|Bicycle parking lot in Sakurashinmachi, Setagaya, where Sanyo’s Smart Energy System “Solar Parking Lot” is installed. Top-right shows the box containing the lithium-ion battery systems and battery chargers. Click to enlarge.|
Sanyo Electric has completed installation of two Solar Parking Lots for hybrid bikes, incorporating solar panels and lithium-ion battery systems, and also provided 100 electric hybrid “eneloop bikes”, in Setagaya, Tokyo Japan. Each Solar Parking Lot holds 40 eneloop bikes. The power generated from the solar panels installed on the roof is stored to be used to recharge the electric hybrid bicycle batteries and illuminate the parking lot lights. Sanyo is using its new Standard Battery System for Power Storage announced in November 2009 in the system. (Earlier post.)
For each of the bicycle parking lots operated by the city of Setagaya at Keio Line Sakurajosui Station and Tokyu Den-en Toshi Line Sakurashinmachi Station, HIT (Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-layer) solar panels (approximate 46 m2, 7.56 kW) are installed on the roof to generate sufficient power to recharge the batteries of a total of 100 eneloop bike units and illuminate the LED parking lot lights.
HIT is a Sanyo-developed technology and is a hybrid model that combines a crystalline silicon substrate and an amorphous silicon thin film. It offers the current highest-class power generation level per installation area, based on energy conversion efficiency and temperature characteristics, according to Sanyo.
|The eneloop bike. Click to enlarge.|
Introduced by Sanyo in Japan in December 2008, the eneloop bike is a 26-inch, three-speed regenerative, pedal-assist hybrid electric bicycle. Riders can propel the eneloop bike under their own power or can engage the bike’s motor and electrical system to pedal in one of three assist modes:—standard, power-up or auto—where the front hub-based motor helps the bicycle and rider travel forward.
Sanyo also employs its Torque-sensing Power Management Controller within the regenerative electrical system of the eneloop bike. As a result, the “Synergetic Hybrid Bicycle” automatically adjusts to differences in terrain uphill/downhill slopes, applying the appropriate amount of assisted power when needed and engaging the regenerative properties of the “energy looping” (ene+loop) eneloop “Loop Charging” system when coasting or braking.
The eneloop bike uses a 25.9V, 5.7Ah Li-on battery pack (i.e., about 148 Wh) and has a range of 57 km when not using recharging while riding; 75 km when using brake recharging only; and 100 km in auto mode. Recharge time is about 3.5 hours.
The 100 eneloop bike units will be provided at three locations, including Odakyu Line Kyodo Station (which does not have a solar parking lot), in addition to Sakurajosui Station and Sakurashinmachi Station and will be used as “community bicycles” by a wide range of people residing in and outside Setagaya.
Each solar parking lot lithium-ion battery system comprises 312 18650-size cells. By combining solar panels with energy storage, the solar parking lot enables recharging the electric hybrid bicycles without any commercial power source, even at night or on a rainy day. The lithium-ion battery system also features AC power outlets that can be used to power external equipment during an emergency.
In addition, the installed system incorporates a DC charger, enabling photovoltaic energy generated and stored in DC (direct current) to be used directly and effectively without AC (alternative current) conversion.
The Solar Parking Lots are examples of Sanyo’s Smart Energy Systems (SES), which combine technologies for Energy Creation (photovoltaic system), Energy Storage (rechargeable battery), and Energy Saving (commercial equipment, etc.). The Solar Parking Lot installed in Setagaya is a small-scale SES.