Everyday developments in the field of science and technology have become a routine in today’s world. Scientists and engineers are constantly working on making advancements in the innovations they have already developed. Recently the eminent scientists working at the Energy Department Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have recently achieved a remarkable success, which is related to energy. The development is basically a virus that helps to generate electricity. It’s a genetically persuaded virus to make such devices which will convert body’s movement into electricity.
These devices are as small as thin wafers can be attached to clothes or could be inserted within the shoes. According to the project chief investigator Seung Wuk lee, these small power generators are capable enough to as much electricity which could easily provide power for cell phones and other small gadgets like ipods and ipads etc.
This method of converting mechanical energy into electric which is known as piezoelectric is widely used in cars and many other processes. For example in cars we often see cigarette lighters and starters are making use of piezoelectric method in a way that we push the starter button and the grill generates small amount of current which later generates a spark and ignites the gas.
Normally inorganic ceramic materials were used as piezo generators, but for the first time scientists have successfully experimented using biological ad organic materials to create these devices which obviously have several advantages. Inorganic materials tend to produce several toxic byproducts as compared to the inorganic ones which are more environment friendly according to Dr.Lee.
According to reports given by Dr.Lee the Berkeley Lab initiated their research with a virus named M13, which is said to be nontoxic virus for human beings and natures and is very widely used in labs. A little modification was adopted in M13 which helped to boost the overall properties of piezoelectric. After that a very thin film as thin as a paper was created and was placed in between two plates of gold plated electrodes. After that pressure was applied this was more than enough to light up an LED.
Dr.Lee further stated that these devices will not be soon available in the market, as we are still in the phase of investigations and discovery level. In case the research is successful, it might take another five to ten years to power these microelectronic devices. These devices will also be helpful to power medical devices like pacemakers etc.