For my Masters project I am using an Arduino Nano BLE 33. The idea is to power the Ardiuno Nano BLE 33 from a Thermoelectric Generator (TEG) which is capable of outputting around 2.2uW/s (30mV, 73uA). This energy is passed through a power processing unit (PPU) to step up the voltage to 5V as required by the Arduino Nano BLE 33. The Arduino will then power a temperature sensor and collect the data, it will also transmit the data wirelessly via Bluetooth to a users smart phone to view the readings. I have tested the Arduino BLE 33 and concluded that it works at 0.042W/s (4.2V, 10mA), I need to significantly reduce that value down in order to make the burst of energy provided by the PPU accommodate for the required time of data collection and transmission of about 2.5 seconds. Any suggestions on how to reduced the power consumption or perhaps has anybody dealt with low power micro controllers and transmission units as an alternative to Arduino?
Thank you for the suggestion this seems to check out for the sleep mode however operating current is 200mA which in my case is near impossible to achieve. I have posted a question to clarify whether that is accurate as it seems excessive for the board.
Thank you for taking your time to help, there is a lot of relevant information in there, the deep sleep mode seems to require a lot less power. My concern here would be the loss of functionality due to the low power. I want to wake the board up once it receives a reading from a sensor taken at an interval, this interval would be determined in the fully functional running board which is unfortunately not occuring in sleep mode.
Thank you for the suggestion of the LTC3108, I am currently using it in my project as you may be able to see from the image. I am capable of powering the board for an X amount of time (it's in milliseconds). Unfortunately that is not fast enough for me, I am looking to power it for 2.5 seconds. The datasheet of the LTC3108 suggests microcontrollers capable of operating in the region of single digit milliseconds. Is Bluetooth perhaps something to reconsider as a means of data transfer in order to save energy? Bluetooth takes the longest time to establish a connection which is an issue.
In that image a supply of 2V is applied to a Peltier module which generates a heat about similar to that of a human body. This Peltier is in contact with a TEG which outputs 30mV through a temperature difference of 16K. The TEG output is passed to the LTC3108 where I can achieve a burst of energy of about 2-3mA at 5V.
I don't see a heat sink in that photograph. For a TEG to work efficiently, you have to maintain the flow of heat, which means to get rid of it as fast as it comes in.
If you intend to transfer the exhaust heat to air, keep in mind that flat surfaces are extremely inefficient. You need a very large finned convection surface to allow air flow, or some other means of disposing of the incoming heat, like a large metal block.
Something like a CPU cooler can help. This is for a cold plate: