Exploring the Advantages of Outdoor Parcel Lockers with Solar Panels

Intelligent parcel lockers9 mins readMon, Feb 20, 2023
A close view of a solar panel mounted on a parcel locker

When it comes to choosing an outdoor parcel locker, there are a few factors to consider. One important factor is the location of the parcel locker and its access to electricity. Another key factor is the dependency on expensive and resource-consuming traditional power sources, the cost of operation and maintenance, the associated environmental impact, as well as the need to ensure a continuous and reliable supply of power for the locker to operate.

Fortunately, there is another option: an outdoor parcel locker with solar panels. Solar panels can help reduce the amount of electricity used by a parcel locker, making it more environmentally friendly. In this article, we will explore the advantages of using solar panels for outdoor parcel lockers. We will also look at some strategies when choosing a parcel locker location and the potential problems these locations might pose.

High Energy Prices: Impact on Businesses

With energy prices on the rise, even small businesses are feeling the strain of increased costs. Fuel and electricity are accounting for an increasingly large proportion of business operational costs due to prices growing faster than inflation. Access to reliable parcel locker solutions requires a continuous power supply and this has become an additional cost factor to consider when choosing between different solutions. However, careful planning and understanding of key factors like location, access to electricity, cost of operation, and maintenance can ensure businesses can successfully reduce their energy usage while maximizing their output to remain profitable in a world where energy prices continue to rise at higher levels than ever before.

Is electricity usage something to be concerned about?

In any parcel locker system, several components require a continuous supply of electricity to function correctly. These include the primary components like the electric motor and control board as well as secondary components such as lights, sensors, and cameras. The electric motor is used for powering the locking mechanism and can consume up to 20 watts per hour when in use. The control board is used to manage the system’s functions and can consume up to 10 watts per hour when in use. Lights and sensors are used for safety and security purposes, consuming 5-10 watts per hour each. Additionally, cameras may be included in the system, consuming 40-50 watts per hour in total when in use.

The total energy required for a single parcel locker system to function can vary greatly depending on the type of components used and how often they are used. However, it is estimated that a single locker may consume up to 100 watts per hour in total when all components are in use. For a large network of lockers, this would equate to thousands of watts per hour being consumed.

For a 1000-locker network, the total energy consumed could reach up to 100,000 watts per hour. At an average electricity rate of $0.16/kWh and 24 hours of usage per day for 365 days in a year, with an average consumption of 70 watts per hour, the annual electricity cost for running a 1000-locker network would be approximately $98,112 per year. Over 10 years, the total electricity cost would be an estimated $981,120, an impressive sum of money for something that appears to be a trivial thing!

How important is the locker location?

Before choosing an indoor or outdoor parcel locker, location is one of the most essential and often overlooked factors. After all, choosing the wrong spot can cost you a lot of time and money wasted. To select suitable locations for your lockers, approach the process holistically by taking multiple aspects into account: logistics such as business areas that benefit from extra convenience while minimizing operational costs, potential competitors near your location, customer demographics, and access to necessary resources like a reliable power supply. Figuring out the perfect combination of these elements requires careful consideration - it could be the difference between success and failure!

What problems may arise?

Can the parcel locker be placed in plain view from the street or is it positioned in a discrete area where individuals need to find it? Does the public have direct access to this space, and if so, how does that factor into its security? Weather conditions must also be taken into consideration: can darkness and rain damage your parcel locker? Outdoor lockers may certainly seem more convenient due to their accessibility - but then there is always that looming issue of exposure.

Picking the right spot for your project can be a struggle, particularly when you have to account for an adequate power supply source. Are you depending on batteries or will it need direct access to an electrical outlet?

Electrical surges and power outages can be extremely damaging to any parcel locker system. An electrical surge is an abnormal spike in electricity that can cause irreparable damage to components such as the control board or motor, while a power failure is when there is no electricity present at all. Without proper protection, both of these events can cause serious damage to your system. It is important to have a contingency plan in place that accounts for these potential issues and provides measures of protection such as surge protectors, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), or generators.

