Scientists Working on Galt’s Motor – Harnessing Electromagnetic Energy From The Air

July 11th, 2011

Tell me this headline doesn’t make you feel all Randy and tingly: Georgia Tech engineers pull energy out of atmospheric hat, go on electromagnetic scavenger hunt.

And, this “energy scavenging tech” is exactly what you think it is:

Spearheaded by Georgia Institute of Technology’s professor Manos Tentzeris and his engineering team, this ambient energy scavenging tech harnesses electromagnetic frequencies in the 100MHz – 15GHz range — anything from your FM car radio to radar — and converts it into a useable DC power source. So, it’s free energy — kind of.

The technology is still in its early stages of development, but the possibilities are impressive.

From the press release:

Researchers have discovered a way to capture and harness energy transmitted by such sources as radio and television transmitters, cell phone networks and satellite communications systems. By scavenging this ambient energy from the air around us, the technique could provide a new way to power networks of wireless sensors, microprocessors and communications chips.

“There is a large amount of electromagnetic energy all around us, but nobody has been able to tap into it,” said Manos Tentzeris, a professor in the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering who is leading the research. “We are using an ultra-wideband antenna that lets us exploit a variety of signals in different frequency ranges, giving us greatly increased power-gathering capability.”

I haven’t said it in a while, so here it goes–Who is John Galt?