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"Mooching" - Top 5 Places to Harvest Energy from Action

April 14, 2011View for printing

The unscientific term is "mooching." Scientists and engineers want to capture movement from cars, speeding trains, liquid in pipes and even a human heartbeat to generate power.

"The potential and the dream is there, but I think it's not an easy goal," said Chang Liu, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Northwestern University. "You have to do it without violating physics."

Energy-harvesting systems shouldn't require more energy than they can produce. And wearable devices can't be cumbersome, or they defeat the purpose. With these caveats in mind, here are five areas ripe for hangers-on.

Alyssa Danigelis

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