Make Your Own Energy


Regenerative braking and other forms of energy capture are becoming more popular and increasingly effective. What started as a way of increasing the range of electric or hybrid vehicles is now being applied to everything from green buildings to industrial robots. The automotive industry is still the main driver of this technology. The idea that braking can generate energy has been around for... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Feb. 19


Flexible energy harvesting rectenna Researchers from MIT, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, University Carlos III of Madrid, Boston University, University of Southern California, and the Army Research Laboratory created a flexible rectenna capable of converting energy from Wi-Fi signals into electricity to power small devices and sensors. The device uses a flexible RF antenna to capture e... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Feb. 11


Body heat harvesting Chemists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst developed a fabric that can harvest body heat to power small wearable electronics such as activity trackers. The device works on the thermoelectric effect created by body temperature and ambient cooler air. "What we have developed is a way to inexpensively vapor-print biocompatible, flexible and lightweight polymer fil... » read more

IoT Meets ML


AI and machine learning are the next big things, and they're going make a huge difference in the adoption and capabilities of the IoT. Unlike previous technology approaches, AI, machine learning and deep learning are based on patterns. In effect, they raise up the level of abstraction for data. An image of a cat can be megabytes of data, and a cat taken from all angles may be gigabytes of da... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: July 16


Bacterial solar Researchers at the University of British Columbia developed a solar cell that uses bacteria to convert light to energy. The cell worked as efficiently in dim light as in bright light, making solar a potential option in areas of the world that frequently have overcast skies. Called biogenic cells, they work by utilizing the natural dye that bacteria use for photosynthesis. Pr... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: June 5


Self-assembled battery Researchers at Cornell University developed a self-assembling battery capable of near-instant charging. Instead of having the batteries' anode and cathode on either side of a nonconducting separator, the team's new approach intertwines the components in a self-assembling, 3D gyroidal structure, with thousands of nanoscale pores filled with the elements necessary for e... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: April 24


Waste heat to power Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley, developed a thin-film system that can be applied to electronics to turn waste heat into energy. The thin-film system uses pyroelectric energy conversion, which is well suited for tapping into waste-heat energy supplies below 100 degrees Celsius, called low-quality waste heat. In particular, the technology might be part... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Apr. 10


Lithium-air battery Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory designed a new lithium-air battery that works in a natural air environment and still functioned after 750 charge/discharge cycles, a record for this battery type. In theory, lithium-air batteries work by combining lithium present in the anode with oxygen from the air to produce lithium p... » read more

Where Is Energy Harvesting?


With power management a top priority in sensor networks, why is energy harvesting—a proven technology with diverse energy sources—conspicuously absent from sensor designs that are the foundation of the Internet of Things? [getkc id="165" kc_name="Energy harvesting"] always has been a promising answer to the limits of battery power. The idea that a device can run for much longer periods o... » read more

Better Living Through Microelectronics


The recently completed 2018 Winter Olympic Games left many of us in awe of the athleticism on display. But this month’s 2018 Winter Paralympic Games, also being held in PyeongChang, South Korea, could be an even more impressive showcase of both skills and heart. Competitors from around the world will include athletes with a range of physical, intellectual and visual disabilities. Of course, t... » read more

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