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UKs first solar panel recharging points to open

The UKs first publicly available solar-powered recharging points will be revealed on Wednesday (July 6, 2011).
Opening at the Centre for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (CEME) in Rainham, Essex, the eTap facility provides parking and charging bays for up to six cars situated under a solar panel canopy. Designed by Harlow-based firm, Use the Sun, the eTap facility combines the latest solar panel technology with state-of-the-art evolt charging equipment (designed by APT Technologies) to produce a robust, easy to use, parking canopy, ideal for public use in car parks and public places. The steel canopy is covered with 45 photovoltaic panels with an expected peak power output of 9.9kW.

Transport Minister Norman Baker is expected to cut the ribbon on the new recharging canopy on Wednesday. The launch event will also feature guest speaker Dr Keith Bevis (CEO of EValu8) discussing the future of electro-mobility.

Recharging for electric cars will be available for 1 to plug in, and then 63p an hour, according to ThisIsLondon.co.uk, while any extra energy capacity will earn CEME money through the feed-in tariff scheme.

Charles Montlake, Managing Director of Use The Sun, comments: eTap will provide CEME with a charging facility that can be used by any electric or plug-in vehicle as a way of topping up the batteries while the driver is visiting the campus. We see our canopies with integrated chargers as being ideal for any organisation which has visitors parking for over an hour such as cinemas, restaurants, pubs, hotels, retail parks etc. They simply plug-in, go about their business and return to a charged vehicle. This is the future of personal transportation
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