Norway to install the world’s first electric car wireless charging stations

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Electric cars are definitely a concept of the future, but still present many challenges for tomorrow that need to be resolved before we can widely consider them mainstream. One of those issues being the need to charge them for a fair amount of time when their batteries run low, something which can be frustrating for long trips, or worse, emergency journeys.

Oslo, the capital city of Norway, is one of the world leading countries in the adoption of electric cars and may soon lead the future in the form of wireless charging of vehicles. With Norway trying to make a completely zero-emission cab system by 2023 (according to Reuters), it is needing to find a way to allow cabs to charge without needing to make long stops at potentially congested charging points.

To solve this problem, the country is reaching out to Finnish utilities firm Fortum to install charging plates in the road that connect to energy receivers in the vehicles themselves. The goal is to make it as easy as possible to charge electric taxis without taking up too much time or money in the process. Using induction, which is more energy efficient, the taxis can be charged as they wait in what’s known as a taxi rank, or a slow-moving queue where cabs line up to wait for passengers

Here’s how Fortum describes the system working in its press announcement:

The project aims to install wireless charging using induction technology. Charging plates are installed in the ground where the taxi is parked and a receiver is installed in the taxi. This allows for charging up to 75 kilowatts. The project will be the first wireless fast-charging infrastructure for electric taxis anywhere in the world, and will also help the further development of wireless charging technology for all EV drivers.

Fortum Charge & Drive has long been working with the taxi industry to enable electrification of the taxi fleet. The greatest hurdle has proved to be the infrastructure: It is too time consuming for taxi drivers to find a charger, plug in and then wait for the car to charge. The wireless fast-charging project aims to solve these issues and thereby reduce climate emissions from the taxi sector – not only in Norway, but in the entire world.

Given our country’s current energy problems, this should be the last thing we should be focusing on, but it does at least give us a view of where our future may be headed. Even if that future may feel frustratingly distant for many of us. With the push for a reduction of greenhouse gasses globally and rapid improvements in greenhouse technology, it is only natural that we will start embracing electric vehicles and it’s great to see initiatives such as this that provide great solutions and will hopefully speed up adoption of the technology around the world.

Last Updated: March 22, 2019