US scientists have found a new way to generate energy at home: the tribo-electric floor. Tread on it and it will convert the kinetic energy of a footstep into a current of electricity. And it’s made from the waste wood pulp that already serves as cheap flooring throughout the world. Xudong Wang, an engineer and materials scientist, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and colleagues report in the journal Nano Energy that they have taken cellulose fibres from forest waste material and chemically treated them in a way that creates an electric charge when they come into contact with untreated wood pulp fibres. The result: a patented, tribo-electric nanogenerator floor covering that can harness the energy of any footfall, and turn it into electric current that could light up a room or charge a battery.
Climate News Network 29th Oct 2016 read more »