Vehicle-charging stations remain scarce in North Carolina, but a surge may be nearing.
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When Randy Talley drives up the Blue Ridge Parkway, he sometimes wonders whether he’ll have enough charge to make it home at night. Talley owns a Nissan Leaf, a plug-in electric vehicle with a range of about 90 miles on a single charge. It’s a fun ride, and he loves zipping around town in it, especially since an electric vehicle charging station is 400 yards from his office door. But a trip to the mountains, where charging stations are scarce, involves some risk.
In cooperation with Eaton Corporation and UNCA, Brightfield TS is proud to announce that our Eaton Pow-R-Stations are fully functional. These 2 chargers represent our 4th site in Asheville. “We selected the Reuters Center because a high percentage of Center participants drive hybrid electric vehicles. When we did our site analysis, we found that almost 10% of the vehicles in the lot were hybrids. That indicated to us that the Reuters Center was a likely early EV adopter hub,” commented Stan Cross, Co-Founder of BTS.
These chargers are FREE to use through July of 2012.
Brightfield TS and Eaton teamed up with UNCA to install chargers on campus.
“As interest in EVs grows, the Brightfield® T1 is a demonstration of the smallest of our Brightfield products, ideal for homes and tight infill locations. Its 2 kilowatt array will create enough electricity to drive the average electric car on sunshine 10,000 miles annually. This is an important installation because it also shows our stand-alone patent-pending Brightfield® Charging Bollard”, reports Matt Johnson, Co-Founder of BTS. The Bollard is an identifiable and durable mounting system for electric vehicle chargers in institutional and municipal settings.
Left- Stand-Alone Brightfield Charging Bollard, Right- Brightfield T1. Both equipped with Eaton Pow-R-Station
NovaCharge president, Helda Rodriquez, has installed hundreds of EV chargers. This is what she has to say about the one of the added values of the Brightfield Charging Station:
“Brightfields are the perfect solution to improve air quality all the way around. They generate clean energy. They power clean vehicles. They provide shade and shelter making the vehicle safer for the driver because the car is kept cool and heat-generated toxins are not released inside the car. And, by reducing the temperature inside the vehicle, Brightfields increase EV mileage by not requiring the AC system to have to work as hard to bring the vehicle to a comfortable temperature.”
All that adds up to a healthier experience for the driver, less pollution, and greater EV range.
To learn more about the toxicity of car interiors and how to avoid exposure, follow this link:
By all measures, Brightfield’s ribbon cutting was a success. Over 200 people and nearly a dozen media outlets gathered to hear our Congressman, Mayor, NC Deputy Secretary of Commerce, and AdvantageWest CEO speak about Brightfield demonstrating innovation, job creation, and clean energy and transportation solutions.
The Asheville Citizen Times gave Brightfield an “A” for the event and the unveiling of our vision to make Asheville America’s first EV travel destination where tourists can come and have a Solar Driven™ EV experience:
A to Brightfield Transportation Solutions, a new alternative energy company, which opened its first Brightfield solar-powered charging station for electric vehicles Monday in the parking lot of the city Public Works Building on Charlotte Street. It’s the first of four stations which will open in the next few weeks, and funded through a $376,000 grant from the federal stimulus. The system was designed and manufactured in the Asheville area from American materials, supporting local jobs while cutting down on fossil fuel use and greenhouse gases. BTS co-founder Stan Cross said the company wants to brand Asheville as a tourism destination for visitors who can rent electric vehicles and drive the mountains “fueled by sunshine.”
To read stories in the news about the ribbon cutting event and view photos from the day, check out the links below (note that at the time of this ribbon cutting, Brightfield Transportation Solutions was called BioWheels Responsible Transportation Solutions):
Nova Charge President Helda Rodriguez and Asheville’s first Chevy Volt owner James Brazell celebrate the ribbon cutting.
By integrating solar power production with EV charging the Brightfield™ Charging Station concept solves three critical issues: it moves us away from fossil fuel, it generates revenue while EV charging demand grows, and it provides locally harvested fuel.Here in western North Carolina our electricity comes mostly from coal strip mined in Virginia and West Virginia through the process known as mountain top removal. In fact, North Carolina leads the nation in mountain top removal coal use. Switching from oil to coal for our transportation sector provides a net environmental gain because the electric motor is much more efficient that the internal combustion engine. But the mining and burning of coal perpetuates the environmentally destructive consequences of burning any fossil fuel namely air pollution, water pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. There’s no way around the fact that coal fired electricity will play a major role in the EV transition, but Brightfield is proving that by incorporating solar power generation from the onset, we can phase in the solar capacity needed to fuel the growing regional fleet of EVs. Doing so will reduce pressure to build new coal-fired power plants as electricity demand increase to meet EV need while increasing the amount of renewable energy deployed.
As far as the revenue generation goes, The solar power generated by Brightfields is bundled and sold on the energy markets as Renewable Energy Credits (REC). The RECs are purchased by individuals and companies looking to stimulate renewable power generation and/or offset their own non-renewable electricity use. In North Carolina the RECs are purchased by NC Green Power. The revenue from the sale of RECs covers Brightfield operations and maintenance costs and provides cash flow to Brightfield. This is particularly valuable while we wait for the EVs the Brightfields will serve to arrive. With integrated solar power generation, the Brightfield Charging Station is productive from day one every moment the sun is shining.
The result is that abundant local sunshine is harvested by the Brightfield’s solar array and put on the grid to power your car. Local fuel is secure fuel. When we buy our imported oil refined as gasoline at the pump, only a few cents per gallon stays in the local economy. The rest leaves immediately to be deposited in far away corporate and foreign-nation bank accounts. But when we harvest sunshine and send it onto the grid and then draw off the grid to fuel our EVs, more of our fuel dollars stay local where they can serve the local economy.
Integrating solar power production and EV charging is environmentally, socially and economically beneficial. There are few products out there in the world today that enable you to improve the environment, put people to work, keep money on local communities, decrease consumer fuel costs, increase local manufacturing, and inspire us all. That’s what the solar power generating Brightfield Charging Station does.