Self-charging Remote Control

Look around any household or even office and you will find a multitude of remote controls. Classic examples include remote controls for the television, set-top-box and music / sound systems, but they can also include garage door openers, blinds, lights and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to name just a few. One thing they have in common is they are often powered by small batteries. As they don’t demand a lot of power, increasingly designers are moving to rechargeable solutions that can benefit from Nexperia's Energy Harvesting Power Managment ICs (PMICs) to ensure we never have to change the batteries in a remote control ever again.

Block diagram

Design considerations

  • Typically, remote controls use one or two AA / AAA batteries, but they can also utilize a LiPo battery or even coin cells.
  • Systems typically have a USB-C connector as back up charging option
  • Designs can include an embedded microphone to manage voice commands and an optional LCD display
  • The IR circuity can be external although some SoCs have a built in LED drive transistor

Adaptive energy harvesting PMIC enables environmentally friendly autonomous, connected devices

Ambient energy harvesting has often been proposed for recharging batteries in remote internet-of-things devices but hasn’t yet taken off. Nexperia's new dedicated PMIC is set to radically improve the viability of energy harvesting with significant benefits for the environment.