Wireless Charging Of Chevrolet Volt With Plugless – Video

2 years ago by Mark Kane 32

Evatran PLUGLESS Wireless Charging System

Evatran PLUGLESS Wireless Charging System

While many carmakers are developing a wireless charging option for their electric cars, some EV owners already enjoy wireless charging thanks to Evatran Plugless.

The 3.3 kW Plugless retrofit is available on three models – Chevy Volt, Nissan LEAF and Cadillac ELR, at some premium compared to conventional EVSE charging.

A brief demonstration of the Plugless system installed on a Chevrolet Volt was released this summer by Tim Milburn of Green Ways 2Go, who prefers this more convenient way of energy replenishment.

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32 responses to "Wireless Charging Of Chevrolet Volt With Plugless – Video"

  1. MikeG says:

    Makes sense for fleet parking spaces but not if homeowners understand the efficiency loss (add’l cost to charge) vs. plugging in a cord.

    1. Mikael says:

      There are plenty of people willing to add another $30 per year for electricity to have it plug-less.

      This will be standard at homes of EV owners in the (not so far) future.

      1. RexxSee says:

        Globally, this would be a giant loss of efficiency, translated in huge releases of GHGs.

        1. Mikael says:

          That is very much exaggerated. There will be a slight increase globally. But since it will be combined with the change to EVs we will not see it at an increase at all but as a massive decrease but a slightly less massive decrease compared to non-wireless.

          We are talking in the regions of 0,5-1% globally and when everything is electric including cars we will have moved on to almost all fossil free electricity anyway.

      2. jerryd says:

        Mikael, It’s not just $30/month but $2k or so for the unit.
        Over 3 yrs you are paying about $7/day for 30 seconds/day to plug in.
        Not very bright fiscally or eco wise.
        If you are really that lazy the Tesla snake or other probe in slot automatic plug in would cost much less and 90% more efficient than this unit or others like it.

        1. Mikael says:

          As I stated: for the electricity. The unit price is a different thing and that will most likely be baked into the price anyway in the future when it becomes standard to include wireless. When you already are buying a charger adding a couple of coils cost next to nothing.

          Almost everyone is that lazy. It’s the reason why we have remote controls, leave equipment on standby etc. etc. Plugging in in an unnecessary thing to do and will be mostly gone in the future.
          It will definitely not be “tesla-snakes” since all moving parts that can be avoided will be avoided. Especially since such a snack would cost at least a hundred time as much as the material cost for a non-moving wireless charger.

          Physical charging solutions like that will be used when high power charging is needed, like at superchargers. Not at home where you either go wireless or can plug it in yourself for the few times when you need faster charging.

  2. SparkEV says:

    I think I saw it rated at 80% efficient. Combined with L2 85% efficiency = 68% efficient. Maybe for some, but definitely not for me.

    1. Bill Howland says:

      Yeah, I seem to remember 80% eff, but low pf so thatsr@ound 28amps @ 240 – plus like 133% distortion..

      1. SparkEV says:

        You can’t be serious. Power companies allow that? There must be some sort of PF corrector, and distortion is likely to cause RFI problems . FCC is mean bunch.

        1. Bill Howland says:

          This disquss is beyond belief.

          If you look at the dat sheet, it is 133% THCD. Voltage distortion doesn’t count because they probablly tested it on a stout line.

          PSteve will say the plugless thing is good enough, has 5000 certifications, etc. but my neighborhood could withstand 1 or 2 of these things but certainly not every house due to the pole transformer heating the thing will cause.
          I agree its ok, and the utility allows it because it doesn’t know about it. One thing for sure. The 6600 watt model upcoming will be noted by utilities if it has the ratiness of the current model.

          1. SparkEV says:

            Still hard to believe power companies allow 3kW device with such awful PF. If what you say is true about 28A, house wiring made for 16A (3.3kW) won’t be too happy with it, potentially making it a fire hazard. I use 12 gauge wiring for 3.3kW, certainly not enough for 28A.

            As for RFI, Nissan Leaf on Chademo kills AM radio, yet they are allowed, so maybe FCC does allow for significant emissions for some EV stuff.

            1. Bill Howland says:

              They get installed with a minimum of #10 AWG copper, and preferably #8. For 3.0 kw output.

              Pf tested at 0.6.

              If you scale it up to say a ’15 kw’ dual charger tesla, then thats 140 amps, or substantially the majority of most large homes’ 200 ampere electric service.

              133% THCD on 140 amps would evenutally smoke most transformers since they’d overheat on the harmonics.

              That’s why I think Plugless is delaying anything over 3.0 kw. Their only unit to date works just fine, and is ‘small potatoes’ enough that no-one notices problems which you would notice , such as in the above example.

    2. Note: I am with Plugless. Plugless is roughly 12% less efficient than corded level 2 chargers and ~7% less efficient than corded level 1 chargers. http://avt.inl.gov/pdf/evse/PLUGLESSEvatranStandaloneTestResultsFactSheet.pdf

      Plugless is the FIRST WEVC unit in the world to receive a third-party safety certification for a wireless EV charging system and pass FCC requirements (2014).

      1. RexxSee says:

        Bravo! but why not build a device making contact with the plate under the car? the loss would be far less, no?

        1. RexxSee says:

          …or near contact…

        2. For our part, largely because of parts…moving, breakable ,needing service, parts. We made a decision early on to make Plugless as simple and maintenance free as possible to mirror the EV experience itself.

