Formula E Previewing Qualcomm Wireless Recharging

BMW Formula E pace cars 1 photo
Photo: BMW
Most people think electric racing is plain boring, but they miss a point; we actually need EV racing if we want to switch to electric passenger cars in the near future.
That’s because most of the technology you got now in your car comes from racing (and the army, but that’s another story). Engine efficiency, aerodynamics, advanced materials, on-board telemetry and many more have been introduced because of racing, with manufacturers investing money in new technology to create winning prototypes.

The same goes for electric cars. Aiming to perform better on track, automakers will be pushed to create better batteries, recharging systems and power management systems.

For the first series of the Formula E this year, Qualcomm already decided to showcase its wireless recharging systems that will come to market in a couple years or so.

Don’t get it wrong, the wireless chargers won’t be fitted to the Formula E racecars, since they currently don’t need them for racing purposes - each team has two fully charged cars they can use. But it will be used by the pace cars.

BMW has already adapted two i3 and a pair of i8 models with magnetic inductive receivers supplied by Qualcomm to recharge their batteries on site and lap the circuits to show people the viability of the system.

The wireless recharging works by magnetic resonance going on between a ground-mounted pad connected to an electric socket and the receiver mounted beneath the car.

Why do we need wireless recharging? Well think about simply parking the car on the designated spot and just accept the offer to recharge via an OK button on the infotainment screen, instead of searching for the recharging cable inside the trunk or discover that the one the charging point should had come with got stolen.
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