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First wireless ‘power-at-a-distance’ charging system approved

Wireless charging systems have been around and available for several years and charging a mobile device wirelessly is easier than plugging it in. However these technologies require the device be in physical contact with the wireless source for the charging to take place. This will change, at least in the U.S., following a decision by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to approve the first wireless charger that does not require direct contact.

The newly approved charger, Engadget reports, that works from up to three feet away. The device has been developed by Sa startup called Energous. The company’s product is called the WattUp Mid Field transmitter.

The WattUp Mid Field transmitter converts electricity into radio frequencies. These radio waves are then sent as energy packets to nearby devices which has a receiver. The scalable power via radio bands functions much like a wireless router.

To achieve the freedom of mobility and charging concurrent to using a device, the receivers can be integrated into all commonplace electronic devices, including smartphones, tablets, fitness bands, smartwatches, wearables, cameras, wireless keyboards and mice, headsets, sensors, LED lights, remote controls and toys and most other battery-powered devices.

Energous was granted FCC certification at the end of December 2017. The technology provides charging capability at distances of up to approximately 5 meters (15 feet) from a transmitter to a receiver device. The company’s long-term aims are for wireless charging ecosystems to be in place in business, homes and retail parks.

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Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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