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The Promise of Integrating Wearable Devices with Thin and Compact Power Sources (Lithium-ion Rechargeable Batteries)

What is a wearable device?

Wearable device is a generic term for devices that can be worn on the body. They are typically equipped with sensors and applications that monitor an individual’s health parameters and physical activity. For example, smartwatches can record exercise and sleep data by measuring heart rate, the number of steps, and calories burned. Smart glasses can display various information and provide navigation services. As tools that help users manage their health and improve quality of life, wearable devices have emerged as an essential daily technology for many people.

Integrating thin and compact power source to open new possibilities for measurement and control

Due to the need for longevity and power output, the conventional batteries (power sources) used in wearable devices tended to be bulky, which in turn made them large and uncomfortable to wear.
Integrating thin, compact EnerCera lithium-ion rechargeable batteries with wearable devices provides the following benefits:

  • As a thin and compact power source, EnerCera adds minimally to device dimensions while providing significant freedom in device design.
  • As a thin, compact, lightweight power source, EnerCera can be incorporated into the device to allow measurements without resulting in a device that is uncomfortable to wear.
  • Rechargeable batteries reduce waste compared to common button cells (primary batteries).

Smart insoles, an example for athletic training

One example of a wearable device used for athletic training are the smart insoles placed inside shoes, which measure the contact pressures generated within the insole to measure balance and load transfer during exercise. This data can then be analyzed by a coach or trainer to provide guidance and suggest changes for more effective movement to improve athletic performance.
The high-capacity, thin, compact, lightweight EnerCera lithium-ion rechargeable battery provides the following advantages for smart insoles:

  • Allows wearing without changing the conventional insole form factor.
  • Allows natural movement during training, free of discomfort.
  • Allows safe use for extended activity or during competition.

Example of blood glucose monitoring device (medical field)

One example of a wearable device in the medical field is the continuous glucose monitoring (CGM), which measures blood glucose levels. This device performs sustained measurement of blood glucose level using a sensor attached to the skin, which measures the concentration of glucose in the subcutaneous interstitial fluid, to aid self-management of condition for diabetics.
Adopting the thin, compact, lightweight, EnerCera lithium-ion rechargeable battery to power this sensor offers the following benefits:

  • Allows the design of even thinner and more flexible sensors.
  • Eliminates discomfort and disruptions in daily routines, due to a shape that conforms to the human body.
  • Allows sensors to be designed for repeated rather than single use.

What is the ultra-thin and compact Li-ion rechargeable battery “EnerCera battery”

The EnerCera battery is an ultra-thin and ultra-small Li-ion rechargeable battery. A semi-solid-state battery developed using NGK’s original crystal oriented ceramic plate as electrodes, EnerCera achieves features that were difficult to incorporate together in existing Li-ion rechargeable batteries, such as high capacity, high output, high heat resistance, and long lifetime.

Due to its low internal resistance, EnerCera batteries can store incredibly small amounts of electricity and output large amounts of power when required, making them the ideal power source for energy harvesting and wireless power transfer (WPT). These technologies can be combined with EnerCera to create power supply systems for maintenance-free IoT devices that rely only on natural energy sources and which can be used repeatedly.

EnerCera can function as an energy storage device that offers the advantages of both a capacitor and a Li-ion rechargeable battery, thereby contributing to the implementation of self-sustaining IoT systems in society.

“EnerCera battery” Series
EnerCera is a battery for IoT to realize “maintenance-free”.

The EnerCera solution

Ideal batteries for wearable devices

  • Extremely low risk of overheating, catching fire, or exploding
  • Optimal power source for wearable devices used in direct contact with the human body

Ultra-thin, ultra-small, yet high capacity

  • Battery capacity is approximately 1.5 to 2 times that of commercially available rechargeable batteries of the same dimensions.
  • Can be used in limited spaces

Can be recharged and used even when over-discharged

  • Less susceptible to performance degradation, even in the case of self-discharge voltage drop
  • Maintains same performance prior to over-discharge when recharged again

Examples of applications

Below are some example applications powered by EnerCera.
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