Furukawa Electric Testing Witricity Wireless EV Charging 

March 27, 2019 by Scott McMahan

WiTricity reported that it is working with Furukawa Electric to test an advanced wireless charging system prototype for EVs that uses Furukawa's latest technologies. The companies are collaborating to test WiTricity's DRIVE 11 park-and-charge system, which WiTricity designed for maximum efficiency and interoperability across vehicle platforms.

The DRIVE 11 system uses materials and components developed by Furukawa. The testing focuses on wireless charging systems at 7.7kW and 11kW charge rates, and it is intended to comply with standards proposed by SAE International's J2954 Committee.

Furukawa is a supplier of interconnection systems, copper wiring and thermal management components for the automotive industry. These materials and components can help optimize the cost and performance of wireless charging, thereby increasing the adoption of wireless charging by carmakers and charging infrastructure providers.

WiTricity's DRIVE 11 wireless charging system allows a driver to simply pull into his or her parking spot and automatically receive charging power from a source on the ground without the need for a physical connection of the vehicle to the charger. WiTricity says that the system design works across all EV platforms and can be deployed as a "floor pad" in a consumer's garage, or installed in the pavement to deliver wireless charging in public and commercial parking lots.

The wireless charging system does not require contact. It uses magnetic resonance to charge a vehicle over a distance, transmitting an electric charge from a source resonator to a device resonator installed on the underside of the vehicle. (See diagram below).

Selective energy exchange between efficiently coupled resonators -- tuned and matched source and receiver

"Wireless charging is a technology that our OEM partners are interested in," said Mamichi Tsuyuki, General Manager, Automotive Products & Electronics Laboratories. "By testing the WiTricity prototype system with our innovative materials and component solutions, we can help drive the adoption of electric vehicles with wireless charging, which benefits the entire industry, including consumers."

"The electric vehicle has been recognized as central to the future of mobility. Furukawa is a leader in Japan and will help make EVs accessible to the broader market. The convenience of wireless charging will help accelerate adoption even further," said Alex Gruzen, CEO, WiTricity. "Our team is proud to work with Furukawa on this project to expand their offerings."