In present times, everywhere there is talk of finding sustainable ways of powering our houses and vehicles. Everywhere people are trying to reduce waste and pollution and hence carbon footprint. Searching for sustainable ways of powering homes, a research team from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ONRL) has created a new model for how we can connect the way we power our homes and vehicles. The model known as AMIE (Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy), features a special technology.
This technology allows a bi-directional flow of energy between a dwelling place and a vehicle. ONRL in order to test this new system completely used 3-D technique to build the home as well as the vehicle.
Researchers claim that this is the first ever bi-directional power system in the world of working level 2(6.6kW). The building is fitted with a flexible 3.2 kW solar photovoltaic system, which is then paired with electric vehicle batteries, providing renewable power generation and storage. Energy can flow in either direction between the house and the vehicle via a wireless transfer system. This also means the vehicle can power the house when the sun has gone down or during cloudy periods. The efficiency of this bi-directional power system (BWPT) has come out to be 85 percent as BWPT uses a resonant technology that allows higher efficiencies through larger gaps.
In order to build the 210 sq ft. dwelling, ORNL worked alongside architectural studio Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. The single-room structure was built using 3D-printed parts and features curved lines and cost effective vacuum insulated panels. The home is equipped with a micro-kitchen concept, developed by GE FirstBuild, and the rooftop photovoltaic system is paired with batteries from a previously used Fiat 500e. Carbon fiber-reinforced ABS plastic composite material was used to print approximately 80 percent of the house components and 30 percent of the vehicle’s. ORNL’s Roderick Jackson, who led the AMIE demonstration project, informed: “”One of the interesting energy saving features is novel modified atmosphere insulation (MAI) panels developed by NanoPore that are about seven times more energy efficient than traditional wall insulation.”