Swedish scientists develop efficient wireless charging tech for e-vehicles

Chalmers University of Technology. Image credit: Press photo.

Researchers at the Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg have developed a new induction tech that allows efficient wireless charging for electric vehicles.

The new technology uses a semiconductor made of silicon carbide and very thin copper wire. These materials enable charging stations to transfer power through induction with 98 percent more efficiency compared to the traditional wireless charging system, delivering up to 500 kilowatts per two square meters with a 15 centimetres air gap between the onboard contact point and the ground pad.

Project leader professor Yujing Liu said the system, which can be built into streets or wharves, could accommodate up to 40 charges per day with minimum human intervention. He added that these stations would be suitable for areas with unpredictable weather.

Liu explained that the technology would benefit cities like Gothenburg and Stockholm, which operate electric public ferries. In addition, the system also suits cities that run electric buses and can help companies that use driverless electric vehicles in their production facilities.

Although wireless charging technology has been known to the public for decades, it is mainly used for portable electronic devices like smartphones. However, Liu believes that induction technology is an important breakthrough in developing greener transportation systems across the globe.

“It’s not just about getting rid of cables, but also about reducing carbon dioxide emissions from transport,” Liu said.

Several global cities have adopted electric public transportation systems. These vehicle units, however, have limitations compared with gas-fueled vehicles. Most notably, they travel relatively shorter distances and require long charging times.

As many cities struggle to integrate electric vehicles into their public transportation systems, a more accessible and efficient charging system can help resolve several issues in electrifying transportation.

Global institutions have expressed interest in the innovative system, including Germany’s SMA Solar Technology AG and the U.S. Navy.

Techarenan News/Monok

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