By Isabella Kaminski
Japanese companies Sekisui Jushi Corporation and Kyocera (and its domestic solar energy sales subsidiary Kyocera Solar Corporation) have together developed a multi-purpose solar power shelter called an ‘Eco-Shell’.
The shelter combines Sekisui Jushi’s multi-purpose shelter unit with a Kyocera solar power generating system and energy-efficient LED lighting to create a covering similar to those already found at bus stops. The new product is intended for use in public places where shelters provide cover against the sun and rain such as bus and taxi stops, benches and pavement coverings.
The solar-powered product is now on sale exclusively to the Japanese market and is being targeted at councils and private companies.
According to Kyocera and Sekisui Jushi, the idea of energy reduction is gaining prominence in Japan following the earthquake in March and environmental awareness in urban planning has received a lot of attention.
The companies say that electricity generated from the shelter can also be used for surrounding electrical needs, such as lighting for advertising displays, with excess power being sold to utility companies. This would help meet expected power shortages in Japan during the summer.
Furthermore, the solar-powered shelter uses low-energy LED lighting to reduce both power consumption and CO2 emissions at night. It can be used as emergency power supply in the event of a disaster, as it has independent power outlets that can be used to charge mobile phones or other vital electronics.