Future Proof: How Wireless Energy Transfer Will Kill the Power Cable

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Montebello

http://getpowerpad.com already kills the cables with their wireless chargers

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MidGreyWolf

When will people learn that wireless energy is a major source of cancer?  Anybody heard of microwave weapons?  Anybody heard of Operation Fishbowl?  That should get you worried enough to revolt against the idea of wireless power.  Ignorance really is bliss in this situation.

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TheZomb

Of course wireless energy can be dangerous, but resonant induction is not the same wireless energy as a microwave weapon... So please stop spouting sensationalist garbage while quietly changing of few terms so as to not overtly lie. This is like saying kinetic energy is huge source death, just look at bullets, so you should never throw a baseball because it could kill you.

Now in specific regards to wireless energy through Electromagnetic waves, since wireless energy is extremely vague and can mean just about anything without a wire. Electromagnetic waves are only dangerous when they are of an ionizing wave length, the wireless power in article is not, or they are in extremely large quantities that don't exist really anywhere in the world.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ionizing_radiation

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-ionizing_radiation

There is an on going debate about whether long term exposure to non ionizing electromagnetic waves is dangerous, but so far there is no conclusive evidence in either direction in fact for the last few years a new study has been coming out every few months saying the opposite of the previous.

 

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doods319

I'm afraid the radiation from the magnetic field (one that can drive power to a TV and whatever else) could be harmful.

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Trooper_One

"This means that the days of having to plug your phone in to charge it are going, going, and almost gone."

That's a pretty grand declaration.  They said wireless LAN connections will kill off the Cat5 cable - nope not a chance.   Microwave broadcast towers and satellite receivers haven't kill off the copper or fibre cable either.  Why?  The wireless medium just can't keep the pace in terms of quality as in speed and reliability.  I'm sure even though power by wireless will come, it just simply cannot replace the capacity of a physical cable.  Even though I have wireless set up (and acutally use it from time to time) I still prefer a physical Cat5 connected to my comp.  Likewise, even though I don't watch TV, I'm sure that there's plenty more cable subscribers than satellite ones.

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TheZomb

I don't know, LAN is held alive by a very very thin thread. That is that motherboard makers aren't very willing to incorporate wireless cards into their desktop chips, but there are an increasing amount that do and when the majority start to do that, LAN will be dead.

cable TV actually has advantages over satellite and going, going, going, and almost gone isn't really a grand declaration seeing as this tech was invented over a 100 years ago and people have been saying the same thing ever since. Its seemed more like a joke to me than a grand statement declaring the end wired power.

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jelenko

As one poster mentioned concern about a pacemaker, moving any conductor thru a magnetic field will create electricty [it's how hydroelectric plants work - duh!].

 

So, this magnetic field is going to either electrocute or shock anyone with metal things on them.  Along with frying most electronic gadgets [i.e., a small EMP]

 

Did you get any comments from electrical engineers before writing this blog?

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tornato7

How efficient is wireless energy transfer compared to a normal phone cord?

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timmyw

They claim in their FAQ that "when the devices are relatively close [efficiency] can exceed 95%."

Yet in the peer-reviewed journal Science they only show that they can transmit 60W at ~40% efficiency over 2 meters.

Copper wires would be >99.95% efficient at that distance.

In a world where climate change in a major concern the idea of increasing the number of power plants by 150% just so people don't have to plug their crap in is insane. Even a 5% increase should be concerning.

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ushim6

and things that are charged overnight. As long as most of the charging is done off of peak usage(during the work day) we don't need to make more plants. 

 

Does sort of damper the enthusiasm for TVs though...

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eric0rr

this may work on small scales like powerpads, but you could never replace powerlines with it, its been tried before. But on the scale of say, a optical drive or maybe thru the magic of intel, processors,but this is something that is really hard to defend.

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jcollins

I wonder what happens if you have a pacemaker and walk into the field...

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Biceps

What if the magnetic field makes your pacemaker stick to your hip implant? Ewwww.

Germany (I think it was Germany, correct me if I am wrong) outlawed public Wi-Fi because of the dangers they believe are inherent in having so many concentrated radio waves bouncing around in homes, schools, etc.

While that might be a little alarmist, the idea that I am going to power my TV by bouncing microwaves around my living room, or by enveloping my family in a giant, inefficient magnetic field is not particularly attractive for some reason.  

What is the longest amount of time someone has sat between the charger and the device charging, and how many eyes did they have at the end of the test?

I like my power in cords.  Because it stays there, and doesn't go into my brain or my testicles.

Sorry guys, I don't know if the world is ready for this one.

