Date of Award

2012

Degree Type

Report

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Advisor

Paul Barr

Abstract

Inductive charging of electronic devices is a newer technology that is capable of transferring electrical power without physical contact through wiring. Research is currently being done to find and improve ways to implement this technology on electric cars. If this type of technology pas implemented on a large scale throughout much of the country, electrical or hybrid cars could travel across counties and states without depleting their batteries.

The current problem with electric cars is that they have a limited range of travel. Even with larger batteries with much more capacitance, the range of pure electric cars usually does not exceed 100 miles (Gigaom, 2012). This is acceptable for a daily commute, but it does not hold up for cross country travel. It would be completely infeasible to travel long distances while having to stop to let your car charge for several hours. A charging system in the road way is likely the only way to rid electric cars of this impending limitation.

The main goal of this research was to design and build a suitable concrete box that can contain the necessary charging equipment, be placed underneath the road surface and maintain its structural integrity to protect the electronic equipment from crushing and moisture. Being placed a few inches below the road surface, the concrete box would need to be able to support the same loading that the roadway was designed for. The concrete box would need to uphold large compressive load while remaining durable. It should also be sturdy enough to avoid tensile cracks that could arise from handling during installation. Overall, the concrete box’s design must be easily fabricated on a mass scale, light enough for ease of installation, and tough enough to maintain structural integrity over years of cyclic loading.

Comments

This work made publicly available electronically on June 4, 2012.

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