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Energy Harvester Produces Power from Local Environment, Eliminating Batteries in Wireless Sensors

Authored on: Apr 21, 2011 by Jim Drew

Technical Paper / Application Note

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Recent advances in ultralow power microcontrollers have produced devices that offer unprecedented levels of integration for the amount of power they require to operate. These are systems on a chip with aggressive power saving schemes, such as shutting down power to idle functions. In fact, so little power is needed to run these devices that many sensors are going wireless, since they can readily run from batteries. Unfortunately, batteries must be regularly replaced, which is a costly and cumbersome maintenance project. A more effective wireless power solution may be to harvest ambient mechanical, thermal, or electro-magnetic energy in the sensor's local environment.

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ahshabazz Posted May 6, 2011

I've always been interested in this kind of technology - especially in wireless applications, however the additional external wiring makes this infeasible for military grade or industrial applications.

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