This is the first of a series of post that I wrote for the Element14 Beyond the Phone Wireless Design Competition. I’m not going to modify the content in any way, they will be copies of what was posted there.
First, I want to thank Element14, Würth and TI for giving me the opportunity to test their devices. I’m really excited and look forward to get my evaluation kit and start experimenting!
As a sailor, I have always been interested in the application on new technologies to the marine boating industry and it has repeatedly surprised me how long it takes until a new feature gets implemented in a boating product. In my opinion, a main reason therefore is how aggressive the marine environment is. Salt, water and electronics have never been a good mix.
Therefore, Wireless Power offers a perfect solution in order to completely seal our products, reducing the risk of water damage.
My plan is to divide the work for the future months into several sub-projects or parts
1. General Testing:
I would like to start with testing a little bit the development kit and playing around with it. At first, I am thinking of testing efficiency while varying the distance between the coils, the materials between coils and maybe even taking a look at different coils. But it really all depends and I may come up with other parameters to measure. All this has probably been already done and I see it more as a nice way of getting started.
2. PCB Design
I would like to design a PCB with a small footprint with all necessary power management included. This means the wireless power and li-po charging solution, as well as a buck-boost converter to give a nice and stable 3.3V output regardless of battery state. Maybe I could also add even another version with a 5V output.
3. Assembly, Testing and Integration into existing “Product”
Once the board is designed I will get them produced by one of the common PCB fabrication services. After they are home again, I expect to solder them with my latest acquisition/hack, a reflow oven. And then, I will have to test the boards to check that they work as they should. If I still have time I will try to incorporate this design as an add-on to a marine safety product project that I’m currently working on.
So, a lot of work coming in our direction. I’m sure, whatever the result, it will prove as a very interesting experience.
More to come next week!