Indiana wants to charge your electric vehicle while you drive. But is it actually possible?

  • Date: 04/25/2024

A quarter-mile stretch of state highway in West Lafayette, Indiana, could help shape the future of electric vehicles in the U.S. and around the world.

That’s where the Indiana Department of Transportation and Purdue University plan to test a patent-pending system designed to provide power to heavy-duty electric trucks traveling at highway speeds. Construction work on the pilot project, based on research by university engineers, began April 1.

The technology is like a product many people already use on a daily basis: magnetic cellphone charging pads. The process behind both is called electromagnetic induction, but the major difference with vehicles is the amount of power needed and the distance between the charger and bottom of the vehicle.

Purdue's researchers said they don't envision 100% of roads being electrified. Rather, the powered pavement would need to be strategically implemented to support transit routes and to complement the expanding network of EV charging ports.

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