Tuesday 30 December 2008

Improved Antenna to revolutionise mobile battery life

Atif Shamim, revolutionising mobile battery life

­Atif Shamim, an electronics PhD student at Carleton University, has built a prototype that extends the battery life of mobile phones, by getting rid of all the wires used to connect the electronic circuits with the antenna.

The invention involves a packaging technique to connect the antenna with the circuits via a wireless connection between a micro-antenna embedded within the circuits on the chip.

“This has not been tried before - that the circuits are connected to the antenna wirelessly. They’ve been connected through wires and a bunch of other components. That’s where the power gets lost,” Mr. Shamim said.

He estimates his module consumes 12 times less power than the traditional, wired-transmitter module. It is also much simpler in design, lowering the overall cost of any hand-held device, he said.

Mr. Shamim has filed patent applications in the U.S. and in Canada.

Earlier this year, the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation honoured Mr. Shamim and Mr. Arsalan as student researchers of the year for their work in the field of wireless biomedical sensors.

Shamim says his major goals for the innovation still lie in biomedical applications, including his original radiation sensors as well as remote healthcare sensors to monitor heart-rate, blood pressure and body temperature. He and Arsalan have also started up a company called Vital Signs Monitoring, and the two have already filed patents for the technology they developed. Clearly he has come a long way from when he first came to Canada, but he says his goals are still the same.

"My aim when I came here was to get some real skills in this domain, learn some new things and be an expert of something that would be valuable for me to find employment," said Shamim. "I was looking for a neat application for these small transmitters. ...That's where the trend is: make it cheaper, smaller, more efficient, so I think this is a good step towards that."

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