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An Active Voltage Doubling AC/DC Converter for Low-Voltage Energy Harvesting Applications

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4 Author(s)
Shuo Cheng ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA ; Ying Jin ; Yuan Rao ; Arnold, D.P.

This paper theoretically and experimentally investigates an ac/dc converter for low-voltage vibrational energy harvesting systems. The circuit employs an active-diode-based voltage doubler, where the output is a dc voltage that is twice the amplitude of the input ac voltage. Analytical solutions for the steady-state open-circuit voltage are derived, capturing the effects of the active-diode comparator hysteresis. It is shown that the hysteresis plays an important role in the rectification characteristics, circuit stability, and overall efficiency. Experimentally, the circuit is able to rectify input voltage amplitude as low as 5 mV and operates over a frequency range of 1 to 500 Hz, which spans most common mechanical vibrations. For input voltage amplitudes 250 mV or higher, the circuit exhibits >;80% efficiency for a range of load resistances, delivering 0.1-10 mW of power. Additionally, the circuit successfully rectifies the voltage from a vibrational energy harvester having a highly irregular and time-varying voltage waveform.

Published in:

Power Electronics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:26 ,  Issue: 8 )