Wireless charging is making its way into our lives, however, it still hasn’t reached its full potential. For instance; most of the wireless charging systems require close proximity in order to work. So, in essence, you’re still tethered to the charging port even though you’re charging wirelessly. According to a new paper, an LCD-like panel could change that. This particular wireless charging system will be capable of charging multiple devices simultaneously from a distance of up to 33 ft.
The current wireless charging systems work via induction. The charging panel houses a coil of wire and when current flows through it, a magnetic field is generated. This magnetic field is strong enough to induce a similar current in the nearby coil that is housed within the device that requires charging. The limiting factor in this wireless charging system is the distance. The strength of the magnetic field drops drastically as you move away from the charging panel.
David Smith, professor at Duke University and co-author of the paper said, “Our proposed system would be able to automatically and continuously charge any device anywhere within a room, making dead batteries a thing of the past.”
The proposed wireless charging system will enhance the range by utilizing higher microwave frequencies. They will be then directed t the devices in the room by running through the LCD-like panel. The panel will be created from a metamaterial that is already being used by Toyota vehicles for communicating with satellites.
Each cell in the material will be tuned so that it is capable of manipulating the electromagnetic waves as desired. This allows the beams of energy to be focused from LCD to something as small as a smartphone anywhere in the room. The system would be capable of charging several devices simultaneously within a range of 10 meters.
There are problems of course, however, not the kind that can’t be overcome. In fact, Professor Smith said, “All of these issues are possible to overcome — they aren’t roadblocks. We actually came up with some nice analytical formulas for coverage areas and efficiencies that would be possible. I think building a system like this, which could be embedded in the ceiling and wirelessly charge everything in a room, is a very feasible scheme. Moreover, there are versions of the concept that can deliver larger power over much larger distances.”
The research has been published online at arXiv.