Welcome to the EnHANTs Project!
In this project we are developing Energy-Harvesting Active Networked Tags (EnHANTs). EnHANTs are small, flexible, and energetically self-reliant devices that can be attached to objects that are traditionally not networked (e.g., books, furniture, walls, doors, toys, keys, clothing, and produce), thereby providing the infrastructure for various novel tracking applications. Examples of these applications include locating misplaced items, continuous monitoring of objects (items in a store, boxes in transit), and determining locations of disaster survivors.
Recent advances in ultra-low-power wireless communications, ultra-wideband (UWB) circuit design, and organic electronic harvesting techniques will enable the realization of EnHANTs in the near future. In order for EnHANTs to rely on harvested energy, they have to spend significantly less energy than Bluetooth, Zigbee, and IEEE 802.15.4a devices. Moreover, the harvesting components and the ultra-low-power physical layer have special characteristics whose implications on the higher layers have yet to be studied (e.g., when using ultra-low-power circuits, the energy required to receive a bit is significantly higher than the energy required to transmit a bit).
The objective of the project is to design hardware, algorithms, and software to enable the realization of EnHANTs. This interdisciplinary project includes 5 PIs in the departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Columbia University with expertise in energy-harvesting devices and techniques, ultra-low power integrated circuits, and energy efficient communications and networking protocols.
The project is supported in part by:
Five different publications and presentations have been recently contributed by different members of the EnHANTs project:
- ACM MobiHoc 2014: A paper authored by Jelena Marasevic, Cliff Stein and Gill Zussman titled “Max-min Fair Rate Allocation and Routing in Energy Harvesting Networks: Algorithmic Analysis,” will be presented in the upcoming ACM MobiHoc 2014 conference to be held in August 2014 in Philadelphia, PA.
- IEEE ISIT 2014: A paper authored by Zhe Wang, Vaneet Aggarwal and Xiaodong Wang titled "Optimal Energy-Bandwidth Allocation for Energy Harvesting Interference Networks," was recently presented in the IEEE ISIT conference held in Honolulu, HI in June 2014.
- ACM MobiSys 2014: An extended abstract by Robert Margolies titled “The Internet of Tags: Energy-harvesting adaptive algorithms,” was recently presented at the PhD Forum of ACM MobiSys 2014 in June 2014 in Bretton Woods, NH.
- IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits: A paper co-authored by Baradwaj Vigraham and Peter Kinget titled "A Self-dutycycled and Synchronized UWB Pulse-Radio Receiver SoC with Automatic Threshold-Recovery Based Demodulation,” has been published in the March 2014 issue of IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits.
- GE Student Research Summit: A poster titled “Energy Harvesting Active Networked Tags (EnHANTs) Prototype Development” will be presented by Earvin Caceres in the upcoming GE Student Research Summit to be held in August 2014 in Niskayuna, NY.
M. Gorlatova, J. Sarik, G. Grebla, M. Cong, I. Kymissis, and G. Zussman, Movers and Shakers: Kinetic Energy Harvesting for the Internet of Things, in Proc. ACM SIGMETRICS '14, June 2014
The paper focuses on human and object motion energy availability and properties in commonplace Internet of Things scenarios. It examines the properties of common human motions (walking, running, bicycling) using a 40-participant human motion dataset that was collected in the past for activity recognition purposes. Additionally, it examines kinetic energy availability associated with normal human routines. This examination is based on over 200 hours of acceleration information associated with human daily routines that was collected as part of this study (the collected dataset is available via the CRAWDAD repository). It also demonstrates unexpectedly low energy availability associated with some high-amplitude periodic object motions. Finally, it describes and evaluates energy allocation algorithms for a wearable energy harvesting devices that take into account practical design considerations.
EnHANTs Students Mina Cong, Tingjun Chen, Craig Gutterman, Baradwaj Vigraham, and Aya Wallwater Receive Honors and Awards!
It is our great pleasure to announce a number of end-of-the-year awards to our current and past EnHANTs project members.
- Mina Cong received the Department Research Award - "Awarded by the Faculty of Electrical Engineering to one outstanding graduating senior who has demonstrated outstanding passion and accomplishment in research."
- Tingjun Chen received the Wei Family Foundation Fellowship. This competitive fellowship is awarded to 2 students among all students of Chinese heritage who applied to the Ph.D. program in the Electrical Engineering department. The fellowship will fund a substantial part of Tingjun's stipend and fellowship.
- Craig Gutterman received the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. The fellowship recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines. In addition, Craig received the M.S. Award of Excellence - awarded to the top 3% of the Electrical Engineering M.S. students.
- Baradwaj Vigraham, who recently defended his Ph.D., received the Collaborative Research Award - “This award is presented to Ph.D. candidates who make a superb contribution to a collaborative research effort.”
- Aya Wallwater received the Presidential Teaching Award – “This award honors outstanding graduate student teachers for the influence they have on the development of their students and their part in maintaining the University’s longstanding reputation for educational excellence.”
Acceleration traces that we collected from 5 participants which include over 200 recorded hours are now available online. These measurements can be used to asses the energy that can be harvested with kinetic energy harvesters and can be used as inputs to simulators and emulators.
The measurement study is summarized in the ACM SIGMETRICS paper below and was highlighted in the MIT Technology Review Physics ArXiv Blog in July 2013.
M. Gorlatova, J. Sarik, G. Grebla, M. Cong, I. Kymissis, and G. Zussman, Movers and Shakers: Kinetic Energy Harvesting for the Internet of Things, in Proc. ACM SIGMETRICS '14 (to appear) June 2014
The traces are also available via the CRAWDAD repository.
The EnHANTs demo was presented by Robert Margolies and Earvin Caceres in a demo session of the NYC Media Lab Mobile Futures event in the Razorfish Headquarters located in Times Square, New York. Following the demo session Prof. Gil Zussman participated in a panel and discussed the future of the Internet of Things (IoT) and EnHANTs as one of the enablers of IoT. The event received a lot of attention in the social media.