There are already a number of wireless (that is to say, inductive) electric vehicle charging systems on the market, but the technology is still somewhat new and undeveloped, with most offerings being relatively low-power (and thus, slow-charging).
That’s beginning to change, though, with automakers such as Nissan currently pursuing higher-power inductive charging options. Earlier options had generally been based around a standard of around 3 kilowatts (kW), but newer options being explored by the Japanese company utilize a level as high as 7 kW.
With regard to the new work, Green Car Reports provides more:
But as an official at Nissan Technical Center in Atsugi, Japan, put it, as we were given a few teases of what Nissan’s working on, in a recent visit after the Tokyo Motor Show, “3 kW is not enough, so we’re focusing on higher power.”
Specifically, the automaker is now working on a system of about 7 kW — a power level that could easily allow overnight charging for a larger battery pack, like the 200 mile, 60 kW pack that Nissan is working on, potentially either as a premium option on the Leaf or for another electric vehicle.
The current development system already has a lot more flexibility, with officials reporting that the vehicle can be positioned up to 4 inches to the left, right, fore, or aft of the ‘bullseye’ for wireless charging. At the same time, Nissan’s latest wireless charging development is now working with what it calls a medium gap between the charging pads — translating to around 4-6 inches (100-150 mm), while the previous 3 kW system was operating at just under 4 inches.
Such a change would of course make things more practical/convenient.
Worth noting here is that those involved in the work stated that the technology was being designed specifically to not cause problems for pacemakers and related technologies. Also of interest is that system efficiency is now over 85% at the above-mentioned heights, according to those involved.
Fleet testing of the system is expected to begin before the end of the year.