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Sensors 2016, 16(7), 1101; doi:10.3390/s16071101

Portable Wind Energy Harvesters for Low-Power Applications: A Survey

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s, NL A1B 3X9, Canada
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Stefano Mariani
Received: 15 April 2016 / Revised: 12 July 2016 / Accepted: 12 July 2016 / Published: 16 July 2016
(This article belongs to the Collection Modeling, Testing and Reliability Issues in MEMS Engineering)

Abstract

Energy harvesting has become an increasingly important topic thanks to the advantages in renewability and environmental friendliness. In this paper, a comprehensive study on contemporary portable wind energy harvesters has been conducted. The electrical power generation methods of portable wind energy harvesters are surveyed in three major groups, piezoelectric-, electromagnetic-, and electrostatic-based generators. The paper also takes another view of this area by gauging the required mechanisms for trapping wind flow from ambient environment. In this regard, rotational and aeroelastic mechanisms are analyzed for the portable wind energy harvesting devices. The comparison between both mechanisms shows that the aeroelastic mechanism has promising potential in producing an energy harvester in smaller scale although how to maintain the resonator perpendicular to wind flow for collecting the maximum vibration is still a major challenge to overcome for this mechanism. Furthermore, this paper categorizes the previously published portable wind energy harvesters to macro and micro scales in terms of their physical dimensions. The power management systems are also surveyed to explore the possibility of improving energy conversion efficiency. Finally some insights and research trends are pointed out based on an overall analysis of the previously published works along the historical timeline. View Full-Text
Keywords: wind energy harvesting; piezoelectric; electromagnetic; electrostatic; rotational; aeroelastic; macro-scale; micro-scale wind energy harvesting; piezoelectric; electromagnetic; electrostatic; rotational; aeroelastic; macro-scale; micro-scale
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Nabavi, S.; Zhang, L. Portable Wind Energy Harvesters for Low-Power Applications: A Survey. Sensors 2016, 16, 1101.

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