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EV Charging Moves Forward with Collaborations

Nov. 30, 2017
More firms are partnering to innovate at the pace of the fast-evolving automotive market, as shown by WiTricity’s use of TI semiconductor components in its new automotive wireless charger solution.

As a result of the rapid growth rate in the electric vehicle (EV) market, wireless charging solutions are quickly emerging. Many semiconductor companies, technology developers, and carmakers are working on new wireless charging automotive solutions. Sometimes they join forces to do so, as is the case for WiTricity and Texas Instruments.

WiTricity’s DRIVE 11 wireless charging technology can optimize energy transfer between the source and vehicle in a wide range of real-world operating conditions including parking misalignment, differing vehicle ground clearance, and varying battery voltage conditions. The DRIVE 11 features Texas Instruments’ C2000 real-time control microcontroller. The AEC-Q100-qualified C2000 is an embedded real-time control solution for electric vehicle systems that require efficient power conversion. The MCU can be used in several digital power applications, such as EV charger (ac/dc), dc/dc power conversion, EV/PHEV wireless charging, etc.

The Drive 11 vehicle assembly (VA) is available in low, mid, and high ground-clearance versions to handle the full range of passenger vehicles, SUVs, and light trucks. (Courtesy of WiTricity)

"New automotive technologies, such as wireless charging, are entering the market at a rapid pace,” says Alex Gruzen, CEO, WiTricity. "TI has been enabling innovation for decades and working with them to deliver robust WiTricity automotive-grade silicon will give carmakers and Tier 1 suppliers confidence to deploy complete wireless charging solutions. We’re excited to be collaborating with TI to bring our Tunable Matching Network (TMN) technology to carmakers around the world.”

WiTricity is working with major automakers and Tier 1 suppliers to make wireless EV charging a commercial reality. The DRIVE 11 evaluation system is an end-to-end reference design for "ON and OFF" wireless charging for pure electric and hybrid vehicles. With up to 11kW of power and up to 94% efficiency, the system is suited for applications based on the SAE TIR J2954 standard, which is an industry guideline that establishes wireless power transfer between infrastructure, vehicle suppliers, and OEMs for plug-in electric and electric vehicles (PH/EVs). Licensing agreements have been announced with Toyota, Delphi, TDK, IHI, Shindengen, Daihen, and BRUSA.

“Convenient charging built to automotive industry standards is a key to growing the adoption of electric vehicles. WiTricity’s wireless charging technology can serve to expand the automotive charging ecosystem,” says Matt Watson, general manager of TI’s C2000 MCU business. "At TI, we are committed to delivering innovations to enable the electrification of vehicles and the rapid evolution toward a greener future.”

This collaboration between WiTricity and TI is just one example of the many collaborations taking place in the growing EV industry. Countries around the world have set goals to reduce global greenhouse gases by eliminating the internal combustion engine in favor of EVs and wireless power solutions. Wireless power has the advantage of enabling a more convenient and flexible EV experience. It also will help to enable the future of autonomous vehicle and shared driving.

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