SFU team looks to tackle climate change with 'energy-harvesting' technology
A Simon Fraser University professor has created a network of the world's greatest energy harvesting experts in an attempt to help tackle climate change.
Vincenzo Pecunia and over 100 internationally recognized scientists are working together to document ways to improve a product that can convert energy into clean power.
"These materials have the ability to convert ambient energy from various sources, including light, heat, radiofrequency waves (like those from Wi-Fi and mobile signals), and mechanical vibrations," says Pecunia.
He refers to all of this ambient energy as "wasted energy," and says the small chip can be inserted anywhere energy or friction is produced, including on sidewalks and clothing.
"It's essential to develop energy-harvesting materials that can efficiently capture this energy and convert it to electricity," Pecunia says. "Another important priority is to develop energy harvesters that can be applied on all types of surfaces and objects, which requires energy harvesting materials that are mechanically flexible."
As Canada and countries around the world look to combat climate change while developing goals to achieve net-zero emissions over the next few decades, Pecunia says this technology could come in handy.
Since September, he has been joined by several students who are also contributing to the project.
Javith Mohammed moved to Surrey from India in the fall, specifically to learn about sustainable energy and obtain his graduate degree.
"My dream is to develop prototypes that involve sustainable energy to help society," said Mohammed.
He is now receiving hands-on experience in the field and helping pave the way for Pecunia's vision to become a reality.
At this time, Pecunia says the energy-harvesting technology is only being produced at a small scale, but has the potential to be manufactured in larger qualities.
"We're at the stage where there are some companies that are being established, and there are some big actors in Canada specifically making those materials and upscaling the production," says Pecunia.
In the meantime, Pecunia says his team of researchers is working to make the material more efficient, in the hope of rolling it out to the public in the near future.
A previous version of this story misspelled Javith Mohammed's name.
Vancouver Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Wildfire battles continue under heat, air quality alerts over most of Canada
The battle against hundreds of wildfires continues, as almost every jurisdiction in Canada remains under either heat or air quality warnings from the federal government. The day after what was supposed to be national Clean Air Day, dozens of alerts remain in place for unseasonable heat or smoky air quality.
Can face masks help protect you from wildfire smoke? Health expert explains
An official recommendation to wear a mask to protect yourself from wildfire smoke is being echoed by health experts as plumes of smoke make their way across parts of Canada, causing poor air quality.
Supporters focus on freeing Canadian held in China amid geopolitical 'ups and downs'
A leader of the fight to secure freedom for a Canadian human-rights activist detained in China for 17 years is taking the latest diplomatic deep-freeze between Ottawa and Beijing in stride.
Documents reveal what happened inside the discord at Canada's drug-price regulator
Internal emails from the agency tasked with regulating the price of patented drugs in Canada shows discord and division was sparked by a letter from the health minister, culminating in an indefinite pause on major drug-price reforms and several resignations.
Experts worry about Canadian water bomber expertise with rising demand, aging fleets
Aviation experts say Canada is losing expertise in the manufacturing of water bombers -- just as demand for them is increasing. The Canadair CL-415, a purpose-built water bomber, was last produced in 2015.
Calgary mass killer Matthew de Grood seeks 'absolute discharge'
The man who was found not criminally responsible in the stabbing deaths of five people at a house party in Brentwood more than nine years ago is seeking more freedoms.
RBC Canadian Open teeing off amid controversy in golf world
Some of the world's top players are teeing off at the RBC Canadian Open today amid the hotly debated LIV Golf-PGA Tour controversy that shook the golf world this week.
5 things to know for Thursday, June 8, 2023
Heat or air quality warnings countrywide, new Nanos polling shows most Canadians support an inquiry into foreign interference, and the Bank of Canada hikes rates again.
UNICEF says 300 trapped children rescued from a Sudanese orphanage after 71 others died
About 300 infants, toddlers and older children have been rescued from an orphanage in Sudan's capital after being trapped there while fighting raged outside, aid officials said Thursday. The evacuation came after 71 children died from hunger and illness in the facility since mid-April.
Extended highway closure expected due to wildfire near Port Alberni
There's no end in sight for the closure of Highway 4 on Vancouver Island – the only highway leading to the communities of Port Alberni, Tofino and Ucluelet – due to a wildfire burning in the area.
Busload of B.C. students stranded by wildfire spend the night inside Vancouver Island high school
A busload of high school students were finally heading home to Nanaimo on Wednesday after they were stranded by a raging wildfire that forced them to spend the night inside a Port Alberni high school.
Speed and alcohol likely factors in fatal Nanaimo crash
A 33-year-old man from Nanaimo is dead after a single-vehicle crash south of the city Tuesday.
Council reconsiders decision to reject recommendations on affordability crisis
Calgary city council has reconsidered its decision to vote against recommendations made by an expert panel to address the city’s housing affordability crisis.
Man on mobility scooter hit by truck in northeast Calgary intersection
Police say a man on a mobility scooter has life-altering injuries after he was struck by a vehicle in a northeast Calgary intersection on Wednesday evening.
Hot, dry weather comes with cautions and a few benefits
Calgary was under a heat warning Wednesday with forecast high of 29C.
Albertans asked to conserve electricity Wednesday evening due to hot temperatures
Hot temperatures across Alberta prompted a grid alert Wednesday afternoon.
'A long time coming': Edmonton Catholics commit $3.2M to Indigenous reconciliation fund
The Archdiocese of Edmonton will spend $3.2 million on reconciliation initiatives with First Nations, Métis and Inuit people in the Alberta capital region.
