Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures, 2023 (SCI-Expanded)
© The Author(s) 2023.Recently, vibration energy harvesting devices have gained growing interests. One of the main requirements for them is a broad bandwidth owing to stochastic spectral characteristics of the general vibration sources. Among various approaches for wide bandwidth, curved-beam hinges are quite attractive due to their simple structures. Although there have been several reports on curved beams, a more detailed study is needed. The device under study is an electret-based one with balanced comb-drive configuration. The whole system is modeled by using nonlinear stochastic differential equations. The numerical analysis results show that there is an optimum curve height for maximum power output, which depends on various conditions, such as external vibration strength, comb-drive dimensions, and initial electret charges. At the external acceleration magnitude of 0.02g and 0.05g, the device with curved beams can produce up to 2.9 times and 4.8 times higher power output, respectively, than one with straight beams for given device geometries. To the contrary, at lower and higher vibration magnitudes, straight-beam devices harvest more energy than curved-beam ones. Therefore, it can be concluded that the curved beam height needs to be carefully determined based on the conditions of the application, especially on the characteristics of the external vibration sources.