The carport of the future? -

The carport of the future?

The Hawaii Electric Company is testing out "The Carport of the Future" using solar energy. They hope to use this technology to charge up your car for your commute around town. 

From above, it doesn't look like much more than solar panels on a roof. But those panels are connected to a battery - which is, in turn, tied to an electric vehicle charger.

The entire system is also connected to the electric grid. "If the battery is insufficient to charge the electric vehicle, to the amount that we need, it will, in essence, draw from the grid, as well," says Tanay Panalal with HEC.

Electric vehicle owners will also be able to follow remotely, in real time, say, from a laptop, how much electricity the sun is generating and how much energy their vehicle is using.

"Many people want to have solar on their carports. So, we're trying to find out, first of all, how it interacts with the grid so that we make sure we're protecting the grid and providing reliable service," says Peter Rosegg.

Ultimately, the goal is to get consumers off the power grid and into a cleaner ride.

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