27 May 2014
In this study the power flow in a coupled mechanical and electromagnetic harvesting system in presence of both positional and electrical fluctuations is analyzed. Explicit expressions for the power into and out of the mechanical and electrical parts of the system are found in the case of weak coupling, and it is shown how the power flows between the domains consistent with energy conservation. The case of thermal fluctuations is considered in particular, and use of the fluctuation-dissipation theorem explicitly demonstrates that the power delivered to the mechanical system from the electrical system is the same as the power delivered to the electrical system from the mechanical system. On the other hand, the power dissipated in the electrical circuit is not the same as the power transferred from the mechanical domain if the electrical circuit contains its own current fluctuations. The electrical noise power dissipated in a load resistor is calculated, and found to consist of a component due to electromagnetic coupling in addition to the well-known Nyquist component. The component due to electromagnetic coupling scales with size, and becomes more important than the Nyquist component only for sufficiently small systems.