Fla.’s Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) officially opened the first inductive wireless charging station on the East Coast.
The new WAVE wireless charging station, the 250-kilowatt Inductive Power Transfer Technology (IPT), includes a primary charging plate aimed at reducing wait time for electric buses to be fully charged. Our fleet of two electric buses, with four more expected in of 2020, currently charge by using a plug-in charger taking approximately four hours to fully recharge. The new technology now cuts the wait-time by more than half.
“This innovative technology is one giant step forward for not only PSTA, but transit agencies across the nation. Being the first electric charging station of its kind in Florida sets the standard of transportation agencies becoming more environmentally-friendly,” said Brad Miller, PSTA CEO. “At PSTA we are committed to reducing our carbon-footprint while still providing the best service possible to our community.”
The process works by an electric bus stopping over the charge plate and aligning with it. The only training drivers will need is how to properly align with the charger, which connects with the bus wirelessly. Once the driver is aligned with plate, he or she will just have to press a button and a 10-minute charge will begin. PSTA’s electric buses average 180 miles or 15 hours before having to re-charge.
Project construction and installation was awarded to A & K Energy Conservation Inc. to not exceed a total cost of $192,000. Funding is derived from Pinellas County's Deepwater Horizon oil spill settlement.