Research Papers

Beam-Based Vibration Energy Harvesters Tunable Through Folding

[+] Author and Article Information
Anup Pydah

Department of Biomedical Engineering and
Mechanics (M/C 0219),
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and
State University,
Blacksburg, VA 24061
e-mail: anpydah@vt.edu

R. C. Batra

Clifton C. Garvin Professor
Honorary Mem. ASME
Department of Biomedical Engineering and
Mechanics (M/C 0219),
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and
State University,
Blacksburg, VA 24061
e-mail: rbatra@vt.edu

Contributed by the Technical Committee on Vibration and Sound of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF VIBRATION AND ACOUSTICS. Manuscript received February 23, 2018; final manuscript received June 5, 2018; published online July 24, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Izhak Bucher.

J. Vib. Acoust 141(1), 011003 (Jul 24, 2018) (6 pages) Paper No: VIB-18-1080; doi: 10.1115/1.4040576 History: Received February 23, 2018; Revised June 05, 2018

We present a novel beam-based vibration energy harvester, and use a structural tailoring concept to tune its natural frequencies. Using a solution of the Euler–Bernoulli beam theory equations, verified with finite element (FE) solutions of shell theory equations, we show that introducing folds or creases along the span of a slender beam, varying the fold angle at a crease, and changing the crease location helps tune the beam natural frequencies to match an external excitation frequency and maximize the energy harvested. For a beam clamped at both ends, the first frequency can be increased by 175% with a single fold. With two folds, selective frequencies can be tuned, leaving others unchanged. The number of folds, their locations, and the fold angles act as tuning parameters that provide high sensitivity and controllability of the frequency response of the harvester. The analytical model can be used to quickly optimize designs with multiple folds for anticipated external frequencies.

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Fig. 4

Variation of the first three nondimensionalized natural frequencies, ω¯=ω(L2/H)ρ/E, and mode shapes with the fold angle α obtained from the FE solution and the MoM formulation for L1 = L2 = 40 mm

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Fig. 5

Percentage change in the first five nondimensionalized frequencies with the fold angle α for L1 = L2 = 40 mm

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Fig. 3

Interface forces and moments on the ith and the (i + 1)th arms of the folded beam

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Fig. 2

Rigid folding, by α deg, of an initially flat beam with a single fold (n = 1). The total length of the beam, L = L1 + L2, remains constant.

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Fig. 1

Schematics of an unfolded beam and of a beam with three folds

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Fig. 6

Effects of changing the location, L1/L2, of the fold on the natural frequencies and mode shapes

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Fig. 7

Effects of increasing the number of folds on the natural frequencies and mode shapes for L = 60 mm. In the two fold case, “S” corresponds to symmetrical folding, α1 = α2, and “AS” to antisymmetrical folding, α1 = −α2.



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