By SolarCars | December 12, 2012
The city of San Diego in partnership with Smart City recently launched its Solar-to-EV Project that makes use of a solar canopy to recharge electric vehicles at the parking lot of the San Diego Zoo. The main objectives of the collaboration are to lower the levels of greenhouse gases and position the city as a leader in clean energy movements.
The project is among the first of its kinds in the United States where solar power is harnessed to directly charge plug-in eco-friendly vehicles. The structure consists of 10 canopies that translates to 90kW of electricity. This amount is enough to power almost sixty homes and power up five electric vehicle charging stations. One of the stations is located at a nearby parking lot that is ADA-accessible.
The setup has a 100kW storage for the energy captured from the rays of the sun. The stored power is used to offset the needs for electricity on the power grid. When the battery is full, the extra energry is diverted to the main grid and benefits the surrounding locality.
This clean energy project can be likened to cupping out 189,216 lbs of CO2 from the earth’s atmosphere annually. It is also similar to around 2,788 trees planted yearly. If you look into the cut in greenhouse gas emissions, it will be equivalent to removing 21 vehicles on the road every year.
This solar charging technology aims to encourage owners of electric vehicles to visit the Balboa Park and the Zoo. It also promotes the benefit of green technology on the site and on the web. The educational tools will play a strong part in achieving the goals of the zoo to encourage people to use sustainable energy.
In case you are not fond of green technologies or if you are but do not own an electric vehicle yet, you can still go to the zoo and contribute to nature by helping the research foundation of the zoo dedicated to help pandas. The zoo is home to a new panda cub named Xiao Liwu.