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SBIR Phase I:Electro-active Polymer-based Energy Harvesting

Award Information

Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch:
N/A
Award ID:
99091
Program Year/Program:
2010 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
1013869
Solicitation Year:
N/A
Solicitation Topic Code:
3Fi
Solicitation Number:
N/A
Small Business Information
KCF Technologies, Inc
336 South Fraser Street State College, PA -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
 
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2010
Title: SBIR Phase I:Electro-active Polymer-based Energy Harvesting
Agency: NSF
Contract: 1013869
Award Amount: $149,250.00
 

Abstract:

This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project seeks to demonstrate an electro-active polymer-based energy harvesting system to power portable electronics and remote devices. As portable wireless electronics and wireless sensors become ubiquitous, their power sources (batteries) continue to be the limiting factor in their dependability. The ability to harvest enough energy from the motion of a typical portable device to power it has been elusive. Prior efforts have been insufficient primarily due to inefficient energy transfer. Start-of-the-art electro-active polymers (EAPs) and innovative mechanical and electrical impedance matching designs will be used to develop an energy harvesting system with harvested energy density well above standard EAPs. Inefficiencies result from three aspects of the energy harvesting system, mechanical impedance mismatch, electrical impedance mismatch, and inefficient electromechanical conversion material properties. The proposed effort addresses all three of these aspects with a novel electro-active polymer-based energy harvesting system. The system combines recently developed electro-active polymer materials with novel electronic design to maximize the energy transfer from mechanical motion into stored electrical energy. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is based on leveraging the unique opportunity for energy harvesting from electro-active polymers developed during the past decade. Heretofore, the potential created by the prior investments into electro-active polymer material development have been unrealized. This project is designed to enhance the understanding of these materials in useful market applications. Two target applications have been chosen based on their potential market size, broad impact, and ability to demonstrate the full capability the electro-active polymer energy harvesting ? 1) button activation on a handheld device and 2) walking motion in the ankle. The button activation is chosen for the large impact it will have in the handheld electronics consumer market. The walking motion application is chosen to demonstrate how an EAP harvesting system can be fully integrated into the functionality of a structure, in this case a prosthetic foot for amputees. Button-push harvesters delivered to consumer electronics OEMs is expected to have a total available market of $100M annually. The walking energy harvesters for prosthetics and portable electronics are expected to have a total available market of $10M annually.

Principal Investigator:

Michael D. Grissom
PhD
8148674097
mgrissom@kcftech.com

Business Contact:

Michael D. Grissom
PhD
8148674097
mgrissom@kcftech.com
Small Business Information at Submission:

KCF Technologies
112 W. Foster Ave. State College, PA 16801

EIN/Tax ID: 251879000
DUNS: N/A
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No