Ireland has always been at the forefront of the global shift towards renewable energy. In fact, the government has set a target of ensuring that 70 percent of the electricity on the national power grid is obtained from renewable energy to put a check on its reliance on fossil fuel imports for energy.
Despite the exponential growth of EV ownership in recent years, many still shy away from them due to pervasive myths about expensive and inefficient charging systems. However, a solar power EV system can solve that problem by producing electrical energy directly from sunlight with efficiency, minimal operational expenses, and little to no maintenance during their lifespan.
What is a Solar Powered EV System?
A Solar power EV System uses photovoltaic(PV) cells to convert solar energy into electrical energy which in turn is used to charge/power your EV battery. They can broadly be categorized into two types:
Mobile Solar Chargers: They’re mounted atop your vehicle’s rooftop.
- Solar-powered Charging Stations: Ground-based on-grid or off-grid installations at fixed charging points.
- Off-Grid Installations: Solar PV panels are used to store the electrical energy in batteries which in turn provides power to the charging station.
- On-Grid Installations: The electrical energy generated by the PV panels is stored directly on the electrical grid rather than in batteries.
Key Components Used in Off-Grid Installations
Off-grid solar-powered EV systems have higher upfront costs, but they are easy to install and can be done anywhere since they do not require a dedicated connection to the electrical grid. They can include following key components:
The number and type of PV panels you’d require depends on your desired power output capacity. For example, level 3 fast-charging stations use more than 300 solar panels to generate power.
They ensure the maximum possible efficiency of power generation from the solar panels. They also direct any excess energy to be stored in the batteries.
They are connected to solar trackers and ensure that the panels receive the maximum available sunlight at any point of the day.
The solar panels generate high-power electrical energy. Converters help dial it down into the requisite EV voltage.
CAN BUS/Power Line Communicator:
A communicator exchanges crucial information like battery capacity, power transfer rate, etc. between the charging system and the Battery Management System(BMS) of your EV.
Solar-powered EV chargers can be categorized into 3 types:
- Level 1: Standard 120V household output.
- Level 2: 240V AC charging output.
- Level 3: Fast charging 480V DC output.
If you need help setting up a charger, you can find the best solar EV charger installers in Galway to get the job done.
Key Benefits of Going Solar
Solar-powered EV chargers have the following advantages over traditional grid charging as well as conventional carbon-based energy sources:
Solar energy is one of the cleanest sources of energy available. Paired with recent improvements in commercial PV technology, it is now one of the best options to power vehicles.
Solar panels have minimal maintenance expenses as well as long lifespans that typically exceed 20 years. Moreover, more than 80 percent of the materials used in the panels can be easily recycled.
The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland(SEAI) offers grants to mitigate the upfront installation charges of solar PV panels, batteries, and EV chargers: These SEAI Grants include:
- Solar PV Grant: Upto €900/kWp up to 2kWp with an additional €300/kWp up to kWp if a battery is also purchased.
- Battery Storage Grant: €600 for large PV systems.
- EV Charger Grant: Up to €600 towards both the purchase as well as installation of a personal EV charging unit.
Getting a Solar Power EV System
Now that you know about solar-powered EV systems and their benefits, contact us and we’ll help you set up your solar power EV system and get you on the road in no time!