Right now, electric cars may not emit greenhouse gases themselves, but the coal-fired power plants that provide the electricity that fuels those cars do. That may be the ugly reality now, but ideally in the not too far future, EVs will juice up with clean, renewable energy. One Japanese town is getting a jump on that beautiful future by serving as a testing ground for solar-powered electric vehicles.
Tsukuba City, Japan, which is near Tokyo, is playing host to a project brought together by various companies, including Mazda, Think Global, EnerDel and Itochu. As part of this project, Mazda2 vehicles have been outfitted with electric drivetrains built by Think, using EnerDel lithium ion batteries.
These cars will solely fuel-up at rapid-charging stations powered by solar-powered stationary grid storage units. The charging stations will use DC current to facilitate a quick charge. The cars will be tested by the Tsukuba City community in a ZipCar-type set up. The residents will have smart cards that grant them access to the cars and charging stations, track the charges and bill them for their use.
written by George, May 17, 2010
written by bigjobsboard, May 18, 2010
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