City of Detroit has the first installation of wireless charging in a public roadway in the US.
The concept is simple: rather than drivers of electric vehicles having to factor in stops to top up batteries, inductive coils embedded under roads could wirelessly beam power to special receivers mounted under EVs and boost up the cells when vehicles are parked up or moving along.
Such infrastructure could also potentially remove the need for large battery packs, lowering vehicle manufacturing costs and leading to more widespread adoption of electric mobility while essentially nipping any perceived range anxiety in the bud.
Initially, a Ford E-Transit fitted with a receiver will be used to gather data as part of a five-year pilot to perfect the technology in real-world settings and study potential public transport applications – though there are plans to open the electric road system to the public within the next few years.
"For more than a century, Detroit has been known around the world as the leader in transportation innovation," said Detroit's Mayor, Mike Duggan. "We are birthplace of the auto industry, and the home of the first mile of concrete road and the first three-way traffic signal. Today, thanks to Gov. Whitmer and our partners at Michigan Central and Electreon, we can add the nation’s first wireless charging public roadway to that list of innovations."