Smart Street Lights using Piezoelectric Materials

Title Smart Street Lights using Piezoelectric Materials
Authors Karima Haque, Nidhee Mahmudur Rahman Khan, Narisha Nowreen
Semester Fall, 2015

In a country where power consumption is a serious issue and there is a constant pressure, we propose the usage of piezoelectric transducers for generation of electricity for street lighting. These piezoelectric materials are plates made of ceramic materials that, when bent, produce voltage. Piezoelectric harvesters are now popular due to the piezoelectricity produced by the materials, which can supply upto 10–100’s of W of available power. The PEs are placed in series to obtain maximum voltage output. In our design, the piezoelectric transducers are to be spread evenly across and beneath the road so they can be compressed when a vehicle passes on top of them, just inducing voltage in the process.

s1g1p1The circuit is set up such that it will charge during the entire time that the piezoelectric transducers are being struck from above. As the street lights are required only after the sun sets and before the sun rises, the circuitry will be made to perform according to these timings. A relay is placed between the circuit and the Arduino Uno board used, which contains a program listed with all the consecutive times of daybreak and day end of any given year. So, the supercapacitors will charge during the daytime mostly and use the stored energy to power up energy saving lights in the streets.

s1g1p2The system is built to be self-sustaining, robust, modular and long lasting, requiring minimal management issues once it has been set up. Granted, the layout of the system will cost in terms of manpower and a high amount of investment, since roads will be needed to build from scratch and the existing lights will need to be replaced as well. But, in the long run, this might prove to be very useful and productive since there is minimal upkeep regarding the system.

As we are tapping into virtually the lost energy from mundane activities, ultimately, we expect the system to pay off regarding its’ well performing features.