Wearable device turns your body heat into a battery
Researchers at CU boulder have created a new wearable device that can transform body heat into a biological battery. Featuring a thermoelectric system that leverages the differences in temperatures to produce electricity, the device not only harvests energy from the human body but is also able to repair itself when damaged.
“In the future, we want to be able to power your wearable electronics without having to include a battery,” said in a statement Jianliang Xiao, senior author of the new paper and an associate professor in the Paul M. Rady Department of Mechanical Engineering at CU Boulder.
For every square centimeter of skin space, the thermoelectric wearable unit, in this case the ring, is capable of producing around 1 volt of electricity. This suggests that it produces less electricity but still enough to fuel electronics such as watches or exercise trackers than current batteries. The fact that it can repair itself and can be entirely recyclable makes it a safer alternative to standard electrical goods.
New devices can generate about one volt of energy for every 0.155 sq in (1 sq cm) of skin space, enough to power electronics such as watches. The wearable tap into a person’s natural body heat, using thermoelectric generators to convert the body’s internal temperature into electricity. Even better, the device can heal itself when damaged and is fully recyclable.