Volvo Testing Electric Roads to Charge Electric Cars - HackTribune

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Friday, 1 January 2016

Volvo Testing Electric Roads to Charge Electric Cars

The concept of electric vehicles has struck the modern world really quick. With the growing need to deal with the pollution problem, some of the governments, as well as the people, want to shift to more environment-friendly vehicles. Electric vehicles are gaining popularity, and one can find a lot of companies manufacturing electric vehicles like Tesla in U.S as well as a huge number of firms in China. With different innovations taking place in wireless charging technology, indications are that we won't be needing batteries at all to run our vehicles. As modern Tesla electric vehicles are using a wireless charging technology in the United States. Volvo with Alstom, a Swedish Energy Agency are working over a new project involving charging the electric vehicles directly from the road, by placing two power lines directly into the road. So the vehicles just passing over the road would be receiving charge directly from the road without the need of the battery.



[caption id="attachment_1034" align="aligncenter" width="530"]Electric Road Current Collector Electric Road Current Collector[/caption]



Prototype Electric Road Constructed by Volvo


Volvo Group has constructed a prototype electric road of a quarter mile, embedded with cables previous year at the Hällered testing facility. They use a test truck containing a current collector. As the truck moves over the lines, this collector collects 750 Volts of direct current that is directed to a hydro cooled heating element as per Gizmag’s Report by Paul Ridden.



[caption id="attachment_1035" align="aligncenter" width="338"]volvo-electric-road Volvo Truck with Electric Road Current Collector[/caption]



Future of Volvo’s Electric Roads

This new invention, even though quite futuristic would certainly end the range anxiety. Once the car is on the track, it could keep going on forever without the need of getting it charged.  It would be a much more affordable and better way of charging the cars than an overhead cable system. Although there are a lot of “ifs” and “buts” here. However, Volvo is working over the current collectors, electric motors, control systems, electric road construction, electric road maintenance, along with a proper payment method the drivers are going to use.

Such high tech roads are very suitable for the United States. As most of the highways are aging and many regions are prone to natural disasters like tornadoes and  so fourth. These roads would be a better alternative to elevated overhead cable lines, which can be completely destroyed in disasters. However, we hope to see this life changing technologies to come in our lifetime.

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