WiTricity – Wireless electricity comes closer to reality

Written by
  • 5 years ago
  • Posted: March 17, 2014 at 11:59 am

We have wires everywhere – wires for phone charges, phablet chargers, tablet chargers, laptop charges, PC monitors power connectors, CPU power connectors, TVs power connectors, power connectors for fridges, cookers, ovens, wires connecting speakers; the HDMI and RCA cables are also wires – our houses are full of wires and even more wires.You may want to reduce the number of wires in your house by owning phones like Samsung Galaxy S4 that does necessarily need a wired charger, install the wireless Home theater system where the speakers, both front, rear and center, connect to the home DVD/Blue ray player wirelessly, install wireless routers for your Internet needs, etc etc.

But even if you decide to have most of your home gadgets communicate wirelessly, those very gadgets, including your lighting bulbs, fridges, TVs, boosters, and many others, will still have to be connected to the power source with wires.  As much as people have managed to set up technologies enabling gadgets to communicate wirelessly, it has been hard to truly come up with a safe, reliable, and easy to use wireless technology for transferring electricity from the sockets to the gadgets so we really must live with the problems of wires everywhere. The other thing is that some of the wireless technologies around are very inconveniencing.

When Samsung announced that the Samsung Galaxy S3 would be charged wirelessly, I was very happy. Before I fully understood how exactly this wireless charging would work, I boasted to a few of my friends that I owned a phone that could charge in my pocket from any part of the house…”I only need to buy the wireless charger”, so I told them. I was wrong. When I went to buy the charger, the seller demonstrated how I should place the S3 on top of the charger, “damn!”. Charging S3 (and above) wirelessly is more inconveniencing than using the counterpart wired charger since with the wired charger, you could still sit a few centimeters away from the charger as you use your phone but the wireless charger would require you to completely forfeit the use of your phone when charging.

This inconvenience is what WiTricity wants to change. WiTricity or rather wireless electricity is a startup working on the technology for powering homes wirelessly. The technology that has been demonstrated to work uses a source resonator, or a coil that generates magnetic field when powered by electric energy. A second coil fitted in a gadget like a smartphone’s battery, if brought within the magnetic field, will use the magnetic field from the source resonator to generate electricity in itself (the second coil) and able to use the electricity to charge the phone. The source coil or source resonator will create a magnetic field present everywhere in the house and hence be able to wirelessly transfer electricity to every house gadget e.g. light bulbs, TVs, cookers, etc.

Dr. Hall differentiates WiTricity from other wireless electricity methods that have been tried over the years since Tesla’s experiments in that instead of generating and transmitting electric fields, the source resonator generates a magnetic field. The magnetic field generated is also safe as it is similar to fields generated by Wi-Fi routers.What is the strength of fields generated by the routers? Honestly that can’t be in the proportion of the fields needed to transmit electricity that can do useful work like boiling water within seconds.

If WiTricity becomes mainstream in homes, it will transform lifestyles in ways beyond our imagination. Electricians will only need to fit source resonators in a house hence those planning to build houses (homes) will save on the cost of electrification. Gadgets with “receiver-resonators” will then be fitted anywhere in the house. The house won’t have sockets so a TV can be placed anywhere deemed most appropriate. Chargers will die so phones could be cheaper.

To completely live a wireless life, you’ll also need to install something like the COCOON 5.8GHz Dual Input AV Sender and Receiver for your TV’s signal reception. To see WiTricity in action, watch this video.

 

What is your opinion on the topic?
Odipo Riaga
Managing Editor at KachTech Analytics Ltd
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Odipo Riaga is a Technology Blogger interested in emerging tech such as VR and AR, AI, Life Extension, Exponential Biotech, Immortality, Cyborgs and many others.
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