New solar panels keep transport refrigeration unit battery charged

by Truck News

ATHENS, Ga. – In an effort to maintain peak performance of transport refrigeration unit batteries in a more environmentally sustainable way, Carrier Transicold has expanded its line of Thin Film Flexible Solar Panels to now offer 18.5 watt and 9.24 watt in addition to its original 28-watt panels.

The panels are designed to maintain the transport refrigeration unit’s charge, are easily installed on the roof of trailers, truck bodies and refrigerated rail cars and can offset the draw from accessory electrical devices, while conserving fuel by minimizing the need to run the refrigeration unit engine to charge the battery.

“Our amorphous silicon, or a-Si, solar cell technology provides high performance in real world environments where daylight may be indirect or low,” said Jason Forman, marketing manager of performance parts for Carrier Transicold. “Unlike some other solar technologies that require several days of sun soaking to bring the panels up to full functionality, a-Si panels deliver maximum performance without sun soaking. They also begin charging at a higher voltage at a lower angle of light than some other technologies, allowing charging over a longer portion of the day, which is especially helpful in northern regions and in the winter.”

Forman said fleets operating in the warmer southern regions would appreciate that that panels do a better job of retaining their efficiency on hot days, unlike some other types of solar panels.

Carrier Transicold said the panels as lightweight, flexible, measures less than 1/8 of an inch thick, waterproof, puncture resistant and is designed to withstand a harsh transportation environment.

Solar panels.
Solar panels.

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