The Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) completed installation of the first wireless-charging public roadway in the United States.
Using technology from Electreon, 14th St. between Marantette and Dalzelle streets is now equipped with inductive-charging coils that will charge electric vehicles equipped with Electreon receivers as they drive on the road.
"We're excited to spearhead the development and deployment of America's first wireless charging road," said Dr. Stefan Tongur, Electreon’s vice president of business development. "This milestone stands as a testament to our collaborative efforts with the state of Michigan and [Michigan Department of Transportation], city of Detroit, Michigan Central, Ford, Jacobs, Next Energy, DTE and others. Alongside Michigan's automotive expertise, we'll demonstrate how wireless charging unlocks widespread EV adoption, addressing limited range, grid limitations, and battery size and costs. This project paves the way for a zero-emission mobility future, where EVs are the norm, not the exception."
The move to support electrification is widely supported by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who announced her support in February 2021 to build the first public in-road charging system in the United States. MDOT and Electreon have entered a five-year commitment to develop the electric road system (ERS), piloting the technology on Michigan roads.
Remaining work along 14th Street is expected to continue through the end of 2023, with extensive testing of the inductive charging technology beginning in early 2024. Using an EV Transit shuttle provided by Ford Motor Co. and equipped with the Electreon receiver needed to collect a charge from the inductive coils, staff will test the efficiency and operations of the shuttle, and potential long-term public transportation opportunities.
“For more than a century, Detroit has been known around the world as the leader in transportation innovation,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “We are birthplace of the auto industry, and the home of the first mile of concrete road and the first three-way traffic signal. Today, thanks to Gov. Whitmer and our partners at Michigan Central and Electreon, we can add the nation’s first wireless charging public roadway to that list of innovations."