A new wireless charging technique that relies on resonance between photonic crystals could do away with the need for power cables, say researchers.
The system uses a pair of resonators designed using radial photonic crystals, with one acting as an energy transmitter and the other attached to the device needing to be charged.
By taking advantage of a phenomenon known as resonant coupling, applying power to the transmitting resonator can recharge the device attached to the second resonator.
“This phenomena is produced when a resonant object is moved closer to a second resonant element and both resonance frequencies are equal or quite similar. This physical proximity produces an energy coupling from the first device, that acts as the source, to the second one, that acts as the charge,” said José Sánchez-Dehesa, researcher at the Wave Phenomena Group of the Universitat Politècnica de València.
As well as being used to charge mobile phones or laptops without needing cables the device could also be used as a power supply system for equipment such as wireless keyboards, mice or speakers.
Outside of consumer electronics, it could also be used in an industrial environment as power supply for robots or guided vehicles, and bioelectric devices such as cardiac pacemakers or defibrillators.
Initial research into the concept was published in journal the Annals of Physics journal last June and the following the first laboratory simulations and calculations of the system’s performance, the engineers of the Wave Phenomena Group have patented the device and are now working on the development of the first prototype.
"Although it may seem futuristic, it is foreseeable that they become universal due to the spread of charging infrastructure in many settings. This technology could follow the same path as Wi-Fi networks," explained Jorge Carbonell, a researcher at the Wave Phenomena Group.