Energy harvest startup appoints Ubisense founder to chair

January 11, 2017 // By Peter Clarke
Energy harvesting and sensor startup 8power Ltd. (Cambridge, England) has appointed Richard Green as its chairman.

The company was founded in January 2015 by Ashwin Seshia, Professor of microsystems technology at the University at the University of Cambridge, and others to exploit vibration energy harvesting based on parametric resonance which is harvested via MEMS technology. Green is a serial entrepreneur and was co-founder and CEO of Ubisense plc and took it to a stock market listing in 2011.

The 8power technology can produce up to 10 times higher than competing devices and in a trail conducted on the Forth road bridge near Edinburgh a packaged harvester measuring 126 cubic centimeters (roughly equivalent to a package measuring 5cm by 5cm by 5cm) was able to recover, on average, 1mW of AC power from the traffic and wind-induced vibrations on the lateral bracing under the bridge deck.

8power also claims that it can use its technology and MEMS manufacturing to create novel sensor types and that it is possible to combine MEMS parametric resonance harvesters with conventional MEMS sensors in the same package to reduce power consumption to as a little as 10microwatts.

8power was spun out of the University of Cambridge to develop and commercialise novel technology for sensing and measurement in industrial applications and received initial funding of approximately £700,000 in a funding round led by IP Group plc back in June 2016.

Notably Ashwin Seshia has recently co-founded another company Silicon Microgravity Ltd. (Cambridge, England) which has a developed highly accurate MEMS-based gravitational meter. This is based resonant frequency sensing and is differentiated from other MEMS technology – such as that based on capacitive or optical sensing – by being highly sensitive with improved performance at low frequencies.

Related links and articles:

News articles:

MicroGen founder moves on

Startup offers chip-scale solar energy harvester

Piezo-MEMS vibration energy harvesters enable SmartMesh IP wireless sensor network

ST adds piezoelectric MEMS to process portfolio