Scientists at Northwestern University have exceeded the limitations by utilizing Nintendo’s iconic Game Boy design to create a device that can operate without a battery.
“The proof of concept, which works via solar energy and the energy of button mashing, is the right step in the direction of battery-free intermittent computing and sustainable technologies,” says Josiah Hester. He was the co-leader of this research.
“It accumulates energy from user actions making it the first battery-free interactive device,” Hester said in a press release. “By the press of a button, the device turns that energy into power for your gaming device.”
What sets the device, called “ENGAGE” apart from the original Game Boy, is that the prior comes along with a pair of solar panels connected to the front of the model. However, both are the same in size and form.
The second source of energy is the button pressing. As the buttons are wired to a set of capacitors that let the machine be powered up no matter how long it has been set aside. Researchers state that this console can play any of the original Nintendo Game Boy games that use the original cartridges.
“By doing away with batteries, a major step has been taken towards sustainable gaming,” stated TU Delft’s Przemyslaw Pawelczak, who was a co-leader in the research along with Hester. “As a result of our platform, we want to create a sustainable gaming device that provides entertainment and happiness to our users .”
The goal of the device is not just sustainable gaming. Hester believes systematic electric tools that don’t use degradable batteries and are dependable over a more extended period are the ultimate future even in space exploration along with hazardous environments on Earth.
No one would have imagined that Nintendo’s old Game Boy would be the first critical tool for evolving independent space tools for the future?
Battery-Free Game Boy Runs Forever On Kinetic Energy