(PhysOrg.com) -- The city of Plainville, Conn. got a brand new carport, and this one runs entirely on the power of the sun. The carport makes use of solar panels that have been mounted of the roof in order to power vehicle charging stations for the electric cars below. The new carport was unveiled by Dannel Malloy, the Governor of the state of Conn. and Luis Ramirez, the CEO of GE Energy Industrial Solutions. The project was a joint venture of GE and Inovateus Solar, who managed the actual installation of the solar carport.
The panels are expected to produce enough power to run roughly 20 homes each year it is in operation. The carport is able to sustain six Level 2 GE Charging Stations, which can charge up to 13 electric cars each day. Not every space in the carport will be used for charging. The solar panels will also be able to power overhead lighting, which allows for charging at night or in dim lighting conditions.
The carport is currently connected to the city power grid, which means that it can give back excess power that the station when it is not charging vehicles at the moment. The carport can also take power from the grid if it needs excess power.
As you may be aware, Connecticut is not the first state to create a solar carport. In February of this year the state of NJ added a solar carport to the William G. Mennen Sports Arena. The carport is capable of generating 1.6 megawatts' worth of power, as a part of the 500-space parking lot.
Explore further: Chicago Installs Solar Powered Charging Station for Electric Vehicles
More information: See also: Parking lots could become 'solar groves' (w/ Video)
GE press release