Ky Sealy, Senior Principal Engineer at WiTricity Corporation will speak during this year's Wireless Power Summit session on higher power, which will feature several presentations around wireless charging for electric vehicles. Ahead of this year's highly anticipated Wireless Power Summit, Ky gave us some updates on current market conditions which are driving towards adoption and 2 of the biggest trends happening with automotive wireless charging.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing automotive charging, right now?
When consumers purchase an electric vehicle, they are forced to adopt a new behavior which does not benefit the global adoption of EV’s. Plug-in electric vehicle charging (wired charging) is currently fraught with interoperability issues between many different plug-in standards. Furthermore, plugging in a vehicle is tedious, not automated, and can be problematic for those with physical challenges – especially as the power level and cable size become large. The issue of breakage and theft must also be considered. Standardized wireless charging of electric vehicles eliminates the many hassles of plug-in charging and is enabled with grid-to-vehicle efficiencies greater than 90%. With wireless charging consumers are now able to park and charge without thinking about it. No plugs. No mess. No hassles.
What are the market conditions which are driving towards adoption?
The SAE J2954 publications and standardization is gaining more traction and moving quickly in order to enable a truly interoperable and wire-free charging experience for electric vehicles. There is a great deal of interest among automotive OEMs in wireless charging for their electric vehicles, but concern about ending up with charging systems which are not highly interoperable – the desire is that any vehicle can charge at any wireless charging station. Adoption of the standard is expected to be ubiquitous and synonymous with electric vehicle wireless charging and continued automation of electric vehicles. Consumers demand a truly wire-free experience without the hassle of worrying about interoperability between vehicles and wireless charging infrastructure available. Wireless charging is fundamental to an autonomous future.
What are some of the big innovations and trends going on with wireless charging for automotive?
Over the last few years, automotive wireless charging implementations have become much more efficient, smaller, and higher power. These trends show efficiencies for wireless power systems better than some presently installed wired plug-in chargers and can be comparable with even the most efficient implementations. Beyond efficiency, the user experience for wireless charging continues to improve and enables use-cases that had been previously impossible. Some vehicle manufacturers have already announced release dates for automotive wireless systems as early as 2018 and that trend is expected to continue as the adoption of electric and automated vehicles continues to increase.
What are you most looking forward to hearing at Wireless Power Summit 2017?
Wireless power at a distance enables new user experiences with transformative products. I’m looking forward to seeing the latest presentations in wireless power which promote spatial freedom, high power delivery, and optimal user experience afforded by wireless power. I expect to see a continued amount of innovation in this area as the demand for wireless charging and a better user-experience increases.