Lord Drayson launches business to commercialize efficient wireless power transfer over distances; ongoing partnership with Imperial College London
7 May 2014
Lord Drayson has launched Drayson Wireless Limited, a new venture to commercialize technology developed at Imperial College London (ICL) for the efficient wireless transfer of power over longer distances. Working closely with Imperial Innovations plc, Drayson Wireless will rapidly bring the technology to market in numerous applications and sectors.
The Drayson Wireless near-field systems can transfer up to 1.5 kW over a distance of up to 0.5 m using a lightweight receiver weighing less than 0.3 g/W. In addition, Drayson Wireless long distance power transfer system can transfer up to 10 mW at distances up to 5 m. The systems operate at high efficiencies (over 80% end-to-end efficiency), while operating through variable vertical offsets, separation distances and angular misalignments.
The new business builds upon Drayson Technologies’ expertise in the use of wireless power in automotive applications such as the development of the Drayson B12/69 wirelessly-charged electric race-car that set a new FIA World Electric Land Speed Record in 2013. (Earlier post.) The B12/69 uses a HaloIPT wireless induction system. (Earlier post.)
Drayson Wireless is based upon research conducted over several years by scientists from the Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering at Imperial College. The Imperial team is led by Dr. Paul Mitcheson, Dr. Stepan Lucyszyn and Dr. David Yates, the academic founders of Drayson Wireless. In particular PhD research by Dr. Manuel Pinuela is central to the venture and as such Dr. Pinuela becomes Chief Technology Officer.
In addition, Lord Drayson has brought together an experienced team with senior-level experience from companies such as Qualcomm, PowderJect and Circassia, with backgrounds in building global businesses in wireless technology and life sciences.
Launching the new company has led Lord Drayson to restructure his interests. A new holding company, Drayson Technologies Ltd, has acquired the business and assets of Drayson Racing Technologies LLP and its Formula E team. The holding company also controls the new venture Drayson Wireless Ltd, which is run in collaboration with Imperial Innovations Plc. This structure reflects the intention to focus on the wireless technology business.
A guiding principle of the business is to incubate world-class scientific research and help translate it into commercial success. As such, Drayson Wireless has signed a long-term strategic research agreement with Imperial College to continue research in the field and to work with Imperial Innovations to accelerate the transfer of wireless energy technology from the research lab to the market place.
Based in London, Lord (Paul) Drayson, is an experienced technology entrepreneur who founded PowderJect Pharmaceuticals in 1993 and served as CEO, overseeing its growth into a profitable public company and the world’s sixth largest vaccine company before it was acquired for £540 million in 2003. He became a life peer in the House of Lords in 2004 and served as Defence and Science Minister in the Blair and Brown governments before returning to his career in business.
Drayson Technologies Ltd has pioneered environmentally sustainable technologies since 2007, latterly focusing on the emerging field of electric vehicles and wireless technology. The business owns the Drayson Racing Technologies automotive R&D business, the Drayson Racing Formula E Team and a majority stake in the newly formed Drayson Wireless business in collaboration with Imperial Innovations.
M. Pinuela, D. C. Yates, S. Lucyszyn, and P. Mitcheson (2013) “Maximising DC to Load Efficiency for Inductive Power Transfer,” IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics, vol. 28, no. 5, p. 1 doi: 10.1109/TPEL.2012.2215887
M. Pinuela et al. (2012) The New Wireless: Efficient Thru-Air Energy (Poster)
Borges Carvalho, N.; Georgiadis, A.; Costanzo, A.; Rogier, H.; Collado, A.; García, J.A.; Lucyszyn, S.; Mezzanotte, P.; Kracek, J.; Masotti, D.; Boaventura, A.J.S.; de las Nieves Ruíz Lavin, M.; Pinuela, M.; Yates, D.C.; Mitcheson, P.D.; Mazanek, M.; Pankrac, V.“Wireless Power Transmission: R&D Activities Within Europe” Microwave Theory and Techniques, IEEE Transactions on vol.62, no.4, pp.1031,1045 doi: 10.1109/TMTT.2014.2303420
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