As car companies unveil electric vehicles (EVs), the need for charging stations increases. Enter Mitsubishi, which unveiled a solar-powered charging station for EVs earlier this month at its North American headquarters in Cypress, California. The charging station is powered by 96 175 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic (PV) panels made by Mitsubishi Electric. It is able to charge four vehicles at the same time, and has three types of chargers with different voltages: standard level 1 voltage (110v) will deliver a 100 percent charge in 22 hours on the new Mitsubishi i, level 2 (220v) which can charge the vehicle in six hours, and level 3 CHAdeMO Quick Charger, which can charge to 80 percent battery capacity in 25 minutes.
“This project will build awareness of solar power’s versatility and efficiency,” said Katsuya Takamiya, president and chief executive officer, Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA. “As electric vehicles’ popularity grows, we expect to see more charging stations at large employers, automobile dealerships, shopping centers and schools, where cars can charge while people work, shop or study.”
“We hope that our dealers, learning institutions, and municipalities will look to this technology with a keen eye towards the future, and bear in mind that the gradual acceptance of the pure-EV transportation will be aided by increasing the number of facilities like this one,” said Mitsubishi Motors North America President Yoichi Yokozawa.
EVs are necessary to reduce America’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs). Although American vehicles make up only 30 percent of the cars in use globally, they are responsible for almost half of the GHGs emitted by vehicles. Transportation accounts for 30 percent of U.S. GHG emissions. In 2006, GHG emissions from on-road vehicles accounted for 79 percent of transportation emissions, and 59 percent were from light-duty vehicles, including passenger cars and pick-up trucks.
Photo: Mitsubishi photo library