Inkjet-printed broadband energy harvesters, rectifiers for 5G and IoT applications featuring broad range matching capabilities

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Prakash, Leharika
Tentzeris, Emmanouil M.
Peterson, Andrew F.
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The need for 5G and the constant improvement in connecting broadband networks to devices has been a research area which has been advancing since recent times. With its ability to support millions of devices along with connecting them and providing mission-based applications such as health monitoring, collecting data etc., it has set a pathway for IoT devices to be used and connected with ultra-efficiency. Apart from this, since the inception of 5G, a lot many researchers have been working on a technique that can harvest power through this network for wireless and wearable devices. This is implemented by designing energy harvesters and rectifiers to harvest energy from the 5G network. This is done by converting the radio frequency waves from the network to usable power. Since this method also comes under wireless charging, it has been one of the most anticipated and prominent technologies for the present and the future of Electromagnetics. With the increase of designing rectifiers, rectennas (rectifying antennas) and energy harvesters, this method has been effective due to its capability of achieving high transmittable power which can be used as a replaceable battery for many electronic devices. Hence many efforts have been taken to work on providing the best power deliverability via the wireless approach, and one solution was to increase or widen the bandwidth of the reception of radio waves. Popularly known as broadband energy harvesting it has been a desired feature in the implementation of providing better power facility for a lot of microelectronic and other devices, mainly because using narrow bandwidths for energy harvesting can prove to be an issue where there can be a high possibility of sudden drop of power due to a variety of factors affecting it such as excitation level etc. Hence this thesis provides many approaches and results which can act as a basis for the design, modeling, and simulation of multiple rectifiers and energy harvesters for 5G and IoT applications. The proposed research focuses on using the solution of designing broadband energy harvesters and rectifiers. The focus would be on developing the antenna gain, bandwidth, size along with a comparison of which type of antenna can be used for this application to understand which antenna can have the capability to radiate as well as receive the RF energy with minimum loss. Methods and solutions to improve the bandwidth of the antenna will also be proposed. The design of a rectifier will be an essential factor in the energy harvesting circuit, since the target of receiving the best RF to DC conversion with less loss would be determined. The energy leakage in the system due to power leakage during transmission due to narrow bandwidth will be addressed by designing a good impedance matching network between the antenna and the load. Matching circuits also come into picture, as due to the presence of large input signal, the rectifier can operate in different regions, which can result in impedance variation leading to variable input power and other issues. This thesis will hence propose the solutions for these issues by using broadband frequency range in wide band and will compare, deduce, design, model and simulate the output of these energy harvester circuits and rectifiers. This thesis will hence prove to be an effort to focus on designing wide band energy harvesters and through the process, also discovering which application can be a better option for this kind of design. This will not only help in providing guidance but also understand the new issues faced with this kind of approach. We should also make note that the overall power conversion efficiency can be obtained by maximizing the efficiency of the individual component of the circuit. As a result, major attention will be given to understand which substrate or component can be used to design a circuit to obtain wide range and large bandwidth along with great power efficiency in each and every step of designing the circuit network.
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