At Sensors Expo, Eric Biel, an engineer from Powercast Corporation, explains how radio frequency (RF) energy can be used in energy harvesting applications. RF wireless power transmitted by the PowerSpot transmitter is received by two receiver sticks with LEDs.
The TX91503 PowerSpot transmitter broadcasts an RF signal in the unlicensed 915 MHz industrial, scientific and medical (ISM) band for remote power and data. The transmitter and Powerharvester receivers operate as an end-to-end system to wirelessly charge batteries for consumer applications. To harvest the RF energy, the PCC114 and PCC110 Powerharvester RF-to-DC converter chips boast up to 75% conversion efficiency and harvest RF energy from all modulation types. With the PCC210 boost converter a voltage output up to 5.5V @ 50mA from RF signals with operation down to 0.4V input and up to 95% efficiency. The chips operate over an industrial temperature range of -40°C to +85°C.
The P21XXCSR-EVB evaluation board includes PCC110 and PCC210 chips with support for six frequency bands to test and develop with the Powerharvester Chipset Reference Design. The P21XXCSR converts RF energy into DC power and stores it in a capacitor to provide an intermittent, regulated voltage output.
Available reference designs address:
- NFC 56 MHz RF energy harvesting
- UHF 915 MHz (UHF RFID/ energy harvesting
- Wi-Fi/BT 45GHz (Wi-Fi/BT) RF energy harvesting
- 4G 1710-1915MHz 4G cellular uplink RF energy harvesting
The reference design includes:
- PCB Layout
- Bill of Material
- Performance Data
In addition to many consumer applications, industrial applications of the technology power wireless sensors to avoid replacing batteries.