Rectennas for RF wireless energy harvesting

Zhang, Jingwei
Rectennas for RF wireless energy harvesting. Doctor of Philosophy thesis, University of Liverpool.

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There is an increasing interest in energy harvesting. The rectenna, which is a combination of a rectifier and an antenna, is a device to harvest wireless energy in the air. This thesis is concentrated on the analysis, design and measurement of compact rectennas for radio frequency (RF) wireless energy harvesting applications, and the thesis can be divided into three parts. The first part is about broadband planar dipole antennas with an unidirectional radiation pattern which is suitable for wireless energy harvesting applications. With the rapid development of various wireless systems, there is a need to have a broadband rectenna for energy collection. The antenna is optimized by changing the dipole shape, diameter, feed gap and the spacing between the antenna and the ground plane. It is shown the optimized antenna has a broad (from 2.8 to at least 12 GHz) with the ability to produce unidirectional radiation pattern. It is a good candidate to form a wideband dual-polarized antenna array for applications such as the wireless power transmission and collection. In addition, a simple rectenna and duel-polarized rectenna arrays are presented. The measurement of the rectenna array is shown that the design has produced the desired DC power with reasonable efficiency. The study is confirmed that the more elements in the array, the higher output voltage although the bandwidth is not as wide as expected because of practical limits. The second part is about a novel wideband cross dipole rectenna for RF wireless energy harvesting. The proposed device consists of a cross dipole antenna, low-pass filter (LPF) and voltage doubling rectifier circuit using Shottcky diodes as rectifying elements. It works over the frequency range from 1.7 to 3 GHz for the reflection coefficient less than -10 dB. Besides, the proposed rectenna can convert the RF energy into DC energy with a good conversion efficiency of up to 75% for high input power density levels (>5 mW/cm^2). In addition, another wideband rectenna built on FR4 substrate is optimized for low input power and the rectenna is optimized, built and measured. A further investigation for the input impedance of rectifier is also conducted. Experimental results demonstrate the rectenna has wideband rectification performance and the maximum rectenna conversion efficiency at 1.7 GHz is more than 50% for the power density of 0.1 mW/cm^2. The third part is about improving rectenna conversion efficiency for low input power density. Increasing the rectenna conversion efficiency for low power density is significant for improving rectenna performance. Currently, there are few of research focused on wideband rectenna arrays for low input power. A new wideband rectenna array with a reflector is developed to increase the rectenna conversion efficiency and output voltage through increasing the gain of the antenna. In addition, two connection methods are used to build the rectenna array and advantages and disadvantages for each method are presented. The RF to DC conversion efficiency of proposed rectenna arrays is much improved for low input power density over a wide bandwidth. This research has produced some important designs and results for wireless energy harvesting, especially in wideband rectennas, and is a solid step towards possible widespread applications of rectennas in the near future.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy)
Additional Information: Date: 2013-09 (completed)
Subjects: ?? TK ??
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Engineering > School of Electrical Engineering, Electronics and Computer Science
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2014 10:32
Last Modified: 16 Dec 2022 04:42
DOI: 10.17638/00018537