Product News February 12, 2014

Mitsubishi Motors and Nichicon Start Full-Scale Operation of Agricultural Charging Station : First Time in Japan to Bring Electricity to Farms Via EVs

 
Mitsubishi Motors Corporation
NICHICON CORPORATION

Effective today, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (hereinafter, Mitsubishi Motors) and Nichicon Corporation (hereinafter, Nichicon) have begun operation of an agricultural charging station in Iwanuma City, Miyagi Prefecture, Japan. This station generates electricity from solar-power that is stored in a lithium-ion battery and then used to charge electric vehicles (EVs).

 

This joint effort by these two companies is part of a project being conducted by Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) and the Reconstruction Agency to use advanced technologies to revitalize food-producing regions of the country. It is aimed at rebuilding the agricultural and fishing industries in regions stricken by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 2011. Mitsubishi Motors and Nichicon jointly applied to conduct an empirical research project to study ways of making use of untapped energy sources in rural areas. At the agricultural charging station, solar-power-generated electricity is stored in a lithium-ion battery and then used for the rapid charging of EVs using the CHAdeMO method. EVs are being loaned to farms in the vicinity of the agricultural charging station, and data is being gathered on things like how the farms are using both the EVs themselves and the electricity stored in the their batteries for agricultural purposes. This is the first time in Japan that EVs are being used to deliver solar-generated power for agricultural purposes.

 

This project will allow greater mechanization of agriculture using renewable-energy charging stations and EVs. Possibilities include local renewable-energy production for local consumption and thus the elimination of the need for fossil-fuel-generated electricity; renewable-energy-run farms in off-grid areas that currently have no electricity; and lower agricultural production costs thanks to the use of EVs that use no gasoline.

Mitsubishi Motors and Nichicon will continue this empirical research project with the eventual goal of building a Smart Agricultural Network System. Such a system will be comprised of multiple charging stations that use not only solar power but also other renewable-energy sources such as wind power and small-scale hydropower. Through a network of these charging stations, a community can make effective use of energy for agriculture.

Opening ceremony for the agricultural charging station

Opening ceremony for the agricultural charging station

(From left)
Toru Hashimoto, General Manager, EV Business Headquarters, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation / Ko Onuma, Head, Miyagi Prefectural Institute of Agriculture and Horticulture / Kazumasa Shioya, Chief, R&D Promotion Section, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Technical / Conference Secretariat, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan / Tsuneaki Iguchi, Mayor, Iwanuma City / Tomoyuki Murakami, member of Prefectural Assembly, Miyagi Prefecture / Tadahiro Yamaguchi, Director, General Manager, “NECST (Nichicon Energy Control System Technology) ” Business Headquarters, Nichicon

 

System Overview

Electricity flow in Smart Agricultural Network System

Electricity flow in Smart Agricultural Network System

  • 1. Generate energy
  • 2. Store energy
  • 3. Deliver energy
  • 4. Use energy

Untapped energy Agricultural charging station Flow of electricity EV Portable electric power feed Electric agricultural machinery Greenhouse cultivation

Agricultural charging station
(Left: Charger Unut;, Right: Electricity storage section)

Agricultural charging station (Left: Charger Unut, Right: Electricity storage section)

 

Inquiries:

  • Corporate Communications Division, NICHICON CORPORATION
  • Phone : 81-75-241-2719
 
 
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