Wireless charging smashes range limits for electric vehicles

Wireless charging smashes range limits for electric vehicles

Technology News |
By Christoph Hammerschmidt

Electreon, developer and provider of wireless charging solutions for electric vehicles, plans to demonstrate in a test lasting several days that electric vehicles can, in principle, travel unlimited distances and for long periods of time – if their batteries are constantly recharged while they are on the road.

Electreon plans to unveil its novel wireless electric road technology these days. This will involve continuously charging a plug-in hybrid vehicle – a Toyota RAV4 PHEV – while it drives for up to 100 hours on the company’s wireless demonstration electric road. A world first, the hybrid electric vehicle’s compact and lightweight 18-kWh battery will never be fully discharged over a five-day period and will travel between 1,000 and 1,500 km during that time. Electreon selected this hybrid vehicle to demonstrate how any electric vehicle, even one with a minimal vehicle battery size, can benefit from extended, theoretically even unlimited, range through wireless charging. The company’s demonstration track is just over 200 meters long, about 25% of which is electrified. For a driving distance of 1,000 km, the company says that the use of wireless charging technology should increase the range by 13 times compared to current limits for hybrid vehicles; for a driving distance of 1,500 km, it should even grow to 20 times.

Drivers will switch over the course of the week, but the vehicle will not have to stop to recharge during the five-day period. The ride is live-streamed and can be followed by anyone.

“Industry, government and public support for wireless charging technologies for electric vehicles is greater today than at any time since Electreon was founded in 2013, and we are now involved in a dozen projects in five countries and working with more than 60 global partners, including leading automotive industry partners. This is the turning point,” said Oren Ezer, CEO and co-founder of Electreon. Just this month, the company claims to have introduced the first public shuttle in Germany that charges dynamically while driving.

Electreon’s inductive technology charges e-vehicles both while driving and while stationary. This, the company argues, eliminates range anxiety, lowers the overall cost of owning an e-vehicle and reduces the need for battery capacity. Electreon is working with cities and fleet operators on a “sell” business model and a Charging as a Service (CaaS) business model that enables cost-effective electrification of public, commercial and autonomous fleets for smooth and continuous operation.

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