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Draw Electrical Power From The Road

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On: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 at 5:05PM | By: Geoff Ciesla

Draw Electrical Power From The Road

The future might just get more futuristic quicker than I thought. The concept of on-the-go recharging of electric cars may soon be a reality after a German engineering company IAV (Ingenieurgesellschaft Auto und Verkehr) pursues this promising technology. The company has received a patent for technology that would allow an electric car to be charged by an embedded strip in the road, using electromagnetic induction.

This is not the first time research on this technology has taken place. DARPA has long funded the UC Berkeley PATH team, which has successfully tested its automated magnetic guidance system for city buses.

Roadways of the future could be fitted with recessed wireless recharging strips. The electric vehicle’s floor pan would be fitted with its companion that would pick-up on the magnetic field. Commuters would not have to stop and recharge their electric vehicle, which could take up to eight hours, despite new technology in lithium ion car batteries.

From iav.com

“In production applications, a control system would, in any case, be needed so that the charging process would be activated
only when sensors detect with absolute certainty that there is, indeed, an electric car over the inductive field. This applies equally to parking as well as driving. In the case of driving, the high efficiency of the system means that only limited sections of roadway need be fitted with induction loops. Exact identification of a specific vehicle (for example, by means of an RFID – a radio frequency identification chip) is also imperative for proper cost accounting. IAV is also working on this aspect of the system.”

IAV says the technology will be production-ready in 3 years, is insensitive to weather conditions, and is free of mechanical wear. As Wilfried Nitschke from IAV says, “The road is then the range extender.”


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