Q. Will energy harvesting be the primary area of research for attempts at reducing power consumption?
A. One of the advances that we see in this area is the need for extremely low power to power up these sensors and associated electronics, especially with the emergence of the IoT. While several new advances are being made in terms of how to reduce power consumption for sensors, the signal chain, the processor and wireless sensor networks, energy harvesting is the trend that is attracting major research funds. The idea is to see if energy could be harvested in the field to power up these remote sensors and edge-nodes of the IoT.
Q. What kinds of technologies are currently available for harvesting energy?
A. Wherever we put an integrated chip between a hot and a cold area, we can look at harvesting energy from a temperature difference standpoint. Energy can also be harvested from vibrations and movements. Ambient light sensors are another area to look at. Energy transmission and storage plays a key role here. So our focus is on building energy transmission and harvesting devices.