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Current issue

ELEKTRO 7/2020 was released on June 24th 2020. Its digital version will be available on July 24th 2020.

Topic: Cables, conductors and cable engineering

Main Article
New traction power supply technology 25 kV/50 Hz (part 2)

SVĚTLO (Light) 3/2020 was released on June 8th 2020. Its digital version will be available on July 8th 2020.

Professional organizations activities
Announcement: LUMEN V4 2020 is cancelled
What is new in CIE, April 2020

Accessories of lighting installations
Foxtrot as a “Master Control” in Hotel Breukelen
Lighting regulators – control of lighting on the constant level

Energy-harvesting design aims to turn Wi-Fi signals into usable power

1. 4. 2020 | MIT | www.mit.edu

Any device that sends out a Wi-Fi signal also emits terahertz waves —electromagnetic waves with a frequency somewhere between microwaves and infrared light. These high-frequency radiation waves, known as “T-rays,” are also produced by almost anything that registers a temperature, including our own bodies and the inanimate objects around us.

Terahertz waves are pervasive in our daily lives, and if harnessed, their concentrated power could potentially serve as an alternate energy source. Imagine, for instance, a cellphone add-on that passively soaks up ambient T-rays and uses their energy to charge your phone. However, to date, terahertz waves are wasted energy, as there has been no practical way to capture and convert them into any usable form.

Energy harvesting from wifi signal

Now physicists at MIT have come up with a blueprint for a device they believe would be able to convert ambient terahertz waves into a direct current, a form of electricity that powers many household electronics. Their design takes advantage of the quantum mechanical, or atomic behavior of the carbon material graphene. They found that by combining graphene with another material, in this case, boron nitride, the electrons in graphene should skew their motion toward a common direction. Any incoming terahertz waves should “shuttle” graphene’s electrons, like so many tiny air traffic controllers, to flow through the material in a single direction, as a direct current.

Read more at MIT

Image Credit: José-Luis Olivares/MIT