How Does a Technology Company Test Wireless Power in the Real World?

Ossia is first and foremost a wireless power technology innovator. We design the technology for real wireless power -- without wires, line of sight, or charging pads -- and develop sophisticated and demonstratable prototypes, but we don’t create the end product. We leave that to our licensees. This gives them the most freedom to create a wireless power system that works best for their unique situation. 

You might think focusing on technology innovation would make it difficult to test our technology specifications, but thankfully, other companies in the wireless power ecosystem are already very good at product development and execution. By collaborating, we can leverage the best engineers to create working Cota wireless power models to test and draw standards from. 

Whenever we’re ready to make an application of our wireless power technology, like the Cota Forever Battery, available for license, we collaborate with companies like Simplexity Product Development, a product design firm with a strong group of engineers. 

Relationships like this help us fine tune our technology specifications and give everyone confidence that the technology will work in the real world. 

The Cota Forever Battery

CES18InnovationHonoree_logoThe Cota Forever Battery, Ossia’s technology innovation, was a CES Innovation Award Honoree in 2018, and was prominently featured in many technical articles. This is a significant stepping stone for wireless power; the Forever Battery is essentially a retrofit for current small devices that use traditional AA batteries, like video game controllers, walkie talkies, and cordless mice. With the Cota Forever battery, small devices can receive power wirelessly; no battery charging or replacing required.

An Engineering Collaboration

In order to fully vet out our reference documentation and demonstrate how to best implement the Cota Forever Battery technology into a device, Ossia’s radio frequency engineers collaborated with Simplexity’s electrical and mechanical engineers to:

  • Miniaturize the electrical layout as much as possible, with a careful mechanical design to ensure both ease of assembly and maximum capacity of the internal lithium-ion battery.
  • Accommodate two microprocessors, three RF pathways, and various power regulation and battery control circuitry within a small board area.
  • Optimize battery capacity, size, and discharge rate in the cylinder in order to power devices that use AA batteries.
  • Ensure that all changes to the hardware are easily integrated into the firmware and to make sure the maximum efficiency can be accessed from the radio frequency portions of the layout.
  • Allow all components to fit and function in the limited space, yet remain cost-effective and allow for ease of assembly.
  • Document the process to enhance the Cota Wireless Power Technology Global Standard, which provides Ossia licensees a guide for designing the Ossia receiver into their own products. This includes an explanation of the essential parts of the design and information on how to customize the system for a particular application.

The Cota Forever Battery, Ready to Scale

A standard AA battery measures 14mm by 50mm, and the custom circuit board that Simplexity created was 11mm x 40mm. The radio frequency antenna curved along the inside of the AA-battery-shaped cylinder. The case was made from high-resolution SLA printed plastic; SLA (stereolithography) is a form of 3D printing technology.  This architecture allows the Cota Forever Battery to scale directly into cost-effective, injection-molded housing parts without a major redesign.

The metal end caps of the Forever Battery were created with a small tab with a spring force that interfaces with the plating on the edges of the printed circuit assembly (PCA). For the initial prototypes, the edges of the board were plated with a thick layer to allow for it to be removed and replaced without rubbing away the contact material. This allows for ease of assembly and a robust contact after assembly.

The Wireless Power Ecosystem Is Everything

Transforming how power is delivered across the world takes a coordinated group effort. That’s why we encourage collaboration and communication throughout the wireless power ecosystem, by connecting innovators, designers, manufacturers, and service providers and encouraging idea-sharing, troubleshooting, and developing wireless power solutions together. The Cota Forever Battery is just the beginning.

To learn more about Ossia's and Simplexity's approach request your free copy of the Forever Battery Design Case Study by clicking here.