El avance a pasos agigantados de los dispositivos móviles está poniendo a trabajar a destajo a los departamentos de investigación y desarrollo de las grandes compañías para lograr baterías más duraderas, pieza clave para controlar la mayor parte del mercado. Ya hablamos hace tiempo de los mejores trucos para ahorrar batería en el iPhone, pero, ¿y si fuese posible cargar los móviles con las vibraciones de nuestro movimiento en cualquier sitio?

Esto es lo que han descubierto investigadores e ingenieros de las universidades de Wisconsin-Madison, Sun Yat-Sen de China y la Universidad de Minnesota en Duluth, y que puede ser toda una revolución en el campo de la generación de energía con multitud de aplicaciones. La idea se fundamenta en la utilización de nano generadores capaces de recoger la energía de vibración de cualquier superficie y transformarla en alimento para nuestros gadgets.

Pensemos por ejemplo en asientos de vehículos en movimiento, chasis de vehículos, ropa y calzado… las posibilidades son enormes para cargar las baterías de cualquier dispositivo, generar la energía suficiente para almacenarla y darle otros usos más amplios.

[quote] Este desarrollo podría ser una nueva solución para la creación de la electrónica personal autorrecargable. [/quote]Xudong Wang, profesor asistente de Ciencia de los Materiales e Ingeniería en la Universidad de Wisconsin-Madison.

Nano hilos piezoeléctricos

El invento, tal como lo han descrito Wang y sus colegas en la revista Advanced Energy Materials, es un nanogenerador piezoléctrico mesoporoso, y básicamente se trata de dos láminas de polifluoruro de vinilideno (PVDF) que sostienen nanohilos de óxido de zinc. Y he aquí la clave, este material piezoeléctrico es capaz de generar corriente eléctrica cuando se deforma con las vibraciones que genera el sonido o el movimiento mecánico. Además, también es capaz de generar una tensión mecánica a partir de un campo eléctrico aplicado, razón por la que tenemos relojes de cuarzo capaces de medir el tiempo cuando se les aplica una corriente eléctrica para generar impulsos regulares.

Nanohilos de óxido de zinc

Según explican los investigadores, “una vez se desencadena la formación de la fase piezoeléctrica que permite recoger la energía de vibración, a continuación se graban las nanopartículas de la película y los poros interconectados resultantes ( ‘mesoporos’) que hacen que el material inicialmente rígido se comporte de forma similar a una esponja”. Y este material esponjoso es la clave que permite recoger la energía de vibración y trasmitirla a través de un circuito cerrado para alimentar un dispositivo.

El nanogenerador lo forman hojas de electrodos delgados en la parte delantera y trasera de la película de polímero mesoporoso, que puede adherirse con perfección a todo tipo superficies, sean planas, rugosas o curvadas, incluyendo la piel humana. Así pues, en el caso de un teléfono móvil o gadget de última generación podría mantenerse cargado tan solo por el movimiento que genere su peso en el bolsillo. Con estos revolucionarios nano-generadores podrían formar parte directamente del propio dispositivo para alimentarse de las vibraciones ambientales de su entorno. Por ahora, cinco de estos nanogeneradores pueden generar energía para dos pilas de tipo AA, aunque tal como avanza la tecnología, es probable que pueda ampliarse su potencia en poco tiempo.

Por si fuera poco, todos los materiales necesarios son neutros y no tóxicos. Esto significa que que son inocuos para el cuerpo humano, ya no solo para convertirnos en pilas andantes, sino por sus posibles aplicaciones en el campo de la medicina con intervenciones mediante nanorobots alimentados por estos diminutos generadores de electricidad.

Imagen | GdeFon
Fuente | Europa Press

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