The feasibility of charging electric vehicles with solar panels in parking lots
What is it about?
Imagine going to work by train, and that you leave your car at the train station parking site during the day. Next, imagine that you don't have to be worried about your car battery because it is charged there, using clean solar energy! This is what we have studied. We analysed the technical and financial performance of a solar powered park&ride. Results show that there is plenty of room for the solar panels required to charge all car batteries, but, at today's prices, it is still expensive and we can only get the investment money back after almost 15 years. On the other hand, a relatively limited public subsidy would enable the solar car park economic viability, and help disseminate this approach to all sunny cities.
Why is it important?
Electric vehicles are the future of mobility! Imagine that all these cars were charged with electricity from fossil or radioactive fuels... Senseless! But if we are able to charge our cars during the day, when we are at work, with clean solar energy, then it would make sense. But, of course, it's always important to consider the costs – that's why we made a financial analysis.
The following have contributed to this page: Raquel Figueiredo, Miguel C Brito, and Pedro Nunes