A device that captures and saves energy from leftover radiowaves could soon be used to power everything from your toaster to your watch.
Called Freevolt, the smart phone-sized technology uses its antenna to collect and convert ambient radio-frequency energy into usable electricity for charging low-power electronic equipment.
Created jointly by Drayson Technologies and scientists from Imperial College London, the aim is to more efficiently power technologies across architecture, furniture, wearables and more.
Lord Drayson, chief executive of Drayson Technologies and former UK science minister, said in a statement today:
Whether we live in a big city or an increasingly urbanised area in the developing world, radio frequency waves are being generated all around us, at different levels, all the time. Some of this wireless energy goes unused.With Freevolt, we have created something special. For the first time, we have solved the problem of harvesting usable energy from a small RF signal
The first commercial application of Freevolt will be the Clean Space Tag air sensor, which is available to buy in the UK from today. Each device will provide data about pollution and air quality in its specific environment to a larger network, allowing users to work out how much pollution they are exposed to and what they can do to reduce it.