Envision Solar, a California-based solar company, has developed the so-called LifePort™, or a modular solar carport. Envision Solar claims it is “the first fully integrated, system-built photovoltaic solar carport for residential, light commercial and light industrial markets worldwide.”
LifePort models are best for the technologically and/or independent minded, as they are available for purchase as a do-it-yourself-kit, or for a contractor to install.
LifePorts can be on-the-grid, meaning extra energy produced by the solar system is sent back into the electric grid, or off-the-grid, meaning the electricity produced flows only into your EV/PHEV and/or solar battery system that you have on site.
Of course, off-the-grid isn’t a realistic option for most consumers. That’s because only on-the-grid systems are eligible for what can sometimes be fairly hefty utility rebates which can substantially reduce the cost of any solar system, LifePort, or not.