Renault is introducing 400,000 square meters of photovoltaic panels simultaneously at six of its production plants in France, making the system the largest in the auto industry around the world. The introduction of the photovoltaic panels underscores the French carmaker’s environmental commitment. The initiative is also considered as an innovative way of protecting new vehicles before they leave plants.
The photovoltaic panels are installed in Renault’s covered ISO 14001-certified sites in Douai, Maubeuge, Flins, Batilly, Sandouville and Cléon – located in delivery and shipping centers as well as employee parking areas.
The entire surface area is covered with photovoltaic panels that could develop 59 MW in total power and could produce 52,600 MWh of electricity a year, which is enough to power a town of 15,000 people. On average, photovoltaic solar plants have total power of around 1 MW.
The panels also ensure protection of new vehicles before delivery to the sales network as they could limit storm damage.
The panels are designed to resist impact and hail in particular. The photovoltaic project was developed by Renault -- project initiator and coordinator -- as the lessor, together with Gestamp Solar and Coruscant (Cléon only), as operational project managers.
The group is also rolling out the photovoltaic project in other parts of the world. The Group will install nearly 100,000 square meters of photovoltaic panels at Renault’s Valladolid and Palencia plants via an agreement with Cenit Solar.
Feasibility studies are currently ongoing in Slovenia, Morocco, Brazil, Colombia, Chile and Romania. Further projects are also being introduced at the Busan site in South Korea, with 300,000 square meters set for finalization in December 2012.