FLEHAP – An energy harvesting device
The FLEHAP device transforms the kinetic energy of a fluid in motion in electric energy, without using rotating blades as usual in wind generators. The device is conceived to power a node in a wireless sensor network. It is robust, small, customizable and cheap.
The FLEHAP device is based on an aeroelastic effect called “fluttering”: when a fluid in motion (air, gas, water) impinges on an elastic system, it can transfer to the system a part of its kinetic energy, then inducing mechanical oscillations with a large amplitude. By using permanent magnets and coils, electric energy can be produced via Faraday effect. The elastic part of the system can be done with elastomers or springs or even with a magnetic suspension, reducing in this way the failure probability. With typical dimensions 10 x 10 x 10 cm^3 , the device can produce more than 20 mW of electric power, sufficient to power small sensors and a radio. The produced energy is stored in a supercapacitor and the node is controlled by a low power microcontroller.
- Environmental control
- Smart agriculture
- Smart city
- Industrial plants and HVAC systems