WASHINGTON, Sept. 23, 2015 - A national park focused on green, renewable energy has been getting greener, thanks to used hybrid car batteries.
Energy generated from solar panels at the Lamar Buffalo Ranch field campus in Yellowstone National Park is now being stored in used Toyota Camry hybrid battery packs to create a more dependable source of power. The solar array generates enough electricity annually to power six average U.S. households, Toyota says.
It’s a win/win for the park as well as the battery manufacturers.
When hybrid batteries reach the end of their usability in automobiles, they still have significant power storage capacity remaining. In an effort to extend the useful life of hybrid vehicle batteries, while providing sustainable power generation, Toyota partnered with Indy Power Systems, Sharp USA SolarWorld, Patriot Solar, the National Park Service and the Yellowstone Park Foundation. Engineers expect this type of use to double the overall lifespan of the hybrid batteries.
“Toyota’s innovative response to solve a difficult problem has helped Yellowstone move closer to its goal of becoming the greenest park in the world,” said Steve Iobst, acting superintendent of Yellowstone. Power from 208 Toyota Camry Hybrid nickel-metal reused batteries is supplied to five buildings at Yellowstone’s Lamar Buffalo Ranch field campus, including cabins, the ranger station and the education center.
The Lamar Buffalo Ranch project is part of Toyota’s extensive work with Yellowstone National Park and the Yellowstone Park Foundation, including providing hybrid vehicles, green building expertise and financial backing for the Old Faithful Visitor Education Center.
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