Microsoft plans to use focused light to charge

If your smart phone runs out of power during the day, people are often annoyed. The solution for most people is to try to remember to charge their devices at night. Even if this is done, it is sometimes not enough for people to use daily. It is sometimes necessary to charge all day. For this reason, Microsoft Research has developed a potential solution: AutoCharge.

Microsoft researchers describe AutoCharge as a technology that automatically locates and charges smart phones on the table. The prototype charger they make can be mounted on the ceiling. There are two work modules: a monitoring module, which uses Microsoft's Kinect camera, can scan objects like a smart phone; the other is the charging mode, using UltraFire CREE XM-L T6 to focus the LED light.

The AutoCharge system uses a smartphone based on image processing to monitor and track the desk and automatically charge the smartphone. The charger will continue to rotate until it detects an object that looks like a smartphone, and then uses the beam generated by the solar power technology to remotely charge the smartphone. In other words, no wires are needed.

AutoCharge establishes a connection via Bluetooth or a LED on the phone and a smartphone. This ensures that charging can be stopped when the battery is fully charged and that objects of similar size and shape to smartphones cannot be charged. The system can automatically shut down within 50 milliseconds after it recognizes that an object is present between it and the smartphone, causing interference with the charging.

Researchers point out that the current smartphone wireless charging solution presents several problems:

First, wirelessly charged electromagnetic radiation is much higher than wireless communications (eg Wi-Fi or 3G). Therefore, wireless charging is a big problem for human body safety. As a result, wireless charging is usually used only in extreme situations, such as in outer space, for military purposes, or in very small areas. The existing smart phone wireless charging board is actually based on electromagnetic induction, which is one of the methods of wireless charging, and can only work within a few centimeters.

Second, the wireless frequency used for wireless charging is much lower than the frequency of light, so it is difficult to emit sufficiently straight radio waves. If the receiving device is not large enough, this will lead to energy waste and it is difficult to guarantee its safety. Using high-frequency radio waves such as X-rays can solve some problems, but X-rays are also harmful and may also lead to more serious safety problems. In addition, the power transfer efficiency of wireless charging is very low when used remotely.

This is why AutoCharge relies on solar power generation technology. This technology is more mature than current wireless charging. It can carry out power transmission in a straight line and is also safer for the human body. Although AutoCharge is still a prototype product, researchers claim that it now takes only seconds to monitor the device to be charged, and that wireless charging is as fast as existing wired charging.

The researchers thus concluded that their experimental results show that it is feasible to automatically charge smartphones. However, this is by no means a simple solution. (Spirit)

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