Power Matters Alliance
||This article appears to be written like an advertisement. (June 2014)|
The Power Matters Alliance logo, which is placed on devices that support the PMA wireless charging standard
|Ron Resnick (President)|
Power Matters Alliance (PMA) is a global, not-for-profit, industry organization whose mission is to advance a suite of standards and protocols for wireless power transfer. Founded by Procter & Gamble and Powermat Technologies in March 2012, PMA is networking technology companies in order to guarantee consumers interoperable devices which employ wireless power technology. Marked by the electron “P”, PMA interface standard describes analog power transfer (inductive and resonant), digital transceiver communication, cloud based power management, and environmental sustainability. The PMA board of directors includes representatives from AT&T, Duracell, Starbucks, Powermat Technologies, Flextronics, Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and Energy Star. The membership of the PMA is made up of companies across the mobile device ecosystem, including handset providers, service providers, chipset suppliers, manufacturers, test labs and public establishments.
||This section reads like an editorial or opinion piece. (July 2013)|
PMA leadership has been working to help diminish the divide among wireless power transfer (WPT) standards and accelerate marketplace adoption by focusing on the following two areas in 2014 as the fastest way forward: 1. Encouraging delivery of multimodal forms of WPT within single devices for an optimal consumer experience - including technical harmonization of multiple inductive WPT standards. 2. Members have made recent strides in proliferating wireless power transfer technology within automobiles and popular public infrastructure venues. The Alliance’s working theory is that if the members focus on certifying and delivering power to consumers in a mobile way to help them power up wherever they are, the wireless power transfer industry as a whole will also benefit.
PMA standard and technology
The PMA's stated mission is to formulate and advance a suite of interface standards for smart and energy-efficient transfer of wireless power. The PMA is actively publishing a suite of standards based on inductive coupling technology to provide advanced inductive and resonant power. In addition the PMA seeks to add a digital layer providing policy-setting, monitoring, and extensible APIs. The PMA manages interoperability, certification and logo programs according to these specifications.
- PMA adopts the A4WP Rezence specification as the PMA magnetic resonance charging specification for both transmitters and receivers in both single and multi-mode configurations
- A4WP adopts the PMA inductive specification as a supported option for multi-mode inductive, magnetic resonance implementations
- A4WP to collaborate with PMA on their open network API for network services management
- Inductive Coupling
- Digital Transceiver Communication
- Cloud Based Power Management
Mark of Interoperability
The 'Electron P' mark of interoperability is required to set compatibility standards across markets and industry, and across all links in the delivery chain of the alliance. It is used by industries and companies that adopt and implement the PMA standards. It is displayed at coffee shops, clubs, hair salons, airline terminals, entertainment venues, and on mobile phone accessories.
Semi-Annual Conferences and Quarterly PlugFests
PMA conducts member conferences to provide members the chance to network with each other, participate face-to-face in the active working groups and receive the latest industry updates related to wireless charging and PMA. PMA PlugFests continuously improve the quality of the PMA Certification Program and the eco system. Members also conduct interoperability testing (at quarterly PlugFests) on various combinations of their receiver and transmitter equipment. This helps prepare members to submit their products for formalized certification testing.
|IPG||The Inductive Power WG is a technical WG that is responsible for the development and maintenance of technical specifications for wireless power technologies based on direct electromagnetic induction.|
|SWG||The Sustainability WG is an advisory WG whose function is to advise the technical WGs with respect to the requirements that permit the wireless power technologies to fulfill the social, economic, and other requirements of present and future generations (e.g., energy saving, etc.).|
|RWG||The Regulatory WG is an advisory WG whose function is to advise the technical WGs with respect to the global emissions and coexistence requirements for the PMA technology being developed in support of the development of Wireless Power technologies which are compliant with regional regulatory requirements to the greatest extent possible.|
|CWG||The Certification WG is a technical WG that is responsible for the establishment of world class certification program with short, medium and long term programs including the development and maintenance of test plans and implementation conformance specifications.|
|MPG||The Multimode Power Group (MPG) is a technical WG that is responsible for the development and maintenance of technical specifications for multimode operations between the PMA inductive technologies and other PMA endorsed wireless power transfer technologies.|
|NWG||The Network Working Group (NWG) is a technical committee responsible for the development and maintenance of network communication strategies and protocols for network related functionality of wireless charging spots. The scope of work done in this committee relates to provisioning, operation, administration, management, and user interaction of the network. The work ensures a viable framework to ensure continued growth of the wireless charging ecosystem.|
|TSC||The TSC is the overall approval and coordinating body for all PMA technical activities conducted in one (1) or more of the technical PMA WGs. The TSC includes appointed leadership, WG Chairs, and Program Office staff.|
|UPG||UPG is chartered with the leadership and development of standardized specifications for wireless power transfer based on non-magnetic technologies such as RF, ultrasound and laser that deliver power at a distance of up to 10m (30 feet).|
On June 11, 2014, Starbucks announced plans to provide wireless chargers at its coffeehouses in the United States and to test the wireless chargers in select European and Asian markets. The wireless chargers will be produced by Duracell and will be compatible with any Qi device that is also PMA certified.
Compared to the Qi standard
There is very little technical difference between these two inductive WPT specs. Any single transmitter or receiver device can now work with both of the most popular inductive WPT standards (PMA and Qi). Today, a few chip makers are providing “dual mode” inductive transmitter and receiver IC solutions, albiet currently for corporate and commercial applications. Harmonizing these two WPT standards adds little cost, if any, to produce the device as dual mode inductive. There is no need to modify the receiver’s inductive coil, magnetics, or other components. For example, a Qi receiver device can work with the PMA-only transmitter solution being deployed in all Starbucks stores across the US, with modifications being made to the Qi receiver device.
In order for this example to work, the receiver device maker would need to:
- Implement a dual mode inductive wireless power transfer solution within the receiver with the correct IC
- Enable PMA mode within that handset
- Formalize industry involvement as a WPT solution provider by joining all of the respective organizations that control the standards. In this example PMA and WPC.
- Qi, a competing wireless power standard promoted by Wireless Power Consortium
- Rezence, a cooperative wireless power standard promoted by the A4WP
- "Members: All Listings". Power Matters Alliance. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
- "Alliance for Wireless Power and Power Matters Alliance Join Forces". PR Newswire. Retrieved February 11, 2014.
- "Wireless charging takes big step forward as rival groups team up". Cnet.
- "Wireless charging takes a step forward, as two of its opposing groups join forces". Digital Trends.
- Power Matters Alliance – official site
- "How wireless charging will make life simpler and greener". July 24, 2012.
- "Revolution: 3 Big Changes Coming to Smartphones". December 18, 2012.
- "Wireless charging blazes path toward mainstream". November 16, 2012.
- "Starbucks Adding Wireless Charging Stations in Boston". October 29, 2012.
- "National Rollout of Wireless Charging, by Duracell Powermat, Begins in Starbucks Stores". June 12, 2014.
- Rezence – official site of a wireless power standard promoted by the Alliance for Wireless Power
- Qi – official site of a wireless power standard promoted by the Wireless Power Consortium