Case 12292

Energy Storage in Carbon Nanotube-Based Springs

Keywords:

Mechanical energy storage device, carbon nanotubes, mechanical deformation, MEMS

Applications:

Mechanical energy storage device, suitable to power an electronic device or a motor vehicle

Problem:

    Relatively low energy storage density of conventional mechanical deformation

Technology:

This invention utilizes the mechanical deformation of nanotubes or highly order assemblies of molecules as a means of storing energy. The deformation includes stretching, bending and twisting. The storage of macroscopically significant amounts of energy may be achieved by assembling a large number of nanotubes and deforming them in parallel. In one example of embodiment, the assembly of nanotubes is stressed by screws at both ends attached to a mechanical cam. To store energy, the cam is driven to rotate by connected piezoelectric blocks; and the reverse process releases the stored energy. The nanotubes can be made of carbon, boron, or nitrogen. The energy stored in such “super-strings” can be recovered for subsequent use either in the form of mechanical energy or in the form of electricity.

Advantages:
  • High energy storage density provided by nanotubes
  • Design and fabrication in the art of MEMS

Inventors:

Intellectual Property:

U.S. Patent Number 8,148,001, issued on April 3, 2012

Publications:

N/A

Last revised: April 29, 2013

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