Guided-Wave Powered Wireless Sensors

Tech ID: 31988 / UC Case 2019-329-0


UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering have developed a wirelessly powered, flexible sensor that detects pipe leaks over long distances.


While the problem of old and failing pipes has garnered attention, the methods for addressing such failing infrastructure has lagged. Monitoring leaks via sensors on pipe external surfaces could provide constant, real-time monitoring with minimal effort. There is a need for monitoring leaking pipes in the natural gas and petroleum industry.


Researchers in the UCLA Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering have developed a sensor that wirelessly detects pipe leaks over long distances. The sensor uses guided waves with low attenuation to wirelessly power the sensors. Moreover, the wirelessly powered energy harvesting chips are flexible, compact and readily fit to cylindrical pipe surfaces.


  • Monitoring wellbore casing integrity in oil/gas wells 
  • Detect corrosion, change in pH, cracks on pipe external surfaces 
  • Wirelessly powered sensors for pipe leak detection


  • Wirelessly powered, no need for battery
  • Detection over long distances
  • Flexible
  • Compact
  • Readily fits to pipe surfaces

Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
Patent Cooperation Treaty Reference for National Filings WO 2021/138268 07/08/2021 2019-329

Patent Pending


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  • Babakhani, Aydin

Other Information


Waveguides, wave propagation, wirelessly powered micro-sensors, wirelessly powered energy harvesting chips, oil and gas leak detection

Categorized As