Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Stellantis successfully tests in-road wireless EV charging technology

Multinational automotive manufacturing corporation Stellantis, together with its project partners, has demonstrated the capability of Dynamic Wireless Power transfer (DWPT) technology to wirelessly recharge electric vehicles (EVs) as they travel over specially equipped, dedicated road lanes. The DWPT technology simplifies the customer approach to electric mobility by removing range anxiety and supports decarbonization and environmental sustainability.

The technology utilizes wireless UV charging coils positioned under the asphalt that transfers energy directly to cars, trucks, and buses without the need to stop at charging stations to refill the battery. The technology can be adapted for all vehicles equipped with a special “receiver” that transfers the energy incoming from the road infrastructure directly to the electric motor, extending the range while conserving the vehicle battery charge.

The system was tested for months at the “Arena del Futuro” (“Arena of the Future”) circuit, a 1,050-meter (0.65-mile) loop of the road near the Chiari exit of the A35 Motorway, about half an hour outside Milan in northern Italy.

Work at “Arena del Futuro” shows that a BEV, like the Fiat New 500 outfitted to test the system, can travel at typical highway speeds without consuming the energy stored in its battery. The test results have shown that the efficiency of the energy flow from the asphalt to the car is comparable to the typical efficiency of fast charging stations, so the driver does not need to stop to recharge. The magnetic fields involved have no impact on the driver and passengers and are safe for pedestrians to walk through.

“Our long-term strategic plan, Dare Forward 2030, is based on the premise of bringing ‘cutting-edge freedom of mobility’ to all, and this project is the very essence of where we’re headed as a company,” said Anne-Lise Richard, Head of Global e-Mobility Business Unit, Stellantis. “Working with this incredible group of partners, we have proven that inductive recharging technology can power our electrified future. These joint projects are exciting steps as we work to achieve longer battery lifespan, lower range anxiety, greater energy efficiency, smaller battery size, outstanding performance, and lower weight and cost.”

DWPT is one of the technologies intended to simplify the customer approach to electric mobility and ultimately respond in a tangible way to the requirements for decarbonization and environmental sustainability in the mobility sector. The technology attracts interest for commercial development globally due to its versatility in its dynamic and static inductive versions. In addition to being useful on roads and motorways, it is also suitable when combined with other infrastructures like harbors, airports, and parking lots.