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Effects of Geometric and Material Properties on Electrical Power Harvested From a Bimorph Piezoelectric Cantilever Beam

[+] Author Affiliations
Nataraj Chandrasekharan, Jaehyung Ju, Lonny Thompson

Clemson University, Clemson, SC

Paper No. DETC2011-48003, pp. 273-282; 10 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 1: 23rd Biennial Conference on Mechanical Vibration and Noise, Parts A and B
  • Washington, DC, USA, August 28–31, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5478-5
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


In this paper, a three-dimensional finite element (FE) model is developed to design a vibrating bimorph piezoelectric cantilever beam for energy harvesting. A parametric study of electric power generated as a function of the dielectric constant, transverse piezoelectric strain constant, length and thickness of the piezoelectric material, is conducted for a time-harmonic surface pressure load. The reference piezoelectric material used in the design is Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT-5H). Complete transversely isotropic elastic and piezoelectric properties are assigned to the bimorph layers with brass chosen as the substrate material in the three-dimensional finite element model. The numerical analysis shows that a uniform decrease in thickness and length coverage of the piezoelectric layers results in a nonlinear reduction in power amplitude, which suggests optimal values. Using design of experiments (DOE), a study was conducted to determine the sensitivity of power with respect to the geometric and material variables.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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