Qualcomm and Formula E have announced a multi-year agreement in which Qualcomm will become an Official Founding Technology Partner of the FIA Formula E Championship. The agreement will let Qualcomm showcase their Halo Wireless charging system, which will plausibly result in that wireless charging system gaining traction in the marketplace of electric car charging systems. The Qualcomm Halo system has been an interest of Drayson Racing, and has been present in their electric race car for a couple years.
Drayson Racing was the first team to join the Formula E. While they will race with the SRT_01E cars during the first Formula E season, they intend to become Manufacturers during the second season. Coincidentally, or not, “The wireless charging system will be made available to the race cars from season two.”
The Qualcomm Halo WEVC technology uses “resonant magnetic induction” to transfer energy between a sending pad, and a receiving pad in a car. This is one of the wireless charging systems being developed for potential use in electric vehicles. The Halo team hopes to have pads installed in roads so that cars charge wirelessly while driving. Drayson Racing hopes that a race car could be charged wirelessly in race conditions without having to make pit stops.
That last point is of course one which is exacerbated by Formula E’s rules. Namely, the cars being built for the 2014-15 season have a 20-25 minute racing time, and they want the races to last for an hour. To work around that problem, Formula E organizers have decided each team will have two cars and swap cars halfway through the race. But they come up a little bit short, 40-50 minutes of racing time with two cars in a race that’s supposed to last for 60 minutes. Apparently the plan is to run the first car for the last 10ish minutes.
But, if the fullness of the Qualcomm Halo vision were working …. but … I have my doubts whether a race car, at race speeds, would pick up much energy while flying over the top of a wireless energy pad.
I rather think they’d have had a better time of it by swapping battery packs during pit stops – because that’s directly analogous to a gas powered racer refueling the tank.
QUALCOMM BECOMES FOUNDING TECHNOLOGY PARTNER OF FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP
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