Owing to its current trendiness, wireless power technology enjoyed a strong presence at CES 2016 in Las Vegas, with several applications available for low and high power being revealed at the show.
For example, Texas Instruments had very interesting technology demonstrations on display at its TI Village booth—in particular, wireless charger technology. Specifically, TI developed the TIDA-00669 (Fig. 1); it is a wireless charger booster pack with gauge reference. It charges at 500mA using an external Li-Ion/Li-Polymer rechargeable battery (1Ah-2Ah).
The TIDA-00669 provides a wireless charger, battery management design, and power supply solution in support of low-power applications like wearables, portable instruments, and the Internet of Things (IoT). The TI gauge is a great addition as it monitors the battery at all times, providing information such as a remaining battery capacity (mAh), state-of-charge (%), and battery voltage (mV).
Also on display in the TI Village was a very cool demonstration of an energy harvesting system. This comprised a plant watering system with microcontrollers, battery managers, and energy-harvesting ICs. The system was based on sensors and detecting moister in the soil. The main idea was to combine this solution with water pumps to water the plants.
The TIDA-00588 (Fig. 2) was part of this watering system. An energy harvester booster pack, it is used to power a design from a local source of energy. The system allows for a variety of current source inputs and energy storage elements (super capacitor, LIR2032 coin cell, external battery). It also contains onboard solar cells that can be used in both indoor and outdoor applications.
There is so much more coming out of CES to talk about; be on the lookout for another installment soon.