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Ultralow-power Microcontroller (MCU) With Energy Harvesting Technology

Technology Overview

This technology offer is a self-powered MCU which harvests energy directly from the ambient environment to power itself, without the need for batteries. The MCU will handle most energy sources as multi-frequency RF bands supporting GSM and ISM, solar, piezoelectric, thermal and voltaic cells. It can be used to power sensors and devices for years, without having to think about maintenance – “deploy and forget”. The device is programmable, has a powerful RISC-V CPU and comes with analog and digital peripherals expected from a microcontroller.

Technology Features & Specifications

MCU:

  • RISC-V 16/32-bit architecture (RV32EMC).
  • High code density with compressed instructions.
  • 1.8V 24MHz, 1.0V 6MHz, 0.8V 1MHz.
  • 450-800mV.
  • Asynchronous operation from ROM/RAM.

 Radio:

  • Crystal-less BTLE transmitter.
  • Programmable output power (-40 to 0dBm).
  • PA supports operation down to 850mV - 0dBm.
  • IEEE 802.15.4 UWB transmitter.
  • 3.5 to 10GHz.
  • Optional 433MHz MICS radio transmitter for medical devices.

 Peripherals:

  • Industry Standard I2C, SPI and UART.
  • Asynchronous AES module for encryption/hash generation.
  • GPIO with asynchronous interrupt/wake up.
  • Programmable current source.
  • Biasing external sensors.

 Memory:

  • 1KB of mask ROM (stdlib, math etc).
  • 2KB RAM.
  • 8/16/32KB ULP Flash.
  • 100k Writes.
  • Read supported down to 850mV.

 Internal RF Rectifier:

  • Multi frequency 800/900/1800/1900/2400MHz bands (ISM and GSM) supported.
  • 40dBm sensitivity.
  • Simple demodulator chain for RX.
  • Range depending on frequency and duty cycle of energy bearer.

 Internal Power Factory:

  • Voltaic cells down to 400mV (DC)
  • Solar, piezoelectric and thermal (1V8 to 3.6V)

 Operation conditions:

  • Operating voltage: 450mv - 1.8V.
  • Operating frequency: Asynchronous to 24MHz.
  • Operating temperature: -40 to 85°C (Industrial grade).
  • ESD protection HBM > 2kV; latchup > 100mA.

 Medical classification:

  • According to ISO 13485:2016 Quality Management System (QMS) for Medical Devices ensuring compliance with applicable standards and regulations such as IEC 60601 and FCC/ETSI.

Potential Applications

As this self-powered MCU supports a wide range of power sources, it exponentially opens up the potential for new applications in areas such as IoT, heath-tech wearables and medical devices, livestock and building sensors, etc.

Customer Benefits

Having no battery means fewer components and a smaller design, which can easily be integrated into a wide range of solutions - be it fabrics, jewellery, watches, wearable medical devices, livestock or building sensors. More importantly, this makes for a cleaner, more eco-friendly solution.

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