Inductive roads charge your electric car all the time, everywhere

Electric cars are going to suck in the immediate future for one big reason: you have to charge them, which usually takes hours. A New Zealand company wants to solve that with inductive chargers built into roads that'll keep your car topped off, while you drive.

You probably remember inductive charging from such products as the Palm Pre and Powermat. The idea is that you can charge something without a physical connection by using the magic of electromagnetic fields. A company called Halo IPT (that's "inductive power transfer") has taken this concept and scaled it all the way up to vehicle size.

Within two years, Halo IPT plans to market a $2,000 charging station that you can install in your garage along with an add-on kit for your electric car. All you'll have to do is park over the right spot, and your car will automatically charge, no wires necessary. Motion sensors make sure that the pad won't accidentally torch your cat, and the system will even be able to suck power out of your car if you need it during expensive peak hours at home. Halo IPT also wants to put the pads under parking spots and bus stops and anywhere else it might be useful to get some quick juice.

Long term (by like 2020), Halo IPT plans to build inductive charging strips into special lanes on highways that'll charge your car as you're driving, F-Zero style, and they say that you'd actually end up with more power in your batteries when you get home than when you started. Supposedly, doing this would only add about ten percent to the cost of road construction, but by 2020 we'll all have flying cars and jetpacks anyway, and anything that doesn't charge instantly with a supercapacitor will be entirely obsolete.

Halo IPT, via Wired

For the latest tech stories, follow us on Twitter at @dvice