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Michigan is looking into wireless charging pavement for EVs

Gov. Whitmer announces plans to create a pilot program for a new wireless charging road infrastructure to speed EV adoption in her state.

Gov. Whitmer visited the Motor Bella Auto Show in Pontiac, Michigan, earlier this month.
Emily Elconin/Bloomberg/Getty Images

One of the things that prospective EV buyers worry about most is charging. That's understandable: If you don't charge, you don't move. That brings up a whole host of questions about when and where to charge and how long it will take. What if, though, there was a different solution? For example, what if your car could charge as you drive?

That's a future that Michigan is interested in pursuing. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced plans on Tuesday to investigate the feasibility of wireless in-road charging by building a one-mile stretch of test road somewhere in either Wayne, Oakland or Macomb counties.

"Michigan was home to the first mile of paved road, and now we're paving the way for the roads of tomorrow with innovative infrastructure that will support the economy and the environment, helping us achieve our goal of carbon neutrality by 2050," Whitmer said in a statement. 

"This project reinforces my commitment to accelerating the deployment of electric vehicle infrastructure in Michigan and will create new opportunities for businesses and high-tech jobs amidst the transition to electric vehicles." 

The Great Lakes State isn't alone in looking at the possibility of wireless inductive charging roads for EVs. Indiana announced similar plans back in July with its partner, German firm Magment. However, Michigan seems to be taking a more measured and phased approach to its rollout, with actual road construction not planned to start until phase 3 of its trial.

Michigan's Department of Transportation will release a request for proposal on Tuesday, Sept. 28, for a partner company to design, test and build that one-mile stretch of road as the Inductive Vehicle Charging Pilot program. 

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