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Self-Powered Wireless Sensor for Air Temperature and Velocity Measurements With Energy Harvesting Capability

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2 Author(s)
Sardini, E. ; Dept. of Electron. for Autom., Univ. of Brescia, Brescia, Italy ; Serpelloni, M.

Air temperature and velocity measurements are important parameters in many applications. A self-powered sensor placed in a duct and powered by an electromechanical generator scavenging energy from the airflow has been designed and tested. It periodically transmits the measured air temperature and velocity to a receiving unit. The system basically consists of two macroblocks, respectively: the self-power wireless sensor and the receiving unit. The self-powered sensor has a section devoted to the energy harvesting, exploiting the movement of an airscrew shaft keyed to a dc motor. The self-powered sensor adopts integrated devices in low-power technology, including a microcontroller, an integrated temperature sensor, and a radio-frequency transmitter at 433 MHz. The data transmission is realized in Manchester encoding, with amplitude-shift-keying modulation at 433 MHz, allowing covering a distance between the sensor and the reader on the order of 4-5 m, depending on the power supplied in transmission. The air velocity is measured through the rotor frequency of the electromechanical generator, whereas, for the temperature, a commercial low-power sensor is used. An experimental system has been designed and fabricated, demonstrating that the airflow harvester can power the self-powered wireless sensor permitting air temperature and velocity measurements. The system can be used for real-time monitoring of temperature and velocity. The sensor module placed into the duct does not require any batteries.

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Instrumentation and Measurement, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:60 ,  Issue: 5 )