Solar panels already set on the new Prius PHEV
Electric giant Panasonic launched a 180-watt solar panel that can be installed on the roof of the car. It is already used by the new Toyota Prius PHEV.
It seems that the Corporation decided to equip solar panels all around – from the rooftops to tents and backpacks, found a new niche for potential profit.
“Car roof can become a new market for solar panels, – said General Manager of Panasonic Shingo Okamoto. We were the first in the world to implement solar panels in the automotive industry.”
In December last year, Panasonic has agreed with Tesla on the issue of solar panels on specialized factory in Buffalo, new York, where the Japanese company will pay a production process, and SolarCity investing 5 billion in the development of the plant for 10 years.
Those who doubt the appeal of solar energy, the company recommends to pay attention to the sales of plug-in hybrids by Toyota in Japan in April of this year it sold 1 350 units of the new Prius PHEV, equipped with solar panels to almost 9 % of all Prius sales.
Recall the latest generation Prius was equipped with solar panels that send electricity directly to the battery, whereby the vehicle can increase the distance travelled on one battery charge, 3 – 6 km depending on the season.
“This means that you provide about 10 % of the annual mileage is obtained from solar energy,” Okamoto said during an interview in Tokyo.
To build solar panels for the new Prius, the Panasonic engineers had to work on the compilation of the operating conditions of the battery. This is meant to take into account vibrations, changes in light/shade, limited space, and the curvature of the car roof. About AC lighting panels, Okamoto said, Panasonic had to adjust the mode of by-pass diodes configured inside the panels to provide a smooth flow of electric current.
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