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Special Issue "Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Sensor Networks".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 December 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Geoff Merrett
Website
Guest Editor
Centre for IoT and Pervasive Systems, University of Southampton, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
Interests: mobile and embedded systems; power/energy management; energy harvesting; energy-driven computing; intermittent computing
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Domenico Balsamo
Website
Guest Editor
Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
Interests: embedded systems; energy harvesting systems; wireless sensor networks; transient computing; energy-/power-neutral systems

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The recent momentum of the Internet-of-Things (IoT) is driving the need for embedded devices comprising one or more low-power and resource-constrained computing elements and sensors. Power management of these devices is emerging as a primary challenge for system designers, as they typically have to last for many years without intervention to charge or replace batteries. Energy harvesting (EH) offers the potential for low-power systems to operate without batteries, by generating electrical power from environmental sources. However, energy harvesting sources can be volatile, meaning that a steady power supply cannot be relied upon. For this Special Issue, we welcome high-quality submissions that describe original and unpublished research contributions advancing the frontiers on energy-harvesting IoT devices and systems, with particular emphasis on energy-/power-neutral and intermittent sensing systems.

Dr. Geoff Merrett
Dr. Domenico Balsamo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

We solicit papers covering (but not limited to) one or more of the following topics:

  • Power management concepts, algorithms, and circuits for energy-harvesting sensing systems;
  • Architectures and standards for energy-neutral sensing systems;
  • Hardware and software concepts for intermittent computing;
  • Resource management and operating system support for energy-harvesting sensing systems;
  • Communication in intermittent-power domain;
  • Ensuring reliable operation in energy-harvesting sensor systems;
  • Modeling, simulation, and tools for effective design of future energy-harvesting sensing systems;
  • Internet of (battery-less) Things;
  • Experience with real-world deployments and innovative applications

