Il lavoro di Eolo ha cominciato a dare i frutti fin da subito. SSSA - TeCIP ha pubblicato un articololo dal titolo "A New Class of Variable Capacitance Generators Based on the Dielectric Fluid Transducer" [Duranti M., Righi M, Veretchy R., Fontana M. - Smart Materials and Structures, 2017, 26 (11), 115014-17].


This paper introduces the novel concept of dielectric fluid transducer (DFT), which is an electrostatic variable capacitance transducer made by compliant electrodes, solid dielectrics and a dielectric fluid with variable volume and/or shape. The DFT can be employed in actuator mode and generator mode. In this work, DFTs are studied as electromechanical generators able to convert oscillating mechanical energy into direct current electricity. Beside illustrating the working principle of dielectric fluid generators (DFGs), we introduce different architectural implementations and provide considerations on limitations and best practices for their design. Additionally, the proposed concept is demonstrated in a preliminary experimental test campaign conducted on a first DFG prototype. During experimental tests a maximum energy per cycle of $4.6,mathrm{mJ}$ and maximum power of $0.575,mathrm{mW}$ has been converted, with a conversion efficiency up to 30%. These figures correspond to converted energy densities of $63.8,mathrm{mJ},{{rm{g}}}^{-1}$ with respect to the displaced dielectric fluid and $179.0,mathrm{mJ},{{rm{g}}}^{-1}$ with respect to the mass of the solid dielectric. This promising performance can be largely improved through the optimization of device topology and dimensions, as well as by the adoption of more performing conductive and dielectric materials.


"This research received funds from European Commission under the projects WETFEET (H2020 Program, Proj. No. 641334), PolyWEC (Fp7, Program, Proj. No. 309139), and from Tuscany Region (Italy) under the project EOLO (FAR FAS 2014-A). The authors would like to thank Dr Giacomo Moretti and Eng. Francesco Damiani for their technical support."