The connection and disconnection of the car with the charging station are fully automated. The process can be observed using a smartphone. The new technology will allow drivers with disabilities to stay in the car while charging or leave the vehicle while the robot does all the work.
The system works as follows. The electric car pulls up to the charging station, the driver activates charging via the smartphone app, the charging port cover opens, and a robotic charging sleeve equipped with a small camera for an accurate hit on the target is extended to the input connector.
In the beta version of the system, drivers could track the state of charge through the FordPass application. After charging is completed, the robotic arm returns to its place.
In the future, robotic charging stations may be installed in parking spaces for drivers with disabilities, in parking lots, or in private homes. In addition, the equipment can be useful for large corporate fleets.
In the future, this process can become fully automated with minimal or no driver involvement. The driver will simply send the car to the charging station, and the infrastructure will ensure its autonomous delivery and return from the destination.