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Green solar vehicle charging station generates 5 kW of solar power

The city of Lansing, Michigan has announced the opening of the first municipality-owned solar powered electric vehicle charging station in the country. The charging station, which is installed at the riverside City Market, has an angled roof acting as both the solar panel and a carport to protect vehicles underneath.

The charging station generates 5 kW of solar energy for charging vehicles. The solar power gathered by the charging station also operates the LED lighting for the signs and banners on the charging station. The charging station is designed to be 100% waterproof and fully wind, snow, and seismic code compliant.
 
"We are committed to helping cities across America deliver on their citizens' dreams of a green tomorrow", said Sass M. Peress, CEO of renewz. "Built right in the heart of the city which will soon assemble the Cadillac ELR hybrid electric vehicle, this solar canopy was constructed in just a few days. It clearly demonstrates how municipalities can power green fleets sustainably."

The charging station is intended to generate clean and renewable energy to recharge the fleet of Lansing Board of Water & Light electric vehicles. The city says the solar charging station will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 115 tons and power more than 300,000 miles of clean driving.

Source: Giulio Barbieri



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So..
By Stoicz on 5/6/2013 12:14:25 PM , Rating: 2
Well now, that 2 car charging station is really going to make a difference. 1.7% of people in Lansing, Michigan will really benefit from it...

Look, I do believe solar is part of the future, but no one will notice this, it's so ludicrously small that it will have basically no impact on anyone's opinion of solar.

What you need, in an urban setting, is something like a parking garage roof's covered in solar panels as well as municipal programs to install solar panel's on residential roof's.

Solar will continue to get cheaper, it will continue to have a lower impact on the environment than Oil or Natural Gas, and it is one of the future tech's of electricity, but a 2 car charging station owned by the Lansing municipality probably won't ever be a positive talking point considering, as previously stated, only a little over 1% of people in Lansing will be able to use it at any given time.




RE: So..
By Solandri on 5/6/2013 2:32:29 PM , Rating: 3
I ran into something similar. A friend who ran a hotel I did some computer work for knew I was all into geeky stuff like energy and technology. She asked me to advise her on some solar air conditioning units they were thinking of buying because the city was getting them for its municipal buildings. That struck me as a little odd because the energy density from solar is so low while the power demand from air conditioning is rather high. But they were in the desert so I supposed it might be possible. I agreed to review the numbers for her.

She forwarded some basic advertising specs for the units she'd been emailed, and I ran some basic thermo and energy calculations. No matter how I fiddled with the numbers, I couldn't get it to work anywhere near like the specs claimed. It had to be doing its cooling some other way besides solar. So I hit the net to try to find more info. Finally I managed to dig up a low-res picture of the unit from a PDF buried in the city's website. It turned out to be a swamp cooler like you can get from Home Depot for $500. They were sticking a small solar panel on it to help run the timer and electronics, and charging the city $5k for it while advertising it as a "green" solar air conditioner.

I explained to my friend why it was a terrible idea, and recommended she avoid them. That if she really wanted one, just buy a regular swamp cooler. I still couldn't figure out why the city was going along with it though - anyone who'd taken a college-level course in thermodynamics could've figured out the numbers didn't add up. A little googling of the company making the units revealed the likely answer. The company was located in the city itself. The CEO and founder had a rather unusual last name. And in a remarkable coincidence, the city's mayor had the exact same last name.


RE: So..
By Reclaimer77 on 5/6/2013 6:51:49 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
She asked me to advise her on some solar air conditioning units they were thinking of buying because the city was getting them for its municipal buildings. That struck me as a little odd because the energy density from solar is so low while the power demand from air conditioning is rather high. But they were in the desert so I supposed it might be possible. I agreed to review the numbers for her.


That's because the Government is essentially bribing businesses to "go Green". By doing so she's qualified for all sorts of, well lets call them what they are, handouts for going along with the Green agenda. All paid for by the taxpayer.

quote:
I still couldn't figure out why the city was going along with it though - anyone who'd taken a college-level course in thermodynamics could've figured out the numbers didn't add up.


Again, when the Government holds a wad of cash in front of your nose if you do something, it doesn't have to make sense. Unfortunately, most city-planner types will go along with it. No matter how silly, impractical, or inept it is.

quote:
The company was located in the city itself.


Ah, of course. Cronyism and collaboration, bought and paid for by the Green lobby.


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