- To: domesteading at sculptors dot com
- Subject: Micro generator
- From: "J.M. Snow" <jsnow at asl dot fs dot uidaho dot edu>
- Date: Fri, 1 Feb 2002 09:59:53 PST8PDT
- Organization: University of Idaho
- Priority: normal
- Reply-to: jsnow at uidaho dot edu
There was an article in the local paper about a new generator that
has been developed at Wash. State University that is 2 mm square
and about 2 hairs thick. It's been dubbed the P3 (Palouse
Piezoelectric Power). The P3 uses "heat to create its own
electricity and lasts thousands of hours before it needs replacing."
It sounds like a real advancement with incredible possibilities. I
wasn't able to find much other info at first try but here is a part of
"A thousand engines combined into a generator about the size of a
sugar cube could power a laptop computer 10 times longer than
"The P3 uses heat to stimulate a vapor bubble, which is
surrounded by a layer of butane or diesel fuel, all contained in a
piezoelectric membrane. Piezoelectric refers to changing
mechanical energy into electrical energy.
In this case, the heat causes the membrane to vibrate, which puts
off an electric current of one thousandth of a watt. That is about
the same amount of power needed to run a Palm device or
Because the generator uses heat to create electricity, computers
or hot water heaters could run the P3 off the heat they create ...
The fuel has to be refilled, but the amount of butane contained in a
lighter could make a laptop computer run 10 to 20 hours."
"Each batch of engines takes about a week to make and is built in
a clean room ... In these early stages, each generator is built by
hand at WSU. When they're mass produced, consumers will be
able to combine different numbers of P3s to produce the power
"The device will likely be in use in two to three years."
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