Next Generation Energy-Harvesting Electronics: A Holistic Approach
The consortium have made a large amount of vibration data from various applications available on the Energy Harvesting Network Data Repository. We have also published a journal paper analysing this data.
There is now a consensus that we are entering the era of electronics powered, or at least augmented by, energy harvesters. Future self-powered applications will require electronic systems that are more complex and more compact but also intelligent, adaptive and able to perform more computation with less energy.
The EPSRC has provided £1.6M of funding to this project, which is developing ultra energy-efficient electronic systems for emerging applications including mobile digital health, and autonomous wireless monitoring in environmental and industrial settings. The project involves four universities (the University of Southampton, Newcastle University, Imperial College, and the University of Bristol) which are undertaking the three-year collaborative research project in partnership with four industrial companies: Dialog Semiconductor, Diodes Incorporated, ARM, and Mentor Graphics.
This research joins up three different research fields, including energy harvesting and MEMS processing methods, low-power embedded computing systems, and electronic design automation. The new design methodology will be incorporated into a novel mixed-technology domain modelling and performance optimization design toolkit. This design approach is fundamental to ultra energy-efficient design and to the miniaturisation of next-generation wireless electronics.
The project was focussed on three interlinked themes (microgenerator design, computation circuits, and system optimisation), involved over 25 people at the four academic institutions, and produced over 50 publications. Members of the project and the advisory board may access the members' area of the site. The advisory board meets annually and is chaired by Prof. Steve Furber.
Vibration Data: The consortium have made a large amount of vibration data from various applications available on the Energy Harvesting Network Data Repository. We have also published a journal paper analysing this data..
Showcase and Workshop: The project is now at an end, and the consortium held a workshop at Imperial College London on 11 February 2013 to showcase the project's demonstrators and research findings. Slides and other material from the event can be found here.
Follow-on Project: EPSRC have funded a follow-on project by the University of Bristol and Newcastle University on power-conditioning and computational electronics that will be able to survive in power-deficient modes.
Innovator of the Year Award: Alex Yakovlev's team at Newcastle University won the Innovator of the Year 2012 award for their work on the Holistic project.