Wireless charging hasn’t caught on yet, with either device manufacturers or consumers. The technology isn’t quite ready for prime time, so to speak. Most consumers have heard of wireless charging, some have even tried it, but very few people use it consistently yet. A team in Korea has developed a new option for wirelessly charging devices that could change that.
A team from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea debuted a new system last week for wirelessly charging devices without the need for the device to be placed on, or even near, a wireless charging coil. They call their system the Dipole Coil Resonant System, or DCRS. The charging unit is actually a box that is nine feet long. It uses magnetic coils to send power to devices that are up to 15 feet away. Last month, they demoed the wireless charging box and even used it to power equipment at a nuclear power plant. While the practicality of putting a nine-foot wireless charging box in your house is questionable, the fact remains that this team has overcome one of the major hurdles of wireless charging adoption.
DPRS is one of many takes on this type of wireless charging over long distances. A wireless platform called Cota is already in commercial development and should be available to consumers sometime next year. Cota can be used to charge devices up to 30-feet away. One of the key differences is the power that the DCRS box can kick it. DCRS can charge up to 40 devices at the same time, and it can be used to power large devices like televisions. The team in Korea sees DCRS as a large-scale charging system to be rolled out alongside current Wi-Fi networks.
“Just like we see Wi-Fi zones everywhere today, we will eventually have many Wi-Power zones at such places as restaurants and streets that provide electric power wirelessly to electronic devices,” said research team lead Chun Rim said in a statement. “We will use all the devices anywhere without tangled wires attached and anytime without worrying about charging their batteries.”
DCRS is designed to be more efficient and easier to set up and use, as well as less sensitive to background interference. This would make it perfect for large-scale rollout in places like airports and hotels. Supposedly it’s scalable for smaller use cases, but we’ll have to wait and see.