Published: Wed, February 22, 2017
Health Care | By Kelly Miles

Disney Develops a Method for Wirelessly Powering an Entire Room

Disney Develops a Method for Wirelessly Powering an Entire Room

The folks at Disney Research have revealed that they've successfully built a method to provide full coverage of an average room and power all the devices one might need.

According to Sample, wireless power transmission is a long-standing technological dream.

As a society, we've been nearly desperate in our need to recharge our phones and laptops and locate the cords and electrical outlets to make it happen.

Outside of the room, the scientists placed a generator and amplifier that produced a radio frequency signal and connected it by wire to a device called a drive coil placed inside the room.

A receiver coil that resonates at the same frequency as the magnetic field was able to pick up that magnetic field and turn it into power. Firstly the room itself must be specially constructed from aluminium sheets, probably not the easiest to paint or hang wallpaper from. The method is termed quasistatic cavity resonance (QSCR).

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Now for the 64,000 dollar question: will being in this room fry your brain?

Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and... breakthroughs in wireless power transfer?

Though the wireless power delivery technology is still in its early stages, Disney researchers believe it can still be further improved to power conventional rooms. As the authors note in their study, while it is possible to safely transmit 1.9 kilowatts of power to a receiver at 90 percent efficiency (the equivalent of charging 320 devices), due to the amount of unused power stored in the room, the appliances in the space would have to use and receive that much power. The thing is, the devices in the room need to be using that energy or it could become a hazard.

"In this work we're demonstrating room-scale wireless power, but there's no reason we couldn't shrink this down to the size of a toy box or a charging chest or scale up to a warehouse or a large building", Sample says in the video. The 1900 watts of power is still within the Federal Guidelines for Specific absorption Rate (SAR) or the measure of energy that can safely be absorbed by the human body and anything higher can be deemed risky.

A paper has been published by Disney Research. Likewise, one could imagine Disney's parks one day being populated by free-roaming Audio-Animatronics figures, able to run throughout the day via wireless power sources.

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