SPINES Design Makes For Modular Energy Harvesting

The SPINES (Self-Powered IoT Node for Environmental Sensing) Mote is a wireless IoT environmental sensor, but don’t let the neatly packed single PCB fool you into thinking it’s not hackable. [Macro Yau] specifically designed SPINES to be highly modular in order to make designing an energy harvesting sensor node an easier task. The way [Macro] sees it, there are two big hurdles to development: one is the energy harvesting itself, and the other is the software required to manage the use of every precious joule of that harvested energy.

[Macro] designed the single board SPINES Mote in a way that the energy harvesting portion can be used independently, and easily integrated into other designs. In addition, an Arduino library is being developed to make it easy for the power management to be done behind the scenes, allowing a developer to concentrate on the application itself. A solar-powered wireless sensor node is one thing, but helping people get their ideas up and running faster in the process is wonderful to see.

7 thoughts on “SPINES Design Makes For Modular Energy Harvesting

    1. Your comment reminds me of how deep in our minds the “common knowledge” is. Think about it: how easy is it to harvest and convert any kind of energy into another? NOT EASY at all!!. Just because solar panels and microcontrollers are commercially available doesn’t mean it is easy as magic to use them. Please review your concepts and accept that any project is a project, regardless of it being old or new tech (specially if posted and documented for everyone on the internet).

    2. It is when presentation matters more than novelty as with all things in life. The reality is ambient could be considered anything even a coal fired sterling engine if you live in coal country. He obviously worked hard on the project and just because it is solar powered shouldn’t diminish it.

  1. Those BQ255xx chips that the project is based around are pretty cool, and easy to use. They have a few programmable resistor dividers for overvoltage, undervoltage, and even a target mptt ratio. The BQ25504 is just under $5 in single quantities, and works well with those small surface-mount solar cells.

    Check ’em out! I think they’re promising in charging supercapacitors, but you know how those leak…

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.