Utah Environment
1:33 pm
Fri November 16, 2012

New Wireless-Charging Bus Could Be 'WAVE' of the Future

The WAVE Technologies electric bus sits in its garage waiting to recharge.
Credit Ryan Cunningham

Utah State University spinoff company WAVE Technologies showcased a first-of-its-kind technology in North Logan on Thursday. A fully-electric bus was shown backing into a very special parking spot, and once parked, the bus's battery was recharged wirelessly from a charging pad embedded in the ground below.

WAVE CEO Wesley Smith says this innovation will allow buses to become more feasible.

"You essential pay about fifty cents a gallon of gas equivalent for your fuel instead of $3.00 or $3.50 for diesel. In most urban environments, these electric buses powered by WAVE technology are cheaper than their diesel or CNG counterparts."

The WAVE bus's wireless power device was perfected at Utah State's Energy Dynamics Laboratory, which stands to share in any profits of the company.

WAVE's Chief Science Officer Hunter Wu has been working on this project since its conception, and he's excited to see it come together.

"I've been researching the wireless power transfer technology, actually, for about a little more than six years now, and the first time when some of these WAVE guys and commercial enterprises came to me and asked me, "We're gonna try to do something real and get this on a bus," as an engineer, I was so happy to see this technology where it is today, and where it'll  be in the future."

The demonstration bus will be put into regular use at Utah State next semester. The University of Utah has  also ordered a forty-foot bus, and the city of Monterrey, California, hopes to replace their diesel-powered trolleys with electric trolleys.