Since the discovery of electricity, many inventions and theories were developed and have been developing in order to put electrical phenomena to practical use. Through the course of years, man has learned to harness the forces of Nature and convert them into useful forms of energy. Examples of such ingenuity are the hydroelectric power plants, which uses the power of falling water; the geothermal plants, which harnesses the energy in the Earth’s interior; the wind mills and wind farms, which since of old have been in use even before electrical phenomena was discovered.
Recent advancements in the fields of science and technology has made it possible for us gather energy in many other different ways, from huge suns to infintesimal atoms. Due to its efficiency and portability, electricity is the preferred method of energy transmission. It is readily convertible to other forms of energy, and with minimal energy losses. In the past, most electrical appliances in use were large devices.
Only a few can be carried and used by man in daily activities, and most of them powered by batteries. Only lately we can see the development of smaller devices, and with the advent of nanotechnology, the creation of more portable devices has been greatly accelerated. However, since the invention of the alternating current, most of the electrical energy we can use now are produced in power plants, making the reliance of portable devices to external or outlet power often impractical.
Batteries, which have been present for some time, are portable, but not cost-effective and often short-lived. The need arises for more portable and lasting sources of energy. Many researches are already making progress in achieving this aim, and one of which is the challenge of converting human energy as a readily available source of electricity. With the aim of converting human kinesis and heat to usable forms of energy, many technologies and phenomena are being considered.
Among the most promising springboards Human Energy 3 are piezoelectricity, thermoelectric effect, and electromagnetic induction. Piezoelectricity (electricity produced by mechnanical pressure from certain crystals) and electromagnetic induction (electricity produced from a rotating magnetic field) can be applied in order to harness wasted energy from human motion, while thermoelectricity (electricity produced from difference in heat from two metals) for drawing energy from body heat (Wordnet, 2008).
These could lead to more efficient miniature devices such as watches, mobile phones and music players, and a considerable reduction in power consumption, in personal, commercial, national or even military activities. Human Energy 4 Conclusion The world’s demand for more portable and efficient technologies has lead researchers and scientists to look for more portable sources of power to sustain these technologies.
Several methods are under research, among them are the miniature dynamos, piezoelectric devices, and thermoelectric devices. Dynamos provide the greatest amount of power among the three. However due to its heavy weight caused by the magnet and armature windings, it is often not portable and applicable in most situations. Both piezoelectric and thermoelectric devices, however, could be employed in almost all human activities because unlike induction motors, they do not require magnets, making them relatively lighter.
On the other hand, dynamos could be connected to devices requiring strenous or continuous physical work, making it ideal for treadmills and other exercise machines, and capable of producing electrical energy enough to power a few small appliances within a house or small commercial facility, thereby saving energy. Human Energy
Electromagnetic Induction. (2008). Dictionary. com. May 1, 2008 from http://dictionary. reference. com Piezoelectricity. (2008). Dictionary. com. Retrieved May 1, 2008 from http://dictionary. reference. com Thermoelectricity. (2008). Dictionary. com. Retrieved May 1, 2008 from