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In brief - Sustained power

17 July 2012

Photograph of the circuits with a solar cell

Energy scavenging system utilising MEMS switch for power management
Electron. Lett. -- 19 July 2012 -- Volume 48, Issue 15, p.948–949

K.-J. Park (1), S.-M. Kang (1), H.S. Kim (1), C.-W. Baek (1) and T.K. Chung (1)
(1) Chung-Ang University, School of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Seoul, Republic of Korea

A novel light energy scavenging system is presented, which employs a MEMS switch as the gate driver of a MOSFET in a power management circuit, for scavenging energy in ultra-low light condition. Measurements show that, in a 5lx illumination condition, the wireless temperature sensor node powered by a palm-size solar cell array can autonomously transmit RF data to a receiver 20 m away every 9 minutes. The experimental results demonstrate the most sensitive energy scavenging system ever reported, and offer great potential for realising practical self-sustaining wireless devices.

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