We, here at UTK, have 17 electric vehicle charging stations on campus: 6 by staff lot 23, 6 on the Ag Campus, and 5 at the 11th Street Garage. These stations are open to students, staff, faculty, and the greater community in efforts to reduce our overall environmental impact. Electric vehicles are a great alternative to standard vehicles in that they have a significantly lower environmental impact than their counterparts, but they have their drawbacks. Because they can only go so far on a single charge (between 50-100 miles is standard) and in refueling they can take as many as 16 hours to recharge to a full 100% (though the option of fast charging to 80% is available, but it can be damaging to the battery and still takes at least 30 minutes), they aren’t really convenient on long trips.
All hope is not lost, however. The British government has an answer to this global conundrum – roads that recharge electric vehicles while you drive. Wireless charging for personal devices has been around for a bit, and is even popping up on a larger scale for cars – but none of them has ever been charged while going 60 mph.
The UK is getting ready to begin the testing phase for this new technology in the next few months. The government will install the devices under test roads and in vehicles, and work toward making this technology a realistic solution for the sovereign state’s highways. This prototype could potentially work for all types of vehicles, and because it goes under the road there won’t be anything above ground that increases the risk of collision or electrical shock. It breaks down the limitations of other projects aimed at lowering emissions on roadways, like overhead cables used for trains and trolleys or LA’s prototype zero emission highway.
To learn more about this awesome project, check out the press release here.