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Power Control Optimization of an Underwater Piezoelectric Energy Harvester

1
Nuclear Engineering and Fluid Mechanics Department, University Basque Country, UPV/EHU, 01006 Vitoria, Spain
2
Automatic Control and System Engineering Department, University Basque Country, UPV/EHU, 01006 Vitoria, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 389; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8030389
Received: 29 December 2017 / Revised: 25 February 2018 / Accepted: 2 March 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
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Abstract

Over the past few years, it has been established that vibration energy harvesters with intentionally designed components can be used for frequency bandwidth enhancement under excitation for sufficiently high vibration amplitudes. Pipelines are often necessary means of transporting important resources such as water, gas, and oil. A self-powered wireless sensor network could be a sustainable alternative for in-pipe monitoring applications. A new control algorithm has been developed and implemented into an underwater energy harvester. Firstly, a computational study of a piezoelectric energy harvester for underwater applications has been studied for using the kinetic energy of water flow at four different Reynolds numbers Re = 3000, 6000, 9000, and 12,000. The device consists of a piezoelectric beam assembled to an oscillating cylinder inside the water of pipes from 2 to 5 inches in diameter. Therefore, unsteady simulations have been performed to study the dynamic forces under different water speeds. Secondly, a new control law strategy based on the computational results has been developed to extract as much energy as possible from the energy harvester. The results show that the harvester can efficiently extract the power from the kinetic energy of the fluid. The maximum power output is 996.25 µW and corresponds to the case with Re = 12,000.
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Keywords: energy harvesting; piezoelectric; pipelines; underwater networks; wireless sensor networks; control algorithm energy harvesting; piezoelectric; pipelines; underwater networks; wireless sensor networks; control algorithm
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Aramendia, I.; Fernandez-Gamiz, U.; Zulueta Guerrero, E.; Lopez-Guede, J.M.; Sancho, J. Power Control Optimization of an Underwater Piezoelectric Energy Harvester. Appl. Sci. 2018, 8, 389.

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