Research that includes: 

  • Photosynthetic fuel cell
  • Surface-tension and osmotic driven micropower sources
  • Silicon-based rotary engine power system
  • Proximity power sensor for energy management

BPN639: Fabrication of Nonlinear Wideband MEMS Energy Harvester with Vertical Sidewall Electrets

Son Duy Nguyen
Igor Paprotny

The goal of the project is to design and fabricate a wide band vibration energy harvester based on silicon MEMS fabrication technology. The project focuses on electrostatic conversion using vertical-sidewall electrets for biasing. Nonlinear springs are designed to operate the device in a wide vibration frequency range of 400 Hz – 1000 Hz at sufficiently high levels of acceleration. The fabrication of the energy harvester was performed at the Marvell Nanofabrication facility at UC Berkeley. The project is supported from the collaboration program between Vestfold University College -...

BPN626: Glucose Energy Harvester for Self-Powering of Remote Distributed Bioanalytical Microsystems

Uyen P. Do

This project focuses on the research aspects concerning the harvesting of energy from glucose in order to power autonomous, self-sustainable MEMS implants by the aid of an abiotically catalyzed micro fuel cell. The results will demonstrate a novel fuel cell architecture that first separates the oxygen at the cathode from the glucose – oxygen mixture present in the body fluid with the aid of diffusion and the use of an oxygen selective catalyst at the cathode. The in vitro prototypes will demonstrate the energy conversion from chemically stored energy (glucose) to electrical energy...

BPN555: Power Transfer Over a Capacitive Interface

Mitchell H. Kline
Igor I. Izyumin

The simplicity and low cost of capacitive interfaces makes them very attractive for wireless charging stations. Major benefits include low electromagnetic radiation and the amenability of combined power and data transfer over the same interface. We present a capacitive power transfer circuit using series resonance that enables efficient high frequency, moderate voltage operation through soft-switching. An included analysis predicts fundamental limitations on the maximum achievable efficiency for a given amount of coupling capacitance and is used to find the optimum circuit component...

BPN520: Miniaturized, Implantable Power Generator

Travis L. Massey

This research presents an implantable, miniaturized power generating system, a biofuel cell, which scavenges power from living organisms. The system harvests carbohydrates such as sugars stored inside the organism and, via an enzyme catalyst, decomposes these carbohydrates to generate electrical power. Our initial target for these devices is as a power supply for cyborg beetles. Our group has previously developed cyborg beetles, live beetles driven by wireless neural stimulator mounted on the dorsal thorax (see BPN 451). The stimulators are currently powered by a conventional...

BPN519: Harvesting Energy from Evaporation

Vedavalli G. Krishnan
Amrit Kashyap

Mimicking the transport of water in plants, the goal of this project is to harvest energy from evaporation-driven flows. This will be achieved by the use of an efficient micro-hydro power generator that is driven by the creeping flow of evaporation and fabricating a synthetic leaf that mimics the transport and transpiration of water in plants.

Project end date: 07/30/13

BPN564: HEaTS: Harsh Environment MEMS for Downhole Geothermal Monitoring

Sarah Wodin-Schwartz

The development of harsh environment sensor technology can aid in data logging and monitoring of geothermal reservoirs which are challenging to assess. State-of-the-art sensors based on silicon technology are limited to temperatures below 300oC and can not survive long exposure in geothermal conditions. As a result, new material platforms that utilize chemically inert, ceramic semiconductor materials are proposed for harsh environment applications. In the proposed work a temperature sensor that can withstand the harsh reservoir environment will be developed. The scope of the proposed...

BPN662: QES: Micro LHP Cooler - An In-Situ Hermetic Seal for High Heat Flux Microfluidic Devices

Gordon D. Hoople

The ultimate project goal for the micro Loop Heat Pipe Chip Cooling System is to design and fabricate a substrate with high thermal conductivity that can be interfaced directly with high heat flux electronic chips. This new technology will be capable of satisfying the constantly increasing cooling requirements of today's electronic devices. A prototype has already been developed that utilizes phase change technology to absorb large heat fluxes through latent heat. In order to perform functional testing, however, a reliable hermetic sealing method must be developed. The major...

BPN670: QES: Micro LHP Cooler - Coherent Porous Silicon Wick for High Heat Flux and Capillary Pumping

Hongyun So

The main goal of this project is to develop a new technique to fabricate the coherent porous silicon (CPS) wick and integrate it into the micro loop heat pipe (micro-LHP). Another goal is to optimize the pore size, pitch, porosity and wick thickness to maximize the heat flux and capillary pressure in the device. Through control of pore size, the flow resistance of the micro-LHP will be defined. Finally, the novel design of the CPS wick will significantly increase the efficiency of micro-LHP while preventing the severe problems such as bubble formation, liquid- vapor interface...

BPN660: QES: Micro LHP Chip Cooling System - Evaporator Design and Testing

Lilla M. Smith

The micro scale loop heat pipe (Micro-LHP) is an ongoing research project dedicated to the design and testing of a new cooling system for thermal management of high-power electronics. With the high power densities of current and future power systems and high performance electronics, comes a continuing need for novel thermal management and cooling solutions. Some of the most promising solutions utilize phase change, such as micro loop heat pipes and vapor chambers. A leading topic for several years has been pool boiling with different surfaces to raise the critical heat flux (CHF) bar...

BPN544: HEaTS: Piezoelectric Energy Harvesters for Harsh Environments

Matilda Yun-Ju Lai

This project aims to develop a micromachined piezoelectric energy harvester for pulsed pressure sources by utilizing silicon carbide (SiC) as the structural material and aluminum nitride (AlN) as the active piezoelectric element for operation within extreme harsh environments. The SiC/AlN energy harvesters have great potentials for integrating energy harvesting power source with SiC sensors and circuitry and enabling self-powered wireless sensing technology for structural health monitoring of harsh environment energy systems.

Project end date: 01/28/14