Hybrid Energy Harvester for Medical Sensor Node toward Real-Time Healthcare Monitoring


  • Saeed Mohsen Faculty of Engineering, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt




medical sensor node, healthcare, energy harvesting, super-capacitor


In healthcare applications, the remote monitoring for moving patients depends on medical sensor nodes, which should be mobile. Thus, the power mains of medical sensor nodes should be disconnected most of the time to monitor natural movements of patients. In this paper, a self-sustainable medical sensor node is proposed for healthcare monitoring applications. The node implementation consists of a microcontroller unit (MCU), a photo-plethysmography (PPG) sensor, a Bluetooth low energy (BLE) module, and a MPU module that includes a gyroscope with accelerometer. The power supply of the node is a hybrid energy harvester developed to provide a sustainable energy for the sensor node. The harvester is composed of a photovoltaic (PV) panel, a thermoelectric generator (TEG) module, a DC-DC converter, and a super-capacitor. Experimental results illustrate that the proposed node can monitor a physiological data on a mobile device using the BLE Terminal application.


M. Magno, G. A. Salvatore, P. Jokic, and L. Benini, “Self-Sustainable Smart Ring for Long-Term Monitoring of Blood Oxygenation,” IEEE Access, vol. 7, pp. 115400-115408, 2019.

T. Wu, F. Wu, J. M. Redoute, and M. R. Yuce, “An Autonomous Wireless Body Area Network Implementation towards IoT Connected,” IEEE Access, vol. 5, pp. 11413-11422, 2017.

S. Mohsen, A. Zekry, K. Youssef, and M. Abouelatta, “An Autonomous Wearable Sensor Node for Long-Term Healthcare Monitoring Powered by a Photovoltaic Energy Harvesting System,” International Journal of Electronics and Telecommunications, vol. 66, no. 2, pp. 267-272, 2020.

A. Dionisi, D. Marioli, E. Sardini, E. Sardini, and M. Serpelloni “Autonomous Wearable System for Vital Signs Measurement with Energy-Harvesting Module,” IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement, vol. 65, no. 6, pp. 1423-1434, June 2016.

A. Decker, “Solar Energy Harvesting for Autonomous Field Devices,” IET Wireless Sensor Systems, vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 1-8, March 2014.

T. Wu, M. S. Arefin, J. M. Redouté, and M. R. Yuce, “A Solar Energy Harvester with an Improved MPPT Circuit for Wearable IoT Applications,” Proceedings of the 11th EAI International Conference on Body Area Networks, December 2016, pp. 166-170.

T. Wu, M. S. Arefin, D. Shmilovitz, J. M. Redoute, and M. R. Yuce, “A Flexible and Wearable Energy Harvester with an Efficient and Fast-converging Analog MPPT,” IEEE Biomedical Circuits and Systems Conference (BioCAS), October 2016, pp. 336-339.

S. Barker, D. Brennan, N. G. Wright, and A. B. Horsfall, “Piezoelectric-Powered Wireless Sensor System with Regenerative Transmit Mode,” IET Wireless Sensor Systems, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 31-38, March 2011.

R. Hamid and M. R. Yuce, “A Wearable Energy Harvester Unit Using Piezoelectric Electromagnetic Hybrid Technique,” Sensors and Actuators A: Physical, vol. 257, pp. 198-207, April 2017.

F. Wu, C. Rudiger, and M. R. Yuce, “Design and Field Test of an Autonomous IoT WSN Platform for Environmental Monitoring,” 27th International Telecommunication Networks and Applications Conference (ITNAC), November 2017, pp. 1-6.

W. Y. Toh, Y. K. Tan, W. S. Koh, and L. Siek, “Autonomous Wearable Sensor Nodes with Flexible Energy Harvesting,” IEEE Sensors Journal, vol. 14, no. 7, pp. 2299-2306, July 2014.

L. J. Chien, M. Drieberg, P. Sebastian, and L. H. Hiung, “A Simple Solar Energy Harvester for Wireless Sensor Networks,” 6th International Conference on Intelligent and Advanced Systems (ICIAS), August 2016, pp. 1-6.

T. V. Tran and W. Y. Chung, “High- Efficient Energy Harvester with Flexible Solar Panel for a Wearable Sensor Device,” IEEE Sensors Journal, vol. 16, no. 24, pp. 9021-9028, October 2016.

K. V. Naveen and S. S. Manjunath, “A Reliable Ultracapacitor Based Solar Energy Harvesting System for Wireless Sensor Network Enabled Intelligent Buildings,” 2nd International Conference on Intelligent Agent and Multi-Agent Systems (IAMA), September 2011, pp. 20-25.

S. Mohsen, A. Zekry, K. Youssef, and M. Abouelatta, “A Self-Powered Wearable Wireless Sensor System Powered by a Hybrid Energy Harvester for Healthcare Applications,” Wireless Personal Communications, vol. 116, no. 4, pp. 3143-3164, September 2020.

A. S. Weddell and M. Magno, “Energy Harvesting for Smart City Applications,” International Symposium on Power Electronics, Electrical Drives, Automation and Motion, June 2018, pp. 111-117.

J. K. Lee, K. Kim, and S. Lee, “Stretchable, Patch-Type, Wireless, 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit for Mobile Health Monitoring,” Proceedings of Engineering and Technology Innovation, vol. 14, pp. 16-21, January 2020.

N. Aphiratsakun and S. Liwsakphaiboon, “Path Control iRobot Create2 Based Sensors,” Proceedings of Engineering and Technology Innovation, vol. 16, pp. 45-51, August 2020.




How to Cite

S. Mohsen, “Hybrid Energy Harvester for Medical Sensor Node toward Real-Time Healthcare Monitoring”, Proc. eng. technol. innov., vol. 18, pp. 43–48, Mar. 2021.