bossanovalithium writes "The idea is that the parts will make external power sources redundant — because they can convert energy from body heat, light and vibrations straight into electricity. Self powered electronics have already sporadically been used in technology like wall-mount remote control units for air conditioners, says Nikkei, but existing parts are bulky and cost a couple thousand yen a piece. 3,000 yen is about $35 — which means they're not the best bet, financially, yet.
Other bits and pieces where the self powered sensors could be used are boilers and, er, pacemakers. If something requires a battery that's difficult to change, the sensors would be ideal as they'll keep the pacemaker ticking instead of the user dropping dead because he's not a surgeon or there aren't enough AAA's in the house.
An umbrella consortium comprising such names as Panasonic and Toyota are workignon bringing the rpice of self powered parts down to levels where they can be mass produced."
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