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SAE now has a wireless charging standard: J2954

It's the next step after J1772.

I know, I know. News of an SAE standard for wireless charging for electric vehicles is not an exciting, sexy topic. But, hear me out. The fact that the J1772 connector was approved way back in 2009 wasn't sexy either. Still, it was a key moment in the development and growth of electric vehicles. Today, most hardcore EV fans know the J1772 name (in fact, maybe knowing what J1772 is is the thing that makes you a hardcore fan). Looking ahead to an era of wireless charging, the next alphanumeric code that will give you access to all secret EV VIP rooms will be ... J2954.

Technically known as SAE TIR J2954, we now have a new official code for wireless electric vehicle charging. The SAE International's PH/EV Wireless Power Transfer committee has been working on developing this standard sine 2010 and the committee chair, Jesse Schneider, called the new standard a "game changer." Of course, there are already aftermarket wireless charging options available for some popular EVs from Evatran/Plugless Power (the company's Plugless L2 model is pictured above).

Power levels for J2954 currently range from 3.7kW to 22kW, but that upper level could be expanded in a future revision. If we're all going to get to that easy future where we never have to physically plug in our cars and instead just drive over a wireless charging pad and let technology do its thing, we'll need a bunch of compatible cars. J2954 is an important next step in getting there.
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SAE International Approves TIR J2954 for PH/EV Wireless Charging

WARRENDALE, Pa., May 17, 2016 - SAE International approved for publishing "SAE TIR J2954 Wireless Power Transfer for Light-Duty Plug-In/ Electric Vehicles and Alignment Methodology," a milestone industry guideline to establish wireless power transfer between infrastructure, vehicle suppliers and OEMs for plug-in electric and electric vehicles (PH/EV). The document will be available from the SAE website on May 31st.

With wireless charging quickly becoming mainstream for consumer electronic devices in low power applications, standardization is needed for commercialization of high power wireless power transfer (WPT) of PH/EVs. In order to achieve a basis for the start of commercialization for WPT, it is important to define criteria for safety and electromagnetic limits, efficiency and interoperability targets, as well as a test setup for the acceptance of WPT – all of which is addressed in SAE TIR J2954.

SAE TIR J2954 is the first step in standardization and was developed by SAE International's PH/EV Wireless Power Transfer committee, established in 2010. Jesse Schneider serves as the Chair of SAE International's Wireless Power Transfer committee and is the Fuel Cell, Electric Vehicle and Standards Development Manager at BMW North America. He presented the SAE TIR J2954 today during the Conference for Electric Roads and Vehicles (CERV) in Logan, Utah.

"Wireless power transfer, using SAE TIR J2954 is a game changer for PH/EVs. This first in a series of documents will enable consumers to simply park their vehicles into spaces equipped with TIR J2954 equipment and walk away without doing anything to charge their PH/EV," Schneider said. "Standardization of both the vehicle and ground infrastructure WPT has started with SAE TIR J2954. The frequency band, safety, interoperability, EMC/ EMF limits as well as coil definitions from SAE TIR J2954 enable any compatible vehicle to charge wirelessly from its WPT home charger, work, or a shopping mall WPT charger, etc. with the same charging ability. All of this makes it possible to seamlessly transfer power over an air gap with high efficiencies. SAE TIR J2954 WPT automates the process for charging and extends the range for the vehicle customer only by parking in the right spot."

SAE TIR J2954 establishes a common frequency band using 85 kHz (81.39 - 90 kHz) for all light duty vehicle systems. In addition, four classes PH/EV of Wireless Power Transfer levels are given today. Future revisions may include even higher power levels:

3.7kW (WPT 1) specified in TIR J2954
7.7kW (WPT 2) specified in TIR J2954
11kW (WPT 3) to be specified in revision of J2954
22kW (WPT 4) to be specified in revision of J2954

TIR J2954 WPT compatible systems have been built by automakers and suppliers and are currently under test with a cross-industry team with the US Department of Energy, Idaho and Argonne National Labs. The test data, first in the bench and later in the vehicle, will be used to finalize the Standard by 2018 to support the roll out of this technology.

For more information about "SAE TIR J2954 Wireless Power Transfer for Light-Duty Plug-In/ Electric Vehicles and Alignment Methodology," visit:

SAE International is a global association committed to being the ultimate knowledge source for the engineering profession. By uniting over 128,000 engineers and technical experts, we drive knowledge and expertise across a broad spectrum of industries. We act on two priorities: encouraging a lifetime of learning for mobility engineering professionals and setting the standards for industry engineering. We strive for a better world through the work of our charitable arm, the SAE Foundation, which helps fund programs like A World in Motion® and the Collegiate Design Series™.

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