Learn more about UC TechAlerts – Subscribe to categories and get notified of new UC technologies

Browse Category: Energy > Transmission


[Search within category]

A Battery-Less Wirelessly Powered Frequency-Swept Spectroscopy Sensor

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering have developed a wirelessly powered frequency-swept spectroscopy sensor.

Scalable Manufacturing of Copper Nanocomposites with Tunable Properties

UCLA researchers in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering have developed a cost-effective method to produce copper-based nanocomposites with excellent mechanical, electrical and thermal properties.

A Family Of Hybrid Boosting Voltage Converters

Many industries, such as solar cells and energy storage, will be greatly benefited by high-gain step-up/step-down converters.UCI researchers have developed a family of hybrid boosting converters (HBC) that combine a base bipolar voltage multiplier (BVM) and one of several possible inductive switching cores to address various converter functionalities.

A Family Of Two-Switch Boosting Switched-Capacitor Converters (TBSC)

Switched capacitor converters, which provide high-gain voltage conversion, have drawbacks that have limited their use to specific applications. UCI researchers have developed a family of two-switch boosting switched-capacitor converters (TBSC) that enables the use of switched-capacitor converters in low cost and small-size applications as well as on-chip integration.

Half-Virtual-Half-Physical Microactuator

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have developed a half-virtual-half-physical microactuator that utilizes a combination of computational models and microelectromechanical systems for use in medical devices and mechanical systems.

Method Of Localizing Breakdown In High Power Rf Network

Researchers in the Department of Physics have developed a method for detecting localized electrical breakdowns in high power RF networks.

Clock Power Reduction Utilizing Adiabatic Charging Method Via a Switched-Capacitor Circuit

Normally, charging a capacitive load from a voltage source invokes a ½ CV2 energy penalty. The concept of adiabatic charging, where the capacitor is charged more slowly than nominally afforded by the natural RC time constant of the charging circuit in the pursuit of reducing energy dissipation to below ½ CV2, has been around for decades. However, there has not been any solution to enabling this slow charging phenomenon in a practical, low-overhead embodiment. For example, prior work used separate DC-DC converters to provide multiple voltage levels, or used resonant inductors, both of which invoke significant area overhead.

A CMOS Compatible Fully-Integrated Switched-Domain Power Inverter Circuit

Modern mobile applications strive for the complete integration of all communication systems in CMOS. Unfortunately, it is conventionally difficult to efficiently generate high levels of RF power in scaled CMOS largely due to the inherently low voltage ratings of core transistors. To realize high output power with ~1V transistors, power combining techniques have been proposed whereby the output of several low-voltage power amplifier (PA) cells are combined via inductive transformers. However, power combining relies on ultra-thick metal that still carries large ohmic and substrate losses. These AC-AC losses, combined with the DC-AC losses of the PAs themselves, and the DC-DC losses of the battery-connected power converters, result in limited total transmitter efficiencies. Even modern digital PA techniques such as RF-DACs, digital Doherty, and digital out-phasing, which have been proposed to leverage the excellent switch performance of scaled transistors and offer reconfigurable operation, still require battery-connected DC-DC converters and RF transformers/power combiners, both of which result in cascaded losses.

Operation Frequency Band Customizable and Frequency Tunable Filters with EBG substrate

The technology relates to cavity resonators and filters for improved processing of electromagnetic signals. Specifically, the invention is a cavity resonator or filter that is constructed on electromagnetic bandgap substrate that includes an external controlling assemble can change the work frequency of the cavity resonator or filter. This enables device access to frequencies with a very broad range.

Improved Energy Harvesting for Current-Carrying Conductors

There are an estimated 130 million wooden poles that support overhead power lines in the US.  Extreme weather, aging, storms or sabotage can all lead to potential damage of these poles and power lines, which can leave large areas without basic necessities.  Due to this risk, it’s anticipated that power utility companies will deploy sensors and corresponding energy harvesters to better respond to potential damage of this critical electricity grid infrastructure. To address this anticipated mass deployment of sensors and harvesters, researchers at UC Berkeley have developed technology improvements to harvesting of electrical energy from energized conductors carrying alternating currents, such as those on overhead and underground power lines (as well as power-supplying conductors in offices and dwellings).  These enhanced harvesters would improve the economics of deploying sensors across a national power grid.  The Berkeley harvesters can readily provide enough power to supply wireless communication devices, energy storage batteries and capacitors, as well as sensors such as accelerometers, particulate matter measuring devices, and atmospheric sensors.

A Highly-Efficient Near-Field Wireless Power Transfer System That Is Immune To Distance And/Or Coupling-Coefficient Variations

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering have developed a novel design for a wireless power transfer system. This new design is optimized to function stably over a greater and variable distance than current systems and to function with a higher efficiency.

