Ultra-low power and battery-less wireless sensing: from theory to market-ready solutions

Tuesday 6 December 2022, 12h00-19h00
@ imec-Leuven

In this workshop we will present – and demonstrate – recent technology innovations for ultra-low power wireless sensing solutions, such as

  • energy harvesting (for battery-less solutions)
  • RF power transfer
  • low power wireless networking protocols
  • ultra-low power, and energy-aware (AI-based) signal processing
  • best practices for low power wireless product engineering
  • reliability for harsh operating environments

Our experts from local industry and academia will cover the whole innovation cycle, from new theoretical concepts to practical implementation into market-ready products.


12h00Registration & Sandwich lunch
13h00Introductiondownload presentation (only for members)
Kris Hermus, Coordinator Wireless Community & Innovation Program Manager Flanders, imec
13h15Feasibility of energy harvesting for today’s and future wireless applications download presentation (only for members)
Dries Van Leemput, PhD researcher, imec-IDLab-UGent

Choosing a suitable wireless technology and energy source for battery-less IoT use cases can be challenging. Therefore, we propose a generic methodology to perform a pre-deployment feasibility study for different combinations of wireless technologies and energy sources. The methodology is used to evaluate popular wireless technologies (BLE, LoRaWAN, and 6TiSCH) for today’s and future wireless IoT applications, and we discuss the feasibility of several example IoT use cases.
13h40A hitchhiker’s guide to the low power design galaxydownload presentation (only for members)
Steven Sanders, Founder, Quicksand

Steven Sanders, founder of Quicksand micro-electronics, takes you on a design roadtrip from marvelous idea to realistic IoT end product. Close encounters include ultra low power system design, wireless communication, encryption & security and battery technology.
14h00A cable-free solution for accurate and energy-aware edge processingdownload presentation (only for members)
Danny Hughes, Professor, imec-DistriNet-KU Leuven

Accurate and energy-aware edge processing of dense mechatronics systems, rotating machine parts or toxic areas in a factory requires the elimination of (power and network) cables without compromising data quality. The KU Leuven/imec intelligent prototype that incorporates these characteristics reduces installation times, cuts installation costs and enables measurements deep inside a machine. A Televic Rail mechatronics use case demonstrates its potential to achieve an autonomous lifetime of up to 20 years.
14h20Wireless condition-based monitoring sensors for trains with 10+ year lifetimedownload presentation (only for members)
Steven Lauwereins, Research Lead, Televic GSP

To monitor the health of wheel bearings, train wheels, gearboxes, etc.; vibration sensors are distributed over the train bogie. However, in a cabled solution the cost of the cable tree is half of the total system cost.
In the WiPeR imec.icon project Televic researched a wireless sensor capable of performing the required high-resolution measurements with wireless sensors reaching an autonomous lifetime of up to 20 years.
  • Demo 1 – imec: the Scavmeter tool for multi-source energy measurements
  • Demo 2 – imec-DistriNet-KU Leuven: a cable-free solution for accurate and energy-aware edge processing
  • Demo 3 – Quicksand: ultra-low power wireless sensing solutions
  • Demo 4 – imec-UGent-IDlab: a selection tool for suitable wireless technologies and energy sources in battery-less IoT applications
  • Demo 5 – UWINLOC: battery-less localisation based on RF energy harvesting
  • Demo 6 – imec: imec.icon programme
15h55Reliability assessment for resilient IoT hardware functioning in harsh conditionsdownload presentation (only for members)
Bart Vandevelde, R&D Project Leader, imec

This work presents the methodology to assess the reliability of IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) modules which are mounted on high speed industrial machines. These IIoT modules are capable of harvesting energy allowing them to operate continuously without having any wiring over the complex machines. This study shows that combination of failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA) and finite element analysis (FEA) provides a quick and an efficient way to assess the reliability of such sensor modules in its early design stages.
16h10Seamless integration of wireless powering in IoT networksdownload presentation (only for members)
Dominique Schreurs, Professor, KU Leuven

Batteryless environmental and health sensors are increasingly appearing in our homes. Therefore, the seamless integration of wireless powering via communication access points is emerging. As the optimal conditions for high-efficient energy harvesting and high-speed data communications diverge, multi-disciplinary challenges are to be tackled, such as TX waveform engineering and IoT node architecture design. This talk will provide an overview of on-going research in this area, and also its embedding in a broader global effort on wireless powering.
16h30Low cost, battery-less localisation based on RF energy harvestingdownload presentation (only for members)
Jan Mennekens, CTO, UWINLOC

In order to accurately track a large number of objects indoor, a low cost location solution is needed. The requirement for a low cost solution with minimal handling overheads necessitates that a battery-less solution be implemented. Since nothing works without energy, energy has to be harvested from the environment.
Here we discuss the fundamental limits and choices that guide the quest for such a harvesting solution, and present a workable solution which can be cost-effectively deployed at very large scale.
16h55Intermittent computing & AI on battery-free devicesdownload presentation (only for members)
Michiel Aernouts, Senior researcher, imec-IDLab-UAntwerp

To increase the sustainability of IoT products, energy harvesting and alternative energy storage solutions are gaining popularity. On the other hand, we expect increasingly complex functionalities from our IoT edge devices. This presentation discusses how the IoBaLeT project addresses this imbalance through resource-aware scheduling for traditional sensing applications, as well as more advanced edge AI algorithms.
17h15Plenary Q&A session
17h30Networking reception
19h00End of the workshop



  • Imec employees and residents: free of charge
  • Employees of Wireless Community members: free of charge
  • User group members of IoBaLeT project: free of charge
  • Others:
    • 80 EUR (excl VAT) early bird until November 30
    • 100 EUR (excl VAT) late registration from December 1

Please fill in your details in this Event Registration Form below and you will be automatically registered.
A few days prior to the event you will receive a confirmation email with all practical details.

Please contact us at wireless-community@imec.be for any question or remark.