SBIR Phase II: Energy Storage, Electrical Distribution, and Packaging for Wireless Sensor Networks
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
Potomac Photonics Inc
4445 Nicole Drive, Lanham, MD, 20706-4352
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research Phase II Project targets development of a new approach to building wireless sensor infrastructure ? energy storage systems, electrical distribution, and packaging - that allows dramatic miniaturization of wireless sensor nodes, eliminates most restrictions on their shape and is environmentally-friendly. Accomplishing these goals requires development of innovative new approaches to fabrication of mesoscale electronic circuitry and thin film energy storage batteries. Laser-based approaches to making very fine feature conductor patterns, vias, and mechanical structures in a variety of organic and inorganic materials commonly used in the electronics industry will be utilized. New battery chemistry will also be refined to allow fabrication of miniature, flexible, thin film batteries with energy storage densities substantially exceeding those of any battery currently on the market. Together these innovations will allow nearly an order of magnitude reduction in volume of wireless sensing devices. Combination of the laser processing and battery technologies developed in this project will offer an approach to miniaturization of almost any wireless sensor that is easily adaptable to most sensor designs. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project will be found in many areas of everyday life. After an extended incubation period, wireless sensing networks are experiencing a surge of market growth. A market opportunity for more than 100 million sensor nodes is projected for 2019. Potential applications come from areas as diverse as infrastructure monitoring for bridges, roadways and pipelines, lighting and HVAC control in buildings, electrical metering, parking management, patient monitoring, elderly care, seismic sensors, industrial process control, crop water management, and home automation. In the health care area alone, wireless sensor networks could potentially produce and estimated $25 billion savings world wide. Feasibility of many potential applications will be strongly influenced by the availability of miniaturized sensor nodes with suitable form factors that can be operated without maintenance for extended periods. Targeting miniaturization and power sources, the proposed project addresses and solves key historical bottlenecks in sensor network implementation. It will have a significant impact on these large developing markets, as well as spin-off applications in medical and consumer electronics.
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