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Sprint Power develops wireless charging for electric taxi trial

Ten electric taxis are to take part in the trial, which starts next month. Image: Sprint Power.

Ten electric taxis are to take part in the trial, which starts next month. Image: Sprint Power.

Sprint Power is developing a series of wireless charging models for a new government-backed trial in Nottingham.

The trial is to demonstrate the suitability of wireless charging for a fleet of electric taxis, with ten modified LEVC TX and Nissan Dynamo taxis to be taking part.

Sprint Power is developing an electrical distribution system, a power distribution module and a high voltage harness assembly that will enable the taxis to charge wirelessly via pads attached to the ground.

These will automatically recognise which power source to draw current from, with each vehicle featuring both wireless and plug-in charging capability.

The trial will last six months, with the first taxis set to be on the road next month and all ten from early autumn.

It will capture information such as journey distances and battery performance data, with drivers also reporting back on their experiences using the technology.

The installation of wireless chargers at taxi ranks for frequent charging can improve vehicle driving range, Sprint Power said, as well as minimise recharging times and provide better service availability for passengers, while also reducing what it described as the negative impact ‘plug-in’ charging could have on taxi drivers’ ability to do their jobs effectively.

Funding for the trial has been awarded by Innovate UK, with the full consortium involved in the project including CENEX, Coventry University, Nottingham City Council, Shell, Parking Energy and Transport for London.

Founder and CEO of Sprint Power, Richie Frost, said: “I firmly believe this exciting project not only demonstrates Sprint Power’s technical and engineering capabilities; it also underscores the importance of wireless charging technology to this country’s shift towards sustainable mobility.”

Other providers of wireless charging in the UK include Connected Kerb, which signed a deal with induction technology specialist Magment to bring the technology to the country in 2019.

In early 2020, Connected Kerb revealed plans to install wireless charging across London, the Midlands and Scotland.


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