The New Energy Technologies and Nanomaterials (Liten) branch of the Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission has developed a prototype vehicle-integrated photovoltaic (VIPV) kit that can be used with any rechargeable electric vehicle.
The kit is intended to be deployed on the roof of a vehicle and to directly power the traction battery of the vehicle.
“According to our calculations, such a kit could increase the autonomy of the demonstrator vehicle by 800 km per year and reduce the recharging frequency by 14%, which is not to be underestimated for many uses”, specify the scientists . “As an illustration – in France and according to the 2019 Personal Mobility Survey of the Ministry of Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion – 35.7% of home-work journeys are made within 5 km.”
The prototype kit consists of a 145W photovoltaic panel, a magnetic back panel and an MPPT charge controller. It also includes a battery and a micro-inverter which can now be used to feed stored energy back into the grid when the vehicle is recharged.
“Tested on a Renault Zoé model, the remote data feedback shows the possible gain of up to 4 kilometers per day when the days are very sunny”, specifies the research institute.
The Liten plans to develop the VIPV technology with the support of unspecified concerned industrialists.
“At this stage of development, the kit does not directly power the main battery, which is its ultimate goal,” he says. “The system is non-intrusive for the vehicle and therefore adapts to all plug-in models.”
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