By design, BITalino is a battery-operated device that is not capable of working while charging. This means that, once the battery is depleted, either it needs to be replaced by a charged unit, or the device will have to be “parked” a couple of hours for charging.
Motivated by an installation that required unattended physiological data acquisition nearly 24/7, in a fixed setting and without human intervention for servicing, IT researchers André Manso and Hugo Plácido da Silva modified BITalino to be powered through wireless power transfer instead of a battery. With this approach, the device can operate continuously while guaranteeing the electrical isolation of the user from the mains.
The team then moved on to extend the experiment, further modifying the power management block to enable wireless charging of the battery while the device is being used. This is a particularly advantageous setup given that it makes it possible to continue using the device, even when charging, in a fully wireless manner.
Within the 22nd edition of the program “Ciência Viva no Laboratório - Ocupação Científica de Jovens nas Férias”, IT organised once again two internships, in Lisbon and Covilhã, with the aim of capturing the interest of high-school students for telecommunications. In both courses students were immersed in the research and development being done at IT, allowing them to “get into the skin” of telecommunications engineers and learn more about their daily activities.
In Lisbon, between 2-6 July, IT and IST hosted for the 7th time the INTELE (Introduction to Telecommunications). The trainees visited the laboratories, attended experimental sessions and set up "kits" for FM broadcast receivers and optical communications. As in previous editions, the hands-on activities like the assembling of the kits and the direct contact with the techniques of manufacture and testing of printed circuits were big favourites. Other activities such as the session “Desmistifying the Internet”, learning the theory about electromagnetic waves or the visit to the Faraday Museum also gathered the general enthusiasm of the young trainees.
In Covilhã, between 25-29 June IT and the Faculdade de Engenharia – University of Beira Interior (UBI) jointly organised the course “Initiation to Electronics and Telecommunications”. The trainees learned about the innovative applications of electronics and communication networks being developed in IT, as well as the main research and technological challenges for the development of mobile and wireless communications in the century XXI. In the activities that took place in the laboratory, trainees put theory to the test with the assembly of electronic kits, basic techniques of printed circuit production, experimental realization of received power measurements, binary output and other relevant measures in 4G and 5G mobile systems.