Above: Wireless Transmission Experiment in BRAHMA Labs
Work on this project focuses on achieving directional, high-efficiency power transmission between a transmitter and a receiver coil. We envision that one (or multiple) receiver coil(s) will be embedded subcutaneously in a patient, which will then receive power from an outside transmitter coil. The embedded coil will provide power for the desired embedded devices. Ultimately, such a power transmission system would be able to power energy-intensive devices like LVADs and artificial hearts directly, and recharge low-power devices like cardiac pacemakers and defibrillators.
There is a particular focus on LVADs because modern iterations of those devices are powered through a "driveline", which is basically a power/control cord that drives and controls the LVAD. Its other end is connected to a power and control module. The driveline pierces through the skin and is a potential source of infection and discomfort to the patient.
In our system, the power/control module will be connected to a transmission coil, which will be placed directly above a spot where a receiver coil is subcutaneously implanted. The receiver coil will be connected to the LVAD. We are also devising a mechanism for the transmission coil to maintain its position over the receiver coil without requiring any adhesive or harness.
We have demonstrated appreciable power transmission levels on our system and are working on scaling it up.