Solar awnings over parking lots help companies and customers – ScienceDaily


The number of people who own electric vehicles is increasing, but they are faced with a mystery: unlike those who own gasoline-powered cars, EV owners cannot simply come to the corner gas station to refuel. There can be only a few charging stations, especially in rural areas.

Joshua Pearce, Richard Witte, endowed professor of materials science and engineering and professor of electrical and computer engineering at Michigan Technological University, hopes to change that.

Pearce and his co-author, PhD student Swaraj Sanjay Deshmukh, point to the untapped potential of solar photovoltaic awnings for retail parking lots in a model described in an article in Renewable Energy magazine.

The study examines the energy-related benefits of developing EV charging stations with solar photovoltaic (PV) canopies built into the parking infrastructure of large retailers like Walmart.

The case study shows that such canopies could generate 3.1 megawatts of potential per Walmart Supercenter in the US and provide solar power for approximately 100 EV charging stations. Across the country, Walmart could install 11.1 gigawatts of solar roofs over parking lots to power more than 346,000 EV charging stations with solar power for their customers. Such a fleet of solar awnings would meet the needs of 90% of the American public who live within 15 miles of a Walmart – about as common as the corner gas station.

This model could be adopted by any box store as it has a competitive advantage over stand-alone EV charging stations. Solar power for charging electric vehicles could be profitable and solve the charging challenges in the community. The results show that store owners could increase store selection and profit by offering their customers a free PV EV fee with four main benefits:

  • Increased customer comfort through protection against shading and precipitation.
  • One way for green consumption.
  • Incentive for preferential shopping for owners of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and electric vehicles.
  • Increase shopping time and money you spend in the store to collect more fees.

“The electric car powerhouse Tesla is the world’s most valuable auto company today, and the more experienced automaker GM has announced that gas and diesel vehicles will be extinct by 2035. It is clear that the growth of electric vehicles will continue to accelerate,” said Pearce . “Retailers have the opportunity to leverage the stranded fortune of their parking lots to capitalize on preferred store choices by the growing army of EV owners. Fast-moving retailers investing in solar rooftops and EV charging stations will attract early EV adopters and benefit from it. ” the greatest gain. “

Source of the story:

Materials provided by Michigan Technological University. Originally written by Kelley Christensen. Note: The content can be edited by style and length.

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