Creating a Soft and Stretchable Wireless Power System
Soft biomaterials such as human skin have very different mechanical properties from conventional electronics, requiring unusual materials and geometries to match the behavior of the skin. One of the biggest challenges in stretchable electronics is the transfer of power and data signals, with physical wiring easily pulled out or damaged. In my talk, I will be discussing all aspects of creating inductors and power circuits for wireless power transfer to stretchable systems. I will focus on the use of room temperature liquid metals and stretchable magnetic materials to maximize power transfer efficiency and distance while retaining the ability to stretch by tens or hundreds of percent. Using these approaches, we demonstrate new records in performance, from stretchable inductors with quality factors as high as 174 to power systems with transfer efficiency as high as 92% to a stretchable system. I conclude with our recent demonstration of the use of strongly coupled magnetic resonance (SCMR) to transmit power efficiently to a stretchable inductor at distances of more than a coil diameter.