Author Topic: The uBeam FAQ  (Read 226420 times)

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Offline coppice

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #50 on: November 09, 2015, 04:10:46 PM »
  • uBeam has developed a high-powered air-coupled ultrasonic transducer to transmit and receive sound waves at a single frequency within the range of 45kHz to 75kHz with an output of 145dB to 155dB (or 316 W/m2 – 3kW/m2)
Im just hoping those places will have signs displayed so i can avoid going there.

And don't bring your cat.
Surely its best to bring your cat. Its time the canaries got their own back.
 

Offline FrankenPC

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #51 on: November 09, 2015, 04:39:49 PM »
Frankly, I'd rather like to see someone build a universal laminate that can be applied to any surface that can be powered to provide a coupled charger anywhere you put devices.  I just want to set my device down anywhere and have it charge.  I don't need something like ubeam. 
Chinglish poetry: In the hot summer. In the car ran full steam. It tastes strange. For this worry? With this fan will bring you a cool summer. Suitable for all kinds of cars. Agricultural vehicles. Van. Tricycle.
 

Offline coppice

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #52 on: November 09, 2015, 08:32:43 PM »
UBeam has not addressed a single fundamental criticism on this FAQ.  We have Josh Constine of TechCrunch attacking this UBeam FAQ as "blind cynicism" because it dared assume that UBeam would want to avoid injuring dogs and cats so the FAQ ran estimates based on 100 KHz.  But Josh Constine said "gotcha", this FAQ wrongly assumed that UBeam cared about cats and dogs and they're actually going to use 45 to 75 KHz.
I was surprised to see 45kHz-75kHz being talked about in a new article. Wasn't there something from uBeam which actually said they have raised their frequency to something beyond 100kHz, because of issues caused by their original lower frequency?
 

Offline itdontgo

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #53 on: November 09, 2015, 08:38:16 PM »
Sounds efficient.  Is it really that hard to plug your phone in?  Where isn't there a USB port these days?
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 09:32:55 PM by itdontgo »
 

Online EEVblog

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #54 on: November 09, 2015, 09:36:17 PM »
With the UBeam system, you'd have to put the phone face down if you wanted to use overhead transmitters.  If you're going to do that, just shine a bright spotlight onto the phone and put a photovoltaic cell on the back.

Or just sit it on a Qi charging pad  ::)
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #55 on: November 09, 2015, 11:32:52 PM »
We haven't even started talking about the problem of sub-harmonics damaging dogs, cats, and humans.

I already brought up the sub-harmonics issue.
 

Offline mikerj

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #56 on: November 10, 2015, 06:29:30 AM »
How about beating between transmitters?  If you walked away from one 100kHz transmitter and towards another at typical walking speed (1m/s), you'd get a shift of about -300Hz on the you are walking away from and +300 on the one you are walking towards.  That seems like it would cause audible beating even if the transmitters were frequency locked together.
 

Offline eneuro

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #57 on: November 10, 2015, 08:00:24 AM »
With the UBeam system, you'd have to put the phone face down if you wanted to use overhead transmitters.  If you're going to do that, just shine a bright spotlight onto the phone and put a photovoltaic cell on the back.

Or just sit it on a Qi charging pad  ::)
Or cut toroid core at half, put one part with a few turns of high frequency AC in transmiter, while second half install at the bottom of your celphone with synchronous rectifier diodes and voltag regulator to charge or provide live current for your phone when those toroid parts are touched to close magnetic circuit with air gap as small as possible ;)

No bloody u  :bullshit: Beam needed, never ever...
They loose their life for such stupid things-better they watch this and forget about this stupid ultrasound pink girl dreams ;)
Universe is driven and powered by gravity and nuclear reactions, creating huge magnetic fields, electricity, but not ultrasound... better use human power and gravity to run high eficiency electric motor to charge something rather than bloody ultrasound...



BTW: in this latest article about his mind change they reused Nicola Tesla lab photo which is huge progress-they will use WPT based chargers anyway, but of course not ultrasonic but, using high frequency magnetic circuits, which has benefit over RF resonant circuts, that while magnetic circuit i closed radio noise is greatly reduced and additionally we have galvanic insuation between transmiter windings and receiver ;)

https://tctechcrunch2011.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/wireless-power.png?w=738

12oV4dWZCAia7vXBzQzBF9wAt1U3JWZkpk
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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #58 on: November 10, 2015, 08:37:22 AM »
We haven't even started talking about the problem of sub-harmonics damaging dogs, cats, and humans.
I already brought up the sub-harmonics issue.

