NGK INSULATORS, LTD., announced that it has commenced collaboration with Renesas Electronics Corporation, on promoting the widespread adoption of maintenance-free IoT devices. As the first phase of collaboration, NGK and Renesas jointly-developed a reference design for a wireless air quality sensing system that will contribute to the realization of a decarbonized society. The system was developed by combining NGK’s EnerCera battery series and Renesas’ RE Family of ultra-low power microcontrollers (MCUs).
Data collection and utilization are considered to be the most effective means of realizing a productive life or addressing social issues. Meanwhile, actions to achieve the decarbonization of society have been gathering momentum on a global basis. For example, Japan and many other countries around the world have adopted the goal of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Therefore, these countries will be required to reduce their power consumption even as they deploy numerous IoT devices for data collection purposes. To realize such a society, there is a need to develop maintenance-free IoT devices that can be powered by trace amounts of electric power obtainable from energy sources in the environment, such as peripheral light, heat, and vibration energy. It also requires for a device that do not require battery replacement.
EnerCera battery series is a lithium-ion rechargeable battery featuring a high capacity, low resistance, and long life despite having a compact, ultra-thin body. EnerCera battery series is ideal as a power source for maintenance-free IoT devices, since it can efficiently charge itself with a weak current and output an intermittent large current to drive functions such as sensing and communication. To power a device with the electric power stored in the battery, an MCU that links the battery with sensor ICs, communication ICs, and other components is needed. For this reason, NGK has developed a reference design for promoting the widespread adoption of maintenance-free IoT devices, together with Renesas’ RE Family MCUs that realize industry-leading ultra-low power consumption.