Date of Award

2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.Sc.

Department

Computer Science

First Advisor

Stoilov, Vesselin

Keywords

Energy Harvesting, Inclined Plates, Numerical Modeling, Piezoelectricity, Vortex Shedding, Wind

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

This thesis presents a coupled mechanical device that generates power by a direct conversion of the airflow into mechanical vibrations. The mechanism experiences a fluid force that changes with its orientation causing vibrations. The device consists of two tightly coupled parts: a mechanical resonator that produces high-frequency mechanical oscillations from quasi-steady airflow resulting in large amplitude vibrations and a piezoelectric power generator harvesting the energy from the resonator's motion. Instantaneous velocity interactions were studied using numerical modeling and experimental tests. The proposed energy harvester allows for locking up the device's lowest natural frequency to the vortex-shedding resonant frequency induced by the ambient energy source. Furthermore, an array consisting of 8 harvesters was constructed and a net feasible power output was measured. A single energy harvester vibrating at its first Eigen frequency mode demonstrated a peak-to-peak output voltage of over 80V at 10Hz, from an input wind velocity of ~7 m/s.

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