iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






News Archive

 « Previous Day News Archive Next Day » 


Implanted Microgenerator To Harvest Human Energy

Matsushita Launches Mass Production Of Safer Lithium-ion Batteries

Implanted Microgenerator To Harvest Human Energy

A UK-based consortium of companies today announced that it is developing an in-body microgenerator that will convert energy from human body movement into power for implanted medical devices, including pacemakers, electrical stimulators, instrumented joints and body area network applications. The project, led by Zarlink Semiconductor, has received £500,000 in funding from the UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), which will be match-funded by the consortium.

Today, batteries in implanted medical devices have a limited lifespan, some needing replacement within seven to 10 years depending on use. Increasing clinical applications, for example wireless monitoring of cardiac pacemakers, and the continuous drive to design less obtrusive implanted devices, is placing further strains on battery operating lifetimes.

While some implanted device batteries can be externally recharged, more commonly the patient must undergo a time-consuming and costly surgical replacement of the entire device. It is estimated that surgical replacement of a cardiac pacemaker can cost up to £10,000.

The two-year SIMM (self-energizing implantable medical micro system) project will prototype a device capable of harvesting energy from movement in or on the body, including joint movement and heartbeats. Body energy will be harvested by means of a microgenerator manufactured as a MEMS (micro-electrical-mechanical system). This prototype design is expected to achieve 10-100 times more power than previous attempts to harvest human energy.

The multi-disciplinary consortium is made up of six companies chosen for their core engineering skill, product exploitation potential and clinical excellence. The group consists of:

  • Finsbury Orthopaedics – a leading UK specialist in the design, development, manufacture and supply of advanced joint replacement products;
  • Innos – the UK’s leading research and development company for innovations in nanoscale technology will manage silicon fabrication of the device;
  • InVivo Technology – will help establish the clinical acceptability and feasibility of a number of proposed energy capture mechanisms;
  • Odstock Medical – will utilise the technology developed in the FES (functional electrical stimulation) marketplace;
  • Perpetuum Ltd. – will provide kinetic energy-harvesting microgenerator technology;
  • Zarlink Semiconductor – will provide advanced micro-packaging techniques at Zarlink’s microelectronics facility in Caldicot, South Wales.

A proof of concept prototype as a result of the project is expected to be released in 2007. To learn more about the SIMM project, please visit: www.implantgen.com.

Source: Zarlink Semiconductor

Matsushita Launches Mass Production Of Safer Lithium-ion Batteries

Matsushita Electric Industrial today announced that one of its subsidiaries, Matsushita Battery Industrial, has established a mass-production system for a lithium-ion battery that incorporates the technology to ensure safety. The company began shipping the industry's first 2.9 Ah high-capacity batteries in April this year and is now ready to mass-produce the products.

MBI has succeeded in improving the safety by forming a heat resistance layer (HRL) consisting of an insulating metal oxide on the surface of the electrodes. Lithium-ion batteries contain a thin polyolefin (generic name of plastic such as polyethylene and polypropylene) separator to insulate the cathode from the anode. When a separator is pierced by an electrically conductive material such as a metal particle, a short-circuit develops, causing the battery to overheat and, in the worst case, catch fire. The HRL used in the Panasonic battery, however, has better insulating and heat-resistant characteristics than polyolefin. Even if a short-circuit occurs, it will cease without causing the battery to overheat.

The HRL technology has enabled MBI to increase energy density and mass-produce safer lithium-ion batteries.

MBI has taken measures to prevent lithium-ion batteries from contaminating with electrically conductive materials by eliminating foreign substances from battery materials and creating a clean environment in the battery factory. Considering contamination with such substances, the company has adopted stronger separators and thermally stable materials. Demand for more safety and capacity, however, called for the development of a new technology. The HRL is a product of MBI's research and development of battery technology and its focus on safety as a first priority.

Matsushita holds 119 patents including pending patent applications with regard to the system.

Source: Matsushita Electric Industrial

 « Previous Day News Archive Next Day » 

Write a comment below. No registration needed!

blog comments powered by Disqus

  Most Popular Reviews More    RSS  

AMD Phenom II X4 955, Phenom II X4 960T, Phenom II X6 1075T, and Intel Pentium G2120, Core i3-3220, Core i5-3330 Processors

Comparing old, cheap solutions from AMD with new, budget offerings from Intel.
February 1, 2013 · Processor Roundups

Inno3D GeForce GTX 670 iChill, Inno3D GeForce GTX 660 Ti Graphics Cards

A couple of mid-range adapters with original cooling systems.
January 30, 2013 · Video cards: NVIDIA GPUs

Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Surround 5.1

An external X-Fi solution in tests.
September 9, 2008 · Sound Cards

AMD FX-8350 Processor

The first worthwhile Piledriver CPU.
September 11, 2012 · Processors: AMD

Consumed Power, Energy Consumption: Ivy Bridge vs. Sandy Bridge

Trying out the new method.
September 18, 2012 · Processors: Intel
  Latest Reviews More    RSS  

i3DSpeed, September 2013

Retested all graphics cards with the new drivers.
Oct 18, 2013 · 3Digests

i3DSpeed, August 2013

Added new benchmarks: BioShock Infinite and Metro: Last Light.
Sep 06, 2013 · 3Digests

i3DSpeed, July 2013

Added the test results of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 and AMD Radeon HD 7730.
Aug 05, 2013 · 3Digests

Gainward GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST 2GB Golden Sample Graphics Card

An excellent hybrid of GeForce GTX 650 Ti and GeForce GTX 660.
Jun 24, 2013 · Video cards: NVIDIA GPUs

i3DSpeed, May 2013

Added the test results of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770/780.
Jun 03, 2013 · 3Digests
  Latest News More    RSS  

Platform  ·  Video  ·  Multimedia  ·  Mobile  ·  Other  ||  About us & Privacy policy  ·  Twitter  ·  Facebook

Copyright © Byrds Research & Publishing, Ltd., 1997–2011. All rights reserved.