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A design method for low-frequency rotational piezoelectric energy harvesting in micro applications

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A rotational piezoelectric energy harvester is an electromechanical device that converts ambient mechanical rotation into electric power. The gravity-based method of using the gravity to excite the cantilever beam to deform in the vertical plane has received great attention. The harvester operates effectively at a narrow frequency band, which must be matched with the excitation frequency. For micro applications, low-frequency harvesters are often very difficult to design due to the specific limitations of the size and weight and the thickness of the piezoelectric material. Moreover, low-frequency harvesters require high precision in production and assembly, and small errors can cause large frequency error deviations. In response to this problem, this paper proposes a scheme for designing low-frequency rotational piezoelectric energy harvester, wherein the tuning is accomplished by changing the distance between the mass and the center of rotation. Furthermore, the paper establishes a theoretical model and presents a relationship for frequency adjustment. The experimental results achieved with a piezoelectric fiber composite fit the theoretical results well. The simulation and experimental results show that the resonance frequency of the harvester could be decreased by 63% when the distance between the mass and the center is five times the length of the harvester.

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This work was supported by National Key R&D Program of China (no. 2018YFF0212201 and no. 2016YFF0101802), National Nature Science Fund of China (no. 61973227), Tianjin Key R&D Program (no. 19YFSLQY00080) and Natural Science Foundation of Tianjin (no. 17JCYBJC19300).

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Correspondence to Yu Zhang.

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Rui, X., Zeng, Z., Zhang, Y. et al. A design method for low-frequency rotational piezoelectric energy harvesting in micro applications. Microsyst Technol 26, 981–991 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00542-019-04628-4

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