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Defence in the field of Radio Engineering M. Sc. (Tech.) Colm McCaffrey

Väitöksen nimi on “Towards power autonomous wireless sensors”

Contents of the dissertation    To enable widespread deployment of sensor systems in our world, they must be wireless and power autonomous. Achieving power autonomy requires a two front approach; addressing both the need and the supply. The optimisation of power consumption in this work focuses on the radio communications, highlighted as one of the most power critical subsystems. A power-optimised system enables the exploitation of application appropriate energy sources; whether they be battery power in the case of short lifetime devices, energy harvesting where reliable sources exist, wireless power transfer where it can be applied, or passive radio backscattering techniques.

This thesis presents four independent systems, each a power autonomous solution in the context of its application requirements. The first system integrates an electrochemical sensor in a swallowable device for gastrointestinal disease diagnosis, with power provided by a high-density lithium manganese dioxide battery. The second system applies an acoustic emission sensor for online condition monitoring of valve leakage in the petrochemical industry, using energy harvesting on both the sensor and gateway sides. The third system exploits resonant inductive coupling for the actuation of a wirelessly powered soft robotic caterpillar. The fourth system employs a sensing platform based on radio backscattering to give a fully passive wireless sensing solution.

In its entirety, this work represents progress on multiple fronts on the key challenge of powering the next generation of IoT sensors.

Opponent: Prof. Gaetano Marrocco, University of Rome, Italy

Supervisor:  Professor Ville Viikari, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering, Department of Electronics and Nanoengineering.

Thesis web page

Contact information: Colm Mc Caffrey, Senior Scientist, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland VTT - Micronova, Tietotie 3, 02150 Espoo, [email protected] , +358404873650

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