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Next Gen Technology: Using the Human Body as a Generator

This entry was posted in Power generation , Electronics and sensors on August 26, 2019 by II-VI Marlow Industries

Our wearable devices and wearable technologies have become a part of our everyday lives. From bluetooth airpods to fitbits, wearable technology has become our norm and we don’t leave the house without it. We track our fitness health, read our email, and have it tell us the news as we walk from our cars to work. As innovative as these new wearable technologies are, they have the confines of a battery and we still have to take them off at night and plug them into a charger for tomorrow’s enjoyment. Have you ever considered that your body could become a power source for your favorite wearable devices? It would only be fitting that next generation technology utilizes next generation power.

Faced with answering this question, experts have been working on a thermoelectric generator design created specifically with knitted fabric. This TEG is sourced completely from non-toxic and non-allergenic substances as safety is the number one concern for an innovative design like this - being worn on the body to power wearable devices. Spectrum believes this new way of harvesting energy could possibly inspire more companies to jump onto the wearables bandwagon, not just for consumer products, but imagine what this technology could offer commercial industries or medical fields? 

While we generate a ton of energy every day, actually using the human body as a power generator for D.C. electricity can be tricky. As a test the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute in South Korea developed a 5 cm x 11 cm module that actually generates electricity from body heat. This device not only generates heat but is also able to serve as a charging source with D.C. power. Researchers discovered that by attaching six patches to the wrist of an adult they were able to amplify the voltage and even generate energy to a commercialization level.

How exactly do these TEG devices generate electricity from your body? These wearable thermoelectric generators create electricity by using the temperature differential between the ambient air and your body and turning it into usable power.

According to Phys, they predict that we will soon be self-sufficient in terms of energy production and we will free ourselves from relying on the cluster of wires hiding in our nightstands. Soon, we could be charging our watches, phones and headsets without any hassle, using our own internal power supply.

Do you have a question about this next generation technology? Feel free to reach out to our experts. 

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