Automotive

Prototype EV powered by radio frequency transmission demonstrated

Prototype EV powered by radio ...
A means of powering electric vehicles using radio frequency transmission has been demonstrated at CEATEC 2014 (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
A means of powering electric vehicles using radio frequency transmission has been demonstrated at CEATEC 2014 (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
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A means of powering electric vehicles using radio frequency transmission has been demonstrated at CEATEC 2014 (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
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A means of powering electric vehicles using radio frequency transmission has been demonstrated at CEATEC 2014 (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
The demonstration of "electric power transfer via the car-wheel" is claimed as the world's first (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
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The demonstration of "electric power transfer via the car-wheel" is claimed as the world's first (Photo: Stephen Clemenger/Gizmag)
An electric track embedded below the road's surface transmits a radio frequency to steel strips in the vehicle's tyres
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An electric track embedded below the road's surface transmits a radio frequency to steel strips in the vehicle's tyres

Two issues preventing the widespread uptake of electric vehicles are recharging time and lack of range. Now, scientists have shown one potential means of negating these issues. Their demonstration of electric power transfer via the car-wheel is claimed as the world's first.

Electric vehicles can already be powered via infrastructure in the road. The South Korean city of Gumi uses a means of electromagnetic induction to power some of its buses. This newly-demonstrated method, however, uses radio frequency transmission.

The concept has been developed by Masahiro Hanazawa of Toyota Central R&D Labs and Takashi Ohira of Toyohashi University of Technology. It avoids the need for potentially dangerous contact conductivity devices by up-converting energy from power lines into radio frequency using high-speed inverters.

An electric track embedded below the road's surface transmits a radio frequency to steel strips in the vehicle's tyres
An electric track embedded below the road's surface transmits a radio frequency to steel strips in the vehicle's tyres

The radio frequency voltage is applied to a balanced metal track running under the surface of the road. The car then picks up this voltage "via electrical capacitance between the metal and a steel belt installed inside of the tires of the EV."

To test their concept, Hanazawa and Ohira created a 1/32 scale electric vehicle. Using the prototype, they were able to show that such a vehicle could be propelled at a frequency of 52 MHz with a power penetration efficiency of over 75 percent.

Hanazawa and Ohira believe that the technology has the potential to enable "a tremendous extension of the EV cruising range." Indeed, by powering electric vehicles in real-time, it would hypothetically allow them to run indefinitely on much smaller batteries than are currently required.

The electric power transfer via the car-wheel concept was demonstrated at CEATEC last week.

Source: Toyohashi University of Technology

5 comments
Mzungu_Mkubwa
Still, massive infrastructure changes are required to put the "metal plate" under the roads. However, I could see this as a charging method - assuming transfer rates were high enough. Batteries could be replaced by quick charging super capacitors, with evenly spaced segments of road containing this tech to recharge them on the fly.
Nicolas Zart
Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Mazda come with that same idea in 2009? Now here's the real question, 75% efficiency? Qualcomm Halo's inductive charging system, which would cost less already achieves in the mid 90s. I'm not I see the practicality of this. Sometimes it feels companies like to over-engineer things too much. Still, good idea.
Stephen N Russell
Mass produce, 2 bad they cant make units prefab, then to bury into Hwys & roads alone. For LA CA thats fine to use in roads being fixed due to potholes but otherwise double work to place inside roadway Love the idea otherwise
Don Duncan
This could be used anywhere a private community was being developed. Imagine driving all day from place to place, locally, without worrying about range or cost. And vehicle maintenance would be minimal. This would be very similar to Nicola's dream of wireless energy transmission. Someday an all private, voluntary community will expose "public services" for the fraud they are. Someday, the statement: "Anarchy is impractical, who will build the roads?" will be met with laughter.
HY
think circles. look at: www.store-dot.com . cars go into a charging circle, chk out in 30 sec.. no need to get out of car.incredible wonderful idea.