Wind turbines bring to mind tall devices with slow-moving spokes and high-wind speeds, however, scientists have developed a smaller-scale wind turbine that can harness the wind generated from the swinging arms of a walking person.
According to a study published in the Cell Reports Physical Sceince, the device created by seven Chinese researchers comes with two plastic strips that flutter with a light breeze which in turn powers the turbine. The turbine works best with a wind speed of 4 to 8 m/s, however, it can also work with a light breeze of 1.6 m/s.
The aim of the scientists was to build a cost-efficient way to generate sustainable energy through wind turbines.
For now, the tiny wind turbine has powered 100 LED lights and temperature sensors, the scientists said. The turbine also has a wind-to-energy conversion efficiency of 3.23%.
The researchers Xin Chen, Xingchen Ma, Weiwei Ren, Lingxiao Gao, Shan Lu, Daqiao Tong, Fayang Wang, Yu Chen, Yi Huang, Hao He, Baoping Tang, Jiajia Zhang, Xiaoqing Zhang, Xiaojing Mu and Ya Yang hope to power small electric devices such as phones with the device and eventually compete with traditional wind turbines where output is high-speed wind-dependent.