Electric Cars Need to Get Power from Somewhere
Tesla’s electric cars are great for the environment for many different reasons, but they still need to be charged up with electricity. The electricity from a city’s power grid can come from a wide variety of sources, and not all of them are as environmentally friendly as they could be. That is why Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, wants to take its car charging stations off the grid, and each station would only use solar panels to gather energy.
Tesla plans to equip as many of its stations as possible with special solar charging arrays, and they have been discussing the idea since 2012. This is the first time the CEO has come out with a bold claim to back up these station upgrades, though. Some doubt that Tesla’s stations will go off the grid.
The New Solar Charging Stations
Six charging stations currently operate using Tesla’s solar arrays. It requires a significant amount of sun to charge the massive central battery, but with enough sun, electric cars can be charged without reliance on public power grids.
Tesla may discover a lot of problems implementing the new technology on a grand scale. Many regions, such as Seattle, receive relatively little bright sunlight during the course of a given year. This drastically reduces the amount of power that Tesla’s standard solar arrays can absorb, and it isn’t clear yet whether the CEO’s goals are feasible.
Grid Disconnection and Tesla’s Overall Goals
Tesla wants to disconnect their stations from the grid, but some scientists question the need for complete grid disconnection. After all, Tesla could supply excess power back into the electrical grid. This would bring Tesla extra income, and it would also be good for the environment.
As a company, Tesla appears to be working hard to create environmentally friendly technologies. Their new charging stations may be high-tech and modern, but it isn’t clear how they will implement their solar array charging stations at this point.