If Hevo Power (an electrical vehicle [EV] charging company) has its way, then you may soon be able to charge your EV using one of New York City's many manholes.
Hevo Power has created a wireless EV charging system that can be disguised as a manhole cover. While this will be not as powerful as regular EV chargers, it will be a more efficient battery source and can be embedded into manhole covers.
If Hevo Power's brainchild sees the light of day in NYC, then EVs would be able to wirelessly top up their battery pack on the go. Moreover, the wireless charging system will easily blend into the surroundings since it resembles a manhole.
"I was walking down the street, pondering how wireless charging could be deployed," says Hevo's CEO and founder Jeremy McCool. "I was standing at 116th and Broadway, and I was looking down and saw a manhole cover. And thought, that's the ticket. There are no cords, no hazards. Everything can be underneath the manhole cover."
Reportedly, Hevo Power intends on setting up the wireless charging stations in early 2014 in New York's Washington Square Park. It will set the ball rolling with two Smart ForTwo EV's that are operated by New York University (NYU). Apart from NYU, Hevo is also in discussions with PepsiCo, City Harvest and Walgreens.
The wireless-enabled manhole covers for EVs apparently use a "resonance charging system" instead of the "traditional inductive charging" one that is used by mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
The advantage of a resonance-based charging system is that both the primary and secondary coils are connected in such a way with capacitors that they resonate at a specific frequency, which in turn results in less energy loss and higher transmission of energy at a faster rate and further distances.
"Hevo's system comes in three parts: a power station that can either be bolted to the street or embedded in the pavement, a vehicle receiver that's connected to the battery, and a smartphone app that lets drivers line up their vehicle with the station and keep tabs on charging," per Wired.
With Hevo's wireless manhole EV charging covers set to be operational from 2014, it will be interesting to see if they become popular for commercial use.