Smart City San Diego and San Diego Zoo announced that they will construct a project that directly charges electric vehicles in the zoo parking lot.
This is not just an ordinary electric car charger. What sets it apart from many others is the fact that it uses solar panels to directly charge electric car batteries, unlike common setups which utilize electricity from their local power grid to charge the vehicles.
They then sell electricity generated by their solar panels back to power companies to offset the energy usage of the electric vehicles.
It is not necessary to buy batteries for solar panels if you are going to use them to charge electric vehicle batteries. Since they already have batteries, if the electric vehicles are built to support a direct connection to solar panels, money can be saved through the elimination of solar setup batteries and a grid-tie inverter.
I should add that this particular project stores surplus solar energy in batteries for future use, and the batteries will supply that surplus energy to the electricity grid when it needs it in order to help prevent brownouts caused by power shortages.
“The Smart City San Diego Solar-to-EV project is a prime example of what can be achieved by combining the talent, resources, and commitment of a diverse group of public and private sector organizations,” said Mayor Jerry Sanders, City of San Diego. “Housed at the San Diego Zoo, one of our region’s most celebrated landmarks, this project will further demonstrate our clean energy leadership to the rest of the world.”
Construction of this project began September 4, 2012. It is claimed to be one of the first of its kind in the region.