© yury asotov dreamstime.com Business | October 17, 2013
Midsummer powers buses with solar cells
In a move to reduce energy consumption and make public transport ‘greener’, the Polish city of Lublin has installed flexible thin film solar cells from Midsummer on the roofs of its municipal buses.
The Municipal Transport Company (MPK) in Lublin has installed photovoltaic thin film CIGS solar panels on its buses' roofs. The solar panels turn solar energy into electric energy and are used to load the buses’ batteries. This will decrease the buses' alternators load, leading to lower fuel consumption and bringing both economic and ecological profits. Potential savings are estimated at up to 8'000 zloty (EUR 1'900) per bus per year. The system’s payback period is estimated at a mere two years, taking into consideration only the fuel consumption reduction and not the overall environmental benefits. After two years, the solar energy solution will create compound surpluses for MPK for the remainder of the panels’ life span that will outlast the lifetime of the bus. The Lublin solar bus project will initially run for two years, after which it will be evaluated. The first solar bus is already in operation. The thin film solar cells have been manufactured by Midsummer, a Swedish supplier of equipment for manufacturing of CIGS thin film flexible solar cells, and installed on MPK’s fleet of Scania buses. The project is a cooperation between MPK and the Lublin University of Technology.
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