Power Transferred Through Concrete Could Mean Electric Cars That Charge As You Drive

One of the biggest issues preventing the electric car from taking over the roads is their incredibly limited battery life. But researchers at the Toyohashi University of Technology in Japan have demonstrated a new system that could let electric cars constantly recharge while they're being driven.

Their research has resulted in a system that's able to transfer somewhere in the neighbourhood of 50-60W of electricity through almost 10cm of concrete, allowing the power source to be safely buried beneath a roadway. And specially adapted tires which are wired into a vehicle's power system could then harness that electricity and use it to top off the battery.

At the moment the system exists as a low-power proof-of-concept of the technology, and would require about 100 times more power to actually charge an electric car's battery while it was running. But they claim the components needed to ramp it up are cheaply available, and the system could even work with concrete layers almost eight inches thick if needed. [Tech-On!]


Comments

    Sounds awesome till someone gets electrocuted crossing a road.

      The transfer of power between the road and the tire is not done with exposed wires, it's done through (from what I can garner in the pictures above) inductive charging where electricity is transferred using electromagnetism and high-frequency, high-amperage electricity travelling through paired coils. Similar technology is used in wireless charging devices (if my assumption is correct).

    ok idea in theory, but lets be real here who going to pay for this electricity? and the infrastructe costs?

    wh y do the car companies insist on going the electric root! it been proven time and time again cars can run on hydrogen and even compressed air. Wait thats right those oil companies in american own alot of the energy info structure through out the world. So running out of oil? no problem! whe now control the electricity that is powering your car $$$.

      @bruce

      Umm, isn't Hydrogen created by running electricity through water? Its an extra step to an electric vehicle. Electricity is the future. We just need a cleaner source of electricity production. This is happening with Japan about to start development on one of the worlds largest solar farm.

      This http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ep4L18zOEYI

      Extra power can be fed back into the grid.

      The biggest thing is governments need to pay for the roads and this technology without petrol excise we may have those issues. Petrol excise is a major factor in keeping petrol cars on the road.

    Doesn't sounds feasible. Current running through the wheel bearings? This is already a known cause of bearing failure in industrial applications, so I can't see it as having any purpose as a FEATURE...

    it could also charge your car while your in gridlock and parking.
    now... all we need to do now is up the power and we could get rid of the battery's altogether.

    One of the biggest issues preventing the electric car from taking over the roads is old fashioned thinking. an electric car can easily do 95% of your driving, no it can't take you on a road trip but how often do you realy do that? driving to work, taking your kids to school, going shopping could all easily be done in an electric car. the only reason you can't buy an electric car is that old school oil money is used to promote old school oil to you and your goverment

      Might drive you to work. I drive 150-200km a day to get to work....Show me an electric car that'll do that for less than the price of my Diesel Golf?
      And no, don't start about "move closer." I train to the station to take public transport otherwise I'd have to get up an hour and a half earlier everyday to catch the train from where I live....and get home an hour later. Also, moving closer to this station would mean living by myself, using more power, hence more CO2, the very point of electric cars.

    This will never be a drive away success, unless there is a way to make money off it (even if it is to offset the cost of installing the "transmitters" and the cost of supplying the power.)

    electric cars will become mainstream. I mean if an electric car can do 200km's on a charge that would be a huge cost saving for people who commute 100km's per day. They are no good for long trips but how often do people do that anyway?

    I have a twin turbo GT and I won't be replacing it anytime soon with an electric car. However I would consider buying a second SMART car sized electric car for the daily commute. It makes sense!

    I would be prepared to pay $11,000. And I don't care about any luxuries, just the basics that would get me to work and back. If I feel like a spirited drive I would take the GT.

    Would be good to apply this technology to airport runways to melt snow

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