Researchers at Georgia Tech today revealed a triboelectric generator that creates energy when two specific plastic materials rub against one another.
Zhong Lin Wang, a professor at Georgia Tech, created this new spin on an old concept by harnessing the power of rubbing together textured transparent sheets of polyester and polydimethysiloxane. When given an electrical load, a tiny current of electricity flows between the two materials during friction and separation. Repeating the action of grinding and separating creates an alternating current, also known as everyday electrical energy. The output of rubbing the materials yields as "much as 18 volts at about 0.13 microamps per square centimeter," according to a Georgia Tech press release. … Read more