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Imagine a world where you could charge your electric car while you were driving on the highway. You won’t have to stop at gas stations or wait overnight for your car to charge. This might sound like a scene from a movie set in the future. However, it’s not that far from the truth. Recent improvements in technology are making it possible for people to charge electric cars wirelessly on the highway. And a new study from Cornell University says that both private operators and customers who use this service will need efficient pricing to keep energy costs down.

How Wireless Charging Functions

Wireless charging lanes would use magnetic fields to transfer energy from equipment embedded in the road to batteries in electric vehicles as they travel at highway speeds. The idea is that cars would have technology that would automatically line up the battery with the charging lane. This would charge the battery while the car is moving.

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The Cornell University Study

The new report from Cornell University (published in Applied Energy) found that using dynamic pricing mechanisms in the market could save customers up to 6% on the retail price of power. To lower costs and make sure that wireless charging lanes can be run profitably, private operators will need to use pricing models that take into account both demand and the time of day they are used. This is similar to how toll roads work now (Cornell University, 2022).

Assistant professor at Cornell’s Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and lead author of the study Peng Xu said, “Our results support the case for privatized operation of [wireless charging] lanes and show that it is important to include time-of-use tariffs in user fee structures.” Xu also said that these results will “help policymakers make good rules and private concessionaires come up with business cases for the deployment of [wireless charging] infrastructure” (Cornell University, 2022).

The future 

Wireless charging highways are set to become a reality within the next decade. With this new technology, electric vehicles will be able to provide their drivers with up to 500 miles of driving range without being hampered by standard battery limitations currently imposed by law or predetermined specs for model years 2020 and beyond! This implies you may now charge through electromagnetic induction instead of at gas stations. It also does not emit emissions into our atmosphere on a daily basis, as combustion engine-powered vehicles do.

A recent report published about “wireless charging lanes” promises great things not only environmentally but also economically if these innovations build out fast enough. This means less energy expenditures overall while still achieving complete convenience. The Wireless Charging Highway project has the potential to revolutionize transportation and energy consumption. This innovative idea would provide drivers with easy access points to electric car charging stations. This is critical in combating climate change while also improving our economy because less gas equals higher profits (Cornell University, 2022).

Final thoughts:

Electric cars are becoming more popular. As battery technology keeps improving, it’s only a matter of time before we can charge them wirelessly on the road. A recent Cornell University research shows that judicious pricing is vital to making this new technology commercially viable. Private operators can keep costs low for themselves and their customers by building time-of-use tariffs into their user fee structures. As electric cars become more common, we need to find ways to get more people to use them. Wireless charging on the road may be the answer.

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