An integrated design approach of piezoelectric vibration energy harvesters

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Due to its multidisciplinary nature, the power behavior of a piezoelectric vibration energy harvester depends on system properties in multiple domains such as material, mechanical and electrical. This paper presents a dimensionless maximum power equation that integrates these effects into a simple model, which serves as a convenience tool for the design and analysis of piezoelectric vibration energy harvesters. The model is given as a closed-form relationship between the dimensionless maximum power (maximum power normalized by the power limit) and the normalized electromechanical coupling coefficient with respect to the critical coupling coefficient, which is the minimum coupling to reach the power limit of a system. In addition, this integrated design equation can be applied to different energy harvesting interface circuit types such as resistive and standard AC-DC with a simple change of the critical coupling expression in the equation. The application of this equation is illustrated by a detailed design example of a bimorph beam harvester for fixed target natural frequency and length given a base motion excitation. It is found that under the same level of excitation, there is an optimal PZT thickness for maximum power. In addition, overall, it is beneficial to make the system of low damping to yield a larger structural response and more power. However, this also leads to a higher bending stress, which is an important design consideration due to the relatively brittle nature of PZT materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationActive and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems IX
EditorsJae-Hung Han, Gang Wang, Shima Shahab
ISBN (Electronic)9781510635296
StatePublished - 2020
EventActive and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems IX 2020 - None, United States
Duration: Apr 27 2020May 8 2020

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


ConferenceActive and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems IX 2020
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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