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While people try to realize a higher standard of living, the increase of CO2 emissions from households is becoming a concern. As a company that provides a range of products deeply rooted in people's lives, Panasonic works to comprehensively reduce CO2 emissions from stand-alone home appliances to the whole house itself, with the four concepts of “create energy,” “store energy,” “save energy,” and “manage energy.” First, we reduce energy consumption of the whole house by saving energy. Energy yet necessary even after saving is covered by energy created by photovoltaic power generation and fuel cells and energy stored by household lithium-ion accumulator batteries. Through this energy management system which links and controls the created and stored energy, we aim to have virtually zero CO2 emissions.
In October 2011 we launched CASART TERRA, a house that realizes virtually zero CO2 emissions through PanaHome. This house delivers an energy-efficient yet comfortable living space with a full insulation system used in conjunction with geothermal heat and a hybrid ventilation system with ECONAVI, as well as cancels out CO2 emissions through the use of EcoCute, Ene-Farm, and our solar power generation system. Further, this CASART TERRA was upgraded to Smart PanaHome in April 2012 with the additional functionality provided by the Energy Creation-Storage Linked System, which links a solar power generator with accumulator batteries.
Following the launch of the Energy Creation-Storage Linked System, a core controller to manage home electric facility and appliances, AiSEG, was introduced to the market in October 2012. This was the beginning of full commercialization of our Smart Home Energy Management System (HEMS). AiSEG enables monitoring of energy creation and usage across the house, automatically controlling energy facilities such as the solar power generation system, Energy Creation-Storage Linked System, and EcoCute, in combination with home appliances including air conditioners and IH cooking heaters, to deliver easy-to-achieve energy conservation. Through implementation of this Smart HEMS, the Smart PanaHome further evolved into the NEW Smart PanaHome, which actualizes effortless electricity saving and home power generation that contributes to safety during a power cut in the event of a disaster.
As an independent system, our full insulation system and hybrid ventilation system with ECONAVI have won the Minister's Prize of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in the Eco Products Category of the 9th Eco Products Awards in November 2012, which demonstrates their high recognition as a housing technology that contributes to CO2 emission reduction. Backed up by such excellent energy conservation and CO2 emission reduction performance, in March 2013 CASART TERRA was awarded the Special Grand Prize in House of the Year in Energy 2012, sponsored by the Japan Center for Area Development Research as one of the best energy-saving houses.
CASART ECO CORDIS is a house equipped with even higher environmental performance than the CASSART series and first appeared on the market in April 2013. The roof of this house is actually constructed from solar panels, which in total provides a minimum 10 kW power to each house as standard. The house improves the self-sufficiency rate of annual primary energy while also reducing CO2 emissions.
Core controller that manages home electric facility and appliances: AiSEG
CASART ECO CORDIS
As a part of the business operated by Panasonic to develop a whole town, PanaHome also develops and sells PanaHome Smart Cities, which are housing developments that offer sustainable and smart lifestyles. The first of such developments is PanaHome Smart City Shioashiya (Ashiya, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan) and sales of ready-built homes in Block 1 in the town commenced in July 2012. All 109 houses in the block adopt the Energy Creation-Storage Linked System. This system connects a solar power generator (energy creator) and lithium ion accumulator batteries (energy storage) through a single power conditioner. Embedding this System within Smart HEMS optimizes energy usage in the house. This is the first development in Japan to offer houses equipped with accumulator batteries that reduce peak power usage and provide a secure power source in the event of a power cut*1.
Sales of the remaining Blocks 2 to 4 in the development (approx. 300 detached houses and 100 apartments) will take place in stages to form a smart net-zero energy town with virtually zero CO2 emissions. The town offers effortless energy saving and a safe lifestyle that ensures a power source during a power cut caused by disasters or other reasons, as well as contributing to curbing peak electricity usage as the whole town.
Street in PanaHome Smart City Shioashiya
We are currently promoting our comprehensive energy solutions across the world. This is the application of our energy systems business not only to shops and public buildings, but right across a whole town. In the Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town (FSST) project which is one of our key projects, we have taken the initiative in building a completely new town on our previous factory site located in Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, to offer an environment where people can sustain eco and smart lifestyles that benefit from natural energy resources. In an area of approx. 19 ha, we are building some 600 detached houses and 400 apartments, along with full welfare functions, including care, medical, and educational facilities. This Smart Town is planned to open in Spring 2014.
The major features of the FSST project are environment, safety, and security of the whole town. The targets of each area are shown below.
Environmental targets: Reduction of CO2 emissions by 70% (compared to 1990) and reduction of water usage by 30% (compared to 2006 with standard equipment used in a house)
Energy target: Renewable energy usage rate of at least 30%
Safety and security targets: Ensuring a 3-day lifeline
All houses, public buildings, and other facilities in the town are fully equipped with solar power generation systems and home accumulator batteries from the beginning?representing the world's first. In total this equates to approximately 3 megawatts of solar cell generation and 3 megawatts of accumulator battery storage installed across the town as a whole.
Outside Japan, we are involved in the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City project and the Dalian Best City project to install energy management support systems and other such equipment. We are also currently working with a governmental body in Singapore to participate in field trials of total energy solutions in a public apartment housing area in Punggol. The project is testing Smart HEMS and other energy solutions for one year from January 2013.
Public apartment buildings in Punggol, Singapore
Equipment installed in a home