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Sensors 2016, 16(9), 1535; doi:10.3390/s16091535

A Novel Passive Wireless Sensor for Concrete Humidity Monitoring

1
School of Civil Engineering and Architecture, East China Jiaotong University, Nanchang 330013, China
2
School of Electrical and Automation Engineering, East China Jiaotong University, Nanchang 330013, China
3
School of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei 230009, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Ferran Martín
Received: 20 May 2016 / Revised: 11 September 2016 / Accepted: 13 September 2016 / Published: 20 September 2016
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Abstract

This paper presents a passive wireless humidity sensor for concrete monitoring. After discussing the transmission of electromagnetic wave in concrete, a novel architecture of wireless humidity sensor, based on Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, is proposed for low-power application. The humidity sensor utilizes the top metal layer to form the interdigitated electrodes, which were then filled with polyimide as the humidity sensing layer. The sensor interface converts the humidity capacitance into a digital signal in the frequency domain. A two-stage rectifier adopts a dynamic bias-voltage generator to boost the effective gate-source voltage of the switches in differential-drive architecture. The clock generator employs a novel structure to reduce the internal voltage swing. The measurement results show that our proposed wireless humidity can achieve a high linearity with a normalized sensitivity of 0.55% %RH at 20 °C. Despite the high losses of concrete, the proposed wireless humidity sensor achieves reliable communication performances in passive mode. The maximum operating distance is 0.52 m when the proposed wireless sensor is embedded into the concrete at the depth of 8 cm. The measured results are highly consistent with the results measured by traditional methods. View Full-Text
Keywords: wireless humidity sensor; RFID technology; concrete humidity measurement; rectifier; regulator; patch antenna wireless humidity sensor; RFID technology; concrete humidity measurement; rectifier; regulator; patch antenna
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Zhou, S.; Deng, F.; Yu, L.; Li, B.; Wu, X.; Yin, B. A Novel Passive Wireless Sensor for Concrete Humidity Monitoring. Sensors 2016, 16, 1535.

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