Mitsubishi begins work on green energy system for EV plant in Japan

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 21 Dec 2019


Solar panels and repurposed EV batteries store energy; green energy system lowers factory emissions by 1,600 tonnes per year at the Okazaki Plant.

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) is to introduce an energy solution service provided by Mitsubishi Corporation (MC) and Mitsubishi Corporation Power  (MCP) at the Okazaki Plant in Okazaki City, one of the main electric vehicle production plants for Mitsubishi Motors and where the UK’s best-selling plug-in hybrid vehicle, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, is built.

The energy solution service aims to reduce carbon emissions through the introduction of renewable energy. This involves the installation of a utility-scale rooftop photovoltaic (PV) system, one of the largest rooftop projects in Japan, and battery energy storage system (BESS) composed of repurposed batteries from used electric vehicles.

Construction began in October 2019, with commercial operation scheduled for May 2020. MC and MCP will install an initial capacity of 3MW (annual power generation: 3GWh) and plans to gradually increase the capacity. Okazaki Plant will then use the power generated from the PV system, thereby contributing to a sustainable approach to the production of MMC's electric vehicles.

The rooftop and battery storage system will reduce carbon emissions by approximately 1,600 tonnes per year and will avoid peak demand of power consumption at the Okazaki Plant. In case of power outages, or in times of emergency or disasters, MMC can utilise the energy in the battery storage system to supply power to the gymnasium at the Okazaki Plant, which is designated as Okazaki City's evacuation shelter. Through such measures, the energy solution service not only reduces carbon emissions at the Okazaki Plant but also improves its capability to respond to a potential disaster in Okazaki City.