The New Zealand-based startup says that it is implementing - with the help of Powerco, the country's second-largest power distributor - its method of safely and wirelessly transmitting electric power across long distances without the use of copper wire. The company's technology transmits energy via electromagnetic waves over long distances using proprietary beam shaping, metamaterials, and rectenna technology.
"We have an abundance of clean hydro, solar, and wind energy available around the world but there are costly challenges that come with delivering that energy using traditional methods," says company founder Greg Kushnir. "For example, offshore wind farms or the Cook Strait here in New Zealand requiring underwater cables which are expensive to install and maintain."
The company says its point-to-point "tele-energy" technology beams power using a non-ionizing ISM (Industrial, Scientific, and Medical) band with frequencies commonly used in Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and RFID. Beam shaping and metamaterials technology creates columnated beams that safely transmit power over many kilometers with no radiation around the beam, as there is with high-voltage wire transmission.
A low-power laser safety curtain ensures that the transmission beam immediately shuts down before any transient object (such as a bird or helicopter) can reach the main beam ensuring it never touches anything except clean air. Benefits of the technology, says the company, include reliability - it has fewer failure points and is not affected by weather or atmospheric conditions - and significantly lower infrastructure and maintenance costs, as well as being "eco-friendly."
By significantly reducing infrastructure costs, says the company, its technology has the capacity to support remote communities such as in Africa and the Pacific Islands by providing access to cheap, sustainable energy to power schools, hospitals, and economies.
"The statistics are pretty compelling," says Kushnir. "We are talking about a potential 50 percent increase in sustainable energy uptake, up to 85 percent reduction in outages and up to 65 percent reduction in electricity infrastructure costs due to