Ongoing projects

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CODE-TRACK: Control theory tools for Optimal Design of piezoelectric Energy harvesters devoted to birds Tracking devices

Funded by the French National Agency for Research (ANR), CODE-TRACK is to develop new electrical power source permitting novel generation of tracking devices with unrivalled features: i) volume and weight radically small allowing to equip less than 400 grams weighted birds while respecting the mass criteria, ii) autonomy extremely high (calculated for the bird entire life), iii) a new class of power density nowadays unreachable by the same technology, iv) robustness, and v) safety and harmlessness for the equipped animal thanks to the reduced sizes and weights. The idea is to harvest the vibrational energy generated by the flapping wings and the natural movements of the bird and to transform it into electricity thanks to piezoelectric transduction, i.e. vibrational piezoelectric energy harvesters (vPEH), embedded in the tracking device. To reach the required power for supplying the tracking devices, the scientific approach of the project consists in using control theory tools to yield a systematic and methodological design of the vPEH. On the basis of pre­defined criterias in term of sizes and power, optimal and interval techniques as well as related algorithms will be explored to provide one or several solutions of mechanical structures of the harvesters. Radically new relative to other methods in the literature for improving vPEH performance, this approach will permit to propose a power density exceeding the actual limitation. The project involves FEMTO-ST Institute and the League for the protection of birds (LPO).

Coordinator: Micky Rakotondrabe (FEMTO-ST). Partners: FEMTO-ST, LPO. Duration: 2018-2022.

ENHANCE - Piezoelectric Energy Harvesters for Self-Powered Automotive Sensors: from Advanced Lead-Free Materials to Smart Systems

ENHANCE is an Innovative Training Network (ITN) European project. It has the objective to create an interdisciplinary, structured programme to form 13 young PhD researchers that will carry out their research both in universities and industry partners. The research topics focus on energy harvesters "for Self-Powered Automotive Sensors: from Advanced Lead-Free Materials to Smart Systems". ENHANCE creates a multidisciplinary joint research activity, implying chemistry, materials science, physics, mechanics, engineering and electronics.

The ENHANCE project brings together 7 European universities and 7 industrial partners in cutting-edge hybrid systems science spanning from materials to end-user products. They will efficiently join their research efforts in chemistry, materials science, physics, mechanics, engineering and electronics to overcome the present technical limitations in enabling harvesters with high-power density, offering stabilized output voltage and the ability to adapt this technology to specific needs of sensors with high autonomy and working in high temperature ranges.

Coordinator: Ausrine Bartasyte (FEMTO-ST). Duration: 2017-2021.