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Wirelessly Powered Light and Temperature Sensors Facilitated by Electrically Small Omnidirectional and Huygens Dipole Antennas

Global Big Data Technologies Centre, School of Electrical and Data Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and IT, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo, NSW 2007, Australia
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Sensors 2019, 19(9), 1998; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19091998
Received: 31 March 2019 / Revised: 22 April 2019 / Accepted: 25 April 2019 / Published: 29 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Augmented RFID Technologies for the Internet of Things and Beyond)
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Abstract

Wirelessly powered, very compact sensors are highly attractive for many emerging Internet-of-things (IoT) applications; they eliminate the need for on-board short-life and bulky batteries. In this study, two electrically small rectenna-based wirelessly powered light and temperature sensors were developed that operate at 915 MHz in the 902–928-MHz industrial, scientific, and medical (ISM) bands. First, a metamaterial-inspired near-field resonant parasitic (NFRP) Egyptian axe dipole (EAD) antenna was seamlessly integrated with a highly efficient sensor-augmented rectifier without any matching network. It was electrically small and very thin, and its omnidirectional property was ideal for capturing incident AC wireless power from any azimuthal direction and converting it into DC power. Both a photocell as the light sensor and a thermistor as the temperature sensor were demonstrated. The resistive properties of the photocell and thermistor changed the rectifier’s output voltage level; an acoustic alarm was activated once a threshold value was attained. Second, an electrically small, low-profile NFRP Huygens antenna was similarly integrated with the same light- and temperature-sensor-augmented rectifiers. Their unidirectional nature was very suitable for surface-mounted wireless power transfer (WPT) applications (i.e., on-body and on-wall sensors). Measurements of the prototypes of both the light- and temperature-sensor-augmented omni- and unidirectional rectenna systems confirmed their predicted performance characteristics.
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Keywords: electrically small antennas; Internet of things (IoT); light sensors; rectennas; temperature sensors; wireless power transfer (WPT) electrically small antennas; Internet of things (IoT); light sensors; rectennas; temperature sensors; wireless power transfer (WPT)
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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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Lin, W.; Ziolkowski, R.W. Wirelessly Powered Light and Temperature Sensors Facilitated by Electrically Small Omnidirectional and Huygens Dipole Antennas. Sensors 2019, 19, 1998.

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