      2. TheElectron says:

        That’s fantastic! Survey says you guys have really thought of the small stuff. Onward Plugless Steve!

  3. JackDFW says:

    I like the idea of plug-less charging.

    I think using a spring mounted post and the receiver in the front on the car behind the license plate would be better. You could pull up to the charger post and make contact so the charging distance would be less than a ground mounted unit. If you got too close the post would fold back. Seems like it would be a better system.

  4. Tim says:

    Plug less charging is great. But it hardly warrants the attention it gets right now as the real gain is just getting people driving electric – BEVs, PHEVs, etc. That’s the efficiency gain.

    1. Tim – every EV manufacturer is pursuing some sort of hands-free charging of some sort or another – in our discussions with them they tell us (right or wrong) consumer perception of plugging and unplugging cars makes them a hard sell. Note: we’ve not seen any hard data from them but we hear it with frequency. What we CAN say is that we very often get customers who tell us that when they heard about Plugless – that is what pushed them to make the switch from ICE to EV. And this is not just their visions of plugs n’ cords but that they can imagine having a car they don’t have to think about refueling. So, for our part we know that WEVC already helps people make the switch, so we hope to expand the technology as fast as we can – and truly can’t wait for competitors to jump in too.

  5. Joe says:

    Wireless will come into it’s own for public infrastructure in the longer term. No trailing cables, no plugin hassle, nothing to easily vandalise, no ugly posts sticking out everywhere. Getting it onto the cars via the home is the first step.
    Nissans teaser trailer showing charging via a curb shows that they get this.

    1. Love that video. (again I am with Plugless) but that is years and years away. We have been involved in the dynamic wireless charging test-bed built down in Clemson at ITIC (we are the “Evatran” in those announcements), but the vast majority of our focus is expanding the EVs Plugless supports (Tesla S rollout is very close – then BMW i3…both at 6.6kW and more in 2016).

  6. Driverguy01 says:

    I’ve had my Plugless for almost 2 years and would not go back to the plug. All that talk about efficiency is rubish to me cause if i had a Tesla, i would be about 30% less efficient since the Tesla uses so much more electrons to do the same job my Volt does. Its a question of perseption really and convenience. This system is probably not for eveybody but ask your wife if she enjoys plugging the car as much as you do and that should be enough for anybody to enjoy the Plugless way. $30 worth of electrons more a year is WELL worth it. If efficiency is all that matters, we’d all be driving Imievs….think about it, the plug might just be a big reason why people dont switch to EVs, as ridiculous as it may sound. To all, a very merry Plugless Christmas!

    1. Bill Howland says:

      That’s a point…. My Roadster wasn’t too bad that way, except in the wintertime, when it was still far superior to the S in cold weather… I can’t quantify HOW superior since hard numbers on the S are hard to find. Any specs i’ve seen consider ‘very cold’ to be like 35 degrees F or something ridiculous like that.

      The Volt and ELR can be VERY efficient, depending on how you drive them, so recharging efficiency CAN fade into the background since they don’t have to be recharged that much.

      Once a week I like to go out to eat at a restaurant way SouthEast of Buffalo, whereas I live northwest. Its about a 50 mile round trip, and I can’t begin to make it if I take the expressways since you see the juice fall out of the battery.

      So I take the local streets, and go 30-35 mph with some stop and go. It surprises me when I still have 3 or 4 miles left when I get home, thanks no doubt to the basic high efficiency of the Voltec, and also the low-rolling-resistance tires.

  7. Erik says:

    I think this plugless charging is best suited to people with frequency short trips from home. PHEV types of trips. you pull into the garage and the car charges automatically, even though your hands were full of groceries or a two year old.

    I’d like to see them come up with a system that includes a J1772 plug/cord set in addition. I can use that for full charges or (more importantly), for my visiting or ‘other’ EV. Best design might be to have a plug on the wall unit that you could plug an optional J1772 cable into (if you wanted). then all users wouldn’t have to purchase the copper/connector. this way I could add plugless charging while keeping the plug too.

    1. Erik, you are not alone in suggesting a corded option integrated into Plugless, it is certainly something we are looking at, but not in the near term.

      1. Mikael says:

        A corded combined with wireless is a must-have. It’s about adding an option not taking a solution away.

        Overall I’m surprised that not more home chargers don’t have at least two outlets so that you can charge more than one EV. It can’t be neither hard nor expensive.

  8. Jacked says:

    Slower charging less efficiency? No thanks. I plug my cell phone in every night so plugging in a Volt shouldn’t be a hardship.

  9. ModernMarvelFan says:

    12% loss is still a lot of loss that isn’t necessary.

    I use about 3500kWh per year charging my Volt.

    12% is 420kWh wasted for saving few seconds of plugging it in.

  10. Ben says:

    Im a Plugless user fo the past eight months,and I can tell you of the countless times I used to drive away after unplugging my J1772 and leaving the charge door open on my Volt. If you have been plugging and unplugging your EV for the past four years twice a day(home & work) like I have,you’d know that the Plugless system from Evatran is the most convenient way to charge your EV.
    Having to plug in your EV frequently is one of the reasons why people don’t purchase an EV.
    I will not purchase an EV unless I charge it wirelessly.

    CHEERS!

  11. energymatters says:

    Needs to be faster than 3.3KW. Cars need faster AC charging in general.