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Low battery: finding alternative ways to power medical devices

May 21, 2019   |

"More than half of patients with pacemakers require a replacement procedure and between 11% and 16% need multiple replacements," writes

"Researchers from Dartmouth, in collaboration with clinicians at the University of Texas in San Antonio, have created 'devices [which] will be self-charged by the energy harvested directly from the human body,' as explained by study lead and Dartmouth professor of engineering John Zhang.

"This approach 'could significantly extend the lifetime of implantable medical devices' in the words of Dartmouth research association and first author of the study Lin Dong.

"As well as 'remove the requirement for surgeries just to replace the battery,' which both 'creates medical complications…and additional healthcare expenses,' according to Zhang.

"Zhang continues: 'We developed a new design for energy harvesting that can be miniaturised and integrated within existing pacemakers. It uses dual-cantilever structured thin films made of piezoelectric materials for effective conversion of kinetic energy into electrical energy.'"

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