Distributed Beamforming Based Wireless Power Transfer: Analysis and Realization

Xiaoran Fan, Han Ding, Yanyong Zhang, Wade Trappe, Zhu Han, Rich Howard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This paper presents a new Wireless Power Transfer (WPT) approach by aligning the phases of a group of spatially distributed Radio Frequency (RF) transmitters (TX) at the target receiver (RX) device. Our approach can transfer energy over tens of meters and even to targets blocked by obstacles. Compared to popular beamforming based WPTs, our approach leads to a drastically different energy density distribution: The energy density at the target receiver is much higher than the energy density at other locations. Due to this unique energy distribution pattern, our approach offers a safer WPT solution, which can be potentially scaled up to ship a higher level of energy over longer distances. Specifically, we model the energy density distribution and prove that our proposed system can create a high energy peak exactly at the target receiver. Then we conduct detailed simulation studies to investigate how the actual energy distribution is impacted by various important system parameters, including number/topology of transmitters, transmitter antenna directionality, the distance between receiver and transmitters, and environmental multipath. Finally, we build an actual prototype with 17 N210 and 4 B210 Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP) nodes, through which we validate the salient features and performance promises of the proposed system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)758-775
Number of pages18
JournalTsinghua Science and Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


  • Wireless Power Transfer (WPT)
  • distributed beamforming
  • wireless network


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