Siemens, the largest engineering conglomerate in Germany, has unveiled their ‘Contactless Charging of Battery-Electric Vehicles’ project at the recently concluded Hannover Messe 2011. The project jointly developed with German automobile giant BMW will be tested in real-world conditions by the German Environment Ministry in Berlin this June.
Started in 1947 by the British military government in order to boost the economic advancement of post-war Germany, Hannover Messe is the world’s biggest industrial fair now.
A primary coil laid beneath the ground connects the ‘Contactless Charging Station’ to the grid. The electric current flowing through the coil creates a magnetic field, which induces an electric current in the secondary coil placed between 8 to 15 centimeters from the primary. The secondary coil in turn recharges the battery.
Searching for the green element? Here it is: The system is expected to ensure judicious use of energy as the energy used is surplus electricity obtained from solar and wind power facilities.
Though the charging station claims an efficiency of 90 percent, we will have to wait until May, when a prototype 3.6 kW charger will be tested. Further, the test trials in Berlin scheduled in June will decide whether there are any modifications required before integrating the inductive charging system into mass-produced vehicles.
Amidst all these positives, the system lags way behind in generating magnetic field of good strength. The internationally recommended limit of 6.25 microteslas is still a distant dream for the ‘Contactless Charging Station’.