The nexus between vibration-based energy harvesting and structural vibration control: A comprehensive review

Qinlin Cai, Songye Zhu

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents the first state-of-the-art review on simultaneous vibration control and energy harvesting strategy, a multi-disciplinary topic related to structural dynamics, mechanical design, and power electronics. The prominent damping effects provided by large-scale vibration-based energy harvesters make the simultaneous control of vibration sources possible. Although the concept of energy-regenerative shock absorbers with vibration control and energy harvesting functions dates back to the 1970s in automotive engineering, the development of such dual-function devices was not extended to broad applications in civil and mechanical structures until 2010. We have witnessed rapid advances in this field in the past decade. A series of feasibility studies, configuration designs, numerical simulations, laboratory experiments, and field tests have demonstrated, to some extent, the great prospect of these dual-function devices in various potential applications. This review first presents different energy transducers and vibration energy sources briefly. Subsequently, different designs and target applications of dual-function devices are elaborated. The power performance in large-scale implementation of dual-function devices is predicted on the order of kilowatt level, which is considerably higher than that of most regular vibration-based energy harvesters and sufficient to power structural health monitoring systems or semi-active/active control systems. The current challenges and potential future research directions of energy-harvesting vibration control are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number111920
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • Electromagnetic
  • Energy harvesting
  • Energy sources
  • Piezoelectric
  • Vibration control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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