The knowledge and use of solar carports has proliferated across the world during the past two years. As a result, solar carports are increasing in popularity in the U.S., especially for commercial and business locations and for people who own electric vehicles (EVs). EVs, however, do not necessarily need solar power to operate; rather, they just need a charge. Too many vehicles using the electric grid to charge has become a concern, however, as the drawing of power could disable or overload it. As an alternative, General Electric and Inovateus are collaborating on solar carports for charging EVs.
Their resulting product, a combination of GE’s EV chargers and combiner boxes for solar power systems and Inovateurs’ solar-powered carports, would allow commercial locations, businesses, and homeowners to charge EVs in their parking lots without drawing significant amounts of power from the electric grid.
Once the system is in place, the car and building or home work reciprocally on solar power, and the system would give back to the grid, rather than take from it. GE and Inovateus are developing both residential and commercial applications for their system.
GE announced its partnership with Inovateus last week, but this isn’t their first instance in developing EV technology. Rather, they started a partnership with Nissan a year ago and increased it recently to develop technology that links together an electric car, home, and residential renewable power sources with a smarter electric grid. Called the Smart Home concept, GE and Nissan’s technology would enable an electric vehicle and a home to power each other. As a two-year project, Smart Home would eventually prevent EVs from disabling the electric grid, reduce demands on the grid, and allow an EV to become part of a home’s or building’s energy equipment.
If you own, or plan to own, an EV, would you consider a system like GE and Inovateus’ for your home?