What is the best way to lengthen the flight of a drone? It’s obvious! Add a bigger battery. But then, adding a larger power backup increases the overall weight of the drone which reduces the flight time. It is an interesting conundrum often faced by the engineers where they have to obtain an optimum output without compromising the efficiency or cost of the overall system.
Dr. Samer Aldhaher from the Imperial College London recently developed a drone that could fly forever without a battery. Dr. Aldhaher employed wireless power to keep the drone flying.
The simple demonstration depicts a lightweight drone, sans battery, hovering in its place. The wireless transmitter underneath the drone powers the UAV. This project is yet another step towards a future where the battery life will not dictate how long we use our favourite gadgets.
Although the quadcopter is flying nearly five inches off the wireless power platform and only slightly sways from one side to the other, the technology is far from being realised. An extensive infrastructure would be required for the drone to fly across the road and the wireless technology is still in its initial developmental stages.
Despite the hurdles, the wireless power will dominate the tech industry; not in the near future, but soon enough!