Electric cars are becoming slightly more commonplace (moreso depending on where you live), but one of the biggest disadvantages to them that I’ve seen thus far isn’t even their price tag, but the fact that you can’t get very far without needing to charge them. Depending on where you’re going and when you need to get there, this can be a huge problem. Taking public transportation is a fabulous way to cut down on your carbon footprint, but then the buses themselves aren’t terribly environmentally-friendly, either. Or are they?

These new buses are currently running in Gumi, South Korea, and it would not really surprise me if they didn’t start showing up in other cities and other countries, and quite possibly eventually become the standard for public busing. Known as Online Electric Vehicles (OLEVs), the electric buses are powered wirelessly by cable laid in the roads they drive on using Shaped Magnetic Field in Resonance (SMFIR) technology. Their batteries are about 1/3 the size of regular electric car batteries, and use 85% of the power emitted by the embedded electric lines. How cool is that?

In case you’re worrying about electricity in the road, don’t. The cables are only activated when a bus drives over them, so they’re not just lying there emitting (and wasting) electricity 24/7/365. There are already plans to put these into use in the Kuala Lumpur Airport in Malaysia and Park City, Utah, so it’s only a matter of time before they’re available everywhere. Sure, it’s not overly practical to just arbitrarily roll them out since the roads will have to be torn up in order to lay the cables, but as we all know, roads do need to be repaved on a somewhat regular basis. Why not make laying the charging cables a regular part of road work?

Probably there’s some kind of regulatory and/or governmental conglomeration of hoops to be jumped through in order to make this happen, but the fact that it exists at all gives me hope. Whether you believe in global warming or not, something is definitely going on, and it can’t hurt to make this just one more in a series of steps toward being more environmentally conscious and preserving the planet for future generations.

Source: Gizmodo

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