Yes, long way to go to develop. We use this now for wireless transmission of energy across a campus to get Temperature, Humidity, Occupancy, Light Level, CO2 information back about every 90 seconds, and control a Building Automation System via BacNET/IP network. Works great, would work nicely for troop status, video transmission, field location of assets, etc. Would not want to dump too much RF Energy on the battlefield, but having a system that would charge and/or power individual electronics would be very beneficial for mobility. Suggest someone develop this and get rich from it!
I doubt any available RF charging technology would be useful in the power densities required by dis-mounted troops. Of course, Tesla would be delighted to see all of the recent interest in wireless power delivery.
I wonder if the battery technologies listed in the article have the same fire hazard of traditional lithium batteries? If so, I would hope that shielding the troops from the heat and/or flame would be priority #1.
With advent of electrical/electronic systems on battlefield, why couldn't soldiers wear the lighter battery with remote charging ability. POWERCAST and others make a RF Battery Charging system that wirelessly transmits power to receivers that charge batteries, or can be used to store info from Soldier in this case, and transmit in bundles every 3-5 minutes.
Wireless technology takes output from generated electricity, transmits it to soldier's receiver and then allows them to store, causing them to wear lighter weight equipment. System could transmit directionally to a platoon or brigade size unit over RF, and each soldier's system could store a new charge without changing out batteries or connecting to a charger.
Simple, lightweight, very few moving parts, and no matter where you were as long in reasonable distance and somewhat line of sight, you could be Charged.
Elizabeth's statement "SWIPES can hold pouch-mounted chargers and power cables... " says there's loads of room to improve a soldier's load besides the battery.
In two years, I'll predict the army will be looking at ways to eliminate all of that cabling and chargers. Each device would have a dedicated holster with built in charging capability, like docking an I-pod. Each holster could then draw from a central, larger power source via some sort of bus built into the harness the soldier wears. No cables, no power blocks.
The purpose is to make wearing, using, charging as effortless as possible. No fumbling in pouches, no cables. Just put the unit away in its holster.
It would look more like Adam West's "Bat Utility Belt" I suppose...
Since energy density is the key to reducing battery weight, then I would assume that the lithium-carbon monofluoride mentioned here must have a very high energy density. I wonder how high the energy density is and whether this chemistry would make sense for consumer applications.
Having just lugged my laptop around again while traveling to a trade show last month, this looks like an especially good idea. The weight of the batteries (I always carry an extra JIC) and the power adapter are still ridiculously heavy and most of the weight involved.
It's great to see so many different efforts around trying to lighten the load of soldier backpacks. Between this effort and some of the others we've written about, including the batteries that are charged based on soldier activity, there are a lot of options for making things slightly easier for our military personnel when out in the field.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.