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timmyw

Actually, power cords emit magnetic fields too, but you don't need to be wearing tin-foil hats and lead boxers. The magnetic fields are so weak as to be hardly detectable.

Your living room is already enveloped in a huge magnetic field; the Earth's magnetic field is far stronger than magnetic fields most people are likely to encounter on a daily basis.

We are exposed to magnetic fields, radio waves, and even radiation from natural sources all day long. You need to look at the relative strengths of the fields and exactly how much power and how damaging the field or radiation is. 

While I wouldn't recommend climbing in an MRI or getting chest x-rays everyday. The chances of you dying as a result of an MRI or x-ray is infinitesimal compared to the risk of letting some other much more dangerous malady go undiagnosed.

Another example is smoke detectors, they have a small amount Americium-241, a radioactive byproduct of Plutonium-241, but the chance of contracting cancer from this microscopic radioactive source is orders of magnitude less than it saving your life in the event of a fire.

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Biceps

Ok, so this I knew.  Anywhere there is an electric current, there is going to be a magnetic field.  Yes, the earth has a magnetic field, and it actually protects us from all sorts of nasty radiation.  Yes, I took many physics classes and understood their content.  I even won a couple national physics competitions, so I'm not a complete idiot.

My point was this: there is a huge difference between the (relatively negligible) magnetic fields raditating from everything around us, and actually using that magnetic field to transmit power through the air for non-negligible distances.  The strength of the field needs to be stronger, there is going to be more 'leakage' or wastage, and the purpose of the field existing is for power transmission.

The magnetic field of the earth is actually quite weak compared to, say, an electromagnet (on a local level, anyway, which is what I am concerned about).  The level of power needed to run a television, or a household appliance is much much much greater than what occurs naturally.  That is why we don't have all of our televisions running on the earth's magnetic field right now, in case you were wondering - because there isn't enough power.

So, my point stands, as does my original question: how safe are these fields?  Can you safely sit in one of these magnetic fields of (relatively) high magnitude for extended periods of time and not walk away with ill effects?  If so, great... but prove it.

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Rader

I registered with the specific intent to respond to the previous two posters. Please allow me to correct some things about magnetic fields. For the record I am a diagnostic imaging field service engineer. That's just a fancy way of saying I'm the maytag repair guy of MRI and ct scanners.

First things first. Ct and MRI do not work on the same principles. Please do not compare the two. Ct uses an xray tube and is thus ionizing radiation which is in fact harmful to you with too much exposure. MRI scans you using rf radiation to manipulate a magnetic field. Neither is ionizing and neither are harmful.

MRI magnets are chemical superconductors. Meaning the magnetic field is present at all times. The dangers associated with the field are not radiation it's the fact that it's a ridiculously strong magnet that people get complacent around. Thus accidents occur in ferrous objects being attracted to the magnet.

How strong are these magnets? The magnetic field of the earth is measured at 1 gauss. A tesla is 20,000 gauss. Behind me right now is a 7tesla ge MRI. It's a high field scanner with fantastic image quality.

A magnetic field of that strength can only hurt you if bring metal into the room. Yes that includes pace makers and metallic stent implants. However don't expect the wireless power to create anything over .3 tesla. We just can't do it. It would have to be an electrical superconductor and we just can't make electrical superconductors of that magnitude yet. In order to establish the high fields we have to reduce the resistance which means cryogens (typically liquid helium). That's not exactly shelf stable.

Now keep in mind that .3T is just a number I three out because it's about the highest power non-chemically cooled superconductor I know of. It still takes a tremendous amount of power to make that field. They are talking about home use so they will have to run off standard power in your home.

The point is there is no way for them to create a magnetic field in your home that will harm yo in any way. You simply don't have that capability unless you have 3phase 440 going to your house.

Even the. The field itself won't hurt you. Just metallic objects in it.

Do magnetic fields effect you? Sure. Working on this 7T can make you dizzy if you aren't careful. It messes with your equilibrium because it's aligning your hydrogen protons in your body to it's magnetic field. Move around in the field you change where that field moves through your brai. Thus dizziness. But it won't hurt nor do any permanent damage. I've been working around magnets for 8 years now. Pardon the crudity of this post it was done at work on my iPhone while waiting for them to let me pm this scanner. So don't take any misspelled words or bad formatting as anything other than small screen big post. 

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Rader

Its not a 7T, its a 3T.  Ive done that like 5 times since we installed it.  I hate that they named it an HD750, its a bit misleading.  Its little brother is called the HD450 and its a 1.5T magnet. 

 

They do make 7T's but they are few and far between.  The bore (place patient goes) gets smaller as the field strength increases. 

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