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Cornell, Nanotech Company to Develop Self-Charging Batteries

To meet an expanding demand for autonomous power for wireless sensors, MicroGen Systems LLC, of Ithaca, New York and Cornell University’s Energy Materials Center (emc2) have agreed to develop self-charging batteries that use background vibrations for their energy source.

The battery, say the partners, will look like a microchip, but with a vibrating core, which will harvest energy from almost anything that shakes. The self-charging batteries can be used in smart energy systems for industrial equipment, lighting control, monitors of the structural integrity of bridges and roads, and sensors for monitoring onboard vehicle systems.

Microgen’s systems are based on piezoelectric vibrational energy harvester technology, which captures electrical energy generated by oscillating mechanical strains.

The agreement will enable MicroGen systems to receive financial support from the New York State Center for Future Energy Systems, with the Cornell NanoScale Science and Technology Facility, and emc2.

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