Estimated reading time: 3 minutes, 48 seconds

AI Needs a Boost to Reach its Full Potential. RF Power is that Boost Featured

AI Needs a Boost to Reach its Full Potential. RF Power is that Boost "SpaceX Falcon Heavy Demo Mission"

AI has a problem. This problem lies not within the algorithms themselves, but in how they are fed. In order for real value to be generated and extracted from AI projects, the data fed to it from the IoT needs to be dependable, flexible, and scalable. As long as the IoT is powered by wires and batteries, the majority of these deployments will not be fully delivered. While our AI systems are quickly evolving in the sophistication and complexity needed to transform the buildings, vehicles, and cities of tomorrow, one question remains; how will power infrastructure support the promise?

In order to generate the most rapid, reliable, and robust outputs, AI systems require a massive amount of high-quality data. Capturing these data points in real-time can only be achieved through a ubiquitous mesh of diverse, reliable sensors operating the entire way from LAN to the edge. It would be ideal to place sensors at every doorway, lamp post, bus stop, and computer desk, but there remains the singular factor that stands in the way of expansion of these networks: the availability and reliability of dependable, flexible, and scalable power.

A microcosm example is in a warehouse setting, where monitoring humidity and temperature every meter in height of a shelving unit would be necessary to support an AI system designed to reduce damaged inventory costs for items that are affected by these two factors. Monitoring the temperature and humidity at 1-meter increments from floor level to the top of the shelving unit means that the system will be able to tell users which products can be placed on which shelves during which seasons, and alert warehouse personnel or inventory selection robots when readings exceed specified thresholds. Additionally, energy efficiency could be significantly improved by automating heating and cooling systems using the same sensor data. Here is the problem in this hypothetical: how much will it cost to run power cables to thousands of sensors? How much would it cost in batteries and battery upkeep if that were the preferred option? Do those costs outweigh the losses the warehouse is currently incurring in damaged inventory? Batteries and wires, while dependable, fail to deliver on flexibility and scalability. So how do we drive the IoT that AI so desperately needs?

The answer to this hurdle is simple: wireless power. Radio frequency-based wireless charging solutions eliminate the high infrastructure costs needed to implement data-hungry sensor networks to feed the growing demand for AI solutions. One power transmitter can power an entire shelf of devices or more, and it will keep sensors operating perpetually. Existing RFID readers that are present throughout warehouse facilities can even be utilized as wireless power transmitters, meaning that hardware infrastructure cost could be as little as just the cost of the sensor devices themselves.

The massive amount of data required for AI deployments to be successful can only be supported by a rapidly expanding network of sensors, and wires and batteries are simply not economically or environmentally sustainable. Utilizing RF-based wireless power allows for free placement of sensors anywhere in the field of power created by a power transmitter, making installation of new sensor devices simple. Progress in AI will not be made while we are still tied down by traditional power cables and limited capacity batteries. AI systems hold enormous promise to deliver better outcomes across every sector of our economy, but we need a power infrastructure to support that expansion. RF wireless power holds the key to deploying dependable, flexible, and scalable AI systems in all of our public and commercial spaces.


Charles Goetz is the CEO of Powercast Corporation and has 30+ years of professional management, financial, & startup experience. He was a GP of Theta Fund from 2003-2010 and is a former Goldman Sachs Managing Director.  He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Read 368 times
Rate this item
(1 Vote)

Visit other PMG Sites:

click me
PMG360 is committed to protecting the privacy of the personal data we collect from our subscribers/agents/customers/exhibitors and sponsors. On May 25th, the European's GDPR policy will be enforced. Nothing is changing about your current settings or how your information is processed, however, we have made a few changes. We have updated our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy to make it easier for you to understand what information we collect, how and why we collect it.