Electrified Highways Will Recharge Tomorrow's Cars

Scientists at Stanford have pioneered a new way to charge electric vehicles without requiring drivers to stop. The new system would place recharging coils beneath the surface of roads. 

What's the Latest Development?


Wireless electricity transfers may power tomorrow's electric cars by making use of recharging coils placed beneath the surface of roads, particularly along interstate highway systems. The coils would be set to the same electromagnetic frequency as the car's battery, allowing an efficient transfer of electricity. Building on work done at MIT in 2006, a Stanford team has "have come up with designs of coil that allow 97% efficient transmission of power over a distance of about 2m (6ft)." The team thinks about 10KW of power can be transferred. 

What's the Big Idea?

Wireless highway systems could mean widespread adoption of electric vehicles, according to Dr. Richard Sassoon, a member of the Stanford research team. He says there are three main reasons why people prefer internal combustion engines to electric cars: "One is the short range that an electric vehicle can travel between charges, and that's based on the size of the battery. The second is the lack of a sufficient charging infrastructure, and the third is that even if you can charge, it takes a long time to chargeseveral hours. That means you’re going to have to take a break in your trip in order to charge your vehicle."

Photo credit: shutterstock.com

Ethnic chauvinism: Why the whole world shouldn’t look like America

We are constantly trying to force the world to look like us — we need to move on.

Videos
  • When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, many Americans jumped for joy. At the time, some believed there weren't going to be any more political disagreements anywhere in the world. They thought American democracy had won the "war of ideas."
  • American exceptionalism has sought to create a world order that's really a mirror image of ourselves — a liberal world order founded on the DNA of American thinking. To many abroad this looks like ethnic chauvinism.
  • We need to move on from this way of thinking, and consider that sometimes "problem-solving," in global affairs, means the world makes us look like how it wants to be.
Keep reading Show less

Physicists find new state of matter that can supercharge technology

Scientists make an important discovery for the future of computing.

Pixabay
Surprising Science
  • Researchers find a new state of matter called "topological superconductivity".
  • The state can lead to important advancements in quantum computing.
  • Utilizing special particles that emerge during this state can lead to error-free data storage and blazing calculation speed.
Keep reading Show less

First solar roadway in France turned out to be a 'total disaster'

French newspapers report that the trial hasn't lived up to expectations.

Image source: Charly Triballeau / AFP / Getty Images
Technology & Innovation
  • The French government initially invested in a rural solar roadway in 2016.
  • French newspapers report that the trial hasn't lived up to expectations.
  • Solar panel "paved" roadways are proving to be inefficient and too expensive.
Keep reading Show less