Evatran Announces Installations of Plugless Power Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging Systems

July 15, 2012 by Jeff Shepard

Evatran has successfully completed the first three installations of its Plugless Power wireless electric vehicle (EV) charging technology with Apollo Launch partners The Hertz Corporation, Duke Energy, and the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR). These installations, on Nissan LEAF vehicles, represent the first passenger electric vehicles in the world with full wireless charging capability.

Drivers at the three installation locations have been trialing the vehicles for the past month, since installations began in early June, and will continue to test the systems throughout the next three months. An additional three installations will be completed in July with partners from California to Washington, D.C. The Apollo Launch Program, kicked-off in early 2012, follows six commercial partners as they trial wireless charging technology installed on their own Chevy Volt and Nissan LEAF vehicles, in a variety of real-world applications.

"Our goal in launching this one-of-a-kind initiative was two-fold," commented Tom Hough, Evatran’s Chief Executive Officer and electric vehicle driver, "we wanted to get this game-changing technology into the hands of real electric vehicle drivers and we wanted to show the market that convenient, wireless charging technology can encourage electric vehicle adoption on a large scale. With these first installations, we’re well on our way to leading the wireless charging market."

The Plugless Power technology is based on electromagnetic induction, a technology that has been understood for over 100 years. This fundamental technology was enhanced by Evatran engineers with proprietary control software and coil designs in order to extend the efficient transfer of power over an air gap of as much as seven inches. The Company, a start-up based out of Virginia, now leads the industry in providing a low-cost system with robust alignment tolerance at a fraction of the on-board weight as competitors. The prototypes installed with Apollo Program partners require absolutely zero user interaction, charge the vehicles as quickly as traditional corded chargers, and function at over 90% efficiency.

Partners have already started providing feedback on the system, which Evatran will collect throughout the Program. Driver feedback ranges from system utilization to user interface to plug-in charging comparisons. The results of the program will be compiled in a Case Study to be released at the end of the summer to further the industry’s understanding of wireless charging technology.

Brian Normann, Evatran’s Chief Technology Officer added, "We’re already learning how users interact with the system, the confidence it gives them in recharging their electric vehicles, and what we need to update for our production aftermarket systems. Our partners, through their daily use of the system, are supplying us with invaluable feedback to utilize as we update our design and make it available to electric vehicle drivers across the country."

Evatran is now accepting partners for the second phase of the Apollo Program set to launch in the next six months. Partners must have Nissan LEAF or Chevrolet Volt vehicles in their fleet and be willing to drive the equipped vehicles on a daily basis.

More news and information regarding the latest developments in Smart Grid electronics can be found at Darnell’s SmartGridElectronics.Net.