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A Multifunctional Battery-Free Bluetooth Low Energy Wireless Sensor Node Remotely Powered by Electromagnetic Wireless Power Transfer in Far-Field

  • sidibe;, alassane
Publication Date
May 27, 2022
DOI: 10.3390/s22114054
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This paper presents a multifunctional battery-free wireless sensing node (SN) designed to monitor physical parameters (e.g., temperature, humidity and resistivity) of reinforced concrete. The SN, which is intended to be embedded into a concrete cavity, is autonomous and can be wirelessly powered thanks to the wireless power transmission technique. Once enough energy is stored in a capacitor, the active components (sensor and transceiver) are supplied with the harvested power. The data from the sensor are then wirelessly transmitted via the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology in broadcasting mode to a device configured as an observer. The feature of energy harvesting (EH) is achieved thanks to an RF-to-DC converter (a rectifier) optimized for a low power input level. It is based on a voltage doubler topology with SMS7630-005LF Schottky diode optimized at −15 dBm input power and a load of 10 kΩ. The harvested DC power is then managed and boosted by a power management unit (PMU). The proposed system has the advantage of presenting two different power management units (PMUs) and two rectifiers working in different European Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM) frequency bands (868 MHz and 2.45 GHz) depending on the available power density. The PMU interfaces a storage capacitor to store the harvested power and then power the active components of the sensing node. The low power digital sensor HD2080 is selected to provide accurate humidity and temperature measurements. Resistivity measurement (not reported in this paper) can also be achieved through a current injection on the concrete probes. For wireless communications, the QN9080 system-on-chip (SoC) was chosen as a BLE transceiver thanks to its attractive features: a small package size and extremely low power consumption. For low power consumption, the SN is configured in broadcasting mode. The measured power consumption of the SN in a deep-sleep mode is 946 µJ for four advertising events (spaced at 250 ms maximum) after the functioning of sensors. It also includes voltage offset cancelling functionality for resistivity measurement. Far-field measurement operated in an anechoic chamber with the most efficient PMU (AEM30940) gives a first charging time of 48 s (with an empty capacitor) and recharge duration of 27 s for a complete measurement and data transmission cycle.

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