Honda’s new Smart Home US, located on the West Village campus of the University of California, Davis, is a showcase for technologies that enable zero net energy living and transportation, including Honda’s home energy management system (HEMS), a hardware and software system that monitors and optimizes electrical generation and consumption.
The Smart Home is capable of producing more energy than it consumes, including enough juice to power a Honda Fit EV. The home’s solar panels are expected to generate a surplus of 2.6 MWh of electricity per year, while a comparable home will consume approximately 13.3 MWh.
A 10 kWh battery energy storage system in the garage, using the same lithium-ion cells that are used in the Honda Fit EV, allows stored solar energy to be used at night. Honda’s HEMS leverages the battery to balance, shift and buffer loads to minimize the home’s impact on the electric grid.
The Honda Fit EV included with the home has been modified to accept DC power directly from the home’s solar panels or stationary battery, eliminating up to half of the energy that is typically lost to heat during DC-to-AC and AC-to-DC power conversion. When the solar panels are generating electricity at full capacity, the vehicle can fully recharge in approximately two hours directly from sunlight.