Wind-Driven Leaf-Like Thin-Film Piezoelectric Harvester for Low Wind Applications



Piezoelectric thin film power generators are one of the future scopes of alternative energy-harvesting sources. In this paper, a wind-driven thin film piezoelectric energy harvester is explored and reported for both parallel and reticulate venation as well as for without venation.


The proposed harvester consists of a triangular-shaped cantilever, triangular leaf-like piezoelectric microthin film (PEMF) and a cantilever. The free end of the cantilever is fixed to the PEMF which is capable of harvesting wind energy by vibration. The leaf-like PEMF structure is 122 μm thick, made up of polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) coated with silver ink electrode on either side. In this work, the influence of wind velocity, vein structure and cantilever length on overall performance of the system is investigated experimentally.


It is seen that under favorable conditions, leaf with reticulate venation showed more than 10% increase in voltage output than in parallel venation. It is found that an increase in cantilever length leads to a substantial increase in voltage output by promoting early onset of flutter. At a velocity of 10 m/s, a maximum open circuit voltage of 1.90 V and power output of 1.2 μW are obtained for L/Lb=1 for reticulate venation PEMF leaf.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8
Fig. 9
Fig. 10
Fig. 11
Fig. 12
Fig. 13
Fig. 14
Fig. 15


  1. 1.

    Jung HJ, Song Y, Hong SK, HoYang CH, Hwang SJ, Jeong SY (2015) Design and optimization of piezoelectric impact-based micro wind energy harvester for wireless sensor network. Sens Actuators A Phys 222:314–321.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Junlei W, Shengxi Z, Zhang Z, Daniil Y (2019) High-performance piezoelectric wind energy harvester with Y-shaped attachments. Energy Convers Manag 181:645–652.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. 3.

    Li Y, Wang Q, Wang H, Tian J, Cu H (2019) Novel Ag2O nanoparticles modified MoS2 nanoflowers for piezoelectric-assisted full solar spectrum photocatalysis. J Colloid Interface Sci 537:206–214.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. 4.

    Montgomery DS, Hewitt CA, Carroll DL (2016) Hybrid thermoelectric piezoelectric generator. Appl Phys Lett 108:263901.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. 5.

    Zhao J, Zheng X, Zhou L, Zhang Y, Sun J, Dong W, Deng S, Peng S (2012) Investigation of a d 15 mode PZT-51 piezoelectric energy harvester with a series connection structure. Smart Mater Struct 21:8.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. 6.

    Yoo R, Ahn CW, Cho KH (2018) 15 Mode piezoelectric composite and its application in a magnetoelectric laminate structure. J Alloys Compd 767:61–67.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Abdelkefi A, Haji MR, Nayfeh AH (2012) Power harvesting from transverse galloping of square cylinder. Nonlinear Dyn 70:1355–1363.

    MathSciNet  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    Parkinson G (1989) Phenomena and modelling of flow-induced vibrations of bluff bodies. Prog Aerosp Sci 26:169–224.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. 9.

    Li S, Lipson H (2009) Vertical-stalk flapping-leaf generator for wind energy harvesting. In: Proceedings of the ASME 2009 conference on smart materials, adaptive structures and intelligent systems

  10. 10.

    Kluger JM, Moona FC, Rand RH (2013) Shape optimization of a blunt body vibro-wind galloping oscillator. J Fluid Struct 40:185–200.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Varadha E, Rajakumar S (2018) Performance improvement of piezoelectric materials in energy harvesting in recent days—a review. J Vibroeng 7:2632–2650.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Oh SJ, Han HJ, Han SB, Lee JY, Chun WG (2010) Development of a tree-shaped wind power system using piezoelectric materials. Int J Energy Res 34:431–437.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. 13.

    Zhang J, Fang Z, Shu C, Zhang J, Zhang Q, Li C (2017) A rotational piezoelectric energy harvester for efficient wind energy harvesting. Sens Actuators A 262:123–129.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Jung HJ, Song Y, Hong SK, Yang CH, Hwang SJ, Sung TH (2014) Increasing the durability of piezoelectric impact-based micro wind generator in real application. Proc Eng 87:1210–1213

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Taufik T, Thornton J, Dolan D (2012) Piezoelectric converter for wind energy harvesting. In: 2012 Ninth international conference on information technology—new generations.

  16. 16.

