No, this is not an image of a delicious Fruit Roll-Up, it’s actually a unique new flexible material from Ricoh that can create electricity from pressure and vibration. Dubbed “Energy-Generating Rubber,” this piezoelectric mat combines the best features of existing ceramic and polymeric materials; high energy output and flexibility, respectively. In fact, this new rubber produces just as much power as ceramic does while surpassing the flexibility of polymeric materials, according to Ricoh. What’s more, it is more easily produced than either existing form of piezoelectric.
Unfortunately, that’s just about everything Ricoh has revealed about the new material so far. The company hopes to further develop the technology into a commercially viable product some point in the future. As such, it is teaming with the Tokyo University of Science to further improve the material’s productive capabilities.