Remember when you were a kid and all you wanted for your birthday was a remote-controlled car?
When the day finally arrived, your heart raced as you ripped open the wrapping paper and saw the gleaming red car under the clear plastic of the box. You, at long last, were the proud owner of a real remote-controlled car.
After tearing open the packaging and having your dad free the car of its inner restraints, a horrible realization occurred. Your car wasn’t a real remote-controlled car, it was tethered with a wire from the remote to the car. What fun is that?
The disappointment was intense, and you hung your head as you followed the car through the kitchen, maneuvering it around adults’ feet, trying to keep the wire free.
Now you’re all grown up and have finally purchased the electric car you always wanted, only to suffer the familiar disappointment of realizing you can’t go far without attaching a wire.
That’s a problem automakers are trying to deal with as EV sales trickle and current owners struggle with messy, hard-to-handle cords and a limited driving range.
A possible solution: wireless charging mats.
The details are a bit technical for my tastes, but essentially automakers are working on two different kinds of mats that an EV owner can park on to receive a wireless charge rather than plugging the cars in with a cord. While car owners could use the mats at home, it’s also possible that parking garages and lots could integrate the mats, giving EV drivers a quick charge before they head off to their next destination. The city of London is even testing the idea of embedding mats in city streets, which, if there were enough of them, could theoretically provide an unlimited amount of driving range on those city streets.
While I’m not yet convinced that electric vehicles are the alternate fuel source of the future, charging mats could at least give current EV owners a reason to hold their heads high and know the cord has finally been severed.
If electric vehicles could be charged as you drove around town, would you be convinced to buy one?