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Proceedings Paper

A MEMS vibration energy harvester for automotive applications
Author(s): R. van Schaijk; R. Elfrink; J. Oudenhoven; V. Pop; Z. Wang; M. Renaud
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Paper Abstract

The objective of this work is to develop MEMS vibration energy harvesters for tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), they can be located on the rim or on the inner-liner of the car tire. Nowadays TPMS modules are powered by batteries with a limited lifetime. A large effort is ongoing to replace batteries with small and long lasting power sources like energy harvesters [1]. The operation principle of vibration harvesters is mechanical resonance of a seismic mass, where mechanical energy is converted into electrical energy. In general, vibration energy harvesters are of specific interest for machine environments where random noise or repetitive shock vibrations are present. In this work we present the results for MEMS based vibration energy harvesting for applying on the rim or inner-liner. The vibrations on the rim correspond to random noise. A vibration energy harvester can be described as an under damped mass-spring system acting like a mechanical band-pass filter, and will resonate at its natural frequency [2]. At 0.01 g2/Hz noise amplitude the average power can reach the level that is required to power a simple wireless sensor node, approximately 10 μW [3]. The dominant vibrations on the inner-liner consist mainly of repetitive high amplitude shocks. With a shock, the seismic mass is displaced, after which the mass will “ring-down” at its natural resonance frequency. During the ring-down period, part of the mechanical energy is harvested. On the inner-liner of the tire repetitive (one per rotation) high amplitude (few hundred g) shocks occur. The harvester enables an average power of a few tens of μW [4], sufficient to power a more sophisticated wireless sensor node that can measure additional tire-parameters besides pressure. In this work we characterized MEMS vibration energy harvesters for noise and shock excitation. We validated their potential for TPMS modules by measurements and simulation.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 May 2013
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 8763, Smart Sensors, Actuators, and MEMS VI, 876305 (17 May 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2016916
Show Author Affiliations
R. van Schaijk, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)
R. Elfrink, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)
J. Oudenhoven, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)
V. Pop, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)
Z. Wang, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)
M. Renaud, IMEC/Holst Ctr. (Netherlands)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8763:
Smart Sensors, Actuators, and MEMS VI
Ulrich Schmid; José Luis Sánchez de Rojas Aldavero; Monika Leester-Schaedel, Editor(s)

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