Aug 14, 2010

Science Scene - Cordless Charging

A Virginia company called Evatran has debuted their prototype for an EV charger that works without plugs, cables or a flow of electricity between the vehicle and the charger.

This new charging system doesn't work by magic, but by induction.  To recharge an EV with this system, the vehicle pulls up to the charging station and parks over a floor-mounted parking block.  An adapter fitted to the vehicle and the parking block both contain metal coils that become aligned by magnetic sensors.  The control tower for the charging station converts electricity into the right frequency for the charger and when the coils are aligned, the electricity creates a strong magnetic field in the parking block's coils that induces a flow of electricity in the coils in the vehicle's adapter, which charges the battery.

Induction is what's used in electrical transformers and has been used for charging smaller devices like cell phones and electric toothbrushes, so it was only a matter of time before we saw it used in EV charging.

The company is running a pilot program throughout the year and hopes to commercially release the system next April.  So far, Evatran has been able to achieve an 80 percent efficiency with the induction charging, but hopes to hit 90 percent by the time production units are released.



  1. Hi Ken,
    Very interesting! I know my comnpany is working on a cordless power initiative for household appliances but didn't realize that the technology could be extended to cars. Pretty cool stuff.

  2. Okay -- don't even talk to me about technology right now. I'm still lost in Windows Hell. Grrrr

  3. Nice. That will be a big plus. It works great for my toothbrush, so it stands to reason it will work great for us.
    Have you heard the idea of lining highways with magnetic strips so you can charge up your car while you drive, and generate lots of additional power, too!


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