This iPhone case creates electricity from radio waves

Harvests energy from wasted radio frequencies

As we all know, smartphones go through the battery like nobody’s business. By the end of the day it’s ready for a recharge. But what if you could capture some of that expended energy and recharge the phone.

It’s not quite a perpetual engine, but this invention converts radio waves produce from the iPhone back into DC power. The case is produced by Nikola Labs (named after famous inventor Nikola Tesla) in partnership with Ohio State University, where the technology was originaly developed.

According to Nikola Labs’ co-founder Will Zell, around 97 per cent uses to send radio signals from the phone is wasted. But this could be recycled back into the phone.

The case has a harvesting antenna embedded in it and this captures the stray radio waves and converts this into DC power which goes straight back into the phone.

The case converts 90 per cent of the wasted energy back into the phone, extending its battery life by up to 30 per cent.

“It’s not a spectacular, in-your-face technology, but it is a technology that works. And it works passively and it gives you extra power that you need to get you from sun up to sun down,” Zell told delegates at the Tech Crunch Disrupt event.

The technology could also be extended into other devices, such as wearable technology, embedded sensors, medical devices and anything else that doesn’t require a lot of energy to function.

The firm hopes to bring the product to market within the year and is gearing up for a Kickstarter launch next month. It should cost around $99 for a case.


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