White Papers & Application Notes

April 05, 2017
Aaron L.F. Stein; Phyo Aung Kyaw; Charles R. Sullivan from Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College
High-Q Self-Resonant Structure for Wireless Power Transfer

The range and efficiency of wireless power transfer systems are limited by the quality factor of the transmit and receive coils used. Multi-layer self-resonant structures have been proposed as a low-cost method for creating high-Q coils for highfrequency wireless power transfer. In these structures thin foil layers are separated by a dielectric material in order to form a capacitance that resonates with the inductance of the structure, while also forcing equal current sharing between conductors. In order to reduce winding loss, these structures are made with foil layers much thinner than a skin depth, which makes the layers of the structure extremely difficult to handle. In this paper, we present a modified self-resonant structure in which the layered conductors are made from standard PCB substrates with no vias. The PCB substrates provide an inexpensive way to handle thin conductive layers, and the modified self-resonant structure ensures that the poor dielectric properties of the PCB substrates do not impact the quality factor of the structure. The modified self-resonant structure makes it feasible to achieve advantages similar to litz wire, but at multi-MHz frequencies where effective litz wire is not commercially available. Experimental results show that the structure has a quality factor of 1177 at 7.08 MHz, despite only being 6.6 cm in diameter. The quality factor normalized by the diameter is more than 6.5x larger than other coils presented in the literature.