Skip to Content

Wireless Electricity! Wi-Fi-Power Makes Nikola Tesla’s Dream a Reality

Sharing is caring!

Nikola Tesla’s wireless electricity is a reality…kind of. A new WiFi based device will charge electronic devices up to 28 feet away using the WiFi signal which comes from a wireless router. It picks up the energy out of thin air. Literally.

It’s called PoWiFi and here’s how it works.


University of Washington

“Ambient RF signals are both the power source and the communication medium.”
Washington University


Abstract – We present the first power over Wi-Fi system that delivers power and works with existing Wi-Fi chipsets. Specifically, we show that a ubiquitous piece of wireless communication infrastructure, the Wi-Fi router, can provide far field wireless power without compromising the network’s communication performance. Building on our design we prototype, for the first time, battery-free temperature and camera sensors that are powered using Wi-Fi chipsets with ranges of 20 and 17 feet respectively. We also demonstrate the ability to wirelessly recharge nickel–metal hydride and lithium-ion coin-cell batteries at distances of up to 28 feet. Finally, we deploy our system in six homes in a metropolitan area and show that our design can successfully deliver power via Wi-Fi in real-world network conditions.” PDF DOWNLOAD Powering the Next Billion Devices with Wi-Fi


University of Washington

“Shyam Gollakota and his team recently demonstrated technology at EmTech Digital in San Francisco that harvests ambient ‘backscatter’ radio signals to power battery-free temperature and camera sensors. The technology can also be used to charge nickel–metal hydride and lithium-ion coin-cell batteries at distances of up to 28 feet.” Read more: Wi-Fi-powered electronics make Nikola Tesla’s dream a reality | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

This device of course won’t power your home, but it will charge small electronic devices.


Source: Washington University