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How scientists turned a flag into a loudspeaker

A paper-thin, flexible device not only can generate energy from human motion, it can act as a loudspeaker and microphone as well. Researchers discovered that a high-tech material, called a ferroeclectret nanogenerator, or FENG, can act as a microphone (by capturing the vibrations from sound, or mechanical energy, and converting it to electrical energy) as well as a loudspeaker (by operating the opposite way, converting electrical energy to mechanical energy). The audio breakthrough could eventually lead to such consumer products as a foldable loudspeaker, a voice-activated security patch for computers and even a talking newspaper.

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