Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology have put together an electromagnetic generator and nanogenerator to “catch” a very wide range of frequencies.
The operation of the two generators is very different: the traditional electromagnetic one produces energy with regular amplitude and high frequency waves: the wave linear motion is converted into rotary motion that is imparted to the permanent magnet rotor. When, on the other hand, the frequency is lower and the rotation speed is slower, the nanogenerator comes into operation, producing energy from the rubbing of different materials.
To give two examples, the first generator might look like the dynamo we can find on our bike, while the nanogeneratoris the high-tech version of the “magic” we did as children, when we rubbed a disposable pen on the sleeve of our wool sweater, electrically charging it (to capture small pieces of paper, as a “magnet”). When they are combined together, the two types of generators operate with a wide range of frequencies for both oscillation and rotation allowing the hybrid device to collect almost any wave, current or tide, and turn it into clean energy.