Low-Voltage DC-DC Converter for IoT and On-Chip Energy Harvester Applications

Sensors (Basel). 2021 Aug 25;21(17):5721. doi: 10.3390/s21175721.


The power saving issue and clean energy harvesting for wireless and cost-affordable electronics (e.g., IoT applications, sensor nodes or medical implants), have recently become attractive research topics. With this in mind, the paper addresses one of the most important parts of the energy conversion system chain – the power management unit. The core of such a unit will be formed by an inductorless, low-voltage DC-DC converter based on the cross-coupled dynamic-threshold charge pump topology. The charge pump utilizes a power-efficient ON/OFF regulation feedback loop, specially designed for strict low-voltage start-up conditions by a driver booster. Taken together, they serve as the masters to control the charge pump output (up to 600 mV), depending on the voltage value produced by a renewable energy source available in the environment. The low-power feature is also ensured by a careful design of the hysteresis-based bulk-driven comparator and fully integrated switched-capacitor voltage divider, omitting the static power consumption. The presented converter can also employ the on-chip RF-based energy harvester for use in a wireless power transfer system.

PMID:34502611 | PMC:PMC8433648 | DOI:10.3390/s21175721


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