A new rubber film-like flexible material from Ricoh has the ability to create electricity as it deforms.
To me, it kind of looks like a fruit roll-up, but that couldn’t be any farther from the truth, as this material is more flexible than its polymer-based stablemates, with the ability to produce as much electricity as ceramic piezoelectrics.
Unfortunately, Ricoh is keeping many of the details about the new rubber film material under wraps, but the company did say it used molecular-level analysis “using leading computational chemistry” to create the material.
In addition, Ricoh claims the material is easy to manufacture, “because it is soft, and does not require a high-temperature process like ceramics.”
Ricoh is working on commercializing the product, which could have many applications in the real world such as coating objects that move more often than not, allowing the rubber film to harness power from motion.