A team of students led by Harus Laksana Guntur, an engineering lecturer at the Sepuluh Nopember Institute of Technology (ITS) in East Java capital Surabaya have developed a mobile kinetic energy charger that can charge your cellphone every time you move. Unlike a battery or solar charger, this new cellphone charger uses the user’s energy to reload mobile phones.
The charger can be clipped onto a belt and convert motion into electric energy. It comes packed in a clear fiberglass box, having the main components a dynamo (a magnet built into a coil). The system generates an induction current that before being transferred to the mobile phone is stored in a built-in battery. The producers hope that the prototype can be used by the military to recharge their equipment on the move.
“Actually, the electricity generated by the coil can directly power the cellphone. Unfortunately, the current is unstable and tends to make the phone hang. The mobile charger is simply a prototype and in the future, we would like to collaborate with the military to develop chargers for their communication devices.” said Muhammad Rudy Hermanto, the ITS student who invented the charger.
According to the researchers, kinetic chargers have the potential to generate up to 150 watts of power by harvesting the body movements, energy that can be used to power about 70 smartphones or run a computer. During tests, where the user was walking at about four kilometers per hour, the prototype charger was able to completely recharge a cellphone in just five minutes. Meanwhile, the ITS team is looking for a sponsor to help their development.