Wireless electricity and electric cars – a thing of the no-too-distant future.
Scientists at Standford University have made momentous advances in the field of wireless electricity transmission, making it possible for the first time ever to charge mobile electrical devices without the need to have them plugged into a stationary charging point.
Wireless charging would solve many of the current difficulties facing electrically powered cars, enabling vehicles to be on constant charge whilst driving, making it theoretically possible for an unlimited driving time. Current market technology allows a maximum of just over 200 miles per charge from the most up-to-date electrically powered vehicles, with the added difficulty of battery powered cars taking several hours to fully charge. The new technology being developed by the Stanford scientists has developed a means for transmitting electrical current to moving objects, altogether eliminating the need to stop and recharge batteries.
The group at Stanford have built on existing technologies originally developed by MIT in 2007 that made it possible for the first time to transfer small electrical currents between two stationary objects. But now the latest advancements allow for much larger currents to be transmitted between moving objects. Shanhui Fan, a professor of electrical engineering and senior author of the study. “We still need to significantly increase the amount of electricity being transferred to charge electric cars, but we may not need to push the distance too much more.”
The team have said that the hope to apply the latest advancements to enable the next generation of electric cars to be powered by electrical coils attached underneath cars that receive constant charge transmitted from a magnetic field coils embedded in the road.
“Our vision is that you’ll be able to drive onto any highway and charge your car… Large-scale deployment would involve revamping the entire highway system and could even have applications beyond transportation.”