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Technical Brief

Development of a Suspended Backpack for Harvesting Biomechanical Energy

[+] Author and Article Information
Longhan Xie, Mingjing Cai

School of Mechanical and Automotive Engineering,
South China University of Technology,
Guangzhou 510640, China

Contributed by the Design Automation Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received March 26, 2014; final manuscript received January 19, 2015; published online March 5, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Matthew B. Parkinson.

J. Mech. Des 137(5), 054503 (May 01, 2015) (3 pages) Paper No: MD-14-1198; doi: 10.1115/1.4029807 History: Received March 26, 2014; Revised January 19, 2015; Online March 05, 2015

In this study, a harvesting device embedded into a suspended backpack was developed to harness part of a human's biomechanical energy and reduce dynamic force of the backpack on the carrier. The harvester utilized a spring mass damping system to translate the human body's vertical movement during walking into the rotation of a gear train, which then drives rotary generators to produce electricity. A prototype was built to examine the theoretical study, which showed that the experimental tests agreed with the simulation. Compared with previous work, the harvester in this work had a 40% higher harvesting energy efficiency.

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References

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Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

(a) The harvesting device and (b) the harvester contained in a backpack

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Harvester prototype and experimental setup

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

(a) Average power output versus walking velocity for a constant external backpack load; and (b) average power output versus external backpack load at a constant walking velocity 5.6 km/hr

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