Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Never Recharge Your Cell Phone Again

Thankfully this isn't a bad dream where Billy Mays screams in your face: "Never recharge your phone again! It's got a Swiss Army knife, it can perform quantum physics in your sleep, it will replace your ex-girlfriend!" It looks like Nokia is smart enough to beat the man to the game (link):

A cell phone that never needs recharging might sound too good to be true, but Nokia says it's developing technology that could draw enough power from ambient radio waves to keep a cell-phone handset topped up.

Ambient electromagnetic radiation--emitted from Wi-Fi transmitters, cell-phone antennas, TV masts, and other sources--could be converted into enough electrical current to keep a battery topped up, says Markku Rouvala, a researcher from the Nokia Research Centre, in Cambridge, U.K.

Rouvala says that his group is working towards a prototype that could harvest up to 50 milliwatts of power--enough to slowly recharge a phone that is switched off. He says current prototypes can harvest 3 to 5 milliwatts.


Nokia is being cagey with the details of the project, but Rouvala is confident about its future: "I would say it is possible to put this into a product within three to four years." Ultimately, though, he says that Nokia plans to use the technology in conjunction with other energy-harvesting approaches, such as solar cells embedded into the outer casing of the handset.

- Brewskie


  1. Another great series of posts.
    I have wondered this: ould PHEVs be powered by microwaves, thus recharging, as they waited at stoplights etc. B Cole

  2. My only concern about the cars and more stuff using this would be if they'd suck up so much of the radio waves that the original transmissions didn't get to their destinations intact.


  3. Strangelove,

    Just think of spam... ha-ha!

  4. Haha! Hopefully we could select specifically FOR the spam!