelectric effect only occurs in non-conductive materials; mainly in crystals andceramics. Patel (2010) indicates that PZT (lead zirconate titanate) based ceramics are the most commonly usedsmart materials due to the amount of electrical charges built up on both sides of this material compared toothers. This unique property of piezoelectric effect can be utilized to capture energy from environmentalvibrations such as human motion.2.0 Problem StatementSeveral studies and attempts are initiated to reap this potential energy from human motion. In Central London,engineers modeled a system at Victoria Station to harvest energy from 34,000 travellers hourly and theexperiment resulted in 6,500 lit light bulbs (Risen, 2006). Ahira (2008) stated that under floor generators couldalso be used to convert pedestrian footstep into electricity. Several shopping centers and railway stations acrossUK were installed with these generators. ―Heel-strike‖ from pedestrians compressing pads installed beneath thefloors drives fluid through mini-turbines to produce electrical energy. The generated electricity is then stored inbatteries used to power lighting systems. Risen (2006) indicated an experiment initiated by a London basedarchitectural company to capture and convert vibrations into electricity via installed small hydraulic generatorsin the floor. In 2007, James Graham and Thaddeus Jusczyk introduced ―Crowd Farming‖ concept inMasssachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that could convert mechanical energy of people walking orjumping into an electricity source (Wright, 2007). Their proposal won the first place in the Japan-based HolcimFoundation’s of Sustainable Construction Competition. The concept of Crowd Farming is made of blocks thatdepress slightly under the force of human steps. Furthermore, a British consultancy firm installed miniature―heel-strike‖ generators underneath the stairs of Spinnaker tower in London to capture the energy generated by aperson walking up and down the stairs.In addition, Bergeron (2009) listed numerous demonstrations on energy harvesting using piezoelectric effectfrom sidewalks to combat boots. Stresses on piezoelectric materials generated by pedestrians’ movement onsidewalks are converted into electrical charge; whereas the latter shows that piezoelectric elements embedded inthe heels of the combat boots are able to convert the bouncing and pounding of the heel-strike to reusable energyspecifically to charge batteries. Similar research is also stated by Howells, (2009), Wright (2007) and Richard(2006). The technology of combat boot mini generators were first developed by DARPA (Defense AdvancedResearch Projects Agency) in the United States under the project called Energy Harvesting which attempted topower battlefield equipment for US Army. 2
  3. 3. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.3.0 Research Objective 1. To investigate the best piezoelectric material and design for harvesting energy from human motion. 2. To measure the electrical energy output from objective (1) and improvise the design. 3. To develop a cost effective and working prototype of the energy harvesting module based on objective (2).4.0 Literature ReviewPotential energy harvesting techniques are discussed by researchers, activists and designers globally. There havebeen several endeavours to harness this potential reusable energy. Researchers have embarked into minigenerators (Risen, 2006; Richard, 2007; Wright, 2007) dynamo concept (Wright, 2007), ―heel strike‖ pressurepad (Ahira, 2008), hydraulic system (Chapa, 2008; Ahira, 2008), piezoelectric effect (J. Kymsis, 1998; Chapa,2008; Bergeron, 2009). Among these experimental attempts, piezoelectric effect by means of piezoelectricmaterial has been explored the most in harvesting reusable pedestrian energy.The viability of piezoelectric effect in energy harvesting has also been discussed by Patel (2010) explaining aprevious study model by Starner (1996) showed that 5 Watt of electrical power can be generated by a 52 kgperson at a brisk walking pace using a PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) power harvesting device integrated in ashoe. He continues to explain that Umeda (1996) attempted to harvest impact energy induced by a free fallingball onto a plate integrated with PZT (lead zirconate titanate) wafer and it developed an electrical equivalentmodel of transforming mechanical impact energy to electrical power. The findings of this experiment pioneeredenergy storage using a bridge rectifier together with a capacitor. Energy harvesting by