The 2nd International Conference on Vibration and Energy Harvesting Applications (VEH 2019) was held in the School of Information Science and Technology (SIST) from July 13th to 15th, attracting 150 scholars, researchers, and students from universities and research institutions around the world such as Imperial College London, University of Paris-Sud, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Stevens Institute of Technology, National University of Singapore, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, City University of Hong Kong, National Taiwan University, Tsinghua University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Harbin Institute of Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, as well as representatives from companies working in electronic technologies, such as Huawei, and Huada Semiconductor.
Vibration energy harvesting technology focuses on how to better convert ambient kinetic energy into electricity. It properly exploits surrounding energy, to provide a reliable power supply to ubiquitous Internet of Things (IoT) devices with a vision towards the Internet of Everything. Vibration energy harvesting is an interdisciplinary research area. The relevant researchers come from a variety of disciplines including mechanical engineering and mechanics, electronic engineering, materials science and technology, civil engineering, and biomedical engineering. The VEH 2019 conference aimed to build an interdisciplinary academic platform for researchers from different professional backgrounds to discuss the fundamental theories, technological innovations, and application designs of vibration energy harvesting technology. The VEH 2019 conference included six keynote speeches, 11 talks by invited presenters, seven oral presentation sessions, a poster session, a student poster paper competition, and a panel discussion. Participants presented their latest academic achievements and shared their experiences in related research fields, as well as their opinions on the future development of vibration energy harvesting technology.
SIST Assistant Professor Liang Junrui chaired the opening ceremony, giving a brief introduction of the history and theme of the conference series with an emphasis on its interdisciplinary features. Vice President and Provost of ShanghaiTech University Yin Jie gave a welcome speech on behalf of the university and introduced the history, vision, and mission of ShanghaiTech University. He said that ShanghaiTech would continuously support the interdisciplinary research on fundamental sciences and applied technologies, including vibration energy harvesting. Honorary Conference Chair and SIST Adjunct Professor Li Xinxin gave an opening speech, reviewing some of their achievements on MEMS (micro-electromechanical system) scale energy harvesters and pointing out the difficulties towards miniaturization and some critical technologies towards future developments, such as up-frequency conversion designs.
Speakers Liang Junrui, Provost Professor Yin Jie, Honorary Chair Li Xinxin
Six renowned scholars from international and domestic universities were invited to give keynote speeches in the conference. They were Professor Eric Yeatman (Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering UK) from Imperial College London, Professor Chengkuo Lee from the National University of Singapore, Professor Muhammad Hajj from the Stevens Institute of Technology, Professor Chen Liqun from Harbin Institute of Technology Shenzhen, Professor Elie Lefeuvre of the University of Paris-Sud, and Professor Wen-Jong Wu from National Taiwan University. They all introduced their research achievements and academic experiences on energy harvesting technology from different aspects, including the broadband designs of vibration energy harvesters, the MEMS designs and IoT applications, the ultrasonic wireless vibration energy transmission, harmonic balance modeling for the electromechanical coupled system, kinetic energy harvesting for biomedical implants, and system-level integration towards self-powered wireless sensors.
Although the VEH conference series concentrated on the fundamental research and applied technology of specific kinetic energy harvesting technology, the related research extends to almost all engineering disciplines. The VEH 2019 was carried out in a single session style for more effective information sharing and discussions among experts from different disciplines, breaking the disciplinary walls and promoting long-term development of this technology. Through the different activities in VEH 2019, participants from different academic backgrounds can get to know each other, establish academic networks, exchange ideas, and initiate cooperation. Besides in-depth academic discussion, the influence of this conference has extended from academia to industry. In VEH 2019, there were several industrial exhibitions and more than ten participants were from the electronic industry such as Huawei Co. and some small-size companies working on IoT technology. The conference also held a student poster competition. Thanks to the evaluations of ten independent judges, six papers out of 24 were selected and awarded the first to third prizes. Ms. Gong Xuewen, a student from the Department of Mechanical and Automation Engineering at The Chinese University of Hong Kong won the “Best Poster Paper Award.”
Oral presentation and Q&A
Networking, poster presentation, industrial exhibition
Award ceremony, Panel discussion / Group photo of organizers and keynote speakers
In the last session, Honorary Chair Wei-Hsin Liao from The Chinese University of Hong Kong chaired a panel discussion on the future development of vibration energy harvesting technology. Professor Chengkuo Lee said that the on-going development of 5G communication and IoT technologies is the most significant incentive for the development of kinetic energy harvesting technology. Professor Lei Zuo from Virginia Tech pointed out that besides the IoT, large-scale kinetic energy harvesting technologies such as ocean-wave power generation should also attract some attention. Professor Muhammad Hajj proposed that we should work together towards an industrial standard for kinetic energy harvesting techniques. Professor Eric Yeatman argued that for interdisciplinary research, researchers must respect different opinions and attitudes. Professor Wen-Jong Wu emphasized the importance of passion for better integration of the interdisciplinary works. Professor Elie Lefeuvre argued that an open mind is necessary for jumping out of the boundary of any specific discipline. The guests suggested that future organizers could consider including a live demo session to seek official funding and industrial cooperation for greater success of the VEH conference series.