Mahle GmbH has acquired a license package from WiTricity for its magnetic resonance technology. With this move, the technology group can work toward becoming a supplier of wireless charging technology for electric vehicles.
“This addition to the Mahle portfolio provides us with a crucial element for the long-term acceptance and expansion of e-mobility,” says Dr. Jörg Stratmann, chairman of the management board and CEO of Mahle. “We believe this technology offers strong market potential. Our solution will enable fast, reliable and highly efficient charging.”
In recent years, Mahle has intensified its research in the field of wireless charging. “With the acquisition of licenses for WiTricity’s magnetic resonance technology, we’re now progressing to the concrete development stage,” says Dr. Otmar Scharrer, head of corporate research and advanced engineering at Mahle. “This will involve our expertise in control electronics, software and thermal management. In the development of our solution, we’re placing particular emphasis on a modular, compact system that can be upgraded by the customer.”
This means, for example, that the operation of Mahle’s system will be bidirectional. The parked vehicle will act as buffer storage and will be able to feed its energy back into the network — a great advantage when it comes to making the best use of electricity from renewables. A high level of overall efficiency will also be achieved, because the waste heat from the charging process can be used to preheat the passenger cabin, for instance.
The magnetic resonance technology licensed by Mahle from WiTricity offers a further advantage. In contrast to the inductive charging method that is currently available — as found in devices like electric toothbrushes, which need to be positioned carefully on their base — Mahle’s system is far more robust. Mahle will continue to build on this advantage ahead of series production development.