How do solar car parks work?

How do solar panels work?

Solar car parks are technically advanced systems. We break them down and avoid technical jargon, so you can understand how they work.

What is a solar car park?

A solar car park (SCP) is a renewable energy system mounted on canopies, installed over car parking spaces. A SCP integrates solar panels, Electric Vehicle (EV) charge points and where appropriate, a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) to provide a cost effective, innovative way to power both your buildings and EV chargers.

Solar car parks are playing an important role in driving the green movement, providing much-needed infrastructure to support the growth of EV charge points and generating renewable energy.

3ti’s bespoke solar car park installations provide a practical, attractive, effective means of generating renewable solar energy from spaces that are otherwise underutilised, expensive to maintain and let’s face it, often just an eyesore.

How do solar car parks generate renewable energy?


Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels capture sunlight and convert it into electricity.

Mounted on attractive canopies, that also protect car park users from the elements, the panels absorb the solar energy to generate direct current (DC) electricity.

However, most electrical appliances, (including most EVs) currently operate on alternating current (AC) so DC electricity, generated by the solar panels, is passed through “inverters”, built into the car park canopies which convert it into much safer AC power.

How do solar panels work? illustration
How do solar panels work? illustration

Getting EV ready & switching to clean energy can be overwhelming. We will guide you every step of the way and can even fund your solar project.

Why include a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS)?

On very sunny days, solar car parks can generate more electricity than the EV charge points and the buildings they are connected to can use.

Normally, excess electricity is fed into the National Grid but this is an inefficient use of solar power generated from the car park canopies. By including a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) in the car park, excess power can be stored and saved for use at night or on days when there is less sunshine.

How do solar car parks power EV charge points?


Solar car parks power EV charge points with solar electricity, generated by solar panels mounted on the car park canopies during the day and electricity from the Battery Energy Storage System or National Grid overnight.

EV charge points work in the same way as a standard power point in your home or workplace – you plug in your phone, laptop or, in this case, your EV and it charges the battery!

Some organisations can also make significant gains in daily revenue from people using the charge points for their electric vehicles.

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