'Major travel delays': Anthony Henday Drive bridge will be closed this weekend
Drivers are being asked to find another way or prepare for delays on the Henday this weekend, because crews need to close a bridge over the North Saskatchewan River.
Smoky conditions in Toronto expected to get worse today before improving this weekend
The smoky air in Toronto is set to get worse before it gets better as hazy conditions continue on Thursday.
Ontario to boost early childhood educator wages in bid to ease staff shortage
Ontario is set to increase the wages of early childhood educators in a bid to boost recruitment and retention amid a staff shortage that advocates warn could hamper the growth of the national $10-a-day child-care program.
Advance voting begins in the Toronto mayoral byelection today; Here's what you need to know
After weeks of hearing dozens of candidates make their pitches for why they think they should become Toronto’s next mayor, voters will finally have a chance to walk into a polling station and cast their ballots starting today.
Dr. Horacio Arruda returns as new assistant deputy health minister
The man in the spotlight during the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic in Quebec, Dr. Horacio Arruda, has been appointed assistant deputy minister at the Ministry of Health and Social Services.
Ontario man charged with first-degree murder in killing of Claudia Iacono outside Montreal salon
An Ontario man has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Claudia Iacono, the daughter-in-law of Mafia associate Moreno Gallo, after she was gunned down at the wheel of her car in Montreal last month.
Hundreds of American firefighters arrive in Canada to help battle wildfires
Hundreds of American firefighters have recently arrived in Canada to help battle wildfires and more are on the way, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday.
Trustee suspended over posts targeting LGBTQ2S+ community, division says
A Manitoba school trustee has been suspended over social media posts the division says targeted the LGBTQ2S+ community.
Continued closure of Fort Gibraltar causing changes for soon to be married couples
The closure of Fort Gibraltar following the collapse of an elevated walkway that sent 16 students and one teacher to hospital has left some couples scrambling to find a place to get married.
Exotic butterflies escape biome in The Leaf, prompting closure
The escape of some exotic butterflies in The Leaf has prompted the temporary closure of the butterfly biome.
Saskatoon property taxes could see 13 per cent hike as city confronts $75M revenue gap
Significant property tax hikes may be needed to cover a funding shortfall, according to City of Saskatoon administration.
Saskatoon builder looking to flip abandoned homes to first time buyers
A Saskatoon man wants to play matchmaker for the unloved homes in the city.
Latest season of survivalist series 'Alone' filmed in Sask., set to premiere June 8
The rugged wilderness of northern Saskatchewan was host to survivalists from all walks of life, vying to win the top prize of the popular series 'Alone.'
Future uncertain for residents of bulldozed Regina homeless camp
The dwellings of around a dozen Regina residents experiencing homelessness were bulldozed after calls from the property owner.
Less than 50% of Indigenous students graduate from provincial schools, report says
Indigenous graduation rates are sliding in the province, according to Saskatchewan’s provincial auditor.
Regina city council asks for debt limit increase
Regina city council has asked its administration to pursue permission from the Saskatchewan Municipal Board (SMB) to increase its debt limit to $780 million.
'This is not helping': Frustrated evacuees say official communication lacking in wildfire recovery
Frustration is building among some people from neighbourhoods hardest-hit by the fires near Halifax. CTV's Heidi Petracek reports.
Irving Oil weighing its options, including the possible sale of its assets
Irving Oil says it’s undertaking a “strategic review” with an eye to its future. In a release Wednesday, the company says it’s looking at a number of options, including the sale of its assets.
Halifax support workers strike impacting students and families
The father of disabled teen from Fall River, N.S. is calling on all sides to get back to the bargaining table and put an end to the Halifax area CUPE educational support worker strike.
Air quality statement in effect, thunderstorms possible this afternoon
According to CTV News London’s Meteorologist Julie Atchison, a large area of low pressure over the Canadian Maritimes and a blocking ridge over central North America is allowing a steady flow of northerly air to usher in smoke from forest fires in Northern Ontario and Quebec.
VIDEO | 'Hate and discrimination have no place in any TVDSB schools': Investigation underway after pride flag torn down
Students at Sir Frederick Banting Secondary School in London, Ont. are being investigated after a video was posted online showing students tearing down a LGBTQ2S+ pride flag.
City pitches new parking garage and extended free parking to aid downtown London, Ont.’s recovery
Since early in the COVID-19 pandemic, the Honk Mobile Parking App has offered two hours of free municipal parking in London’s core area business districts.
Wildfire west of Sudbury prompts evacuation order, total active fires in northern Ont. grows to 54
A northern Ontario forest fire that started west of Sudbury on Sunday morning has grown to more than 1,000 hectares and has prompted officials to issue an evacuation order for the immediate area as the number of active fires in the region grows.
‘Incompetent’ northern Ont. doctor loses his license to practise medicine
A northern Ontario doctor has been stripped of his medical licence for conduct described as “disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional.”
Toronto woman 'horrified' after losing $95,000 to romance scam
Romance scams have always been around, but they got worse during the pandemic, and fraudsters continue to use social media and dating sites to find victims.
Poor air quality in Waterloo region and Guelph will continue into the weekend: Environment Canada
There's high levels of air pollution in Waterloo region and Wellington County as smoke plumes from wildfires burning in Quebec and northeastern Ontario continue to blow into the region, Environment Canada says.
Jamal Murray scores 34 points in NBA Finals as Kitchener cheers him on
Kitchener is hosting a series of watch parties to cheer on basketball star Jamal Murray as his Denver Nuggets take on the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.
Six Region of Waterloo councillors announce support for amalgamation
One unified city – that’s what six Region of Waterloo councillors say they want when it comes to the future of the region’s municipal governance.