Semiconductor IP News and Trends Blog
Video: Virtual Reality, RF Harvesters, and Lemon Power
In this October issue of “Industry Trends,” John Blyler and Sean O’Kane ponder the possibilities of inner space and thin air (think Dassault Systemes and Imec).
Remember the ’60s Disneyland Tomorrowland ride called the “Adventure through Inner Space?” In this ride, you were shrunk to the size of an atom. Such an experience is now possible with Dassault Systemes’s 3DVIA virtual-reality development system. Wouldn’t this experience prove to be a useful design tool for chip designers and nanotechnology educators?
What if you could pull energy out of thin air? That’s what the folks at Imec have done with their prototype RF energy-harvesting system. This platform is different from today’s electromagnet rechargers (e.g., for toothbrushes) in that it can pull energy from the RF spectrum at significant distances away from the source.
Staying on the theme of ultra-low power, Imec recently demonstrated a lemon-powered CPU. Similar to Intel’s solar/potato-powered processor covered at the Hot Chips show, both CPUs are designed for near-threshold-voltage (NTV) technology. Such NTV designs will be needed to power the multitude of sensors emerging in our ever-connected world.