On the Effects of Structural Coupling on Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting Systems Subject to Random Base Excitation

HR Masoumi, H Moeenfard (Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran), H Haddad Khodaparast & MI Friswell (Swansea University)

Aerospace, Vol. 7, No. 7, July 2020, paper number 93


The current research investigates the novel approach of coupling separate energy harvesters in order to scavenge more power from a stochastic point of view. To this end, a multi-body system composed of two cantilever harvesters with two identical piezoelectric patches is considered. The beams are interconnected through a linear spring. Assuming a stochastic band limited white noise excitation of the base, the statistical properties of the mechanical response and those of the generated voltages are derived in closed form. Moreover, analytical models are derived for the expected value of the total harvested energy. In order to maximize the expected generated power, an optimization is performed to determine the optimum physical and geometrical characteristics of the system. It is observed that by properly tuning the harvester parameters, the energy harvesting performance of the structure is remarkably improved. Furthermore, used an optimized energy harvester model, it is shown that the coupling of the beams negatively affects the scavenged power, contrary to the effect previously demonstrated for harvesters under harmonic excitation. The qualitative and quantitative knowledge resulting from this analysis can be effectively employed for the realistic design and modelling of coupled multi-body structures under stochastic excitations.

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Link to paper using doi: 10.3390/aerospace7070093

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