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  • Electric cars that don’t need charging

    A Japanese academic has developed an innovative way of making electric cars more attractive – having them charge their battery as they drive along the road.

    Based on the assumption that what is holding back electric cars is the need to carry an expensive and heavy battery that takes a long time to charge and then offers either a short distance or a low speed, Takashi Ohira at the Toyohashi University of Technology has built a 0.3%-scale electric car that picks up electricity from electrodes buried beneath the road surface as it drives along. That reduces the need for a heavy battery and cuts out almost all the charging time, but it would require large infrastructure costs in terms of planting electrodes under road surfaces. How attractive the idea proves to be may well depend on how successful the automotive industry is in developing lighter, cheaper and more powerful batteries.

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