Electric vehicles may need long-term solar power plan

As popularity rises with electric vehicles (EVs), future charging options may include solar power. Long-term planning is being pushed by Delta Electronics (Thailand) Plc., as a result of the need to ensure adequate power supplies. One idea is that of using microgrids at charging stations.

The electronics manufacturer is suggesting that each charging facility should act as a microgrid that can generate electricity with solar panels. Such an idea comes as demand for power is to be expected when the Thai EV market fully develops. Currently, EV charging stations in Thailand are connected to the state grid, but Delta says it would be better if they had their own microgrids.

Solar inverters and energy storage systems or batteries would make them less dependent on state electricity, according to Kittisak Ngoenngokngam, Delta’s director of energy infrastructure solutions business.

“The state grid is already good, but more equipment added to the station will be good for future power management and clean energy campaigns. Imagine if more than 2,000 PTT petrol stations turn into EV charging stations, how much electricity will we need?”

Kittisak also says he expects charging facilities to pop up at shopping malls, condos and other places. And, he says the government will need to increase power reserves in the country to ensure adequate amounts of electricity are supplied during peak times. But, he says the idea to build microgrids would help authorities deal with higher electricity demands.

He also noted that the microgrids would save on electricity costs and help promote Thailand’s plans to fight global warming. Delta plans to display its EV charging technologies next year at its two factories in Samut Prakan and Chachoengsao. The Land Transport Department’s statistics show that the first part of this year saw a 188 per cent year-on-year increase in newly registered battery EVs in Thailand.

And, the growth of the EV industry is only expected to increase as product availability and accessibility rise.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.