When we heard that Mitsubishi and the Tokyo Institute of Technology (TIoT) were working on a way to use power generated while a windmill spins at night, it got us thinking. What's so special about wind power produced overnight?

As it turns out, power companies usually only buy energy that wind farms produce during the day when demand is high. When the windmills spin all night long, the power generated is wasted, unless an expensive battery is used to store the energy. Mitsubishi and the TIoT are developing a system that will allow this "wasted" night energy to charge electric vehicles – and it doesn't rely on that costly battery.

The system gathers data on power generation of the windmills and energy consumed by charging vehicles. It then assesses the data and can send juice out to vehicles in need of a charge. The system can stop power supply to the vehicle as needed and is smart enough to determine which cars need the most juice, though the companies don't detail how it does this. According to the specs, one windmill could provide enough power to charge 200 EVs nightly, which is certainly a good start.

There are a lot of minor issues to sort out, like determining how to charge customers for the windmill power and how to distribute the power to large areas, but these kinks can probably be taken care of. We've got an idea to help them get started: since the energy would be wasted anyways, why not send it to EV owners for free?

[Source: Green Car Advisor | Image: Ryan McD - C.C. License 2.0]


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