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A Smart energy-harvesting platform for underground IoT devices

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About This PhD Project

Project Description

Reference Number: SciEng-UR-2018-1

Project Summary:
This research will look at Energy Harvesting Technology (EHT) for underground utilities monitoring systems as it is still in the early stages because of the lack of the sources of power. The available lifetime of the battery used by the current automated Manhole Cover (MC) monitoring systems is about one year (for not fully automated systems). By increasing, the number of sensors required to reach fully automated MC monitoring the lifetime of the battery will decrease. Also for IoT-based underground utilities monitoring it is essential to have encryption systems to secure the information acquired, which need more complex algorithms that consume more power. This proposal will investigate the various different sources of energy for powering IoT devices used in underground utilities monitoring. Based on the findings a smart platform needs to be designed/modelled and simulated to use several methods for energy harvesting simultaneously to guarantee the acceptable amount of energy that can extend the lifetime for the IOT-based underground utilities monitoring. It is envisaged that an implementation testbed will be developed at the end.

Specific Requirements of the Project


● Hardware
– Analogue/ Digital Electronics circuit Design
– Arduino/PIC/Raspberry Pi Microcontrollers
– Power Supplies/ Signal Generators/Oscilloscopes/Soldering
● Software
– Simulation software
• Matlab/Simulink
– Programing in C/C++, Java
– Some background/interest in would be beneficial
• Internet of things, smart cities
• Energy harvesting
• AI techniques, algorithms
● Team
– You will work with academic members of staff from the Engineering at MMU
– Possibility to work with other academic institutes and industrial partner on this project.

Project Aims and Objectives


This research will involve
• To perform a comprehensive critical evaluation of the current underground energy sources and EHS Methods/models and select the most viable ones for further testing.
• To carry out a comprehensive critical evaluation of the current EH selection models/algorithms for underground utilities monitoring and possibly propose a new smart algorithm for EH selection based on ambient conditions.
• To establish which EH methods are the most efficient for underground based utility monitoring by designing experimental testbeds and carrying out tests using the selected methods.
• To propose a smart energy selection model based on ambient environment conditions using the above-proposed smart algorithm.
• Develop appropriate mathematical models to capture the key characteristics of the various architectures for harvested energy usage and analyse newly proposed models.
• To propose a smart EH system architecture for underground utilities monitoring sensor node based on the newly proposed smart model.
• To implement the resulting system architecture/models on appropriate hardware platforms in test beds and in simulators.

Project is open to: Home/EU and overseas

Informal enquiries can be made to Dr Umar Raza
01612471652

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