piezoelectric materialthrough the impact of rain drops has also been proposed and proven in principle (Guigon, 2008).The duo from MIT whom behind the concept of ―Crowd Farming‖ carried out an experiment to demonstratetheir hypothesis by using block slippage against one another that performs as the power generator based on theprinciple of a dynamo (Wright, 2007). They found out that a single human step is able to power two 60 Wattlight bulbs for about one flickering second; hence a crowd motion of 28 257 steps (per say) may generateenough power to move a train for one second. They further supported their findings by lighting up a LightEmitting Diode (LED) in a stool embedded with a generator every time a person sits on the stool.Piezoelectricity in energy harvesting have also been proven by Kymsis (1998) by proving enough energy tolight up a bulb from a piezoelectric film implanted in a shoe sole.According to Patel, et. al. (2010) again, two typical mostly or widely used piezoelectric materials were thepolymer membrane PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) and ceramic based PZT (lead zirconate titanate). Theconventional piezoelectric ceramic is considered rigid, heavy and are only produced in block form. On the otherhand, polymer based piezoelectric materials possess lower dielectric (an insulating material or a very poor 3
  4. 4. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.conductor of electric current; (Britannica Encyclopedia, 2009)) and piezoelectric properties than ceramics; butthey are soft, flexible, low-cost and suitable for large area deployment. In addition, current development of PP(polypropylene) polymer foam material demonstrates some superior properties in comparison to other twocommon types of piezoelectric material. Due to the properties of the PP foam with a voided internal structure, itis capable of storing large amount of electrical charges within these voids.The developments of piezoelectric have advanced into a new dimension as nanotechnology is introduced. Aresearch carried out by Christian (2009) found that piezoelectric and nanotechnology can be combined toexplore the possibility of self-powered implantable microsystem; which basically is a self-powered microsensors implanted in a living body. The researchers carried out their study based on the findings of KookChennault et. al. (2008); which indicated that the best harvesting strategy will always depend on the application,the mechanical to electrical conversion through piezoelectric transducers; affirmatively the most promisingoption. However, several challenges have been identified in applying nanowires in piezoelectric energyharvesting potential.In reference with the various research carried out on piezoelectric effect combined with the potentialdevelopment of nanotechnology, advancement in the field of inventing high efficient energy harvesting buildingproduct or material may possibly be achieved. Vice versa, the disadvantages of piezoelectricity are also beingconsidered. Bergeron (2009) identifies weakness of piezoelectric effect as the high cost of installation andmaintenance. He continues to explain that the current available technology provides a small return oninvestment (ROI) which therefore restricts its application in the industry. The major limitation is lacking inaffordable, general-purpose energy harvesting technology that could be applied in a variety of application areaswith high return on investment. The earlier mentioned experiment by DARPA was abandoned as the attemptwas viewed as impractical and has various negative impacts imposed on the user (Wright, 2007; Richard, 2006).5.0 Research Methodology5.1 Description of MethodologyThis research shall adopt several research methods depending on its function and objectives. According toTakim (2006), research method and methodology are interchangeably used, in fact their meaning are different.Method is defined as the techniques used to do something; while methodology refers to the study of researchmethod. Since this paper is at its proposal stage, the research method shall be outlined, while the researchmethodology will be explained in the next stage.It is therefore this research shall be underpinned by: i. Exploratory Research ii. Descriptive Research iii. Experimental Research 4
