Converting Wi-Fi Signals To Electricity With New 2-D Materials

Converting Wi-Fi Signals To Electricity With New 2-D Materials

Everyday we use our gadgets to play games, update our social media accounts, check our emails, and attend online classes or online meetings. All of these activities are made possible because of the internet. The internet that we obtain can be from Wi-Fi or Mobile Data. Most people today use Wi-Fi for a cheaper and wider range of connections. Wireless connectivity, often known as Wi-Fi, is the technology that allows a PC, laptop, mobile phone, or tablet device to connect at high speed to the internet without the need for a physical wired connection. Yes, we often use Wi-Fi mainly to connect to the internet as a means of personal use. However, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) conducted a research about other possible uses of Wi-Fi and they found out that the energy gathered by the Wi-Fi could be converted to electricity with the use of new 2D materials.

The researchers of MIT designed the first fully flexible, battery-free device that converts energy from Wi-Fi signals into electricity. They fere to it as the “rectenna”. It can be used to power flexible and wearable electronics, medical devices, and sensors for the Internet of Things (IoT). The rectenna converts AC electromagnetic waves into DC electricity. This device utilizes a flexible radio-frequency (RF) antenna to obtain electromagnetic waves, including those carrying Wi-Fi signals. It is connected to a novel device made out of a two-dimensional semiconductor just a few atoms thick, which converts the AC signal into a DC voltage.

Paper co-author Tomás Palacios, a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and director of the MIT/MTL Center for Graphene Devices and 2D Systems in the Microsystems Technology Laboratories said, “We have come up with a new way to power the electronics systems of the future — by harvesting Wi-Fi energy in a way that’s easily integrated in large areas — to bring intelligence to every object around us.” This discovery is promising and the researchers are looking into details on how to expand it in the field of electronics, medicine, science laboratories, agriculture, power plants, and military.

Want to know more about this amazing discovery? Just follow this link!

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