Car Companies Take Their Expertise Past the Garage

April 25, 2014

fitMost people are increasingly looking for alternative sources of energy to meet their daily energy consumption. One of the most popular energy sources at the moment is solar energy. The drawback to this is that the device may not store enough energy to carry you through the night in case you have high-energy consumption. Motor vehicle manufacturers have come up with a solution to this problem. They have developed carbon-free energy stored in car batteries that can also serve as an energy reserve for electric devices within the home.

Buildings and the transport industry account for about 44% of greenhouse emissions in the United States. There has been increased awareness regarding the importance of keeping the environment safe by developing alternative sources of energy.

Honda has been in the forefront of the development of this technology. At the center of the Honda headquarters is a room that contains a black house that holds a 10-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. Next to the battery is a bigger white box referred to as the home-energy management system. This is the intelligence center for the house. It makes intelligent decisions such as when to tap the renewable electric power produced by the 9.5-kilowatt solar panel placed on the home’s roof to charge the battery or put the energy into storage.

The home transfers the excess energy into the grid. When the utility becomes overloaded, which often happens during the summer, the local electric power provider simply sends a signal to the home to make the home direct its solar power to the grid and help avoid blackouts. A similar house will consume up to 1.3 megawatt-hours of electricity yearly. This smart house can generate energy of up to .6-megawatt hours in a year.

The Honda Fit EV in the garage has also been configured to accept energy directly from a solar array. The company also looked into ways of reducing the power consumption of the overall technology. They installed a geothermal system that traps the heat in the ground under the house to cool or heat the house. There is also an automated light adjustment that seeks to mimic natural daylight conditions and thus reduces the actual energy consumption on lighting.

Car companies that have so far been focusing on the production of hybrid cars in an attempt to conserver the environment are also going a step further in investing in alternative sources of energy. This is a complimentary move that helps them meet the overall vision behind the development of hybrid cars.

 

Filed under: All Posts,Electric Cars,Green News and Products,hybrid cars

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