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Wireless Power Transfer and Microwave Energy Harvesting

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Although wireless energy transfer is an old idea (Tesla patented one design in 1901), technological advances and the rise of portable devices have made it relevant again for different applications, such as wireless charging and energy harvesting.

This webinar will consist of two parts. The first part is a review of low frequency power transfer in two categories: short range-inductive charging and powering of electronic devices and electric vehicles, and mid-range power transfer through coupled resonant circuits. We will give several examples and highlight the role of simulation in the design of transfer systems. The tools in CST STUDIO SUITE® used for the design and optimization of these devices will be demonstrated, including the use of hybrid circuit-EM co-simulation to optimize matching circuits to improve link robustness.

The second part of the webinar is concerned with wireless energy transfer over longer distances, where the far-field transfer of RF energy may be used. We make a distinction between harvesting RF energy from signals present in the ambient and transferring RF energy by intentionally transmitting RF signals. After a discussion of the power densities, we will continue with (intentional) RF energy transfer for powering sensors to be used in Smart Buildings. The blocks of a far field RF energy transfer system will be discussed: Transmit antenna (and maximum allowed transmit power), propagation channel and rectifying antenna or rectenna. The components of the rectenna: rectifier, dc-dc boost converter and antenna, will then be discussed. Several examples will be shown.

Presenter bios:
Dr. Marc Rütschlin grew up and studied in Stellenbosch, South Africa. After completing his PhD in Electronic Engineering, with a focus on dielectric material characterization, he did post-doctoral studies at NIST in Boulder, Colorado, and at the University of Karlsruhe in Germany, with a focus on electromagnetic wave propagation in buildings and small antenna design respectively. Marc joined CST in January 2007, and currently works from CST’s UK office in Nottingham as the global market development manager for microwave and RF applications.

Hubregt J. Visser obtained his Ph.D. from the Eindhoven University of Technology and Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. He has participated in several projects concerning near-field antenna measurements, monolithic microwave integrated circuits design, and phased-array antenna design. In 2009 he joined the Holst Centre as an employee of IMEC and works on wireless energy transfer. He is also an associate professor at Eindhoven University of Technology and author of the books: ‘Array and Phased Array Antenna Basics’ (Wiley, 2005), ‘Approximate Antenna Analysis for CAD’ (Wiley, 2009) and `Antenna Theory and Applications' (Wiley, 2012).

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