Extending battery life of anchors


#1

Hey all,

A couple questions:

  1. What is the expected battery life of an anchor on the 2600 mAh battery the kit comes with?
  2. How can we extend the battery life?
  3. Can we extend it via reduced sampling rate?
  4. If so, how do we configure the sampling rate?

Thanks!
Micah


#2

As of May 11th of 2016, the expected battery life of an anchor running the demo firmware powered by the batteries provided in the DWUSB kit is 6-8 hours.

As of May 11th of 2016, there is no way to extend the battery life with the DWUSB demo firmware beyond obtaining a power source with a larger capacity. If you do look for other batteries, please be warned that many USB battery power supplies will monitor the current drain, and for many of them, if the current drain stays below some arbitrary threshold for an extended period of time, the battery will stop supplying power to the connected device. As most of these USB batteries are made specifically to recharge phones and the DWUSB does not draw nearly as much power as a phone that is recharging its battery, most USB batteries will not work properly with the DWUSB.

If you do want to perform any long-term tests with the current DWUSB demo software, we would recommend getting some USB extenders and some USB to wall socket adapters. We will be looking into improving power efficiency for future demo releases, but for now, that might be the best alternative.

Oddly enough, it is actually receiving packets that takes the most power on the DWUSBs, not transmitting packets, so reducing the rate at which devices can transmit would not provide any significant gains in battery life.

As of May 11th of 2016, the current demo software does not support adjusting the sample rate.


#3

Has their been any further developments on this front?

The application I am thinking about is inventory (pallet) tracking.

Powering the anchors is not an issue, but powering the tags in the pallets could be. What are the minimum power requirements of a tag being tracked? Could a system be designed that transmits on a very slow schedule (hourly) and/or if an accelerometer registers movement above a certain threshold?


#4

Thanks for your inquiry and interest in our UWB network. The DWUSB was created as a development kit to test and build proof of concept networks. It is a platform for developers/engineers to test the system and broaden their understanding of UWB.

At this time we don’t have low-power code available for the DWUSB acting as a tag. It turns out the device is programmed to draw as much power as possible in order to keep the electronics in the battery bank from switching off due to low power usage.

We will have someone contact you directly to discuss your application and the need for low-powered tags.