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Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2012;2012:1675-8. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2012.6346269.

A feed-forward controlled AC-DC boost converter for biomedical implants.

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School of Engineering, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA, USA.


Miniaturization is important to make implants clinic friendly. Wireless power transfer is an essential technology to miniaturize implants by reducing their battery size or completely eliminating their batteries. Traditionally, a pair of inductively-coupled coils operating at radio-frequency (RF) is employed to deliver electrical power wirelessly. In this approach, a rectifier is needed to convert the received RF power to a stable DC one. To achieve high efficiency, the induced voltage of the receiving coil must be much higher than the turn-on voltage of the rectifying diode (which could be an active circuit for low turn-on voltage) [1]. In order to have a high induced voltage, the size of the receiving coil often is significantly larger than rest of the implant. A rotating magnets based wireless power transfer has been demonstrated to deliver the same amount of power at much lower frequency (around 100 Hz) because of the superior magnetic strength produced by rare-earth magnets [2]. Taking the advantage of the low operating frequency, an innovative feed-forward controlled AC to DC boost converter has been demonstrated for the first time to accomplish the following two tasks simultaneously: (1) rectifying the AC power whose amplitude (500 mV) is less than the rectifier's turn-on voltage (1.44 V) and (2) boosting the DC output voltage to a much higher level (5 V). Within a range, the output DC voltage can be selected by the control circuit. The standard deviation of the output DC voltage is less than 2.1% of its mean. The measured load regulation is 0.4 V/kΩ. The estimated conversion efficiency excluding the power consumption of the control circuits reaches 75%. The converter in this paper has the potential to reduce the size of the receiving coil and yet achieve desirable DC output voltage for powering biomedical implants.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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