Self-powered cyborg bugs

  • Illustration by Steve Scott
Date:27 April 2012 Tags:, ,

Insects guided by remote control have been around for a few years (see Tech Watch, July 2009). But they continue to have the same problem as many tech gadgets: short battery life. University of Michigan engineers propose to fix this by gleaning energy from the insects themselves. The researchers attached piezoelectric harvesters to generate power from the wing movements of green June beetles. Other power-generation methods could include thermoelectric devices to tap body heat and solar cells. The electricity would run cameras, mics and gas detectors, making cyborg insects ideal first responders in cramped, hazardous situations. – Alex Hutchinson



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