Signal Statistics Compression-Based Quantization Method in an ADC

The technology is a new architecture for analog-to-digital converters (ADCs).Its properties include the use of unique signal statistics compression quantization technique, lower power than other ADC techniques, no degradation of effective number of bits and conversion rate, and automatic adaption to power-optimized state of input signal.With this technology, users will be able to produce more power efficient ADCs

Methods for Fabrication of Electric Propulsion Tips

The technology is a method for fabrication of silicon microfabricated emitter tips.This process has two-step etching process which utilizes field emission electric propulsion (FEEP) and indium propellant.

Processing Spinel-Less Thermal Barrier Coating Systems

This invention, intended for use in the processing of turbine engine blades’ thermal barrier coatings, is a two-step procedure used to produce a thermally grown oxide that is completely devoid of lifetime-limiting spinel oxides. Both steps take place at the same temperature used in present day bond coat pre-oxidation, utilize everyday gases, and can be performed serially in the same furnace, in a matter of hours. In step one, pre-oxidation of a bond-coated blade yields a thermally grown oxide (TGO) layer that contains a limited amount of spinel. In step two, all spinel is removed in situ. In an industrial-scale setup, the entire process would take place in less than 24 hours, including ramp times to and from the exposure temperature. Once blade specimens are cooled and removed from the furnace, they are then ready to be coated with the thermally protective yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) layer, using industry-standard techniques. Due to the nature of the process, no new spinel is expected to grow at the critical TGO–YSZ interface for as long as the part operates in service, which means that the blade will be completely spinel-less for its entire usable lifetime. By eliminating all spinel-related failure mechanisms, this may result in longer blade lifetimes and therefore significant cost reduction.

Thermal Devices for Controlling Heat Transfer

The technology is a heat transfer device. The key properties are a unidirectional heat flow, thin, sandwich structure, and a T-dependent thermal resistance. The technology functions via the heat pipe effect. The purpose of the technology is to provide a one-way heat flow in a compact form (in a thin layer) with T-dependent thermal resistance.

Silicon On Sapphire Based Plasmonic And Metasuraface Design For Optical Light Manipulation

The technology is a high contrast optical grating.It features patterned silicon on sapphire and is designed for a broad range of optical frequencies: from visible to far infrared with ultra-high reflectivity.The technology can be tailored to mimic mirrors and other optical components.

GaN-based Vertical Metal Oxide Semiconductor and Junction Field Effect Transistors

The first true vertical GaN-based transistors, where gating is also performed on electrons traveling perpendicular to the surface in a vertical channel.

A Robust Hybrid Control Algorithm for a Single-Phase DC/AC Inverter

Future energy distribution systems must be capable of interconnecting highly variable sources of electricity into the existing grid. The development of “Smart Grid” is needed due to increasing electricity demands and the need regulate input power sources. A particular challenge already impacting deployment of diverse renewable electric sources is the need to regulate the highly variable power these sources generate. While single-phase DC/AC inverters using Pulse WIdth Modulation (PWM) are one of the most common topologies used in power conversion, PWM is not robust with respect to changes in the DC input voltage. PWM also suffers from harmonic distortions that are less and less acceptable to downstream consumers of the power. One of the main shortcomings of converters controlled by PWM-based algorithms is that they are not robust to changes in the input DC voltage, which limits their use in renewable energy applications.

Microstructured Cathode for Self-Regulated Oxygen Generation and Consumption

UCLA researchers have developed a cathode that generates oxygen, consumes the oxygen as needed, and stops the oxygen generation when it is not consumed, all in a self-regulated fashion.

Method For Dynamic Intelligent Load Balancing

Brief description not available

Vertical Heterostructures for Transistors, Photodetectors, and Photovoltaic Devices

The Duan group at UCLA has developed a high current density vertical field-effect transistor (VFET) that benefits from the strengths of the incorporated layered materials yet addresses the band gap problem found in current graphene technologies.

Floating-Non Contact Wireless Voltage Sensor For High-Voltage Transmission Lines

The present invention relates to a new voltage sensor that would allow for an economical way to achieve distributed monitoring of the nation’s power line infrastructure without posing a hazard to field operators.

Dynamically Adjusting Piezoelectric AC Current Sensors and Energy Scavengers

There is strong commercial potential in the use of piezoelectric crystals for AC electricity sensors and in energy scavenging from nearby energized conductors. However, the widespread adoption of piezoelectrics in these applications is predicated on low cost of ownership including long lifecycles that don't require maintenance -- such as replacing batteries or failed parts. Therefore, improving the duration of the no-maintenance lifecycle of this technology strengthens its market potential for broad commercial penetration. To address this opportunity, researchers at UC Berkeley have developed a means of dynamically adjusting the operating properties of piezoelectric crystals used in AC electricity sensing and energy scavenging applications. This dynamic adjustment reduces the fatigue of piezoelectric crystals thereby promoting a longer lifecyle. In addition, the dynamic adjustments are implemented via circuit means -- instead of mechanical means that require relatively substantial power.

  • Go to Page: