MetaVEH will revolutionise sensor applications

Tuesday, 1 December, 2020
Vector visualisation of Industry 4.0
A new Pathfinder project focuses on harvesting as the power source for remotely located sensors and smart structures.

The MetaVEH project follows the trend of sustainable development and tackles the issue of renewable energy sources. It wants to develop and realise innovative lead-free electromechanical energy harvesting systems, which will potentially allow eliminating batteries and human intervention, whilst simultaneously reducing, or eliminating, chemical waste. Such new systems, based on vibration energy harvesting, could increase the efficiency of remote and real time monitoring of vulnerable environment.

The mechanical core of the harvester will be based on advanced multiresonator designs, pioneered by members of the team (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, Multiwave Technologies, Polytechnic University of Milan, Assimilate and STMicroelectronics). This technology will dramatically increase the energy available for harvesting, and the operational bandwidth, as compared with the current state of the art, as the researchers specified in the project proposal:

“The basic idea is to enhance the performance of lead-free piezoelectric energy scavengers by exploiting, in unprecedented manner, a multi-scale energy manipulation through the application of mechanical metamaterials. This is highly interdisciplinary drawing upon simulation and modelling, from physicists and mathematicians, design and proof-of-concept fabrication, by theoreticians and engineers, and then feeding through into commercialisation.”

The research will combine numerical simulations, mathematical modelling, advanced manufacturing and scale experimentation, in order to contain all the multidisciplinary aspects of the topic involving various knowledge of mathematics, physics or engineering.

The outcomes of the project, which starts in January 2021 and runs for 48 months, can find their applications in emerging technologies such as wearable technology and IoT (Internet of Things) devices based on fully autonomous wireless sensors.


Background information

FET-Open and FET Proactive are now part of the Enhanced European Innovation Council (EIC) Pilot (specifically the Pathfinder), the new home for deep-tech research and innovation in Horizon 2020, the EU funding programme for research and innovation.