Wireless Charging and Shared Autonomous Battery Electric Vehicles (W+SABEV): Synergies that Accelerate Sustainable Mobility and Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction
Emerging technologies play important roles in shaping future mobility systems and impacting sustainability performance of the transportation sector in major economies, such as the United States of America (USA) and China. This study applies a life cycle framework to demonstrate and evaluate the synergies of the following four emerging transportation system technologies both qualitatively and quantitatively: (1) wireless charging; (2) shared mobility services; (3) autonomous driving; and (4) battery electric vehicles (BEV). The new concept of a wireless charging and shared autonomous battery electric vehicle (W+SABEV) system is introduced and modeled. First, an analytical framework is presented to assess the pros and cons of the W+SABEV system vs. a conventional plug-in charging BEV system, adhering to the principles of sustainable mobility and highlighting the impacts and dynamics of the disruptive technologies on the key parameters that define sustainable mobility. Second, a quantitative analysis presents the synergies of the four technologies by modeling a W+SABEV system and demonstrates that the combination of the four technologies can shorten the payback time of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission burdens for infrastructure and vehicles. Compared to a plug-in charging BEV system, a W+SABEV system pays back the additional GHG emission burdens of wireless charging infrastructure deployment within 5 years if the wireless charging utility factor (ratio of en route charging time vs. trip time) is above 19%.