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Evatran unveils wireless charging solution for electric vehicles

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August 1, 2010

Evatran has revealed a plug-free solution to EV charging, its Plugless Power induction cha...

Evatran has revealed a plug-free solution to EV charging, its Plugless Power induction charging system

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Evatran has unveiled its Plugless Power induction charging solution for electric vehicles. Instead of having to worry about bothersome cables and plug/power compatibility, EV owners using the system will just need to pull up in front of a control tower and the charging process will kick in automatically. And you needn't concern yourself with perfect parking either, the floor-mounted current delivery block is said to take care of all the alignment issues.

Formed by Virginian-based MTC Transformers in 2009, Evatran is looking to provide convenient, universal, and reliable charging solutions for electric vehicles. With its Plugless Power electric vehicle supply equipment, the company is aiming to make EV charging a fairly simple affair. The system consists of two main parts, one fitted to the vehicle and the other on the ground in front of a control tower.

First off, owners will need to get a specially designed adapter fitted and linked up to the car's onboard battery charger. After this, when the car pulls up in front of a Plugless Power control tower the floor-mounted parking block automatically detects and aligns itself to the adapter in the car. The system then uses magnetic induction to bridge the small gap and start charging the battery.

An electric vehicle pulls up to the Plugless Power control tower
When the system detects the vehicle, charging automatically begins
Once charging is complete, the vehicle is simply driven away - not a cable in sight

To call it wireless charging is perhaps misleading, it is in fact proximity induction charging where the two parts of the charging system need to get close enough for a charge to flow over a small air space between them.

Evatran's current system does lose some energy during transfer (around 20 per cent) but by the time the system is launched, the company anticipates that it can get its enhanced solution operating at 90 per cent efficiency or more. Still short of perfect but the company says that this won't necessarily lead to increased charging times as "the charger will draw additional watts from the electrical outlet to compensate for the small efficiency loss."

The Plugless Power system has been undergoing field trials and testing during the year and Evatran is aiming to have the first production-ready, plug-free units available by early 2011. The final cost to electric vehicle owners has yet to be announced.

It's not the first time magnetic induction has been used to power an electric vehicle but Evatran's solution could well see it's U.S. manufactured electric vehicle supply equipment popping up all over the country.

Via earth2tech

About the Author
Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.   All articles by Paul Ridden
4 Comments

So...the inductive charging will have a 20% loss...at 20 cents per kilowatt-hour, that makes the cost to use this device, that experts say will take as much electricity as an whole home airconditioner, will be 24 cents per kilowatt-hour. Wow! So, you will have to pay to install a 240 volt charging system into your home (about $500-$1500 depending on the electrician). Then you have to purchase the 240 volt charging system (not standard) The Leaf sells theirs for $19,000. Then you have to buy this system...who *KNOWS* how much they will charge...you you know that they see a money tree here! So consider another $1000? at least! And for that you get the privilege of paying 20% more for the electricity! Suddenly, $4/gallon of gas looks cheap!

Ed
2nd August, 2010 @ 04:15 pm PDT

Well, while a 240 volt supply is not the standard in the USA it is for most of the world.

(220-240 anyway) so this was a major reason for choosing it, plus being able to use

lower current for the same power delivery.

In the USA 240 volts is readily available using two single-phase 120v supplies as is

customary for higher powered appliances such as cooking-stoves and clothes-driers, thus very little by way of installation would be required - a piece of cable and a power-socket.

professore
3rd August, 2010 @ 02:05 am PDT

now you just have to remember that its actually there and not run it over.

Facebook User
3rd August, 2010 @ 02:26 am PDT

I'd say the extra inconvenience of having to physically plug your car in isn't worth the hassle of induction charging at home, BUT if these chargers were under the road at intersections, you could grab bits of charge every time you came to a red light. A security code could be passed to the system for billing. I've seen the idea elsewhere. Aligning the car with the charging system is what we call a "detail" in engineering. But a "wireless" technology is much more useful when you're actually on the go than when you're at a "parked" charging station where all you have to do is get out and plug in a cable. Just saying....

warren52nz
3rd August, 2010 @ 08:17 pm PDT
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