A team from the University of Southampton has made possible the planting of such a device in environments that preclude having any electrical connection to the outside world. Sensors in inaccessible places can now generate their own power and transmit data to outside receivers.
Applications includes: Implants in heart muscles can use the heart's movement to generate sufficient voltage to act as pacemaker, doing away with the necessity for regular battery replacements. Sensors placed in remote parts of a space shuttle or airliner can transmit data to a central receiver, such as a black box, even in the event of a total power failure. The pressure and temperature of wheels on a trailer could be monitored by placing sensors on the inside of the tyre. Factories producing any type of merchandise will benefit from being able to place maintenance-free sensors at all critical points.