I bought that up in my original blog article too.
It's how directional speakers and sound weapons work.
Not just on a single unit and the environment, but when they flood a Starbucks with dozens of units as they boast they want to do.
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #59 on: November 10, 2015, 09:58:47 AM »
We haven't even started talking about the problem of sub-harmonics damaging dogs, cats, and humans.
I already brought up the sub-harmonics issue.

I bought that up in my original blog article too.
It's how directional speakers and sound weapons work.
Not just on a single unit and the environment, but when they flood a Starbucks with dozens of units as they boast they want to do.

I'm just floored that anyone that's actually worked with ultrasonics at any meaningful power level doesn't know about the sub-harmonics issue. It's more than just a minor nuisance. More than a few ultrasonic welders are stuffed into acoustic enclosures for this very reason.

You'd think that someone who had millions at her disposal could buy ultrasonic power supplies and transducers from Dukane or Branson and quickly realize the many problems with this booby hatch.

20/30/40 and 50kHz systems are all off the shelf technology.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #60 on: November 10, 2015, 09:59:20 AM »
I bought that up in my original blog article too.
It's how directional speakers and sound weapons work.
Not just on a single unit and the environment, but when they flood a Starbucks with dozens of units as they boast they want to do.

Just boost the power by 100 and do time sharing between 100 devices at 100 different points. It's just as impractical as the rest of their design.
Drain the swamp.
 

Offline wijowa

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #61 on: November 10, 2015, 11:04:47 AM »
There is an IEEE Spectrum article on this that just came out too:
http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/consumer-electronics/portable-devices/can-ubeams-throughtheair-phone-charging-system-live-up-to-the-hype

I find it most hilarious that the TechCrunch article quotes two physicists basically saying "Well, if they can make it work, they can make it work" and Spectrum reaches out to those physicists in their article.

Now that they are saying they are working at 40-75 khz and their site still says "uBeam operates at such a high frequency that even animals, such as dogs, are not sensitive to its transmission." Because of the focused, directional nature of the beams.  it's becoming clear the level of flim-flammery this company is executing. 

Clearly they have a somewhat-valuable trademark and IP and are developing some technology that could find a niche.  Conceivably the effort can pay off for those early investors either as a pump and dump scheme or in a quick sale of the niche technology and trademark.  It might be interesting to try and conceive of other niche applications this could find its way into.

Adding to this:

For example, one might make a VR "Holodeck" with Oculus Rift type face masks, where the front of the face mask is receiving power so as not to require wires.  This would be a constrained situation that would possibly make the issues worthwhile.  In this particular case, Facebook is acquisition-prone and could easily shell out the cash to buy out Ubeam to integrate into the Oculus product.  John Carmack was quoted somewhere as saying wires were the biggest challenge of making VR seamless, so could definitely see something like this being the ultimate fate of ubeam's technology. Even if for all commercial intents it's impractical even for constrained situations like that, and ultimately never sees practical implementation outside of CES or E3.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2015, 11:26:20 AM by wijowa »
 

Offline SaintGimp

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #62 on: November 10, 2015, 01:02:43 PM »
IMHO, the most damaging piece of information in that IEEE Spectrum article is this:

Quote
The company appears to have suffered an exodus of technical talent. With the exception of Perry, none of the engineers listed on uBeam’s patents are still at the company, according to their LinkedIn profiles.

The engineers always know when it's not going to work, and they vote with their feet.  Unless and until uBeam coughs up a working prototype, this is the clearest signal we have about how product development is actually going.
 

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #63 on: November 10, 2015, 01:23:56 PM »
IMHO, the most damaging piece of information in that IEEE Spectrum article is this:
Quote
The company appears to have suffered an exodus of technical talent. With the exception of Perry, none of the engineers listed on uBeam’s patents are still at the company, according to their LinkedIn profiles.
The engineers always know when it's not going to work, and they vote with their feet.  Unless and until uBeam coughs up a working prototype, this is the clearest signal we have about how product development is actually going.

 :-DD
And totally unsurprising.
Ubeam will be lucky if it doesn't implode.

And just remember Merideth's classic bitch slap to engineers:
 

Online EEVblog

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #64 on: November 10, 2015, 01:28:09 PM »
No reviews for Ubeam on GlassDoor yet...
 

