MIT Working On Wireless Power: Cord-Free HDTVs Within Sight

Few institutions impact the world of consumer electronics as often as MIT, and it's a known fact that the entity has been working towards wireless power for years now. Wireless power remains one of the Holy Grails of electronics; even with wireless video and audio solutions in the market, there's still a power requirement that demands at least one cable. It's the reason that wireless surround speakers can't easily be mounted anywhere; you still have to run power to each one, or at least signal wires with power running through them.

But MIT is getting closer and closer to making wireless energy a reality. The latest research shows that efficient actually improves when multiple devices are charged at once, paving the way for wireless power to be used in group chargings possibly before solo chargings. Three years ago, MIT researchers proudly announced that they had uncovered a novel way of transmitting electricity without any wires; now, these researchers have "demonstrated that the system’s efficiency at transmitting energy improves significantly when it is used to charge multiple devices at the same time.

The other huge benefit about the new system is that it's tailor made to power typical gadgets. The prototype is almost in a place where it could be used in a television set; imagine being able to wall-mount an HDTV anywhere and not have to worry about running power to it. The opportunities would be near limitless. The transmitting coil could theoretically be built into a wall or ceiling, and thus far, transmissions have taken place in "ordinary room" sizes.

Those who are working on the project have also stated that it could be worked into portable devices, meaning that your next tablet or media player may be able to charge while you're sitting around using it. Talk about a major shift in the way we think about using our devices. If you're curious about how it all works, take a listen: "The system works by creating a strong electromagnetic resonance between the sending and receiving coils — similar to the way a tuning fork can start vibrating when exposed to a sound of exactly the right frequency, or the way a radio antenna can be tuned to just the frequency of a single station out of the hundreds that are simultaneously broadcasting their signals. In this case, the magnetic resonance between the two coils is unaffected by objects in between the coils, and by the same token objects between the coils — including people — are not affected by the magnetic fields."

C'mon MIT, we believe in you. And really, we're just tired of waiting for someone to master wireless power. If 3D HDTVs were the big thing this year, can you imagine the the buzz surrounding a TV that could run entirely without wires?