Power Supply Solution for IoT Sensor devices
Toward a world without need for battery replacement

Fujikura DSSCs
(Dye‐Sensitized Solar Cells)

Fujikura DSSCs (Dye‐Sensitized Solar Cells)

The cost and labor entailed in battery   replacement in sensor devices is an important issue for IoT adoption

Streamlining and automation initiatives utilizing IoT sensing are being promoted in various scene all around us. Typical examples are smart meters being installed in recent years. Real-time reading of each household's consumption is creating new services.
While cheap, easy-to-install sensor devices for proof of concept are battery-powered, when it comes to commercial application, the battery replacement cost becomes big issues in adoption.

Fujikura DSSCs   solve these problems

Fujikura DSSCs make battery-less sensor devices a reality. The time and effort associated with battery replacement is becoming more noticeable as IoT sensing expands, its applications become more diverse, and the number of sensor devices increases. DSSCs, which are able to generate power in all environments, can be employed in a wide array of situations.

We hope they will help you to address the challenges you face.

 Usage scenarios

As IoT devices installation expands and their numbers increase, initial installation costs and post-adoption battery replacement costs are drastically reduced.

 Use Case

For example…
When applying to smart meters

Owing to its ability to generate electricity without direct sunlight, it can be installed even in shaded areas of the house.
It helps extend battery life or increase power consumption as an auxiliary power source for batteries.

Possible benefits of employing DSSC
Possible benefits of employing DSSC
smart meter figure: You can install it even in places not exposed to direct sunlight

For example, considering the communication device used in smart meters, DSSC is a suitable power source for them because they are generally used in the following way.
・ Installed in a place out of direct sunlight
・ Operates for a long term with tiny power consumption

Case Study

In the case of communication device operation under the following conditions

2,400mAh lithium thionyl chloride battery x 2 pieces
Battery life: 10 years
Battery usage efficiency: 80%

Simulate if the batteries are replaceable to DSSC

DSSC
FDSC-FSC5FGC (dimension 44.0 X 85.0 mm): 1 piece

Simulation result (See figure on the right)

DSSC would be able to cover the amount of power consumption even at 2,000 lx all day under a thick cloud.

Please refer "How to use the energy balance calculation simulator" for how to read the results.

Sensor batteries

Fujikura DSSC  Features

IoT sensor devices are characterized by utilization in every kind of location imaginable.
For this reason, any power source that aims to replace batteries must be able to generate power in any kind of location.
DSSCs are optimal devices for supplying power to IoT sensor devices because in addition to being able to generate power over a wide range of lighting and temperature conditions, their incorporation into sensor devices makes installation easy.

Capable of generating electricity anywhere in the living environment

Feature 1:
High power generation over a wide range of lighting conditions

Capable of generating electricity anywhere: in sunlight, in shade, in bad weather, indoors, etc.

Feature 2:
High power generation over a wide range of temperatures

Capable of supplying electricity from -30°C to +60°C, an even wider range than normal batteries can deliver

Sensor devices with built in DSSCs are easy to install

Feature 3:
Can be installed without regard to the position of the light source

Since power can be generated from scattered light, there is no need to make sure the cells are oriented toward the light source

Feature 4:
It is okay for part of the DSSC to be in shadow

These cells avoid the problems that most multiple series solar cells can experience due to shadows

Feature 5:
Durable enough to be used both indoors and outdoors

While durability is said to be an issue with DSSCs, our cells are durable enough for long-term power supply without needing to worry about installation location

Feature :
Capable of generating electricity anywhere in the living environment

1

High power generation over a wide range of lighting conditions

Capable of generating electricity anywhere: in sunlight, shade, poor weather conditions, indoors, etc.
High power generation over a wide range of lighting conditions
2

High power generation over a wide range of temperatures

Capable of supplying electricity from -30°C to +60°C , an even wider range than normal batteries can deliver
High power generation over a wide range of temperatures

Feature : Devices with built in DSSCs are easy to install

3

No need to consider the position of the light source

Since power can be generated from scattered light, there is no need to make sure the cells are oriented toward the light source
4

It is okay for part of the DSSC to be in shadow

These cells avoid the problems that multiple series solar cells can experience due to shadows

This video shows an experiment that places part of the DSSC in shadow -> There was almost no drop in power output like that which was observed for multiple series solar cells in the same experiment. (The figure at right shows power fluctuation)

5

Durable enough to be used both indoors and outdoors

While durability is said to be an issue with DSSCs, our cells are durable enough for long-term power supply without considering installation location
光照射試験
Test Cases
Temperature cycle test -40 to 90 ℃, 200 cycles
Temperature and humidity cycle test -40 to 85 ℃, 85%RH, 10 cycles
High-temperature high-humidity test 85 ℃, 85%RH, 1000 hrs
Light irradiation test AM 1.5G 1000W/㎡, 40℃, 500 hrs
Model test Terminal strength test, vibration/shock/drop test, overcurrent application test

 Product Specifications

Product name:
FDSC-FSC7FGC

External dimensions: 70.0 x 92.0 mm
Thickness dimension: 2.5 mm
FDSC-FSC7FGC
Unit Typical value Specification Notes
Maximum Operation Power Point (Pm) μW 340 >= 243 at White LED 200 lx,
Ambient temperature: 23℃
Operating Current (Iop) at 0.38 V μA 796 >= 569
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc) V 0.58 0.45 – 0.65

