Thursday, November 12, 2009

HP reveals highly sensitive accelerometer

Helett Packard has revealed a new accelerometer based on a novel design claiming it can sensure motions far more sensitively than competitors devices. The sensor can measure down to 100 nano-g per root Hertz and is based on a capacitive sensing principle.

In standard sensors using capacitve sensing, the distance between the electrodes of a capacitor is changed thereby changing the capacitance. In this design two arrays of small electrodes seperated by a fixed gap are used. External acceleration changes the overlap of the electrodes, hence changing the capacitance.


Saturday, May 2, 2009

6-axis MEMS-based Intertial Measurement Unit

Austria based SensorDynamics has recently presented a low-cost 6-axis IMU.
The unit measures angular rate and acceleration in all three spatial directions and contains a continuous self-diagnosis capability.
The IMU has total dimensions of 23x32x22 mm with an angular rate resolution of as low as 0.0039 Degree/s/bit and an acceleration resolution of as low as 0.002 m/s^2/bit for measurement ranges of 100 Degree/s and 2g respectively.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blood vessel energy harvester

Recently professor Zhong Lin Wang from the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Tech have recently demonstrated a novel energy harvester.
Blood flow or the contraction of blood vessels inside the body are used to create energy using piezoelectric harvesting.

[Link to research group]

Trees as batteries

A topic slightly off topic in this blog, but I think it is really cool.
Do you remember the experiment we probably all did in school where you stuck two metal-rods into a lemon to create electricity.
At first sight this sounds fairly similar is based on completely different principle however.

Voltree has developed a method utilizing the pH difference between the inside of the tree and the soil to create electricity. They use this to power remote sensor nodes which form a wirless mesh network in order to monitor remote forests.


Panel discussion about Energy Harvesting

I just came across a video of a panel discussion about energy harvesting including loads of remarks about MEMS harvesters. Amongst the group discussing are representatives of Perpetuum, TI, and EnOcean.
Very interesting to watch as it includes a lot of information about where the harvesting industry has come to by now, what is possible and where things are going.

[Link to Video]