Mechanical 16 - Piezo Mat

Student Team: Erica Merckling
Advisor: Duane Starner
Sponsoring Organization: KEEN - Gonzaga
Liaison: tbd

Note - This is the same project as EE & CPEN 3

Project Background:

The world has begun to take notice of the importance of sustainability and it is our responsibility to harness all the green energy possible. Electrical energy can be harnessed from vibration and movement. High activity areas, such as gyms and sports arenas, have large amounts of vibrational energy lost to the environment which could be harnessed for other purposes.

Project Goal:

The team will design and build a prototype of an energy harvesting treadmill. The harvesting may use piezoelectric chips or other generation technologies to produce electric power. A method for storing and/or conditioning the harvested energy for other uses will also be part of the project. Success for the project will measured primarily using the following objectives:
• Develop a business plan to bring the harvesting treadmill to the wider market.
• Explore multiple options for harvesting and conditioning of power.
• Build a proof of concept prototype and/or test best for the selected technologies.

Project Deliverables:

1. Project plan delineating milestones, deliverables, and working budget (first month).
2. Develop a “use model” for the harvesting treadmill. This model will be delineated in a report that describes how a typical user would apply the technology. The main thrust of this effort is to re-describe the treadmill from a technology point of view into a market point of view.
3. Report detailing potential harvesting and conditioning technologies (mid to late first semester). The report should compare strengths and weaknesses of each technology in technical specifications (such as efficiency, cost, etc.) so that a comparison can be drawn between them.
4. Feasibility proposal to DAB for most viable product.
5. Prototype documentation including schematics, 3D models, and other related documents needed to create a prototype.
6. Fabrication review of 3D models with GU shop machinist.
7. Working prototype and/or technology test bed. (Note: completing a full working prototype is a very optimistic scope of one academic year. A technology test bed (experimental prototype to characterize the functioning of involved technologies) may be better suited. The team should assess which route is more feasible by mid first semester.
8. Project summary report that includes the technical characterization of the prototype.

Project Management and Communication Expectations:

1. Schedule project from start to finish. Updated monthly.
2. Biweekly meetings with sponsor.
3. Status reports weekly.

Project Research:

1. Investigate latest research of piezoelectric chips and other generation technology.
2. Investigate methods for power conditioning and/or storage.
3. Materials research for greatest efficiency.

502 E. Boone Avenue
Spokane, WA 99258-0026
Phone: (509) 313-3523
Fax: (509) 313-5871

Dr. Stephen E. Silliman
Phone: (509) 313-3522