Future Electric Cars Could Be Recharged While Driving

Most of the countries don’t have charging stations while on a single charge, most of the electrical automobiles can travel between 100 to 250 miles. This lack of or no charging stations has been an everyday problem as the owners have to calculate the whole travel. This ain’t fair! If the experience of driving an electric car is like this then I would rather prefer a cycle.

That’s why, perhaps hearing my comment (well I don’t think so, was just joking), the engineers of University of Boulder are working on such vehicle that would enable electric vehicles to recharge when driving on the highway.

An assistant professor in Development of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering at CU Boulder, Khurram Afridi and his colleagues have developed wireless power transfer’s proof of concept which can transfer electrical energy through electrical fields at extremely high-frequency, and it’s doing for the last couple of years.

This ability to send a large amount of energy over a great distance to in-motion platforms from low-cost charging plates could one day expand beyond little consumer electronics such as mobile phone and start to power larger objects such as vehicles. Afridi said, “On a highway, you could have one lane dedicated to charging. A vehicle could simply travel in the lane when it needed an energy boost and could carry a smaller onboard battery as a result; reducing the overall cost of the vehicle.”

Afridi also had to think about methodology differently to solve the scale and in-motion problem cause a Smartphone needs just five watts o power to charge itself while a laptop requires 100 watts but an electric car might need tens of kilowatts of power while in-motion, two orders of magnitude higher.

Most of today’s wireless power technology researches are focusing on to transform energy through magnetic fields. Also, magnetic fields are best for substantial energy transfer at strength levels because they’re easier to generate than equivalent electric fields. Magnetic fields also travel in a looping pattern which requires the fragile and loosy ferrites’ use, so the fields and the energy stay in a level.

Which will result in an expensive yet fascinating system, by contrast, electrical fields travel in relatively straight lines. Afridi also wanted to take advantage of electric fields’ more directed nature in order to reduce the system’s cost.

He said, “Everybody said that it’s not possible to transfer that much energy through such a small capacitance. But we thought what if we increase the frequency of the electric fields?

Afridi and his understudies set it similar metal plates isolated by 12 centimeters. The two base plates speak to the transmitting plates that are inside the roadway and the two best plates speak to the getting plates inside the car. And when Afridi flipped a switch, energy is transmitted from the base plates. The light over the base plates brightens right away and controls the transmission without wires.

The gadget has been boosted in such way that it can transmit kilowatts of energy at the frequencies of megahertz. “When we broke the thousand-watt barrier by sending energy across the 12-centimeter gap, we were just exhilarated. There were a lot of high fives that day, Afridi said.

Afridi’s plan is to go further with the prototype scaling and developing it for potential real-world applications. Afridi also has received funds from ARPA-E division of Department of Energy and support National Science Foundation CAREER Award. From the Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory, a recent seed grant was granted to him in partnership with NREL and Colorado State University. Also, they’ve allowed Afridi to explore the feasibility and in-motion system’s optimization.

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