Published in Mobiles

Georgia tech creates 5G harvester

by on31 March 2021


Can power devices

Georgia Institute of Technology boffins have developed a small, 3D-printed rectifying antenna that can harvest electromagnetic energy from 5G signals and use it to power devices.

According to a university press release, the move is a way of turning 5G networks into "a wireless power grid”.

According to the journal Scientific Reports, the flexible Rotman lens-based rectifying antenna, in other words, rectenna, the system can perform millimetre-wave harvesting in the 28-GHz band.

The Rotman lens is commonly used in radar surveillance systems to see multiple directions without moving the antenna system, especially for beamforming networks. However, larger antennas, which unfortunately have a narrowing field of view, are needed to harvest enough power to supply devices, limiting usage.

The researchers solved this problem by using a system that has a wide-angle of coverage. The Rotman lens provides six levels of view simultaneously in a pattern shaped like a spider.

By enabling this structure to map a set of selected radiation directions to an associated set of beam-ports, the lens is an intermediate component between the antennas and the rectifiers. This way, the electromagnetic energy collected by the antenna arrays from one direction is combined and fed into a single rectifier.

This maximises efficiency, enabling a system with both high gain and large beamwidth. The system achieved a 21-fold increase in harvested power compared with a referenced counterpart in demonstrations. It was also able to maintain identical angular coverage.

Last modified on 31 March 2021
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