Toshiba is now field testing a new wireless electric vehicle (EV) charger for a shuttle bus at Haneda Airport in Tokyo. The 45-seat bus is taking passengers on 6.8 mile loops between facilities near the airport. It is powered by Toshiba’s 52.9 kilowatt hour SCiB battery, which uses lithium titanium oxide in its anode and is designed to prevent thermal runaway resulting from short circuiting caused by physical stress. The battery is charged using a contactless system that was developed by Toshiba in collaboration with engineers at Waseda University.
A 15 minute charge will give the bus enough power to drive 55 miles. While similar wireless EV charging uses electromagnetic induction, Toshiba’s system uses a magnetic resonance system that is installed in the ground and controlled with a touch panel on the bus.
I think we have developed a high-quality system by combining the new, convenient contactless charger with a high-power SCiB™ suited to frequent charging. I look forward to the field testing, as it will be the first time where a bus charged in this way has operated on the expressway. I am confident that the results will make a useful contribution to the promotion of EV buses.
Conventional electromagnetic induction systems transfer power via magnetic fields using magnetic inductive coupling between coils of wire. This technique requires the battery’s receiving pad to be aligned almost perfectly with the transmitting pad, which can be challenging in real-world situations. Magnetic resonance, on the other hand, has a longer transmission range, so the battery will still charge even if it is misaligned by half a foot. Field tests of Toshiba’s magnetic resonance EV system started on June 1 and are expected to continue until December.