Thrust IV: Integrated Sensor Node Design and Prototyping

THRUST IV is charged with integrating technologies and components from research thrusts I-III into a complete electrical prototype of a wearable self powered system. This prototype will be ready for packaging and test bed deployment in Thrust V. The heart of the ASSIST node will be a System-on-Chip (SoC) integrated circuit that includes power management and delivery, sensor front end circuits, digital processing and storage, and a radio.

GOAL: Develop integrated sensor node(s) with:

  • Power < 30 μW (excluding sensors) for energy harvesting, and
  • Instantaneous peak power during RF transmission <200 μW.

CHALLENGES:

  • Severe power and energy constraints
  • Numerous independent parts, options, and design teams
  • Heterogeneous technologies

APPROACH:

  • Subthrusts: System design and optimization; Low power computation; Low power communication; Multiscale modeling
  • Cross thrust integration: system modeling; careful interfacing; block level co-design
  • Leverage prior work in ultra low power SoCs, such as below:

Measured result from an energy harvesting ECG node that is acquiring RCG, extracting heart rate, and sending wireless packets every few seconds all at 19 μW. (ISSCC, 2012)