Durable pyroelectric shell structures for energy scavenging applications
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In the light of the increasing growth of requests for applicable energy accounts, this study is driven by the desire to determine the energy interactions among the electrical, thermal and mechanical fields in pyroelectric shell structures. The principal purpose of the proposed work is to scrutinize how material properties synthesize new smart systems exhibiting higher levels of electrical energy while possessing considerably lower weight. To achieve such an aim, it is assumed that the material properties of the elastic medium would be graded through the thickness and the mechanical, electrical and thermal fields would have their own independent gradient indexes. If we nominate the grading indexes as design variables, the material elements of the solid should be appropriately functionalized, avoiding any problems stemming from the low electrical outputs of shell structures in energy-harvesting applications. To untangle the complex mathematics governing this problem, a skilfully merged algorithm of an advanced optimization method with two semi-analytical approaches is exploited. When the simulation is implemented, a significant increment in electrical energy in conjunction with a marked reduction in weight is reported. Further, the effects of inhomogeneity and thermal gradient on the electrostatic energy and weight, as well as the stress, displacement, electrical and thermal fields are graphically presented and discussed. With its material development and structural integrity, this study presents an efficient and cost-effective criterion for smart structures for scavenging energy from available thermo-electromechanical energy sources.
Mohammad Khorsand is grateful for the financial support of Postgraduate Research Scholarships (International) for his Ph.D. study at Flinders University.
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