Wireless Charging: An Emerging Reality

While modern electrical devices rely more than ever on a single rechargeable battery, charging solutions have historically been sluggish to keep up. That may be about to change with a recent breakthrough in wireless charging technology - we may soon be able to charge electrical devices by simply walking into a room.

Inspired by Nikola Tesla’s vision of a global electromagnetic field which could instantly transport power to any location, researchers at Disney Research are experimenting with a wireless charging solution which could change the face of charging as we know it.

Scientists Matthew Chabalko, Mohsen Shahmohammadi and Alanson Sample generated an electromagnetic field within a normal-sized room by running a current through a copper pipe, which was fitted with capacitors and placed in the centre of the room. Aluminium panels around the outside of the room contain the current and circulate it back to the pole, creating a continuous field which – when paired with the right receiver – can provide charge to any electrical device inside the room.

While the technology is still very much in development, it has proven wildly successful in tests, delivering 1.9kW of power throughout the space - which remains perfectly safe for human occupancy.

By harnessing quasistatic cavity resonance, this three-dimensional charging space could potentially be adapted for use as smaller portable or household solutions, or upscaled to the size of a warehouse - opening up a world of possibilities for domestic, commercial, and industrial applications. The Pacific team look forward to seeing how wireless charging progresses. As development continues we hope to see it widely implemented - it could be a true game-changer.

Tom Sinclair