A model-based strategy for an efficient power supply control used in a wireless sensor network is presented. The strategy, based on Pulse-Skipping Modulation, regulates the current charging a battery, delivered by a photovoltaic source, resulting in an accurate current regulation and highly efficient power management. The strategy is implemented on a microcontroller unit and compensates for the microcontroller self-absorbed current. The modulation signal is generated through a full software interface, reducing the requirement for external components. Experimental validations, performed on a charger prototype by using a laboratory photovoltaic device simulator, proved that both regulation accuracy, regulation resolution and converter efficiency achieved are superior to the classic Pulse-Width Modulation. The approach results in a simple practical implementation, carries over the advantages of an up-to-date model for the photovoltaic device, and serves the auxiliary purpose of using the photovoltaic source as an instantaneous solar irradiance sensor.
Corti, F., Laudani, A., Lozito, G.M., Reatti, A., Bartolini, A., Ciani, L. (2022). Model-Based Power Management for Smart Farming Wireless Sensor Networks. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON CIRCUITS AND SYSTEMS. I, REGULAR PAPERS, 1-11 [10.1109/TCSI.2022.3143698].