It is called Piezoskin and is activated by a breath of wind ten times less intense than necessary for a wind turbine, for later use in non-traditional environments.
The invention is the result of advanced nanotechnology and will arrive on the market through Piezoskin, a start-up founded in Lecce as a spin off of the Center for Biomolecular Nanotechnologies (CBN) of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT). The device has the shape of a flexible carpet composed of piezoelectric micro leaflets, each of which can generate electricity.
As explained in the start-up, the product can be used in galleries, tunnels and subways: virtually any environment in which there is an even modest flow of air. It could be applied on the walls of civilian homes, on rooftops, but also on street lamps and public gardens.
Piezoelectricity is a physical phenomenon that is also exploited to cause the spark in cigarette lighters, and in this application, currently waiting for the international patent, could contribute to the generation of considerable amounts of energy going towards energy self-sufficiency and environmental sustainability, with no CO2 emissions anymore.