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High-performance flexible energy storage and harvesting system for wearable electronics

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This paper reports on the design and operation of a flexible power source integrating a lithium ion battery and amorphous silicon solar module, optimized to supply power to a wearable health monitoring device. The battery consists of printed anode and cathode layers based on graphite and lithium cobalt oxide, respectively, on thin flexible current collectors. It displays energy density of 6.98 mWh/cm(2) and demonstrates capacity retention of 90% at 3C discharge rate and ~99% under 100 charge/discharge cycles and 600 cycles of mechanical flexing. A solar module with appropriate voltage and dimensions is used to charge the battery under both full sun and indoor illumination conditions, and the addition of the solar module is shown to extend the battery lifetime between charging cycles while powering a load. Furthermore, we show that by selecting the appropriate load duty cycle, the average load current can be matched to the solar module current and the battery can be maintained at a constant state of charge. Finally, the battery is used to power a pulse oximeter, demonstrating its effectiveness as a power source for wearable medical devices.

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