While we frequently hear about new trends in mobile and wireless technologies, challenges remain, such as the need to charge devices on a stationary device. At the SnT at the University of Luxembourg, Postdoc Sumit Gautam works on solving the future information and energy requirements of wireless devices, via radio frequency (RF)-based techniques.
Through rapid technological progress, we witness new ways and means to make our lives simpler with the help of electronic gadgets. However: Battery-driven user equipment is constrained by battery usage/capacity – the need to recharge is inconvenient. While recent methods involving a coil-based wireless recharging mechanism has brought some convenience from the perspective of plugging in and out of the wire from the charger, the devices are still required to be kept in one place (on top of the charging pad) and users are unable to move freely with the device. The big question is: Can wireless charging be made even more convenient?
“The answer is yes, but with a lot of constraints and limitations at the moment. However, it can be made possible by using the radio-frequency (RF) waves of the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum – the same that we receive from the FM radio-stations, Wi-Fi transmitters, Cellular base-stations, etc.,” Postdoc Sumit Gautam explains.
Sumit is a Postdoc in the SigCom group at the Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT) at the University of Luxembourg.
“My research work aims at proposing small updates to the existing wireless communication systems with subtle modifications to the receivers to carry out the SWIPT mechanism.
“Rigorous research is still required in the domain, but introduction of such methods will bring a lot of convenience in the society. It will also be good for the environment since renewable sources of energy (like wind, solar, etc.,) may be converted into RF-form and be used for recharging the battery-constrained wireless devices.”
Sumit explains that a promising idea for simultaneous wireless radio-frequency (RF) transmission of information and energy has come into the spotlight during the last decade.
“This technique does not only guarantee a more flexible recharging alternative, but also ensures its co-existence with any of the existing (RF-based) or alternatively proposed methods of wireless communications, such as visible light communications (VLC) (e.g., Light Fidelity (Li-Fi)), optical communications (e.g., LASER-equipped communication systems), and far-envisioned quantum-based communication systems. Our research group primarily focuses on wireless communication technologies.
“My work fits well with the research activities of our group since we leverage the existing works in the domain and seek possibilities of designing practical simultaneous wireless information and power transmission (SWIPT) systems.”
Sumit has been involved in the overall project since his PhD, which he started in 2017 and defended in 2020.
“During my PhD, I was working on the same project as I am working now, i.e., InWIP-NET (R-AGR-0700-10). The main objective of the project is the the investigation of InWIP-NETs, where a wireless power transfer network composed of a variety of RF energy sources is incorporated into a heterogeneous wireless information network, in order to deliver on-demand information and power wirelessly in a cost-efficient manner.”
Having only transitioned from PhD to Postdoc early in 2020, Sumit explains being a Postdoc is a completely different experience.
“The Postdoc position is filled with new challenges in form of multi-tasking from not only the project requirements’ perspective, but also research. During the PhD, I was mostly focused on targeting problems and finding solutions with a certain domain of research area. This mechanism becomes multi-disciplinary during the Postdoc, where I should expand my knowledge spanning over various other domains of research. Moreover, there are other additional tasks associated with the Post-doctoral position unlike in the case of a PhD student.”
The FNR supports Sumit’s project via the FNR’s INTER programme, through which the FNR supports Luxembourg researchers in bi/multilateral international collaborations.
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