The presentation of a solar carport concept developed by BMW Group DesignworksUSA will take place during international media launch of the BMW i8 in Los Angeles.
The solar carport designed by BMW Group DesignworksUSA combines high-grade technology for generating electricity from solar power with an innovative design that complements the BMW i models in the choice of materials, design and color.
In addition to the carbon elements on the side of the carport, the principal material used is bamboo in the form of struts.
Thanks to its rapid growth, bamboo is considered a particularly sustainable raw material. For the generation of electricity, high-grade glass-on-glass solar modules are used.
These are translucent and very durable, as well as generating a high energy yield. For the panels used in Europe, the manufacturer offers a 30-year guarantee.
The solar carport not only guarantees the supply of green power but furthermore allows for energy self-sufficiency, so that customers remain independent of electricity prices.
During development of the solar carport concept, the spotlight was firmly on the harmonious interplay between vehicle design and architecture.
The glass-on-glass solar modules of the carport are supported by exclusively designed bamboo and carbon elements that authentically reflect the hallmark lines and surface sculpting of the BMW i automobiles.
“With the solar carport concept we opted for a holistic approach: not only is the vehicle itself sustainable, but so is its energy supply,” explains Tom Allemeier, who is responsible for the carport design at BMW Group DesignworksUSA.
“This is therefore an entirely new generation of carports that allows energy to be produced in a simple and transparent way. It renders the overarching theme of lightweight design both visible and palpable.”
In conjunction with the BMW i Wallbox Pro, the car can be specifically charged with solar electricity from the carport.
The Wallbox also indicates the amount of solar energy that goes into the car and provides an analysis of recent charging processes which shows the respective proportions of solar and grid power. If the solar panels provide energy beyond the requirements of the vehicle, this surplus solar power can be put to domestic use.
Generating private electricity with the aid of solar collectors and feeding this CO2-free energy via the BMW i Wallbox into the vehicle’s high-voltage battery further optimizes of the life cycle assessment of vehicles.