This Device Can Power a Pacemaker With Heartbeats
Estimated reading time: 4 minute(s)
Pacemakers and other electronic implants can be quite difficult to keep running, patients need surgery to replace batteries. And so far body-powered generators aren’t strong enough to charge these kinds of devices.
American and Chinese researchers have developed a device that could charge an implant all by itself. The prototype machine generates electricity through the movement of nanoribbons that are small enough to be sewn into an organs surface and are efficient enough to power a pacemaker through heartbeats. The device could also be attached to a diaphragm or lung.
The device itself consists of a piezoelectric power plant strip made from lead zirconate titanate nanoribbons, housed in biocompatible plastic.
It’s able to transform kinetic energy into electricity, which is then stored in a miniature rechargeable battery. Several units can be attached to the same organ and combined to boost their power output.
It’s still far from being used. They still need to ensure that the devices are able to survive inside the body for as long as would be needed. Also there are some minor kinks to works, like the fact that it uses lead.