New Nanogenerator Harvests Power from Rolling Tires

6. 30. 15 by Kevin Woods
  • The nanogenerator relies on the triboelectric effect to harness energy from the changing electric potential between the pavement and a vehicle’s wheels. The triboelectric effect is the electric charge that results from the contact or rubbing together of two dissimilar objects.
  • “The friction between the tire and the ground consumes about 10 percent of a vehicle’s fuel,” he says. “That energy is wasted. So if we can convert that energy, it could give us very good improvement in fuel efficiency.”
  • The amount of energy saved can vary depending on the vehicle-but Wang estimates about a 10-percent increase in the average vehicle’s gas mileage given 50-percent friction energy conversion efficiency.

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