In an era where sports technology is rapidly evolving, the partnership between Energous and Catapult has ushered in a new horizon for athlete performance monitoring. They have combined cutting-edge AirFuel RF wireless charging technology with real-time performance analytics through their collaboration, setting new standards for precision, convenience, and efficiency.
The Challenge: Seamless, Non-Disruptive Performance Monitoring
Sports professionals understand the significance of real-time athlete data. Every stride, leap, and motion can reveal insights, helping to tweak strategies and hone techniques. Historically, tracking this data in real-time posed challenges. Bulky monitoring devices often hindered athletes, constraining their natural movement, and sometimes skewing the data collected. The disruption of charging these devices not only interrupts pivotal moments in training but also creates windows of data voids – intervals where performance metrics went unrecorded.
Furthermore, the nature of data-intense chips, such as the 40 kHz. LPS (Linear Positioning Sensor) Sensor and the 100 kHz. Tri-Axial Accelerometer, Gyroscope, and Magnetometer require substantial computing power per game or practice. The high-power consumption and the necessity to maintain the traditional characteristics of sports equipment, such as balls, presented a unique challenge. The chip needed to be small and lightweight, sealed and suspended precisely at the center of the ball, impervious to water or dirt ingress, and entirely undetectable for athletes to ensure no alteration in the ball’s characteristics or athletes’ performance and experience.
With the rise of IoT, integrating multiple devices on the field increases the complexity. For instance, each football player could have a device monitoring heart rate, another tracking speed, and another assessing impact. Keeping all these devices charged and operational throughout a game or training session was a logistical challenge. This complexity extends to game day operations, where ensuring easy and efficient processes became crucial. For example, the need to effortlessly charge 52 balls per game without impacting game-day operations necessitated a solution that could seamlessly integrate into the existing sporting environment.
The demand was clear: a solution that offers non-stop power without interfering with the athlete’s performance or the authenticity of the data while supporting the high-power requirement of the data-intense chips and maintaining the integrity of the sports equipment.
The Solution: Energous’ Game-Changing Wireless Integration
Recognizing the immense potential of Energous, Catapult saw an opportunity to overhaul the athlete monitoring paradigm. They envisioned a field where devices receive continuous power without the need for cables or precise placement on a charging mat. By leveraging Energous’ capability to charge multiple devices from a distance, they integrated this technology into performance monitoring tools. This meant that devices on a player’s wrist, shoe, or jersey could draw power wirelessly from transmitters placed strategically around the stadium or training facility.
Kero Basilious, Director of System Applications, at Energous, elaborates,
“Our focus goes beyond mere charging; it’s about ensuring consistent power delivery, this consistency is pivotal. With AirFuel RF, we’re pioneering a more adaptive and flexible IoT ecosystem, capturing every performance metric without the constraints of traditional charging alignments.”
Catapult’s primary challenge to maintain the traditional weight and feel of their devices, like footballs, was addressed. The integration aimed to make the technology as unobtrusive as possible. By integrating Energous’ technology, the overall weight and size of these devices was preserved, ensuring athletes barely notice them while reaping all their benefits.
The Results: Revolutionizing Athletic Training and Performance Analysis
The results of this technological integration were immediate and profound. Coaches and sports analysts now had uninterrupted access to a goldmine of data, providing insights into every minute facet of an athlete’s performance, including:
- Continuous and Comprehensive Data Capture: With the integration of this technology, data collection gaps became a thing of the past. Whether it was monitoring an athlete’s stamina during the final minutes of a game or analyzing split-second decisions, the consistent power delivery ensured no moment went unrecorded.
- Enhanced Athlete Comfort: With smaller and lightweight devices, athletes reported heightened comfort during wear. This led to more accurate data collection as athletes could move freely, ensuring that the data reflected their natural performance rather than being skewed by the discomfort or consciousness of wearing a device.
- Elevated Training Regimes: Coaches could now make real-time strategic decisions based on live data streams. Be it adjusting training regimes or tailoring individualized training modules, the availability of consistent data plays a pivotal role in enhancing training efficacy.
- Increased Device Longevity: One often overlooked benefit is the increased lifespan of devices. Consistent and optimized charging, as opposed to repetitive drain and charge cycles, extends the battery health of these performance monitoring tools, ensuring teams get more value from their investment.
“The integration of Energous and Catapult technology into monitoring devices with the AirFuel ecosystem has been nothing short of revolutionary. We can provide uninterrupted, detailed data meaning you can now delve deeper into understanding players, tweaking strategies, and optimizing performance like never before,”
says Kero Basilious, Director of System Applications at Energous.
Working Together to Shape the Future of Sports
As proud members of the AirFuel Alliance, Energous and Catapult embraced the transformative potential of AirFuel RF and championed its broader vision. Their pioneering endeavor in sports is just a testament to what is possible when innovative minds collaborate with groundbreaking technology.
AirFuel Alliance® enables companies to provide cutting edge wireless charging and wireless power experiences for their customers. Members bring wireless power solutions to market today and champion innovation to advance wireless technologies tomorrow. They also receive access to the world’s leading wireless charging standards and development tools and connect to a global community of companies working together to realize a vision of a world without wires.
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