If plugging a cable into your electric car annoys the life out of you, the prospect of wireless EV chargers sounds very tasty indeed. Imagine parking your electric car and getting a boost with no plugging in!
The technology sounds futuristic, but a UK-based firm has started a 12-month trial of an induction pad that could revolutionise EV charging.
Wireless EV chargers – the future?
EV charging specialist Char.gy has developed an induction charging pad (the same technology that charges your smartphone wirelessly) for electric cars, and they are trialling it in the UK to see if it’s suitable for mass production.
The way it works is an induction charging kit is installed on the electric car, which can then use an induction charging plate built into the ground.
The charging plates can be installed in off-street parking zones like driveways using the same electric infrastructure as a standard wall box. In theory, the wireless EV chargers will work with any single-phase power supply.
The first wireless EV charger trial takes place in Marlow in Buckinghamshire, using ten Renault Zoe’s. Hiyacar, a car-sharing firm, is supplying the vehicles. People can hire the Zoe’s for £1 per hour or £5 per day.
All customers need to do is park over the induction charging plate, and the Zoe should start charging after driver confirmation.
The technology has been tested at the Millbrook Proving Ground, developed with the University of Warwick and wireless power specialist IPT Technology.
Will wireless EV charging catch on? If smartphones are anything to go by, yes, but for now, the charge speeds will be nowhere near as fast as wired charging. Still, how exciting!
Source: Sunday Times Driving.