Researcher Highlight – Niharika Gogoi from Project A

We are continuing the Researcher Highlight Series with Niharika Gogoi from Project A – Electronic Circuits for Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting and Sensor Array Systems. She is working at the Institute for Electronics Engineering (LTE).

   What is the topic of your research and how do you approach it?

The topic of my research is „Electric Circuits for Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting and Sensor Array Systems“. I am working in possibilities of simultaneous sensing and energy harvesting of piezoelectric sensors.

Like everyone, I approached my topic with a literature study. The literature study introduced me to various prospects of this material in the renewable energy landscape. Although piezo is a promising material, its implementation in energy harvesting is quite limited. I started my research by understanding the reasons behind its limitations. My ultimate goal is to design an advanced interface circuit to maximize the energy harvest.

My research targets ambient mechanical vibration to operate wearable and low-power devices for health monitoring applications. Human and vehicle movements generate a sufficient amount of mechanical vibrations, which are wasted but if harvested can be useful for portable devices. With advanced circuitry and improvement in piezo properties, the wasted energy in the environment can be utilized to power the mentioned devices.  Of course, it contributes on a small amount but „small help is a big hope“ and large-scale implementation can change the game.

   Why did you decide to continue your studies by a PhD, and how did you become part of this particular IRTG?

To learn more about the role of electronics engineering in renewable energy. I was always sensitive towards energy crises and climate change issues. I wondered if I could be scientifically involved in such topics through my academic degrees.

I came across IRTG vacancies on some websites. Since I have a bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering and a master’s in renewable energy, project A fitted into my interest and I applied for it. I am glad I got through.

   What is the handiest utensil/ equipment for your research, or at your workplace?

Oscilloscopes and signal generators are primary necessities in every electronics laboratory. We frequently use them in every small and big experiments.

   What are your plans after graduation?

I would be happy to get a postdoctoral position in some good universities or research organizations. I would like to explore and learn this area for next few years.