As part of the $1.5-billion Kansas City International Airport (MCI) New Terminal project, the Kansas City Aviation Department this week announced it was investing in the first wireless vehicle charging system installed at a U.S. airport.

The Aviation Department will use this technology to extend the range of its electric buses without installing an above-ground charging station or taking buses out of service for charging. Momentum Dynamics will provide the charging solution, which will be in place when the new terminal opens in 2023.

“We are designing and building a modern, new terminal and we want to make sure that its support infrastructure does not detract from the design,” said Aaron Kaden, KCI acting fleet manager. “Inductive charging was not only an efficient solution in terms of monetary outlay and ongoing costs, but was the only system we found that can deliver energy without the traditional plug-in infrastructure.”

The new system will be supported by two 300 kilowatt wireless chargers located at shuttle bus stops at the new terminal. While awaiting passengers, the electric buses will park over the charging pads and will automatically receive incremental charging. Charging takes place while passengers are loading and unloading, and each session ends when the bus leaves the pad.