Isis Innovation reports a new technology being developed by Chris Stevens at Oxford University’s Department of Engineering Science that enables devices such as mobile phones and cables to charge and transmit data without cables and could one day eliminate power and data cables altogether.
‘You could have a truly active, cable-free, batteryless desktop that can power and link your laptop or PC, monitor, keyboard, mouse, phone and camera. For example, by incorporating the technology behind the screen of a computer monitor, digital files, photos and music could be transferred effortlessly to and from a USB stick simply by tapping the flash drive against an on-screen icon,’ Chris explains.
‘This work comes from research into metamaterials, that is, materials that act as magneto-inductive wave guides and magneto-inductive power surfaces. You can find simple inductive technology in the charging unit of an electric toothbrush but in this case we can transfer data as well, and over a distance.
‘The real beauty is that since the technology is in a patterned conductive layer, we can start adding that layer to any surface or indeed into a fabric.’