  5. 5. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.5.2 Exploratory ResearchExploratory research is undertaken at the beginning of learning about a topic. Where little or no previousknowledge exists, the researcher must engage in an open-ended search for answers and understanding. Thismethod may be loosely formulated that it rarely yields definitive answers. Exploratory research provides theresearcher with the insights and understanding that are needed into a topic to enable a more systematic study tobe carried out subsequently. Since exploratory research may lack any clear course at the outset, it may changedirection more than once. The basic categories of exploratory techniques that may be considered for this studyare: • Secondary data analysis Data previously collected and assembled for some project other than the project being studied • Case Studies A technique that intensively investigates one or a few situations similar to the researcher’s problem situation.5.3 Descriptive ResearchDescriptive research can be used when the researcher has a clearer idea about the social phenomenon orbehaviour under investigation. Descriptive research provides details about a situation, setting or socialrelationship. It is also designed to describe characteristics of a population or a phenomenon and determine theanswers to who, what, when, where and how questions.5.4 Experimental ResearchThis type of research follows the principles found in natural sciences. Experiment manipulates sets of conditionseither in an artificial laboratory setting or in real life and then measure the differences in the way people respondin those situations. Experiments are ideal for explanatory research because they can directly address cause andeffect relationship issues. 5
  6. 6. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.6.0 Research Activities Flow Chart Problem Statement Literature Review PHASE 1 Exploratory Research Secondary Data Case Studies Problem Definition PHASE 2 Selection of basic research method Secondary Data Study Experimentation Selection of Sample Design Probability Non-probability Data Collection & Analysis Findings Interpretations Report Writing & Presentation PHASE 3 Development of Prototype 6
  7. 7. 2012 International Conference on Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Built Environment (ICITSBE 2012) 16 – 17 April 2012, Perak, MALAYSIA. Ref No : GT –23.ReferencesA. Bergen, L. P. (2009). Experimental assessment of a residential scale renewable–regenerative. Journal of Power Sources, 158-166.Ahira, K. (2008). Pedestrians to power shopping centres. Retrieved June 11, 2009, from (2009). Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting. Retrieved September 15, 2010, from Hubpages:, G. (1996). Renewable Energy: Power for a Sustainable Future. Glasgow: Oxford University Press.Chapa, J. (2008, June 19). Inhabitat. Retrieved June 8, 2009, from Spinnaker Tower Stairs to Generate Electricity: Falconia, G. M. (2009). Studying piezoelectric nanowires and nanowalls for energy harvesting. Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical, 511-519.Howells, C. A. (2009). Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting. Energy Conversion & Management, 1847-1850.I. Patel, E. S. (2010). Utilisation of smart polymers and ceramic based piezoelectric materials for scavenging wasted energy. Sensors & Actuators A: Physical, 213-218.J. Kymissis, C. K. (1998). Parasitic power harvesting in shoes. Second IEEE International Conference on Wearable Computing, (pp. 132-139).K. Daisuke., N. K. (2009). Electric power generation using vibration of a polyurea piezoelectric thin film. Applied Accoustics, 439-445.K.A. Cook-Chennault, N. T. (2008). Powering MEMS portable devices—a review of non-regenerative and regenerative power supply systems with special emphasis on piezoelectric energy. Smart Material Structure 17.M. Umeda, K. N. (1996). Analysis of transformation of mechanical impact energy to electrical energy using a piezoelectric vibrator. Journal of Applied Physics 35, 3267-3273.R. Guigon, J. C. (2008). Harvesting raindrop energy:Experimental Study. Smart Material Structure 17.Richard, M. G. (2006). Japan: Producing Electricity from Train Station Ticket Gates. Retrieved June 8, 2009, from Treehugger:, C. (2006, December 10). Energy-Harvesting Floors. The New York Times Magazine. New York, USA.Starner, T. (1996). Human-powered wearable computing. IBM System Journal, 618-629.T. Hehn, F. H. (2009). Highly Efficient Energy Extraction from Piezoelectric Generators. Proceedings of the Eurosensors XXIII conference (pp. 1451-1454). ScienceDirect.Takim, R. (2006). Research Methodology. Research Method & Methodology. Shah Alam, Selangor: UiTM.Wright, S. H. (2007). MIT. Retrieved June 9, 2009, from MIT duo sees people-powered "Crowd Farm": Plan would harvest energy of human movement.: 7