Efficient Ambient RF Energy Harvesting Technology and its Applications
Advisor:Volakis, John L.
RF energy harvesting
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Series/Report no.:2012 Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum. 26th
This paper is focused on equipping wireless devices (including sensors) with novel, high efficiency circuitry to harvest and convert ambient RF power to direct current (dc). Key components of this technology are (a) miniaturized antenna and (b) high efficiency rectifying circuit. The first is responsible for capturing the RF waves, and the latter coverts the RF energy to dc. A major challenge is the design of novel circuitry to generate a battery-like voltage from very low incoming RF energy. Under this study, we designed a novel RF power harvesting front-end whose conversion efficiency is significantly improved at low RF power levels (<-20 dBm) as compared to existing technologies. Thus, the new circuitry can harvest ambient and widely available RF energy, making a game changing technology for powering mobile devices. In this study, we demonstrate this technology by using it to power a commercially available temperature and humidity meter with an LCD display. The latter is powered using nothing more than ambient WiFi signals in an office environment.
Engineering: 3rd Place (The Ohio State University Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum)
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