We live in an Internet of Things (IoT) world where our environment and vital signs are monitored by hundreds of different sensors. Every design iteration of smartphones incorporates more and more sensors. A traditional multi-sensor Analogue Frontend (AFE) consists of separate channels for each sensor. The signal path is custom designed for a particular sensor and a mux connects the individual paths to a shared ADC. The design implementation utilises a lot of chip area especially if the signals need large resistors and capacitors to filter out noise above 10kHz. Analogue to Digital converters have undergone a huge increase in performance in the 21st century. These improvements have meant that the power bottleneck in sensor systems is now the analogue interface not the ADC. The circuit techniques developed in this research project will be applicable to most sensor interfaces. The project will also leverage Tyndall Sensor Technology and know-how to enable new applications in the areas such as environmental monitoring.
This project was allocated funding following the MCCI call for proposals for research into innovative future technology solutions in the area of microelectronics. The centre awarded over €5 million in funding to eight MCCI researchers for research into deeptech microelectronic solutions such as beyond 5G wireless communications, implantable biomedical devices, IoT, space and satellite electronics, and sustainable electronics.
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