A research team has developed a self-sustaining sensor platform to constantly monitor the nearby environment without having an exterior source of power. The team has designed a self-sustaining water-motion-sensing platform to display and monitor the time-varying kinetics of water movements, such as amplitude and frequency, with the use of the energy produced from the water movement itself.
A self-sustaining sensor platform is a center constituent for the smart-grid systems and Internet-of-Things. The available sensor platforms need the energy to function and exhibit the detected data. Hence, processing, displaying, and monitoring the microscopic alterations of a targeted environmental constituent in an instantaneous manner without using exterior sources of power or energy storages, such as batteries has been tough.
This problem was tackled by the team with the use of a vital technique for permanent sensor platforms, i.e., energy harvesting. It is also called as energy scavenging and is a method for production of energy from numerous sources in the surrounding environment, such as water, wind, heat, mechanical, and light energy for alteration into convenient usable electric energy. The newly designed semiconductor circuit has the potential of conducting several functions concurrently, such as analysis of dynamics and energy harvesting.
The platform includes a self-sustaining water-motion sensor integrated circuit on a test printed circuit board, water-contact-based triboelectric nanogenerator, and a LED display for exhibiting the detected amplitudes and frequencies of water motion. The circuits that accumulate the produced electrical energy and concomitantly examine the signals are fabricated with the use of complementary metal-oxide semiconductor process. It is a cost-effective technique utilized in the manufacturing of semiconductors and digital & analog circuits. It is made up of N-type and P-type transistors and can be developed as circuits that process different signals.
It also has the potential of conducting harvesting and production of energy, water motion analysis, capacitor charging, as well as LED control for exhibiting identified data without obstructing the sensor’s mobility. Furthermore, according to the team, as the incorporated single-platform conception need no exterior source of power and considerably decreases the requirement of energy storage, it can be employed to no power or wireless sensor interface and renewable energy plants of grid scale.