Nissan has released a Smart City concept incorporating environmentally friendly energy generation with driverless cars.
It uses vehicle-to-grid technology, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive technology and over-the-air connectivity to demonstrate how energy distribution in future cities could be linked to autonomous vehicles.
A video demonstrating the technology shows cities powered by renewable sources, including solar and wind, with consumers storing any excess energy generated in the batteries of their electric cars.
The batteries can also be charged with wireless infrastructure built into roads, with intelligent drive technology used to move vehicles in and out of charging bays overnight depending on their energy needs, without the need for any interaction from the drivers.
Nissan’s concept would also allow the car owners to draw energy from the car’s battery to power their homes. It envisages a future where cars, houses, roads and the electricity grid are all in sync and connected to each other.
The car company is already making strides to achieve this goal. It recently announced it will construct the next generation of electric car batteries at its manufacturing hub in Sunderland, UK.
It is currently trialling a vehicle-to-grid system in Europe which, when coupled with advances in its batteries, will allow drivers to operate as individual ‘energy hubs’, able to store, use or return clean energy to the grid.
Nissan also demonstrated its first self-driving vehicle at the end of last year, although many of the first drivers noted the system’s cautious style when navigating the roads.