IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute

Wireless electric road charges vehicles as they drive

Smartroad Gotland is a wireless electric road, charging electric trucks and a buses on a public road. The unique demonstration project is developed to gain knowledge and pave the way for the global implementation of electric roads.

Road freight accounts for nearly one-fifth of annual global oil consumption. One solution that has the potential to achieve the goal of fossil-free transport is electric roads that charge vehicles wirelessly as they drive. This technology is already ”on the way” in Visby, Sweden, in the unique demonstration project Smartroad Gotland.

How does it work?

Inductive electrical infrastructure beneath the asphalt charges vehicles as they drive, via an electrical receiver fitted underneath the vehicle. The system is compatible with all types of electric vehicles. Smartroad Gotland has installed 1.6 km of electric road on a 4.1 km section between the city of Visby and Visby Airport. The electric road is currently being used to operate a passenger shuttle bus to and from Visby Airport, as well as a heavy truck, in order to test and demonstrate the technology.

Fossil-free transport and other sustainability benefits

This world-leading technology offers an opportunity to substantially reduce the need for fossil fuels, while also cutting air and noise pollution in urban areas. Besides enabling fossil-free transport and sustainable mobility, electric roads offer many other benefits contributing to sustainable future transport:
• Use of smaller batteries in vehicles
• Shared charging infrastructure
• High utilisation
• No range anxiety
• High energy efficiency
• Lower vehicle weight, so less wear and tear on roads

Part of the Swedish roadmap to reduce CO2 emissions

The project is being conducted by the consortium for Smartroad Gotland, under the leadership of Electreon AB. It is financed by the Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket) as part of the Swedish government’s electric road strategy to reduce CO2 emissions from road haulage.

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