Electric cars are taking the automotive industry and people’s lifestyles gradually. All you need to do to fuel them is to plug in at a charging station and wait for an hour or two, but imagine having an electric car that never stops to refuel. How convenient will that be for you? 100% convenient, I guess. Two Stanford University engineers have designed a technology that can allow electric cars to recharge themselves as they speed up along roads with a unique design feature for “refuelling.” This technology can also be used to recharge drones hovering over rooftops and robots on factory floors.
Wireless charging is not a very new concept as some smartphones are already using this technology through wireless charging pads, although the phones need to be sitting still. Applying the same technique to an electric car is not very different from plugging it in at a charging station, as the vehicle needs to be stationary and that’ why engineers at Stanford have built a system that can charge objects even in motion and could be in use in the near future.
In wireless charging, the wireless cargers usually transmit the electricity by being able to create the magnetic field which does oscillate at frequency, this does create resonating vibration in the magnetic coils on receiving device. The only limitation to this process is that resonant frequency changes if distance between the source as well as the receiver changes even by a small fraction. According to the scientists, to achieve this, one needs to incorporate an amplifier and a feedback resistor that allows a system to adjust operating frequency automatically, as the distance between charger as well as the moving object changes.
In their latest development, the scientists were able to illustrate how to boost a system’s wireless transmission efficiency to an overwhelming 92%, b having an efficient switch mode amplifier. This means that in a distance of two to three feet, their prototype can transmit 10 watts of electricity, which is more than fast enough to be able to re-supply a speeding vehicle. Another exemptional feature of the wireless charging system is that it does not pose a health risk to users as the magnetic fields are within the safety guidelines. This means that the magnetic field can be able to transmit the electricity through people literally, without them feeling anything.
Although it could be years before this advance in technology is applied and used on a broader scale, it’s a significant development in the world of science and technology. It will day revamp the automotive industry, offering a better and convenient transport system with self- charging cars.