SeeSaw – Nova Tecnologia de Sensores Passivos Baseados em Ondas Acústicas de Superfície (QREN 21634).
Partners: DETI (Department of Electronics, Telecommunications and Informatics Engineering) University of Aveiro, ISA (Intelligent Sensing Anywhere, Coimbra). IT doesn’t participate directly, but there are 3 members of IT in the consortium.
Key words: SAW, Sensor, wireless, passive
Most recent technological innovations are based upon the capacity to “feel” various physical variables from the surroundings. In order to improve a building’s energy efficiency, it is necessary to know in detail the values of temperature, humidity, within the building. That data is a crucial part of the following digital processing phases.
It is necessary to make that value of each measurement reach the central processing unit. Currently, that can, broadly, be done through electrical wires or through radio waves. The use of wires is generally cumbersome, since it requires the creation of physical pathways for passing the cable. Using wireless sensors, even if more practical, creates the need for an electronic radio interface, placed near the sensor, requiring batteries.
Surface Acoustic Wave technology (SAW), which is the focus of this project, provides an alternative to both wired sensors and powered wireless sensors. SAW sensors can be inquired by a simple RF wave, and it answers with another RF wave, The response RF wave can be remotely captured by an “interrogator” electronic circuit. By appropriately designing the semiconductor element, it is possible to make it such that the radio signal change becomes correlated with physical variables. The interrogator circuit can thus come to know the physical conditions at the remote sensor’s location. However, the sensor is a strictly passive component, with no need for wired or battery power.
Given the vested interest that Intelligent Sensing Anywhere has within the domain of remote telemetry, SAW technology opens a whole new world of possibilities for the remote monitoring of physical variables. SAW technology is thus a strategic bet for ISA, which, in conjunction with Aveiro University, aims to incorporate this body of scientific and technological knowledge within its line of telemetry products.