Now, a yarn called "Twistron" can generate electricity by itself. It’s research and development is from an international research team led by scientists at The University of Texas at Dallas and Hanyang University in South Korea. The research was published in the Aug. 25 issue of the journal Science.
"Twistron" is essentially spun from a lot of carbon nanotubes, single carbon nanotubes are hollow cylinders with a diameter of 10,000 times smaller than a human hair. To make the yarns highly elastic, the researchers introduced so much twist that the yarns coiled like an over-twisted rubber band.
In order to generate electricity, in addition to its own unique structure, "Twistron" must be either submerged in or coated with an ionically conducting material, or electrolyte. Subsequently, the ions in these electrolytes are automatically inserted into the yarn. When "Twistron" is twisted or stretched, the electric charges on the yarn get closer and increasing their voltage to generate electricity.
Experiments in the east coast of South Korea show Twistron's application potential. The researchers attached a 10 centimeter-long yarn (only 1 milligram), between a balloon and a sinker that rested on the seabed. When an ocean wave arrived, the balloon would rise, stretching the yarn up to 25 percent
Baughman believes that “Twistron” can gain huge amounts of energy from the waves. He Said that just 31 milligrams of “Twistron” could provide the electrical energy to transmit a 2-kilobyte packet of data over a 100-meter radius every 10 seconds based on demonstrated average power output. But to be put into use, “Twistron” cost still need to be reduced .