Energy harvesting research

Energy harvesting technology may be considered an ultimate solution to replace batteries and provide a long‐term power supply for wireless sensor networks. Looking back into its research history, individual energy harvesters for the conversion of single energy sources into electricity are developed first, followed by hybrid counterparts designed for use with multiple energy sources. Very recently, the concept of a truly multisource energy harvester built from only a single piece of material as the energy conversion component is proposed. This review, from the aspect of materials and device configurations, explains in detail a wide scope to give an overview of energy harvesting research. It covers single‐source devices including solar, thermal, kinetic and other types of energy harvesters, hybrid energy harvesting configurations for both single and multiple energy sources and single material, and multisource energy harvesters. It also includes the energy conversion principles of photovoltaic, electromagnetic, piezoelectric, triboelectric, electrostatic, electrostrictive, thermoelectric, pyroelectric, magnetostrictive, and dielectric devices. This is one of the most comprehensive reviews conducted to date, focusing on the entire energy harvesting research scene and providing a guide to seeking deeper and more specific research references and resources from every corner of the scientific community.