Sweat could power new gadgets
A new generation of wearable devices could be powered by human sweat instead of conventional batteries, scientists have said.
Engineers at the University of Glasgow have developed a new type of flexible supercapacitor, which stores energy, replacing the electrolytes found in conventional batteries with sweat. It can be fully charged with as little as 20 microlitres of fluid and is robust enough to survive 4,000 cycles of the types of flexes and bends it might encounter in use. The researchers tested their technology by having volunteers run while wearing a 2cm by 2cm cell version of the device.
The research was led by Professor Ravinder Dahiya, based at the University of Glasgow’s
James Watt School of Engineering.
He said: “Conventional batteries are cheaper and more plentiful than ever before but they are often built using unsustainable materials which are harmful to the environment. What we’ve been able to do for the first time is show that human sweat provides a real opportunity to do away with those toxic materials entirely.”