A flexible super-capacitive solid-state power supply for miniature implantable medical devices

Chuizhou Meng, Oren Z. Gall, Pedro P. Irazoqui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


We present a high-energy local power supply based on a flexible and solid-state supercapacitor for miniature wireless implantable medical devices. Wireless radio-frequency (RF) powering recharges the supercapacitor through an antenna with an RF rectifier. A power management circuit for the super-capacitive system includes a boost converter to increase the breakdown voltage required for powering device circuits, and a parallel conventional capacitor as an intermediate power source to deliver current spikes during high current transients (e.g., wireless data transmission). The supercapacitor has an extremely high area capacitance of ~1.3 mF/mm2, and is in the novel form of a 100 μm-thick thin film with the merit of mechanical flexibility and a tailorable size down to 1 mm2 to meet various clinical dimension requirements. We experimentally demonstrate that after fully recharging the capacitor with an external RF powering source, the supercapacitor-based local power supply runs a full system for electromyogram (EMG) recording that consumes ~670 μW with wireless-data-transmission functionality for a period of ~1 s in the absence of additional RF powering. Since the quality of wireless powering for implantable devices is sensitive to the position of those devices within the RF electromagnetic field, this high-energy local power supply plays a crucial role in providing continuous and reliable power for medical device operations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)973-983
Number of pages11
JournalBiomedical Microdevices
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Molecular Biology


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