Raymond Wang is a 14 year old Canadian finalist in the Google Science Fair, an online competition open to all students aged 13 to 18 from around the world which gives students around the world an opportunity to share their ideas.
According to Wang, the energy crisis and severe weather are two of the biggest problems facing us today. He noticed that the severe weather contained large amounts of energy that was waiting to be harvested. For example, precipitation contained amounts of potential energy, while the wind had kinetic energy.
Wang's innovation was to design a system that had a potential to be widely implemented in order to harvest and store the weather energy. For this purpose, a model house was constructed with a piezoelectric roof.
The weather energy harvesting roof was then placed under a series of experiments containing tests in both actual and simulated weather such as rain, snow, hail and wind. Through this experiment, the weather energy was successfully harvested into electricity and stored onto a capacitor. The results from the experiment proved that the innovation of a weather harvesting roof was feasible and could become a commercial product.
Based on his innovation, Wang intends to combine the potential and kinetic energy harvesting system with photovoltaic cells in the future to make an all weather energy harvester.
Source: Google Science Fair 2012
Top image: Zastavki