Wireless power for the price of a penny

Wireless power for the price of a penny

(Phys.org) -- The newspaper-style printing of electronic equipment has led to a cost-effective device that could change the way we interact with everyday objects.

For a price of just one penny per unit the device, known as a rectenna, which is presented today, Friday 10 August, in IOP Publishing's journal Nanotechnology, can be placed onto objects such as , logos and signage so that we can read product information on our smartphones with one simple swipe.

This type of technology, which is known as (), has already been implemented to allow fast money transactions; however, this new device could lead the way to large-scale adoption at a low cost.

The rectenna, created by researchers from Sunchon National University and Paru Printed Electronics Research Institute, could be implemented onto everyday objects so that they can harness the power given off by the smartphone's radio waves and send information back to it via printed digital circuits.

It is called a rectenna as it is a combination of an and a rectifier – a device that converts alternating current (AC) into direct current (DC). The rectenna was printed onto plastic foils in large batches using a roll-to-roll process at a rate of 8m min-1. Five different electronic inks were used and each rectenna had a length of around 1300 mm.

The researchers state that the rectenna can harness power directly from given off by a mobile phone, converting AC into DC. The rectenna created in this study could provide at least 0.3 W of power from an alternating current which had a frequency of 13.56 MHz.

NFC technology is very similar to QR codes, whereby users take a photo of a square-shaped bar code on a poster or advert using their smartphone. The difference with NFC is that items will contain a small computer chip or digital information, operated by DC power.

"What is great about this technique is that we can also print the digital information onto the rectenna, meaning that everything you need for wireless communication is in one place," said co-author of the study Gyoujin Cho.

"Our advantage over current technology is lower cost, since we can produce a roll-to-roll printing process with high throughput in an environmentally friendly manner. Furthermore, we can integrate many extra functions without huge extra cost in the printing process.

"The application of NFC technology with the will be limitless in the near future. The medical, automotive, military and aerospace industries will benefit greatly."


Explore further

Researchers develop “rectenna” to convert radio waves to electricity

More information: "Fully roll-to-roll gravure printed rectenna on plastic foils for wireless power transmission at 13.56Mhz" Hyejin Park et al. Nanotechnology 23 344006 (2012) doi:10.1088/0957-4484/23/34/344006 iopscience.iop.org/0957-4484/23/34/344006
Journal information: Nanotechnology

Citation: Wireless power for the price of a penny (2012, August 9) retrieved 28 February 2021 from https://phys.org/news/2012-08-wireless-power-price-penny.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
0 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments