To meet the regulations established to limit human exposure to time-varying electromagnetic fields (EMFs) such as the International Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) guidelines, thin metallic sheets are often used to shield magnetic field leakage in high power applications of wireless power transfer (WPT) systems based on magnetic field coupling. However, the metals in the vicinity of the WPT coils cause the decrease of self and mutual inductances and increase of effective series resistance; as such, the electric performance including transmission power and the efficiency of the system is affected. With the research objective of further investigating excellent shielding effectiveness associated with system performance, the utilization of the optimal magnetic field shielding method by metallic sheets in magnetic field coupling WPT is carried out in this paper. The circuit and 3D Finite Element Analysis (FEA) models are combined to predict the magnetic field distribution and electrical performance. Simulation and experiment results show that the method is very effective by obtaining the largest possible coupling coefficient of the WPT coils within the allowable range and then reducing the value nearest to and no smaller than the critical coupling coefficient via geometric unbroken metallic sheets. The optimal magnetic field shielding method which considers the system efficiency, transmission power, transmission distance, and system size is also achieved using the analytic hierarchy process (AHP). The results can benefit WPT by helping to achieve efficient energy transfer and safe use in metal shielded equipment.
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