Research in the field of harvesting energy from vibration has interested many researchers in the preceding years, principally by the fast improvement in the field of wireless equipment and low consumption electronic devices. One of the approaches for transforming vibration energy from mechanical sources to electricity is the application of piezoelectric substances, functioning in different boundary conditions in bending modes, producing a voltage across the electrodes while they are under stress. This research presents modeling and finite element analysis of THUNDER (THin layer UNimorph DrivER), a specific type of PZT piezoelectric curved energy generator produced by Langley Research Center which shows large power generation features when utilized as an energy generator and large displacement when it is used as an actuator. Moreover, it has a low resonance frequency enabling THUNDER to gain its maximum power generation in low frequencies. THUNDER unimorph structure consists of five layers: a substrate layer of stainless steel, a PZT piezoelectric layer, a thin aluminum electrode layer in the top and two layers of adhesive material. This work utilized finite element method using ANSYS Mechanical APDL software to model THUNDER structure and implemented an electric circuit element to generate resistance load for increasing the power generation efficiency and investigated energy harvesting characteristics of THUNDER under sinusoidal mechanical loading. Simulation of piezoelectric effect of PZT layer was performed using SOLID226 coupled field 20 nodes brick elements. Moreover, for the structural layers and resistance loads SOLID186 brick 20 nodes and CIRCU94 elements were utilized, respectively. Modal analysis was conducted to obtain different order mode shapes and their corresponding natural frequencies to predict the appropriate frequency range for functioning as harvesters gain their maximum power generation at their resonance frequency. Furthermore, frequency responses for the electric potential and power generation were calculated and the effect of the electric resistance load parameter on energy harvesting efficiency was studied. Numerical results were compared with the experimental and analytical results of a similar study on THUNDER 7-R for verification and validation and they were in good agreement.
|Commitee:||Kweon, Soondo, Lotfi Yagin, Nima|
|School:||Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville|
|Department:||Mechanical and Industrial Engineering|
|School Location:||United States -- Illinois|
|Source:||MAI 57/02M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Engineering, Mechanical engineering, Energy|
|Keywords:||Dynamics, Performance, Piezoelectric|
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