Is Wireless Vehicle Charging The Wave Of The Future?

It is, if researchers from Stanford University have their way.

A research team from the California school recently designed a high-efficiency charging system using magnetic fields to wireless transmit large amounts of electricity between metal coils placed several feet apart. Their ultimate goal is to create an electric highway that will charge electric vehicles as they travel over the road surface.

A team of researchers from MIT (Massachusetts Institute Of Technology) started a small company to develop a stationary charging system capable of transferring a small amount of electric power wirelessly to a vehicle parked in a garage or on the street, proving that wireless charging is feasible.

The Stanford team has expanded on this concept, creating a system to handle more electricity over a greater distance, which they feel will be enough to charge an electric vehicle moving at highway speeds.

This is how it would work: A series of metal coils would be connected to an electric power source and embedded in the road surface. Receiving coils would be attached to the bottom of the electric vehicle, which would resonate as the vehicle traveled along. As the receiving coils passed over the charged coils embedded in the road, magnetic fields would be created that would continuously transfer electricity from the road to the vehicle’s battery, maintaining the battery’s charge and thus, extending the vehicle’s range. The system boasts a power transfer efficiency rating of 97%, and the electricity could come from renewable resources, including solar power.

The researchers are still testing the design to determine that the system will not produce any ill effects for drivers, passengers or any electronic systems, such as navigation, built into the vehicles on the road.

If this technology works as well as expected, it could eventually result in automated transportation systems, featuring driverless electric vehicles running specific routes and charging continuously.

To learn more, check out the full article at Wireless power could revolutionize highway transportation - Electric Vehicles Research.