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Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging

NREL is investigating the requirements and feasibility of wireless electric vehicle (EV) charging. 

Photo of van parked in a designated spot next to several pieces of boxed equipment near a parking garage

High-power, in-road, dynamic wireless charging could go a long way toward realizing the potential of charge-sustaining EV operation (i.e., unlimited range with in-route recharge) while enabling the use of smaller, cheaper batteries.

Research focuses on associated hardware, communication, system planning, and control strategy needs, as well as its potential to be cost-competitive with conventional fast-charging technologies.

Researchers are looking at various interrelated variables to design an optimized system:

  • Roadway classes to be electrified
  • Roadway charging segment locations and lengths
  • Charging power levels
  • System interoperability to serve a range of vehicle classes (i.e., light-, medium-, and heavy-duty)
  • Appropriate battery capacity to enable charge-sustaining operation for long-distance travel
  • Feasibility of wireless charging for shared automated electric vehicles.

To do this, they're employing real-world global positioning system data from the Transportation Secure Data Center and Fleet DNA repositories along with NREL’s Wireless Power Transfer Simulator, a system planning and optimization tool.

Contact

To learn more about NREL’s wireless charging research, contact Andrew Meintz.