The Wireless Future of Electricity

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The Wireless Future of Electricity

Although technology has come a long way, it’s not to say that it has all been for the best. Stanford University scientists have looked to the past for a solution to our unsustainable reliance on traditional methods of transporting electricity. The technology they have been working on has the potential to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of providing electricity to the world.

The development of wireless electricity

In 1891 Nikola Tesla came close to achieving wireless electricity by creating the Tesla Coil - a fairly simple invention that uses electromagnetic force and resonance. The Tesla coil, which contains two coils made from copper (a reliable electrical conductor) is connected to a power source. The primary coil absorbs the electrical charge and due to the large amount of energy, voltage shoots between the primary and secondary coils. This happens several hundred times per second. The charge in the secondary coil eventually gets so high that it will push out and create an electric current strong enough to illuminate a fluorescent bulb one metre away.

   “Tesla's experiment proved that the Earth itself could be used to conduct electricity, no wires necessary.” -  Popular Science.

“Tesla's experiment proved that the Earth itself could be used to conduct electricity, no wires necessary.” - Popular Science.

 

The team at Stanford University have been fascinated by the challenge of wirelessly charging nearby moving objects. In particular, they have focused on technology that can send an electrical current through to objects at a range of distances. At the moment, the technology can successfully light a moving fluorescent bulb several metres away.

The technology they are working on will allow you to walk around with your mobile phone in your pocket while it is wirelessly charging. Similarly, they’re looking into technology that can charge an electric car as it drives over a wireless electricity set up.

Looking to the future

Fast forward in time and this technology could see electrical cars become a commodity. Issues such as a lack of electric charging stations and battery life will become less apparent. In the greater scheme of things, this development could usher in a new technological era where all technology is powered wirelessly.

If successful, and developed on a larger scale, Stanford University’s findings could lead to a whole new industry set up. Picture a world where traditional electricity companies no longer exist, instead governments around the world fund the installation of wireless electricity in all major cities. There would be a complete shift in mindset where cities no longer have to invest time and money into unnecessary electrical wiring and environmentally unfriendly infrastructure.

It’s about time we focused on developing and utilising more renewable resources.

Did you know? The sun can generate more electricity in one hour than the world needs in an entire year.

If you’re interested in reducing your own technology-based carbon footprint, why sit around and wait for technology to advance? Technology that can utilise the power of Mother Nature already exists - solar power. It’s a strong, reliable power source that puts little strain on the planet and will save you a lot of money in the long run.

Although the production of solar panels requires the input of raw materials and energy, the environmental impact is minimal. The technology produces none of the carbon, methane or particulate emissions that fossil fuels emit, and it doesn’t demand large-scale mining or drilling operations. Since panel arrays can be placed on rooftops or in isolated desert areas, solar power’s physical footprint is manageable as well.

At The Conscious Club, we have a strong focus on using climate neutral solutions. Our building is a former chocolate factory turned climate neutral canal house. The first one in Amsterdam. We have Eneco solar panels on top of the building that cover all electricity use and ensure that The Conscious Club is self sufficient and ready for the future.

 

Conscious Contributor: Hayley Becht
 

Sources:

Wireless Electricity? How the Tesla Coil Works
Stanford Scientists Are Making Wireless Electricity Transmission a Reality

Scientists at Stanford Are Turning Tesla’s Global Wireless Power Grid Into Reality