Coupled analysis for the harvesting structure and the modulating circuit in a piezoelectric bimorph energy harvester
The authors analyze a piezoelectric energy harvester as an electro-mechanically coupled system. The energy harvester consists of a piezoelectric bimorph with a concentrated mass attached at one end, called the harvesting structure, an electric circuit for energy storage, and a rectifier that converts the AC output of the harvesting structure into a DC input for the storage circuit. The piezoelectric bimorph is assumed to be driven into flexural vibration by an ambient acoustic source to convert the mechanical energies into electric energies. The analysis indicates that the performance of this harvester, measured by the power density, is characterized by three important non-dimensional parameters, i.e., the non-dimensional inductance of the storage circuit, the non-dimensional aspect ratio (length/thickness) and the non-dimensional end mass of the harvesting structure. The numerical results show that: (1) the power density can be optimized by varying the non-dimensional inductance for each fixed non-dimensional aspect ratio with a fixed non-dimensional end mass; and (2) for a fixed non-dimensional inductance, the power density is maximized if the non-dimensional aspect ratio and the non-dimensional end mass are so chosen that the harvesting structure, consisting of both the piezoelectric bimorph and the end mass attached, resonates at the frequency of the ambient acoustic source.
Key wordsenergy harvester piezoelectric bimorph harvesting structure RLC modulating circuit coupled interaction power density
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