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
A Hybrid Energy Harvesting Design for On-Body Internet-of-Things (IoT) Networks
Sensors 2020, 20(2), 407; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20020407 - 10 Jan 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
The Internet-of-things (IoT) has been gradually paving the way for the pervasive connectivity of wireless networks. Due to the ability to connect a number of devices to the Internet, many applications of IoT networks have recently been proposed. Though these applications range from [...] Read more.
The Internet-of-things (IoT) has been gradually paving the way for the pervasive connectivity of wireless networks. Due to the ability to connect a number of devices to the Internet, many applications of IoT networks have recently been proposed. Though these applications range from industrial automation to smart homes, healthcare applications are the most critical. Providing reliable connectivity among wearables and other monitoring devices is one of the major tasks of such healthcare networks. The main source of power for such low-powered IoT devices is the batteries, which have a limited lifetime and need to be replaced or recharged periodically. In order to improve their lifecycle, one of the most promising proposals is to harvest energy from the ambient resources in the environment. For this purpose, we designed an energy harvesting protocol that harvests energy from two ambient energy sources, namely radio frequency (RF) at 2.4 GHz and thermal energy. A rectenna is used to harvest RF energy, while the thermoelectric generator (TEG) is employed to harvest human thermal energy. To verify the proposed design, extensive simulations are performed in Green Castalia, which is a framework that is used with the Castalia simulator in OMNeT++. The results show significant improvements in terms of the harvested energy and lifecycle improvement of IoT devices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Centralized Energy Harvesting-Based TDMA Protocol for Terahertz NanoSensor Networks
Sensors 2019, 19(20), 4508; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19204508 - 17 Oct 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Terahertz wireless nano-sensor networks (WNSNs) are novel networks interconnecting multiple nano-devices by means of wireless communication. In this paper, a centralized energy harvesting-based time division multiple access (TDMA) protocol, called CEH-TDMA is proposed. This protocol examines the data transmission process from a global [...] Read more.
Terahertz wireless nano-sensor networks (WNSNs) are novel networks interconnecting multiple nano-devices by means of wireless communication. In this paper, a centralized energy harvesting-based time division multiple access (TDMA) protocol, called CEH-TDMA is proposed. This protocol examines the data transmission process from a global perspective, where the nano-controller regulates the channel access and allocates time slots for all nano-nodes. First, each nano-node sends the remaining energy and the number of packets in its data buffer to the nano-controller, and then, the nano-controller constructs a Markov decision process (MDP) model according to the state information of all nano-nodes, where the energy consumption and the number of transmitted packets in the entire network are considered as impact factors in designing the award function in the MDP model. Finally, a globally optimal slot allocation strategy is obtained, which maximizes the amount of packet transmission in the perpetual WNSNs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Bidirectional Piezoelectric Energy Harvester
Sensors 2019, 19(18), 3845; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19183845 - 06 Sep 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
This paper represents a numerical and experimental investigation of the bidirectional piezoelectric energy harvester. The harvester can harvest energy from the vibrating base in two perpendicular directions. The introduced harvester consists of two cantilevers that are connected by a particular angle and two [...] Read more.
This paper represents a numerical and experimental investigation of the bidirectional piezoelectric energy harvester. The harvester can harvest energy from the vibrating base in two perpendicular directions. The introduced harvester consists of two cantilevers that are connected by a particular angle and two seismic masses. The first mass is placed at a free end of the harvester while the second mass is fixed at the joining point of the cantilevers. The piezoelectric energy harvester employs the first and the second out of plane bending modes. The numerical investigation was carried out to obtain optimal geometrical parameters and to calculate the mechanical and electrical characteristics of the harvester. The energy harvester can provide stable output power during harmonic and impact-based excitation in two directions. The results of the investigations showed that energy harvester provides a maximum output power of 16.85 µW and 15.9 4 µW when the base has harmonic vibrations in y and z directions, respectively. Maximum output of 4.059 nW/N and 3.1 nW/N in y and z directions were obtained in case of impact based excitation Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Analytical Model of a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) Node Operation with a Modified Threshold-Type Energy Saving Mechanism
Sensors 2019, 19(14), 3114; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19143114 - 14 Jul 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
In this article, a model of the operation of a wireless sensor network (WSN) node with an energy saving mechanism based on a threshold-controlled multiple vacation policy is considered. When the queue of packets directed to the node becomes empty, a multiple vacation [...] Read more.
In this article, a model of the operation of a wireless sensor network (WSN) node with an energy saving mechanism based on a threshold-controlled multiple vacation policy is considered. When the queue of packets directed to the node becomes empty, a multiple vacation period is started during which the receiving/transmitting of packets is blocked. In such a period, successive vacations of a fixed constant duration are taken until a predetermined number of N packets accumulated in the queue is detected. Then, at the completion epoch of this vacation, the processing restarts normally. The analytic approach is based on the conception of an embedded Markov chain; integral equations and renewal theory are applied to study the queue-size transient behaviour. The representations for the Laplace transforms of the queue-size distribution at an arbitrary fixed time t and on the idle and processing periods are obtained. The compact-form formulae for the distributions of the idle and processing period duration are derived. Numerical examples are attached as well. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Joint Resource Optimization in Simultaneous Wireless Information and Power Transfer (SWIPT) Enabled Multi-Relay Internet of Things (IoT) System
Sensors 2019, 19(11), 2536; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19112536 - 03 Jun 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The internet of things (IoT) is becoming more indispensable in modern society as the further development and maturity of information technology progresses. However the exponential growth of IoT devices leads to severe energy consumption. As a technology with broad application prospects, simultaneous wireless [...] Read more.
The internet of things (IoT) is becoming more indispensable in modern society as the further development and maturity of information technology progresses. However the exponential growth of IoT devices leads to severe energy consumption. As a technology with broad application prospects, simultaneous wireless information and power transfer (SWIPT) enables IoT devices to harvest energy from receiving radio frequency (RF) signals while ensuring information transmission. In this paper, we investigate the transmission rate optimization problem for a dual-hop multi-relay IoT system, where a decode-and-forward (DF) relay supports the SWIPT technique. We jointly optimize the resource including power and subcarrier allocation, to maximize the system transmission rate. The time-sharing strategy and Lagrange dual method are used to solve this optimization problem. Simulation results reveal that the proposed algorithm has a larger transmission rate than other benchmark algorithms when ensuring each relay has no additional energy supply. Specifically, the proposed algorithm improves the information transmission rate by 2.8%, 3.4% and 43% compared with other algorithms in the case of five relays when the source’s power is equal to 0.5 W, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Photovoltaic Energy Harvesting System Adapted for Different Environmental Operation Conditions: Analysis, Modeling, Simulation and Selection of Devices
Sensors 2019, 19(7), 1578; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19071578 - 01 Apr 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
The present research work proposes a photovoltaic energy harvester and an appropriate direct current (DC)/DC converter for a harvesting system after the study of the devices and taking the operation conditions. Parameters such as power, efficiency and voltage are taken into account under [...] Read more.
The present research work proposes a photovoltaic energy harvester and an appropriate direct current (DC)/DC converter for a harvesting system after the study of the devices and taking the operation conditions. Parameters such as power, efficiency and voltage are taken into account under different environment conditions of illumination and temperature in order to obtain the best possible response. For this reason, suitable metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), diode, coil, frequency, duty-cycle and load are selected and analyzed for a DC/DC converter with boost architecture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Spatiotemporal Rule of Heat Transfer on a Soil/Finned Tube Interface
Sensors 2019, 19(5), 1159; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19051159 - 07 Mar 2019
Abstract
To efficiently harvest environmental micro-energy from shallow soil, simulated analysis, theoretical arithmetic and experimental verification are performed to explore the spatiotemporal rules of heat transfer on a soil/finned tube interface. Simulations are carried out for 36 types of different working conditions, and the [...] Read more.
To efficiently harvest environmental micro-energy from shallow soil, simulated analysis, theoretical arithmetic and experimental verification are performed to explore the spatiotemporal rules of heat transfer on a soil/finned tube interface. Simulations are carried out for 36 types of different working conditions, and the empirical formulas for temperature and heat flux are obtained. The temperature and heat flux can be calculated using the formulas if the soil temperature, soil moisture content and finned tube initial temperature are known. The simulations also show that the highest heat flux can reach approximately 0.30 mW/mm2, and approximately 1507.96 mW of energy can be harvested through the finned tube. Theoretical arithmetic indicates that the heat transfer rate of the copper finned tube is 76.77% higher than that of the bare tube, the highest rate obtained in any study to date. Results also show that the finned tube should be placed where the soil moisture is greater than 30% to get more heat from the soil. A field experiment is carried out in the city of Harbin in Northeast China, where a thermoelectric power generation device has been installed and temperature data have been monitored for a certain time. The results are in good agreement with those obtained from the simulation analysis. The heat transfer processes and heat transfer steady state on the soil/finned tube interface are revealed in this work and are of great importance for the use of geothermal energy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Harvesting and Energy-Neutral IoT Devices and Systems)
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