Harnessing Energy from Radio Waves

Freevolt is an energy-harvesting technology that turns radio waves into usable electricity to charge lowpower electronic devices for the Internet of Things.

Freevolt is a technology that harvests ambient radio frequency energy from broadcast, mobile, and wi-fi networks – energy that currently goes to waste – to produce small amounts of electricity. This enables a range of low-power Internet of Things devices to be perpetually powered. The Freevolt harvester comprises a multi-band antenna and rectifier capable of absorbing energy from multiple radio frequency bands at almost any orientation.
The small, lightweight design is scalable and suitable for a range of uses, from the low-power Internet of Things, such as wearables, sensors, and beacons,to built environments, with the potential to integrate Freevolt into the fabric of urban and industrial architecture. The first commercial application of Freevolt is the CleanSpace Tag, a personal air pollution smart sensor providing users with insight into the quality of the air they breathe.

Relevance of solution

Billions of low-energy Internet of Things devices will be deployed over the coming years,1 all of which require a dedicated power source or battery. By harnessing energy from radio frequency waves, Freevolt is designed to extend the battery life of low-power IoT devices indefinitely, or to vastly extend the time between battery swaps, thereby reducing the economic cost and environmental impact of changing batteries.

Triple Bottom Line

Environmental

The Freevolt harvester operates at up to 40% efficiency without the use of so-called dedicated transmitters, which makes it effective for low-power devices.

Social

Freevolt enables the cable-free installation of connected devices in hard-to-reach or dangerous locations, bringing off -grid charging to rural markets.

Economic

The use of connected devices by business is predicted to drive $868 billion in hardware spending in 2016.2 Freevolt offers a more cost-effective way of charging, installing, and maintaining batteries for this multitude of devices.


Sources

  1. Gartner. ”Gartner Says 6.4 Billion Connected ‘Things’ Will Be in Use in 2016, Up 30 Percent From 2015.” (2015)
  2. Ibid. ()