Harnessing the Power of the Sun

Introducing solar power to outdoor parcel lockers is an intriguing concept! After all, the sun’s energy is reliable and free. It has the bonus of being sustainable, too. Installing solar panels for a robust energy solution can be quickly and easily implemented at any location worldwide. With advancements in technology, even small parcel locker units can now benefit from the power of the sun. This has led to countless businesses optimizing solar technology to save money on electricity bills while ensuring the efficient operation of their parcel lockers. Plus, you don't have to worry about your parcel locker requiring a continuous electricity connection; solar panels provide a dependable power supply no matter what!

The many benefits of outdoor parcel lockers with solar panels

Outdoor parcel lockers with solar panels provide a sustainable solution for businesses and customers alike - aside from being eco-friendly, you don't have to worry about location constraints or whether the parcel locker needs access to electricity. Solar panels guarantee a continuous and reliable power supply so they can be employed even in remote locations, or locations inaccessible otherwise.

Lots of businesses have leveraged the advantages of solar parcel lockers - from grocery stores to community centers to amusement parks. The potential is limitless! Best of all, these outdoor parcel lockers require very little maintenance and often come at a cost-effective price, making them worthy investments that continue to give long-term returns.

Arka parcel locker with solar panels

The advantages of using solar panels to power outdoor parcel lockers

Solar-powered outdoor parcel lockers have been getting more and more attention lately, as this form of power supply can help users save on both costs and, surprisingly, their environmental impact. On top of that, solar panels offer owners a reliable, continuous power supply - a definite advantage over competing locks powered by electricity alone. Capitalizing on never-ending access to sunlight, a well-built solar panel infrastructure installed at the preferred location of the parcel locker can provide stable power for its operation and upkeep. Furthermore, with the increased durability that comes from an energy source such as sunlight, there are usually reduced maintenance costs associated with the investment in solar panels; they don't need to be switched off or unplugged during downpours and won’t blow out due to electrical surges in thunderstorms. Investing in a solid outdoor parcel system powered by solar energy is something many businesses should consider for all the aforementioned advantages when making the decision more thoughtfully.

The financial aspect of it

From a financial point of view, using solar panels to power a locker network can help reduce energy costs significantly. To accentuate the colossal savings in costs, a solar panel that produces around 2-300 watts per hour should be sufficient to power a single locker and the cost of such a system is estimated at around $300. Referring to our previous example, for a 1000-locker network, the total cost of installing solar panels would be approximately $300,000. This can lead to total savings of almost $600,000 in electricity bills over 10 years.

This proves to be an incredibly smart and profitable investment that any business should seriously consider.

A hand holding a glass globe with trees and sky as background

The environmental benefits of using solar energy

When it comes to choosing an outdoor parcel locker, the use of solar energy is not only a wise decision but also a great way to make a positive impact on the environment. Not only is implementing solar energy beneficial for the planet, but it can also have great impacts on the convenience, cost-effectiveness, and reliability of the parcel locker. Solar power requires almost no maintenance compared to other power sources, and its clean operation means its carbon footprint is virtually zero. It can help us conserve traditional sources of energy while being a substantially more efficient option. Companies that utilize solar power can benefit from it in much the same way: enjoying reduced operating costs and incredible scalability. It could be argued that utilizing this green source of energy could give you an edge over your competition!

The key points

Key factors like location, access to electricity, and the cost of operation & maintenance as well as the need for a continuous and reliable power supply are all taken into consideration when choosing an outdoor parcel locker.

With ever-increasing fuel and electricity prices, it's becoming more important than ever for businesses to find ways to reduce their energy costs. One way to do this is by choosing an outdoor parcel locker powered by solar panels. Arka's AK-300-EKO Autonomous Parcel Locker is a great example of how this can be done effectively. Not only will you save money on energy costs, but you'll also have the added benefit of increased reliability thanks to the solar power supply. Plus, it's good for the environment! So if you're looking for a way to save money and go green, consider an outdoor parcel locker powered by solar panels.