A Comprehensive Study of the Electromagnetic Energy Harvesting Technology from Roadways Systems
Energy harvesting technology in roadway infrastructure has attracted significant attention recently due to its capacity to generate sustainable low power. According to the review paper, the latest work failed to include an electromagnetic approach, which is believed to be one of the most promising energy technologies for roadways. Thus, in this study, different mechanisms of electromagnetic energy harvesting technology were explored. Four mechanisms were developed and examined: the rack-pinion mechanism, linear generator (stator-translator) mechanism, rotational mechanism, and cantilever mechanism. All of these mechanisms function on principles based on Faraday's law. The Maxwell–Faraday equation, the general form of Faraday's law, states that a time-varying magnetic field will always accompany a spatially electric field, and vice versa. Some prototypes were designed and fabricated based on these four mechanisms. The performances of these prototypes in generating electrical power were examined through laboratory and in-field tests. The results showed promise for using each of these electromagnetic energy harvesting mechanisms, but the power output of the mechanisms varied in scale. The maximum power output for the rack-pinion, linear generator, rotational, and cantilever mechanisms in laboratory tests were approximately 16 W, 80 mW, 90 mW, and 1.1 W, respectively. The maximum power output for the rack-pinion mechanism in-field tests was 6.7 W. The ease of installation and the limited negative effects on a roadway's performance make electromagnetic technology an ideal candidate for energy harvesting in roadways. However, it must be noted that the technology is in its beginning stage, and it must be developed in all phases.