Dr Geoff V. Merrett
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Keynote Speech given at EnHaNSS 2012

11th June 2012

Today I gave the keynote speech at the International Workshop on Algorithms and Concepts for Networked Sensing Systems Powered by Energy Harvesters (EnHaNSS'12) workshop in Antwerp, Belgium. The workshop was organised as part of the Internationl Conference on Networked Sensing Systems (INSS 2012).

In the keynote, I talked about the holistic design of energy harvesting sensor nodes. Energy harvesting sensor nodes are gaining increasing potential and research interest, but they are inherently complicated systems. Numerous interactions exist between the microgenerator, power processing circuitry, energy storage, processor and radio transceiver etc, and designing and optimising an isolated component does not necessarily translate to equivalent improvements at the system level. Efficient and effective design needs to take a holistic approach, and consider the system's multiple components and their interactions. In the presentation, I discussed different aspects of this holistic design process, from the design of generators, power processing circuitry and computation units through to system modelling, simulation and optimisation. Some of these aspects were illustrated in the context of case-studies, both in constrained and real applications, including a wireless sensor performing condition monitoring on a ferry engine which is powered by a tuneable vibration-based microgenerator. I also presented a range of data on energy availability that we have collected, analysed and made freely available to the community.

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