Magnets Are Now Re-Volting

| 9 Jan 2009 19:12

Fancy ditching all those fiddly wires that keep tripping you up? Get yourself a magnetic Powermat or get eCoupled.

The Powermat, revealed at CES, is an Israeli invention that uses magnetic induction to recharge batteries, without removing them from the device itself. The system is already clever enough to identify RFID tags and deliver power based on the power needs of the device, even recharging up to four devices at once, with differing needs.

"It can charge a 100-watt gadget side by side with an iPod Nano that is very low power," said Ron Ferber, president of Powermat. "It knows what's on the mat."

Also at CES was the eCoupled system, developed by Fulton Innovation, which detects the power need by the induction coil already within the device, and then recharges it in a similar way.

Both devices won't be available to the general public until late 2009, but the system itself is safer and less expensive than normal wall-based cables. Obviously, you can't power devices like monitors or items with a hard-disk, due to the magnets inside - that would be bad, - but the inventions are still in their infancy. As it stands, you can run a desklamp or fan purely by sitting them on the mat.

The systems are also green (as the power use is massively decreased), take a similar time to recharge as normal wall-based sockets and can't shock you (as the mat needs to recognize the RFID/coil before it will provide power).

And the one thing that might really excite all you Left 4 Dead and Fallout 3 players is the system could still work after the National Power Grid is taken out by hordes of Infected Mutants, so you'll still be able to use your mobile after The Fall.

Source: BBC

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