Micro-Windmills to Power Wearable Electronics


J.-C. Chiao and Smitha Rao developed a small device that is just 1.8 mm at its widest point. It is calculated that 9 more of the same devices could be attached to a grain of rice. Wind could be created by waving the phone, or in the lazy way – by placing it at the window on a windy day.

The devices were tested in September, 2013 and operated successfully even under strong artificial winds.

“The problem most MEMS designers have is that materials are too brittle,” Rao said. “With the nickel alloy, we don’t have that same issue. They’re very, very durable.”

According to UT Arlington, the cost for manufacturing one windmill is the same as the cost of producing hundreds or even thousands on a single wafer.

The University of Texas Arlington via Interesting Engineering.

This entry was posted in Gadgets by Heretic. Bookmark the permalink.

About Heretic

I design video games for a living, write fiction, political theory and poetry for personal amusement, and train regularly in Western European 16th century swordwork. On frequent occasion I have been known to hunt for and explore abandoned graveyards, train tunnels and other interesting places wherever I may find them, but there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that I am preparing to set off a zombie apocalypse. Nothing that will stand up in court, at least. I use paranthesis with distressing frequency, have a deep passion for history, anthropology and sociological theory, and really, really, really hate mayonnaise. But I wash my hands after the writing. Promise.

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