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Captain Hybrid

Slideshow: Wireless Charging Comes to Automobiles

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TJ McDermott
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Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
TJ McDermott   11/7/2013 10:43:05 AM
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I'm frankly surprised at that - one would think it a no-brainer.  Is there a very large cost (or increase in weight) that would explain why wireless charging isn't ubiquitous in mobile phones?

And because it hasn't, will the same happen to EVs?

naperlou
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Re: Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
naperlou   11/7/2013 11:33:47 AM
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TJ, you have a point.  In a wireless device, the plugging in is not a real hassle.  With a wireless charger for a cell phone, for example, you still have to plug in the charger.  The overhead is large in percentage terms. 

For a car, it is not quite the same.  The overhead in your own garage is similar.  I am assuming you are going to want a higher voltage, dedicated charger.  The overhead in the home is similar, but the overhead on the vehicle is less.  Plugging in, in either case, is not as big a deal, but perhaps there are situations where wireless is going to be desirable.  Time will tell.

ChriSharek
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Wireless Charging is a Novelty
ChriSharek   11/7/2013 3:04:24 PM
Wireless Charging is cool, but absolutely unnecessary.  Plugging in your car takes 10 seconds.  As much as an EV advocate as I am, I don't see this taking off.  Plus, some drivers might end up spending more time aligning their vehicle with the wireless charger than just plugging the darn thing in! 

Charles Murray
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Re: Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
Charles Murray   11/7/2013 9:12:06 PM
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I think the hold-up in EVs right now, TJ, is that automakers are trying to focus their development efforts on the core EV technologies. They've already got their hands full with battery development, and I don't think they want to split the EV pie up into too many pieces.  

TJ McDermott
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Re: Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
TJ McDermott   11/7/2013 10:21:31 PM
Some standards would be nice.  The unleaded gasoline nozzle at any gas station is going to fit the fill port on any vehicle.  There's no competition between auto manufacturers for this bit of infrastructure.

The same needs to happen with the technologies associated with electric vehicles.  There's no way I'm going to stand for two different types of non-contact charger just because I have two different makes of vehicle in my driveway.

 

Analog_John
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Re: Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
Analog_John   11/8/2013 9:18:08 AM
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To create a wireless interface there has to be an on-board energy receiver and on exterior energy transmitter.  In both instances LARGE amounts of energy are required to be transfered.  In the case of overnight charging the transfer rate can be low but for on-the-road 'fill-ups' the charging rate must be frighteningly high.  In both cases the on-board component for wireless charging will be of significant physical size and mass.  This is counterproductive to the present market environment of small, lightweight vehicles.  I expect that this wirless charging concept will not flourish but rather fissel out completely in favour of rapid charge stations with quick disconnects of very fat wires with stringent safety approvals to avoid shock and flashover. 

 

g-whiz
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How much of a gap?
g-whiz   11/8/2013 10:39:52 AM
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God forbid your cat wearing a collar (metal buckle) might haplessly wander between the energy transfer gap. Not only would it get an unwanted MRI, but the buckle would keep them impailed on the charging disk.

William K.
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But how much energy is lost?
William K.   11/8/2013 12:03:02 PM
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None of the touts can claim any real benefit for wireless charging except for convenience. One very seldom sees any mention of efficiency at all, and the last time I did see a description of efficiency it was all in terms that were very hard to follow. But we all know that a direct connection is usually at least 99% efficient. One other concern has been that some folks would have a problem figuring out how to plug in a vehicle. Those people should not even be allowed to drive any car, if their understanding of things in general is that poor. An EVG is an option, it is certainly not an entitlement. Nor should it ever be one.

VoltDave
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Re: Wireless Charging is a Novelty
VoltDave   11/8/2013 12:08:51 PM
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I agree with ChriSharek.  As a fellow EV advocate and Volt owner, this is a solution in search of a problem.  Get home, step out of the car, plug it in.  To leave, unplug it, open the door, get in.  10 seconds is generous.

kevenm1
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Iron
Re: Wireless charging hasn't taken off in consumer electronics
kevenm1   11/8/2013 12:40:31 PM
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The reason wireless charging hasn't taken off for phones and other devices is the inefficiency of charging through the air.  The efficiency rating of wireless charging is between 10 and 20 percent.  That's something we can live with for a phone, but certainly not a car.  The cost of the electricity to recharge a car multiplied by at least 5 becomes unacceptable, and the MPGe calculations go out the window.

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