• low power components
  • less moving parts.. , etc+
  • electron conservation

for remote sensors, recent technologies like wifi (802.11) or bluetooth are often considered. some examples of power consumption:

however, when only transmission is required, there are RF transmitters that seem much more efficient

  • this RF AM transmitter module draws only 6mA while transmitting. (http://www.abacom-tech.com/data_sheets/ATX-433-IAuser.pdf) however, there is often only a choice of 3 or so different frequencies, which will raise problems when there are multiple sensors transmitting at once. the transmitters used in remote controlled cars somehow get around this (multiple channels per car, multiple drivers per race), how? (as in, is it possible to use get the modules on their own?)

cables vs air

  • microchip (makers of the PIC) have a single chip ethernet driver IC (ENC28J60) that can do 10mbps. surprisingly, this consumes 250mA during normal operation. so, over the kinds of distances where cables appear to be a possibility, wireless is probably going to use less power.
  • on the other hand, if you can handle doing serial, the max232 serial driver IC consumes about 10mA.

any research into low power electronics would need some method of measuring power consumption. a simple multimeter can measure current drain at an instant, but with most computing devices, the drain varies over time (changing sleep modes etc). what would be good is either a device that can measure the average current drain over a longer period of time, or even better, to graph the power drain. there are many digital multimeters with rs232 interfaces and some that are supported under linux.

—- Libarynth > Main Web > LowPowerElectronics r9 - 31 Mar 2007 - 22:40

  • low_power_electronics.txt
  • Last modified: 2014-09-23 16:06
  • by nik