There is always going to be talk about charging your devices and there is always ideas and gadgets to help do this,NFC if one way which is wireless and we recently spoke about battery anxiety on RTE with the Consumer Show about alternative methods to keep our devices charged.Now WI-Fi tech is here to help in the near future.Until then we may stick with charging banks,USB and our humble wall plug..
US engineers recently developed technology known as ‘ambient backscatter’ that taps into Wi-Fi signals and transforms it into power – and have now created a prototype router.
During trials, these so-called PoWiFi routers powered battery-free cameras 17ft (5 metres) away and did so without interfering with the homeowners’ web speeds.The technology was first showcased by researchers at Washington University in August but lead engineer Shyam Gollakota recently demonstrated the prototype router at the EmTech Digital conference.
Ambient backscatter transforms existing wireless signals into both a source of power and a communication medium.It enables two battery-free devices to communicate by backscattering existing wireless signals.Since it uses the ambient radio frequency signals that are already around us, it doesn’t require a dedicated power infrastructure.The router used in the tests sent out radio waves which was then converted into a direct current voltage using what’s known as a ‘rectifier.’ A DC-DC converter was then used to increase the voltage level of the signal to match the requirements of the sensor or microcontroller.
Eventually, the technology could lead to networks of devices and sensors that send data by reflecting existing signals to exchange information, without the need for batteries.