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #65 on: November 10, 2015, 01:31:23 PM »
There is an IEEE Spectrum article on this that just came out too:
http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/consumer-electronics/portable-devices/can-ubeams-throughtheair-phone-charging-system-live-up-to-the-hype

Big shoutout in that article to this thread and George's comprehensive FAQ
Quote
Perhaps the most devastating critique was a 3,000 word post on EEVblog Electronics Forum, which, among other things, says that a large room will require dozens of transmitters to provide full coverage. What is striking about that last post is the nearly universal praise it has received for accuracy, with the endorsements coming both from persons familiar with uBeam as well as highly-credentialed outside experts. Several from the former category said they couldn't find any mistakes. “He did a very good job with it,” said one.
:-+
 

Online EEVblog

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #66 on: November 10, 2015, 01:39:00 PM »
Huge  :-+ to Lee Gomes for that IEEE article
http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/consumer-electronics/portable-devices/can-ubeams-throughtheair-phone-charging-system-live-up-to-the-hype
Thoroughly professional, researched, and pulls no punches. Exactly what you'd expect from the IEEE.
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #67 on: November 10, 2015, 02:21:13 PM »
Quote
In an e-mailed response, a uBeam spokesperson said the questions had “a negative slant,” and added, “If you want to write about real science, for a scientific audience, you would reach out to us and work with us in a collaborative rather than offensive way.”

"Real science."

Wow.

On that note, the "careers" section of uBeam's website is curiously missing.   ;D
 

Online EEVblog

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #68 on: November 10, 2015, 02:27:47 PM »
On that note, the "careers" section of uBeam's website is curiously missing.   ;D

Last update:
https://web.archive.org/web/20150928054829/http://ubeam.com/careers/
 

Online Delta

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #69 on: November 10, 2015, 02:38:32 PM »
As mentioned in the IEEE article, Ms uBeam tweeted “You just can't win with people that want to bring you down,” and then added “but I got news for you guys. I'm a resilient SOB and you're going to have to nuke me to kill me.”

FFS.  We are a bunch of engineering geeks.  It isn't a battle or even a debate, just show some data or working prototype and that's that.
 

Offline coppice

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #70 on: November 10, 2015, 02:51:31 PM »
The ubeam.com web site now refers to http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0041624X15001973 , which is a genuinely interesting experiment in ultrasonic charging. The article is about charging medical devices under the skin of a pig, using ultrasonic power directly applied to its skin. That sounds like a potentially useful idea, although I didn't see mention of why it might be an better alternative to the inductive coupled charging currently used for medical implants.
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #71 on: November 10, 2015, 03:12:44 PM »
The ubeam.com web site now refers to http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0041624X15001973 , which is a genuinely interesting experiment in ultrasonic charging. The article is about charging medical devices under the skin of a pig, using ultrasonic power directly applied to its skin. That sounds like a potentially useful idea, although I didn't see mention of why it might be an better alternative to the inductive coupled charging currently used for medical implants.

Ultrasound works great through water.  Sonar transducers are how a few of the big ultrasonics companies got their start.  Between the favorable medium and short transmission distance, that's a form of ultrasonic charging that I would actually buy into. 
 

Offline itdontgo

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #72 on: November 10, 2015, 03:48:05 PM »
Oh my this woman is deluded and her investors do not understand anything.  What the planet really does not need are billions of 3W mobile chargers being replaced by billions of inefficient 3kW chargers doing the same job!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-34604843

Offline wijowa

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #73 on: November 10, 2015, 03:58:59 PM »
As mentioned in the IEEE article, Ms uBeam tweeted “You just can't win with people that want to bring you down,” and then added “but I got news for you guys. I'm a resilient SOB and you're going to have to nuke me to kill me.”

Her tweets seem to reveal more information about the product development, quoting:

Quote
2/Some challenges we had 2 overcome to make @uBeam viable: impedancemismatch/aircoupling/beamforming/acoustic losses/low power rectification

3/Thru yrs of development & hard work, our team of brilliant engineers/scientists developed& realized solutions to the following challenges:

4/Built novel high powered air-coupled ultrasonic txt, operates btwn 45-75 kHz, output btwn 145dB – 155dB (=316 W/m2 – 3kW/m2). Took 3 yrs

5/Built phased array transmitter w 1000s of individually addressable & controllable elements that enable us to beam power over 1-4m radius

6/ Develop a detection and tracking system to precisely locate receiving electronic devices in air in real-time

7/ Develop beamforming algorithms that can shape & steer multiple focused beams to several moving devices based on their loc & size in space

7/Build receiver that harvests & convert acoustic power w multiple focused beams hitting Rx @ multiple angles, while Rx itself is in motion


I think this was brought up much earlier, but in a phased array type system, isn't there going to be substantial noise and harmonics in the negative space? Kind of how a fourier approximation can't quite perfectly make a step function, it has fuzzy noise at the corners.
 

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Re: The uBeam FAQ
« Reply #74 on: November 10, 2015, 04:01:19 PM »
It seems that Mark Suster (big investor in Ubeam http://www.businessinsider.com.au/startup-ubeams-10-million-debate-2014-11 ) is tad upset at the article.
He's going to town on Twitter
 


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