Energy Harvesters markets at $131.4 million in 2012 are projected to increase to $4.2 billion in 2019. Growth is anticipated to be based on demand for micro power generation that can be used to charge thin film batteries. Systems provide clean energy that is good for the environment. Growth is based on global demand for sensors and wireless sensor networks that permit control of systems.
A new study Energy Harvesting Market Shares, Strategy, and Forecasts, Worldwide, 2013 to 2019. The 2013 study has 597 pages, 288 tables and figures. Worldwide markets are poised to achieve significant growth as the Energy Harvesting is used inside telemedicine systems and m-health initiatives as a way to implement ruggedized handset communications for all clinicians.
Advanced storage devices are emerging simultaneously. Storage devices can leverage the power captured by energy harvesting devices. Energy storage technologies of super-capacitors and thin-film batteries have become cost-effective. Energy harvesting devices have attained workable levels of efficiency. There are significant cost reductions. Many applications are related to smarter computing that depends on sensors capturing change in conditions and making adjustments to the environment based on measured change.
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Existing energy harvesting and storage applications include vibration-based wireless train measuring systems, wireless sensors distributed city wide to implement smart cities, oil field monitoring systems, windup laptops for use in remote regions, and wireless light switches for use in smart buildings. Wireless sensors are self-powering. They can be used to alert and monitor a range of environments and incidents, pollution and forest fires, robberies in a city, temperature in a building, and movement around a border fence.
Energy harvesting technologies include electrodynamics, photovoltaics, piezoelectrics, and thermovoltaics. Photovoltaic systems for solar energy are evolving at a slower pace. The energy harvesting and energy storage market factors implement light harvesting for small devices
Technological developments in the fields of low-power electronics and energy storage systems have allowed energy harvesting to become an increasingly viable technology. It is alternatively referred to as energy scavenging and power harvesting. Energy harvesting technology has become sophisticated and efficient.
According to Susan Eustis, the lead author of the team that created the study, “Converting ambient energy to useable electrical energy harvesting (EH) systems is a useful and compelling technology. The technologies offer an inexpensive and compact way to power portable electrical devices initially and to create stores of power in the long term.”
Electronics tends to rely heavily on batteries. EH technology powers an increasing number of consumer and industrial products that are untethered or need to become disconnected from electrical outlets. As initial projects succeed and prove their worth, the technology is set to proliferate.
At some point energy harvester markets will shift from simple growth to rapid growth measured as a penetration analysis. This will happen as markets move beyond the early adopter stage. Eventually energy harvesters will be used as fuel to power batteries for electronic devices and smart phones. The energy is manufactured from vibration and thermal differentiation that is ambient in the environment. Energy harvesters have become more feasible as the technology evolves.