Charging electric cars could be a lot easier with this new tech Detroit is testing to restore on the go

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Electric cars are generally few and far between. Of the 250 million vehicles sold in the United States, less than 1% are electric, according to J.D. Power. 

There are a slew of reasons why Americans have been rather hesitant to trade in their gas-powered cars for electric one. One of those reasons is a fear of the car running out of battery with no charging station in sight, or simply the hassle of waiting for the car to charge. 

An electric car plugged in

Detroit is testing a way for electric cars to be charged while they are driving, rather than stopped at a charging station.  (Josh Lefkowitz/Getty Images)

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Detroit has offered a solution for drivers with a new system that allows electric cars to drive and charge simultaneously. Detroit is the first city in the nation to test out this new technology. 

At this point in the development process, the technology is being tested along a quarter-mile stretch in downtown Detroit.

The tech is produced by Electreon, and is made up of copper charging coils located under the street. These coils are activated and transfer electricity only when an electric vehicle containing a receiver is near.

Electreon’s website reads of the company, “Electreon created a cost-effective, end-to-end wireless charging infrastructure that minimizes the environmental impacts of EV batteries and reduces the burden of transport on the electrical grid.”

Interior of a Tesla

The new technology is able to determine when an electric car is on the street. (Christian Charisius/picture alliance via Getty Images)

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“Automatically, it knows who you are and charges you while you drive or while you stand still wirelessly without a plug, without anything. And it’s seamless with your driving behavior,” said Stefan Tongur, Ph.D., vice president of business development at Electreon, per CBS Detroit.  

This system allows electric cars to develop a charge when driving on the road or when the car is stopped on the street. The technology is still in its beginning stages, but Michigan’s Department of Transportation and Electron have made a five-year commitment to develop the technology.

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Biden making a speech

The Biden administration has been focused on an ambitious electric car proposal, but dealers have pushed back.  (Daniel Brenner/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“In Michigan, we want to stay ahead of the curve. We want to lead the curve,” Michigan DOT Director Bradley C. Wieferich said, per The Associated Press. 

This new technology comes on the heels of a push by the Biden administration to create half a million electric vehicle charging stations across the United States, aligning with a proposal made in April to have two-thirds of vehicles electric by 2032.

Car dealers have pushed back on this proposal, with 3,882 dealers writing a public letter in response. The letter states that even though there is a wide range of electric vehicles available to consumers, the demand simply isn’t keeping up with supply, which is over populating their lots with EV’s.  

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Electric vehicle charging

The low demand for electric cars has left dealerships with an overflow of unwanted supply. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

“Mr. President, it is time to tap the brakes on the unrealistic government electric vehicle mandate. Allow time for the battery technology to advance. Allow time to make BEVs more affordable,” the letter to the president states. “Allow time to develop domestic sources for the minerals to make batteries. Allow time for the charging infrastructure to be built and prove reliable. And most of all, allow time for the American consumer to get comfortable with the technology and make the choice to buy an electric vehicle.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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