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Heart’s energy to power life-saving implants

Scientists have developed a dime-sized device to capture and convert the kinetic energy of the heart into electricity to power a wide-range of life-saving implantable devices such as pacemakers. Researchers from the Dartmouth College in the US said, the heart’s motion is so powerful that it can recharge devices that save our lives. Millions of people rely on pacemakers, defibrillators and other live-saving implantable devices powered by batteries that need to be replaced every five to 10 years.

According to the study published in the journal Advanced Materials Technologies, those replacements require surgery which can be costly and create the possibility of complications and infections. John X J Zhang from the University of Texas in the US and Lin Dong, a research associate at Dartmouth have said the scientists are trying to solve the ultimate problem for any implantable biomedical device, also ensuring that the device not interfere with the body’s function. The team proposes modifying pacemakers to harness the kinetic energy of the lead wire that is attached to the heart, converting it into electricity to continually charge the batteries.

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