Volkswagen built a robot that can find your electric car in a parking lot and charge it

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Volkswagen's new invention could turn every car park into an electric car park.
Volkswagen’s new invention could turn every car park into an electric car park.

Finding that one free charging spot in a parking garage can be a chore, but if Volkswagen’s new project catches on, the charging spot might come to you instead. 

On Thursday, the company announced a concept for a mobile charging robot that comes to electric cars and charges them on its own. 

The robot would be able to communicate with the car, open the charging socket flap and plug in with no human interaction. It’s fitted with cameras, laser scanners and ultrasonic sensor, which would allow it to move freely and go around obstacles.

Once it connects the mobile battery to a car, the robot can go perform other tasks until the charging is done.
Once it connects the mobile battery to a car, the robot can go perform other tasks until the charging is done.

The robot would haul a “mobile energy storage device” (a big battery on wheels with about 25kWh worth of energy content), jack it into the car, and then scuttle off onto its next task. When the charging is complete, the robot would collect the battery and take it back to a base charging station. 

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