Daimler AG announced a partnership with mobile technologies company Qualcomm Inc. to explore wireless recharging of mobile phones in cars as well as recharging of electric cars without cables.
7/29/15 5:00 am chumakdenis 1
Daimler AG (German multinational automotive corporation) and Qualcomm announced a strategic collaboration on connected car technologies, which among many topics includes wireless charging.
The development deal has been announced as part of a Formula One race in Monaco and could be used then to help Qualcomm’s Halo wireless electric vehicle charging system achieve a toehold with mainstream automobile manufacturers.
“Our work with Daimler AG is a natural extension of the sponsorship we have with the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One team as our work in motorsports cultivates the innovation and advancements seen in the auto space. The automobile has become a mobile platform and an extension of always-on connectivity, and as such, we’re utilizing our expertise as the leader in mobile technology to deliver in-car experiences comparable to the ease and convenience of smartphones.”
Qualcomm already developed and tested different prototypes of wireless stations with power of 3.3 kW, 6.6 kW and 22 kW.
It’s expected that Daimler will implement and offer such a system for its electric and plug-in hybrid cars.
Phases of the program
In the first phase of the collaboration, the companies will focus on transforming future vehicles with mobile technologies that enhance in-car experiences and vehicle performance such as 3G/4G connectivity, wireless charging technology for in-vehicle use and implementation of the Qualcomm Halo Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging (WEVC) technology.
In addition, the companies are jointly assessing the application of Qualcomm Technology’s newly developed Automotive Solutions.
Qualcomm Technologies is collaborating with Daimler on its Wireless Power Transfer 2.0 high-performance program for electric vehicles. The Qualcomm Halo WEVC technology provides high performance and high power in a small vehicle package that could allow Daimler customers to charge their electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid vehicles without ever having to plug them in. In addition, Qualcomm WiPower technology enables consumer electronics to charge wirelessly in-vehicle.
What do we have now?
The Qualcomm’s Halo technology allows wireless charging of electric vehicles without having to plug them in. Electric cars park over a mat about the size of a computer screen. The mat then links with a receiving device mounted under the vehicle to charge the batteries wirelessly.
Cool, isn't it?
Well, that's good, but not enough: the company wants to develop a technology that would allow recharging while the car is moving.
San Diego-based company works without requiring precise alignment of the ground mat and the receiving plate on the vehicle. The need for near-perfect alignment has been a technical hurdle for this technology in the past.
Demonstration of the technology
Technology has been demonstrated in a pilot basis in the United Kingdom and Qualcomm has been showcasing the technology in the all-electric car Formula E racing series. The Formula E-safety car is a BMW i8, which along with the BMW i3 medical cars, are outfitted with Qualcomm Halo technology.
But outside of these demonstrations, Halo has not been adopted yet for use by mainstream carmakers for wireless charging of electric and hybrid vehicles.
A lot of work has still to be done.
When will we see this technology on the mass market?
As of now, there is no roadmap for introduction of wireless charging, but it could be a year, or maybe two.
Well, in spite of the fact that this technology isn't coming next week, we do think that this cooperation will be long-lasting and fertile.
“It’s important that we remain on the cutting edge of technology and continue to deliver unparalleled experiences to our customers. With this in mind, we are eager to jointly explore possible fields of future cooperation with an internationally leading tech firm like Qualcomm.”
Well, good luck with that one.
It isn’t the first partnership between Qualcomm and Daimler - in March Qualcomm became a technology sponsor of a Mercedes Formula One racing team, so everything should go smoothly.
Let's wish them good luck one more time and hope that wireless in-car charging technology will hit the mass market quite soon.