As automakers envision the future, it’s increasingly more high voltage than high octane. Beyond all the dazzling displays of the worlds’ finest automobiles at the 2018 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), I came away with the distinct impression that electric and autonomous vehicles are going to be with us sooner than you think. The promise of an electric and autonomous future was a dominant theme this year at the NAIAS. The high-tech companies participating in the auto show, focused on achievements that will propel electric and self-driving vehicles into your driveways and parking lots. As of today, electric vehicles (EV), in the United States comprise less than 1% of the market, but are expected to reach 20% by 2022.
Most of the automakers confirmed electric vehicles are on the horizon. Ford said that it will spend $11 billion on electrified vehicles by 2022, including 16 new full battery-electric models. Its plans include a gas-electric hybrid version of its cornerstone pickup, the F-150, as well as a high-performance all-electric supercar, which it’s calling the Mach 1. A few weeks earlier, GM’s CEO, Mary Barra, said they are committed to an “all-electric future”, with 20 new models by 2022. Two of those will be battery-electric crossovers based on the Chevy Bolt in the next 18 months. It has also been widely reported that Norway is already at the 50% mark for electric vehicle market penetration and expects to be fully electric by 2025.
The appearance of EV’s on the road doesn’t mean you’ll have to give up your gasoline-powered car or SUV—at least not yet. When auto executives talk about electrification, they don’t just mean cars like the Chevrolet Bolt or Tesla’s luxury models. They mean a mix of models that are either entirely powered by batteries (think Tesla Model 3), gas-electric hybrids (Toyota Prius), plug-in hybrid or range extender vehicles (Chevy Volt) and, increasingly, cars called “mild hybrids.”
How will the Construction Industry benefit from these changes?
Opportunity Knocks. In terms of new infrastructure, this means that solar carports and EV charging stations will no longer be expensive option …but a cost-effective necessity and the numbers are pointing in that direction. This represent a window of opportunity to get ahead of the curve. Going forward, architects, urban planners, real estate developers, and contractors will want to include solar carports and EV charging stations as part of the package.
The iSunEnergy ‘Palm’ is designed for commercial placement, easy to install and move if required.
One of the exhibitors at the NAIAS, iSunEnergy, had several noteworthy solar carports, canopies, and charging solutions. Mr. Sass Peress, CEO of iSunEnergy, explains that pre-fab kits save installation time and take advantage of a variety of EV charging products that can be installed in minutes and relocated any time you like. Solar carports not only provide protection for vehicles from heat, rain, snow & UV, they are easy to permit, install, and eligible for solar investment tax credits and other incentives.
Charging your EV directly from the sun saves on energy costs. Onboard battery storage allows drivers to charge their EV during the day, at night and even when there’s a black out.
In commercial settings, using your solar carports for outdoor media (advertising) is another option. Your message can be visible on renewable energy platforms and your customers will appreciate your positive impact on the environment.
Smart Solar Canopies for the Home
Sass Peress answers the question of why can’t electric vehicle or home owners benefit from the same kind of technology? The team at iSunEnergy started brainstorming the features they’d want if designing the ideal solar shelter or canopy for the home and developed the iSun Oasis.
The resulting product and platform combine the best of solar technology hardware, easy to use software and a host of other features. From smart, connected lighting and EV chargers, to simple touches like plant holders and USB/110V plugs power outlets for our favorite devices. Obviously, each will decide where they want to place it and with an online configurator, determine which accessories (and eventually color) they want. Some will be able to use it as a carport, some as a gazebo, some as a patio-cover. Whatever the use, it will shelter your family and your things beautifully, while producing clean solar power each day. Even the curve of the roof was designed to capture sunlight no matter the layout of your driveway, patio or garden, while allowing rain or snow to slide off the sides. According to Sass Peress, “When you configure your iSun Oasis online, you’ll see lifetime energy savings, grants and incentives in your zip code and finance options.”
The iSun Oasis is designed to complement many different home styles. Practically, it had to do things that enhanced your life with little touches like color and placement of lighting, the mobile app that allows you to see everything from power produced to how much pollen is in the air. The power doesn’t go directly into your vehicle, rather it goes into your home power panel (grid tied), but you can truly say that you are driving on sunshine. And if the power isn’t helping recharge your car, its powering your air conditioner, fridge, lighting or anything connected to your electrical panel. The power is never wasted. Based on American solar power technology, the iSun Oasis is truly unique experience that improves as software features are added.
From an aesthetic perspective, the iSun-Oasis Solar Gazebo doesn’t look like a solar platform and can be used for many purposes, in your driveway, backyard or patio.
EV Charging Stations Attract New Business
Proof positive. Jim MacInnes, CEO, and co-owner of Crystal Mountain, a ski, golf, and spa resort in Benzie County, Michigan, is ahead of the curve. “…as a long-time EV owner, I see the widespread adoption of EVs in our state to improve public health while generating significant savings. Clean air and a clean environment are vital to our company’s success. Crystal Mountain was among the first businesses in northern Michigan to install public EV charging stations, and we now have five stations to support employee and customer EV charging. They also have a real impact on our bottom line, by attracting new guests who need access to charging and seek out destinations with EV charging capabilities.”
For more information contact;
Mr. Sass Peress, CEO, at www.iSunEnergy.com
Crystal Mountain Resort http://www.crystalmountain.com/
Doug Elbinger – email: email@example.com