Some news on the inductive charging front. Volvo, working as part of a consortium of companies, has successfully completed a research project on cordless charging for electric cars and buses. The automaker supplied the car for the inductive charging project, which was a Volvo C30 Electric with a power output of 89 kW.
The project, initiated by Flanders’ Drive, the knowledge centre of the automotive industry in the Flanders region in Belgium, studied the possibilities of inductive charging for electric vehicles, and the technology has shown great potential.
Tests demonstrated that the C30 Electric can be fully charged without a power cable in approximately 2.5 hours. With inductive charging, it’s a case of simply positioning the car over a charging device and charging starts automatically.
Inductive charging uses an electromagnetic field instead of a cord to transfer energy between two objects. An induction coil creates an alternating electromagnetic field from a charging base station, and a second induction coil in the portable device picks up power from the electromagnetic field and converts it back into an electrical energy, which then charges the battery.
The technology is common in electrical home appliances such as electrical toothbrushes, but isn’t yet commercially available for charging EVs, not is there yet a common standard for inductive charging.
In parallel with the research in inductive charging, Volvo also studied slow and regular charging together with Inverto, which was also a partner in the project, and says that research and evaluation on the feasibility of the technology in its hybrids and EVs will continue.