In addition to power the traffic facilities on the roadway, the other significant long-term benefit of Energy-Plus Roadway Hybrid power system (RHPS) would be close proximity of recharge stations for electric cars. The wind/solar electric power can be sold at charging station building along roadway. Designed for our roadway infrastructure, RHPS systems will provide wide-scale deployment in our national highway systems.
The consumer research from electric vehicle maker Nissan found that 61% of potential electric car customers are most worried about the inconvenience of recharging. Hybrids are holding a 2.4% new vehicle market share in 2009 according to Green Car Congress, and it is predicted to have a 4.2 % market share by 2012 (J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Forecasting Services) . The RHPS system will help to provide the renewable energy to increasing demand of convenient charging stations. With the developments of wireless charging techniques, we can even charge our vehicles when stopping at the intersections.
(100% electric Nissan LEAF ™)
Not only on the roadway, the RHPS system can be installed many other locations with required infrastructure, like highway rest areas and parking lots. It will also promote the implement of Segways and other electric vehicles. These kinds of application will promote our national roadway systems toward sustainable transportation.
Just image how many traffic poles along our national roadway system and how much good wind and solar resources we have along the roadways. From manufactures of wind turbine and solar panel, to power system installation and maintenance, roadway wind/solar hybrid system projects along our national highways will create so many green jobs. If the world-wide supply chain is also considered, these projects will even promote global economy. The roadway wind/solar hybrid system projects will provide convenient vehicle charging stations and this will also encourage electric and hybrid vehicle market. The transportation of products like wind turbines, solar panels will bring more business for transportation services such as truck companies. Our economy will boom as the development of renewable energy projects like roadway wind/solar power systems.
Wind/solar power production can be used to generate hydrogen, which provides an alternative to the battery bank for energy storage. Professor Jerry Hudgins in our team is conducting a project, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research (NCESR), to produce low-cost hydrogen from wind sources. Low-cost hydrogen production from renewable energy sources will significantly impact not only the energy storage technologies but also other related technologies, such fuel cell technologies and fuel-cell hybrid vehicles.