Traditional pacemakers have batteries that last about seven years, which requires patients to undergo several procedures to replace them. The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has developed an alternative cardiac pacemaker that is powers itself with a flexible piezoelectric nanogenerator.
During testing, the nanogenerator stimulated a living rat's heart by using its small body movements to convert into electrical energy.
“For clinical purposes, the current achievement will benefit the development of self-powered cardiac pacemakers as well as prevent heart attacks via the real-time diagnosis of heart arrhythmia,” said Professor Keon Jae Lee of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at KAIST. “The flexible piezoelectric nanogenerator could also be utilized as an electrical source for various other implantable medical devices.”
See how the self-powered pacemaker works in the video below.