A joint solar charging research project funded by the Victorian Government, in partnership with Nissan, Delta Electronics and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), has commenced in Australia.
Run out of Nissan Australia’s national headquarters in Dandenong South, Melbourne, solar charging stations manufactured by Delta Electronics that include advanced technologies developed by the CSIRO, are installed at Nissan. This will evaluate off-grid electric vehicle (EV) charging, using solar power and battery back-up in all conditions.
The aim is to confirm and enhance the environmental advantages, and cost savings, which come with owning an EV by maximising the use of renewable energies. Once the full study is complete, it paves the way to have solar power chargers installed without requiring updates to grid connections, and in areas that don’t have access to grid power.
Delta Electronics developed the cabinets that combine a solar system with battery storage and EV charging, while the CSIRO focused on the module that integrates with solar and battery systems to help charge multiple vehicles quickly, regardless of the weather.
Important infrastructure for the research has been installed at Nissan including a 5kW solar system to power the two solar charging units at the front of Nissan Australian’s head office, and another two charging units connected to a 10kW solar system positioned at the rear of the property.
Today, the Hon. Lily D’Ambrosio MP, Victorian Minister for energy, Environment & Climate Change – who approved the $210,000 grant from the New Energy Jobs Fund (NEJF) – recognised the importance of this project. “We know we need to reduce emissions in the transport sector and one of the best ways we can do that is to support partnerships like this one,” said Minister D’Ambrosio. “By encouraging electric vehicle take up, we reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality and increase job opportunities in Victoria. This battery smart storage platform means electric vehicle drivers can travel more confidently and enjoy the drive.”
Nissan is performing the testing and evaluation of the project using multiple Nissan LEAF EVs. The new Nissan LEAF was launched in Australia in early July, and is the world’s most popular mass-market electric vehicle with over 430,000 global sales.
“Nissan is proud to partner with CSIRO and Delta Electronics to deliver this innovative trial and acknowledges the investment of the Victorian Government in supporting this project,” said Nissan Australia managing director Stephen Lester. “Nissan is committed to helping innovate the way all its customers access EV charging, while a study of this nature will enable greater EV adoption both here and around the world, reducing the impact on the grid.”
At the conclusion of the solar power charging testing and evaluation period at Nissan Australia, Delta Electronics and the CSIRO will gather the data and hand down their findings and announce next steps mid next year.