Powermat – How Does the Powermat Wireless Charger Work?

April 30, 2012 § Leave a comment

PowerMat is an consuming new wireless charging technology. It was first demonstrated in 2008 and early 2009 and is now ready to buy for the home and office.

So what is PowerMat? It is a small expedient that uses wireless charging to charge your most prominent gadgets like cellphones (including the iPhone and Blackberry), video games (including the Nintendo Ds), and iPod without you having to associate them to a charger or plug them into the wall. The PowerMat itself is, of course, plugged into the wall and linked to mains electricity by a wire, but from then on all things is wireless. You drop your expedient onto the PowerMat and it gets expensed wirelessly, without you having to do anything.

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So how does PowerMat wireless charging work?

Powermat – How Does the Powermat Wireless Charger Work?

The technology behind PowerMat is known as ‘electromagnetic induction’ (or just ‘magnetic induction’). Michael Faraday is commonly credited with the discovery of the induction phenomenon in 1831 though others were working in the same field at the time.

This electromagnetic induction is officially defined as “the production of voltage over a conductor situated in a changing magnetic field or a conductor consuming through a stationary magnetic field” but that does not mean very much to most people. A better way to put it is that it is a means to replacement electrical power using a shared magnetic field.

Consider this arrangement:

1. Put electrical power into a coil of wire

2. This will yield a magnetic field nearby the coil that affects any metal within the field (as demonstrated by Faraday)

3. Change the field fast over time and an galvanic current will be generated in the metal

So what is happening when a PowerMat is charging is that it is generating rapidly changing magnetic fields above the mat; these are converted by receivers on any devices on the mat into electrical power, and so these devices get charged. The magnetic fields and electrical currents are, of course, very small and so they can work on handheld gadgets without being a health risk to humans.

The same technology is used in a huge whole of other devices and systems along with generators, motors, transformers, some cookers, induction welding, and so on. Perhaps to most citizen the best known example is in rechargeable galvanic toothbrushes, where they are customary with dropping a toothbrush into a ‘dock’ daily to keep it charged. However they may be unaware that similar systems are also operating in galvanic guitar pickups, video tape players, and computer graphics tablets.

PowerMat is currently the best known example of a wireless charger but this technology is developing rapidly and soon we will see it in many other applications and products. The PowerMat business itself is planning to expand the technology and feature it in kitchen counters, walls, and other surfaces nearby the home. One day this technology may be used anywhere and be invisible, it will be so commonplace. Finally we will be freed of the endless tangle of chargers and wires nearby the home.

Powermat – How Does the Powermat Wireless Charger Work?

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