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Energy management systems for energy harvesting in structural health monitoring applications

Arnold, M., Featherston, Carol Ann ORCID:, Pearson, Matthew R. ORCID:, Lees, Jonathan ORCID: and Kural, Aleksander 2012. Energy management systems for energy harvesting in structural health monitoring applications. Key Engineering Materials 518 , pp. 137-153. 10.4028/

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Autonomous structural health monitoring systems with independent power sources and wireless sensor nodes are increasingly seen as the best solution for monitoring a diverse range of machines and structures including pumps, bridges and aircraft. Powering these systems using harvested energy from ambient sources provides an attractive alternative to the use of batteries which may be either inaccessible for routine maintenance or unsuitable (for example in aerospace applications). A number of techniques are currently being considered including harvesting energy from vibration and thermal gradients. Harvesting energy can however lead to a highly variable power supply in opposition to the requirements of a wireless sensor node which requires continuous standby power with an additional capacity for power peaks during transmission of data. A power management system with embedded energy storage is therefore necessary in order to match supply and demand. Due to the low levels of power harvested in a number of applications, an important factor in the design of such a system is its efficiency to ensure sufficient power reaches the sensor node. Based on the requirements for a simple power management system for thermoelectric power harvesting consisting of a rectifier, a DC/DC convertors and a battery, this paper first examines the possibilities in terms of basic components with a number of commercially available units tested and characterised. Potential designs for a management system incorporating these components are then discussed and a blueprint for an optimal system is suggested.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Publisher: Trans Tech Publications
ISSN: 1662-9795
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2022 08:44

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