A recently implemented innovation under a street in Detroit has the capability to recharge electric cars while they are in motion.

Workers have completed the installation of what is being promoted as the first publicly accessible wireless-charging road for electric cars in the United States. This road is located under a street on the western side of downtown Detroit.

Copper coils that use inductive charging allow vehicles with receivers to recharge their batteries while in motion, stopped, or parked above the coils.

The Michigan Department of Transportation plans to utilize a quarter-mile portion of 14th Street for testing and refining the technology before eventually making it accessible to the general public in a couple of years.

On Wednesday, protests took place at Michigan Central’s innovation district, a central location for promoting technologies and initiatives that tackle obstacles in transportation. This district is also where Ford Motor Co. is revamping the historic Michigan Central train station to create self-driving cars.

Electreon, a company based in Israel, owns the technology used for wireless charging of electric vehicles. They have agreements for constructing similar roads in Israel, Sweden, Italy, and Germany. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the pilot program in Michigan in 2021.

Stefan Tongur, Electreon’s VP of business development, stated that in addition to Michigan’s automotive knowledge, they will showcase how wireless charging can facilitate the widespread adoption of electric vehicles. This addresses issues such as limited range, grid constraints, and battery size and expenses. The project sets the foundation for a future of emission-free mobility, where electric vehicles are the standard rather than the exception.

When a car equipped with a receiver approaches the charging areas, the coils located under the road use a magnetic field to transfer electricity and charge the car’s battery. The coils are only activated when a car with a receiver drives over them.

Tongur informed journalists that the road is secure for people walking, driving, and animals.

The Department of Transportation and Electreon have entered into a five-year partnership to create an electric road network. The DOT plans to solicit proposals to reconstruct a section of the heavily trafficked Michigan Avenue, which will include the implementation of inductive charging.

The Biden administration has made the installation of 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations a key part of its infrastructure objectives as the popularity of electric vehicles grows in the United States.

Officials stated that the wireless-charging roadway positions Michigan and Detroit as leaders in electric vehicle technology.

Michigan Department of Transportation Director Bradley C. Wieferich expressed the importance of being proactive and setting the pace in Michigan.

Tongur stated that no determinations have been reached regarding revenue plans in Michigan.

“The technology is intelligent,” he stated. “It can recognize your identity as a verified and legitimate user, allowing you to receive a charge.”

Source: wral.com