Here by “a meaningful amount” we mean an adequate and reliable amount of power to power the device.

The motivation of this problem is a series of researches related to self-powered implants in human body. For instance, this research paper claims that we can harvest power from human body movement to make a self-powered pacemaker via nano-generators. Similar claim is found in research like this. Yet no real-world and clinical applications of this seem to be recorded. Another even more “far-reached” example using nano-generator is the self-powered transmitter in this paper.

Also there are claims regarding powering implants with bio-batteries with glucose inside human body. See this paper or this related news article.

The question is, all the above self-powering implants seem to only have prototypes and have no recorded real clinical applications to patients or other people. This makes me doubt that: Are the power generating technologies and methods in the above cases really meaningful in powering functional implants, like pacemakers, transmitters, etc.? Can our on the current or near-future technology really build such implantable self-powering devices?


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