A wirelessly powered homecage system, called the EnerCage-HC, that is equipped with multicoil wireless power transfer, closed-loop power control, optical behavioral tracking, and a graphic user interface is presented for longitudinal electrophysiology and behavioral neuroscience experiments. The EnerCage-HC system can wirelessly power a mobile unit attached to a small animal subject and also track its behavior in real-time as it is housed inside a standard homecage. The EnerCage-HC system is equipped with one central and four overlapping slanted wire-wound coils with optimal geometries to form three- and four-coil power transmission links while operating at 13.56 MHz. Utilizing multicoil links increases the power transfer efficiency (PTE) compared with conventional two-coil links and also reduces the number of power amplifiers to only one, which significantly reduces the system complexity, cost, and heat dissipation. A Microsoft Kinect installed 90 cm above the homecage localizes the animal position and orientation with 1.6-cm accuracy. Moreover, a power management ASIC, including a high efficiency active rectifier and automatic coil resonance tuning, was fabricated in a 0.35-μm 4M2P standard CMOS process for the mobile unit. The EnerCage-HC achieves a max/min PTE of 36.3%/16.1% at the nominal height of 7 cm. In vivo experiments were conducted on freely behaving rats by continuously delivering 24 mW to the mobile unit for >7 h inside a standard homecage.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering