Disney Research has developed new method that enables users to charge electronic devices wirelessly by transmitting power throughout a room, like a Wi-Fi Network, thereby eliminating the need for electrical cords or charging cradles.
The researchers demonstrated the method, called Quasistatic Cavity Resonance (QSCR), inside a specially built 16-by-16-foot room in their lab. They safely generated near-field standing magnetic waves that filled the interior of the room, making it possible to power several cellphones, fans and lights simultaneously.
The QSCR method involves inducing electrical currents in the metalized walls, floor and ceiling of a room, which in turn generate uniform magnetic fields that permeate the room's interior. This enables power to be transmitted efficiently to receiving coils that operate at the same resonant frequency as the magnetic fields. The induced currents in the structure are channeled through discrete capacitors, which isolate potentially harmful electrical fields. It is the capacitors that set the electromagnetic frequency of the structure and confine the electric fields. Thus devices operating at that low megahertz frequency can receive power almost anywhere in the room. At the same time, the magnetic waves at that frequency don't interact with everyday materials, so other objects in the room remain unaffected.
Although the demonstration room was specially constructed by the researchers, it is possible to reduce the need for metalized walls, ceilings and floors in the future. It also may be possible to retrofit existing structures, for instance, with modular panels or conductive paint and larger spaces might be accommodated by using multiple copper poles.