Evatran plans trials of Plugless Power wireless charging technology with commercial partners for early 2012; outfitting Volts and LEAFs
|Plugless Power system components. Click to enlarge.|
Evatran, a developer of wireless charging systems for electric vehicles (earlier post), has signed contracts with six commercial participants to outfit their Chevrolet Volt and Nissan LEAF models with pre-production Plugless Power wireless charging systems. Plugless Power is a Level 2 (240V at 30A, 3.3 kW rated power output) inductive charging system, with a transfer efficiency of 90%.
Building on Evatran’s first product trials around its headquarters in Virginia and its prototype installation at Google’s Mountain View campus in early 2011, this trial, which Evatran is calling the “Apollo Launch Program”, will follow market leaders from six industry segments as they trial Plugless Power systems on their own Volt and LEAF vehicles.
Participants range from car rental agencies to corporate campuses to utility providers; installations will occur in locations across the United States. Participants will be asked to provide feedback on daily usage routines, user interfaces, and any additional functionality needed. The trial will culminate in a body of feedback for Evatran to incorporate into the production design of its aftermarket product line, launching towards the end of 2012.
Evatran is planning announcements regarding the participants of the trial for early January, with installations beginning in February 2012. A second phase of the trial is planned for the third quarter of 2012 to include additional participants across the country.
Evatran is planning additional initiatives in 2012 to reach EV owners across the country and allow them to experience the ease of hands-free charging technology on their own cars.
Evatran intends for Plugless Power tobe available as a dealer-installed feature on new EVs or as a retrofit system. The system adds less than 10 pounds (4.54 kg) to the weight of the vehicle and is wired directly into the existing onboard battery charger.
The vehicle adapter is installed on the undercarriage of the car based on available space and surrounding components. A Plugless Power technician will install the charging station using a standard 240V outlet. Maintenance and service will be provided through the Plugless Power customer service network.
Evatran was founded in 2009 by MTC Transformers, a provider of transformers and rewind services Evatran and Yazaki North America have a Joint Development Agreement to develop and market Plugless Power technology to automotive manufacturers as a factory or dealership option. (Earlier post.)