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Design and optimisation of a footfall energy harvesting system

Gilbert, James M.; Balouchi, Farouk


Farouk Balouchi


The scavenging of electrical energy from normal human activity has a number of attractions, and footfall energy is seen as one of the most attractive sources. However, footfall motion is characterised by relatively large forces and low velocities, and this makes it inherently poorly matched to electromagnetic generators which operate most efficiently at high speeds. In order to achieve an efficient velocity amplification, a novel mechanism has been developed which makes use of a spring and flywheel as energy storage elements and a ‘striker’ mechanism which controls energy storage and release. This energy harvesting mechanism is capable of being used either in footwear or under a floor. In this article, the structure of the proposed mechanism is described; the optimisation of the system parameters, based on a dynamic model, is discussed; and experimental results for an under-floor system are presented.


Gilbert, J. M., & Balouchi, F. (2014). Design and optimisation of a footfall energy harvesting system. Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures, 25(14), 1746-1756.

Acceptance Date Jan 13, 2014
Online Publication Date Feb 25, 2014
Publication Date 2014-09
Deposit Date Feb 24, 2016
Publicly Available Date Feb 24, 2016
Journal Journal of intelligent material systems and structures
Print ISSN 1045-389X
Electronic ISSN 1530-8138
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 25
Issue 14
Pages 1746-1756
Keywords Mechanical Engineering; General Materials Science
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the author's accepted manuscript of an article published in Journal of intelligent material systems and structures, 2014, v.25 issue 14.


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