Product name:
FDSC-FSC4FGC

External dimensions: 56.0 x 112.0 mm
Thickness dimension: 2.5 mm
FDSC-FSC4FGC
Unit Typical value Specification Notes
Maximum Operation Power Point (Pm) μW 300 >= 214 at White LED 200 lx,
Ambient temperature: 23℃
Operating Current (Iop) at 0.38 V μA 776 >= 554
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc) V 0.50 0.45 – 0.65

Product name:
FDSC-FSC5FGC

External dimensions: 44.0 x 85.0 mm
Thickness dimension: 2.5 mm
FDSC-FSC5FGC
Unit Typical value Specification Notes
Maximum Operation Power Point (Pm) μW 165 >= 117 at White LED 200 lx,
Ambient temperature: 23℃
Operating Current (Iop) at 0.38 V μA 425 >= 304
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc) V 0.50 0.45 – 0.65

Product name:
FDSC-FSC12FGC

External dimensions: 23.9 x 62.3 mm
Thickness dimension: 2.5 mm
FDSC-FSC12FGC
Unit Typical value Specification Notes
Maximum Operation Power Point (Pm) μW 45 >= 32 at White LED 200 lx,
Ambient temperature: 23℃
Operating Current (Iop) at 0.38 V μA 117 >= 83
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc) V 0.50 0.45 – 0.65

Product name:
FDSC-FSC10FGC

External dimensions: 39.9 x 35.0 mm
Thickness dimension: 2.5 mm
FDSC-FSC10FGC
Unit Typical value Specification Notes
Maximum Operation Power Point (Pm) μW 42 >= 30 at White LED 200 lx,
Ambient temperature: 23℃
Operating Current (Iop) at 0.38 V μA 108 >= 77
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc) V 0.50 0.45 – 0.65

 Design support for switching to DSSC power supply

Combining a DSSC with a power supply IC or a power storage device makes it possible to eliminate the battery from a battery-powered IoT sensing device.
Using a recommended power supply IC suitable for the Fujikura DSSC enables stable electrical power to be supplied. See the table below for the amount of electrical energy that can be supplied.

Recommended power supply IC

Boost Converter

Manufacturer Device No.
Analog Devices ADP5090
ADP5091
LTC3105
Texas Instruments bq25504
bq25505
e-peas AEM10941

Step-up/Down Converter

Manufacturer Device No.
Analog Devices LTC3106
Texas Instruments bq25570

Estimated electrical energy supplied

(Model number: FDSC-FSC4FGC)
Dim indoor areas
200 lx
×12 hr/day
Bright indoor areas
1,000 lx
×12 hr/day
Dark shadows (outdoor)
5,000 lx
×12 hr/day
Light shadows (outdoor)
10,000lx
×12 hr/day
2.2 mWh/day 13.7 mWh/day 63.3 mWh/day 107.1 mWh/day

All-in-one power module kit

It is essential to integrate power management IC and electricity storage device to utilize DSSC. However it is time consuming and bothering to evaluate individual parts and to design and assemble the circuit board. To solve this challenge, Fujikura released the compact and all-in-one power module kit for light energy harvesting evaluation. This kit provides DC 3 V output and can easily be replaced with primary batteries to drive IoT devices.

We collaboratively developed this kit together with NGK Insulators, a storage device maker, and e-peas, a power management IC maker.
Visit our news release for your reference.

DSSC kit
Product brief
Output voltage 3 V
Dimensions 44 x 85 mm
Plate thickness 4.5 mm
Battery capacity 100mWh (27mAh)
DSSC FDSC-FSC5FGC
Solar power generation 165μW under white LED 200lx

 User guide(PDF)

 Energy Balance Calculation (Rev.1)

Environments and working conditions of your IoT device may change which DSSC to be used.
Please use this simulation for easy and quick power design.
Please download the user’s manual in this site for details about how to use.

 Contact

  • Personal Information Protection Policy
    • Personal information entered into the inquiry form below will be used only to confirm and respond to inquiries. We reserve the right to retain inquiry records for a specified period of time for the aforementioned purposes.
    • Personal information will not be disclosed to any third party except in cases when:
      1. we deem it appropriate for inquiries to be answered by business partners such as our contractors, agents, and other member companies of the Fujikura Group;
      2. complying with laws and regulations that require our company to submit the information; and
      3. the person providing the personal information has given us consent to disclose this information.
  • Response to your inquiry may be made by email, letter, phone or fax.
  • Please allow a few days for a response to your inquiry.
  • Email inquiries arriving on weekends or holidays (including year-end holidays) will be processed the next business day.
  • The following types of inquiries will not be processed or transferred to a specific department or group company:
    • Sales promotions, slanderous/abusive content, questionnaires, surveys or donation
    • Inquiries regarding information that is not directly related to our company
  • Any duplication, inappropriate or secondary use of responses, in part or in their entirety, without the express permission of our company is strictly prohibited under copyright laws.
  • When submitting a request or an inquiry, please complete the form below as accurately as possible. Please understand that we may not respond to requests/inquiries submitted with incomplete/incorrect information or inappropriate content.

* required