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'Near-Zero-Power' Temperature Sensor Could Make Wearables, Smart Home Devices Less Power-Hungry

The temperature sensor is integrated into a small chip measuring 0.15 × 0.15 square millimeters in area (about the size of Lincoln's nose on a penny).

The temperature sensor is integrated into a small chip measuring 0.15 × 0.15 square millimeters in area (about the size of Lincoln's nose on a penny).

July 31, 2017 | Source: University of California San Diego, jacobschool.ucsd.edu, 30 June 2017, Liezel Labios

Electrical engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a temperature sensor that runs on only 113 picowatts of power — 628 times lower power than the state of the art and about 10 billion times smaller than a watt. This "near-zero-power" temperature sensor could extend the battery life of wearable or implantable devices that monitor body temperature, smart home monitoring systems, Internet of Things devices and environmental monitoring systems.

The technology could also enable a new class of devices that can be powered by harvesting energy from low-power sources, such as the body or the surrounding environment.