    Chao CY, Min G, Wei-bo YU, Lei Z (2013) Modeling and simulation of triangle cantilever piezoelectric vibrator. Appl Mech Mater 347:1616–1620

    Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Magal C, Scholler M, Tautz J, Cases J (2000) The role of leaf structure in vibration propagation. J Acoust Soc Am 108:2412–2418.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    Tadrist L, Julio K, Saudreau M, Langre ED (2015) Leaf flutter by torsional galloping: experiments and model. J Fluids Struct 56:1–10.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Hoffman JA, Wertheimer T (2000) Cantilever beam vibrations. J Sound Vib 229:1269–1276.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Corson F, Adda-Bedia M, Boudaoud A (2009) In silico leaf venation networks: growth and reorganization driven by mechanical forces. J Theor Biol 259:440–448.

    MathSciNet  Article  MATH  Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Niklas KJ (2002) A mechanical perspective on foliage leaf form and function. New Phytol 143:19–31.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Price CA, Wing S, Weitz JS (2012) Scaling and structure of dicotyledonous leaf venation networks. Ecol Lett 15:87–95.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    Li M, Kang J (2018) Plant species selection based on leaf vibration experiments. In: IOP Conference series: materials science and engineering, vol 371, pp 012038.

  24. 24.

    Larese MG, Namias R, Craviotto RM, Arango MR, Gallo C, Granitto PM (2014) Automatic classification of legumes using leaf vein image features. Pattern Recognit 47:158–168

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Frank G, Woias P (2008) Characterization of different beam shapes for piezoelectric energy harvesting. J Micromech Microeng 18:104013.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Enrico L, Díaz S, Westoby M, Rice BL (2016) Leaf mechanical resistance in plant trait databases: comparing the results of two common measurement methods. Ann Bot 117:209–214.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. 27.

    Wang X, Dong J, Zhang P, Feng Y (2010) Study on galloping critical wind velocity of high-rise structure. In: International conference of logistics engineering and management (ICLEM).

  28. 28.

    Wang X, Dong J, Zhang P, Feng Y (2010) Study on galloping critical wind velocity of high-rise structure. In: International conference of logistics engineering and management (ICLEM)

  29. 29.

    An X, Song B, Tian W, Ma C (2018) Design and CFD simulations of a vortex-induced piezoelectric energy converter (VIPEC) for underwater environment. Energies 11:330.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Portoles JF, Cumpson PJ, Hedley J, Allen S, Williams PM, Tendler SJB (2006) Accurate velocity measurements of AFM-cantilever vibrations by Doppler Interferometry. J Exp Nanosci 1:51–62.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. 31.

    Zhou Z, Qin W, Zhu P, Shang S (2018) Scavenging wind energy by a Y-shaped bi-stable energy harvester with curved wings. Energy 153:400–412.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. 32.

    Li T, Chen YH, Ma J (2007) Frequency dependence of piezoelectric vibration velocity. Sens Actuators A 138:404–410.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. 33.

    Bahrami MN, Arani MK, Saleh NR (2011) Modified wave approach for calculation of natural frequencies and mode shapes in arbitrary non-uniform beams. Scientia Iranica 18:1088–1094.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  34. 34.

    Felix E, Gang W, Brian C (2014) Experimental investigation of galloping piezoelectric energy harvesters with square bluff bodies. Smart Mater Struct 23:104012.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. 35.

    Wang J, Zhaeo G, Zhang M, Zhang Z (2018) Efficient study of a coarse structure number on the bluff body during the harvesting of wind energy. Energy Sources Part A Recovery Util Environ Effects 40:1788–1797.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. 36.

    Sanchitha F, Michael A, Jason C (2007) Improved cantilever profiles for sensor elements. J Phys D Appl Phys 40:7652–7655.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. 37.

    Wang W, He X, Wang X, Wang M, Xue K (2018) Bioinspired structure modification of piezoelectric wind energy harvester based on the prototype of leaf veins. Sens Actuators A.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. 38.

    Wang J, Geng L, Ding L, Zhu H, Yurchenko D (2020) The state-of-the-art review on energy harvesting from flow-induced vibrations. Appl Energy 267:114902.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references


This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to E. Varadha.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Varadha, E., Kumar, S.R. & Jain, X.S.A. Wind-Driven Leaf-Like Thin-Film Piezoelectric Harvester for Low Wind Applications. J. Vib. Eng. Technol. (2021).

Download citation


  • Cantilever
  • Harvester
  • PEMF leaf
  • Venation
  • Vibration
  • Wind velocity