Imagine your home street. Now wipe the power lines. Imagine interstate highways without the ugly cable towers that stretch across the American landscape. This could be the future of wireless power if the partnership between the New Zealand government and a startup called Emrod succeeds, and it all goes back to Nikola Tesla’s wild dreams.
Wireless electricity sounds like science fiction, but the technology is a reality and it is ready for a utility-scale case study. And in this first pilot program of its kind, the company Powerco – New Zealand’s second largest distributor of electricity – to test technology Amrood Starting in 2021.
The companies plan to spread the typical wireless power infrastructure over a span of 40 meters. To make it possible, Emrod uses rectification antennas, also known as “rectennas,” that pass microwaves of electricity from one point to another.– A very suitable solution for mountainous terrain in New Zealand. Specialized square elements are mounted on intermediate poles to act as path points that keep the electricity going, and a larger surface “catches” the entire wave, so to speak.
Figure 1. Emrod uses rectification antennas, also known as “rectennas,” that pass microwaves of electricity from one point to another.
We have developed a long range wireless power transmission technology.Founder Emrod explains, Greg Kouchner. “The technology itself has been around for a long time. It looks futuristic and awesome, but it’s been an iterative process since Tesla.”
Link with Nikola TeslaIt’s more of a fascinating fairy tale, Kouchner admits, than a true genealogy. Tesla thought about wireless power in the 1890s, while working on an innovative transformer circuit.Tesla coilWhich generates an alternating electric current, but could not prove its ability to control a beam of electricity over long distances.
On the other hand, Emrod can keep the electric beam narrow and focused with two technologies. The first is about transmission: the small radio elements and single wave patterns create a parallel beam, which means that the rays are aligned in parallel and do not propagate as much as they do. Second, Emrod uses engineered metamaterials with delicate patterns that interact effectively with those radio waves.
Emrod wireless antennas are a medium, like cable, which means that their role is to simply deliver a power supply to customers. Kushner plans to put Emrod technology into challenging terrain that connects to the brightest, windy, or hydroelectric points on Earth.Because these rural places are the ones with the most electricity shortages.
By eliminating the need to run long cables copper Traditionally, Emrod claims it can bring energy to these regions, which cannot afford the type of infrastructure that supports the power grid.. This could also have positive consequences for the environment, as many places where no electricity is available ends up with diesel generators for power.
There are even opportunities to support marine wind and solar farmsBecause the current sticking point for these forms of renewable energy is the cost of transportation, Kouchner says. In Cook Strait, which connects the northern and southern islands of New Zealand, offshore wind farms require expensive undersea cables, for example.
At this time, Kushner has enough business support to take the next organizational steps and start spreading the word about Emrod technology. He adds that the real challenge is to reassure and educate the public.
“We expect there will be many reactions similar to what we saw with 5G.”, Dice. “People are opposed to the additional radiation around them, which is completely understandable.” But fortunately, he says, the controlled Emrod beam does not emit any radiation. It is not a “spray” pattern like a cell phone antenna.
So if all goes well during the New Zealand pilot program in early 2021, wireless power could be on the horizon in America as well. And when? This is anyone’s guess.
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