Electric vehicles can be charged while driving thanks to new technology installed beneath Detroit Street

Electric vehicles can be charged while driving thanks to new technology installed beneath Detroit Street
Electric vehicles can be charged while driving thanks to new technology installed beneath Detroit Street

Crews have built the country’s first wireless-charging public roadway for electric vehicles beneath a thoroughfare west of downtown Detroit.

The nation’s first wireless-charging public roadway for electric vehicles has been built beneath a street just west of downtown Detroit.

Copper inductive charging coils enable receiver-equipped automobiles to charge their batteries while driving, idling, or parking above the coils.

According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, the quarter-mile length of 14th Street will be used to test and perfect the technology before making it available to the public in a few years.

On Wednesday, demonstrations were presented at the Michigan Central Innovation District, a hotspot for advancing technologies and programs that address mobility challenges. Ford Motor Company is also rehabilitating the former Michigan Central train station in the neighborhood in order to research self-driving automobiles.

Electreon, an Israeli provider of wireless charging solutions for electric automobiles, owns the technology. Contracts for similar roads have been awarded to the corporation in Israel, Sweden, Italy, and Germany. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer launched the pilot initiative in 2021.

“We’ll demonstrate how wireless charging unlocks widespread EV adoption, addressing limited range, grid limitations, and battery size and costs alongside Michigan’s automotive expertise,” said Stefan Tongur, Electreon vice president of business development. “This project paves the way for a zero-emission mobility future, where electric vehicles are the norm, not the exception.”

When a car equipped with a receiver approaches the charging section, the coils beneath the road transmit electricity via a magnetic field, charging the vehicle’s battery. The coils only turn on when a vehicle equipped with a receiver drives over them.

According to Tongur, the route is safe for pedestrians, automobiles, and animals.

The state Department of Transportation and Electreon have committed to developing an electric road infrastructure over a five-year period. The DOT is set to solicit bids to rebuild a portion of bustling Michigan Avenue, which will also include inductive charging.

As the popularity of electric vehicles grows in the United States, the Biden administration has made a plan for 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations a signature piece of its infrastructure plans.

According to officials, the wireless-charging roadway contributes to Michigan and Detroit being at the forefront of electric vehicle technology.

“We want to stay ahead of the curve in Michigan.” “We want to be ahead of the curve,” said Michigan Department of Transportation Director Bradley C. Wieferich.

Tongur stated that no decisions on revenue models had been made in Michigan. “The technology is smart,” he remarked. “The technology knows who you are—you’re a verified and authentic user—you can get a charge.”

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