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Brief Published: 27 Jun 2013

Solar-Powered Electronic Vehicle License Plates


South Carolina-based technology firm Compliance Innovations plans to present state lawmakers with a new design for a solar-powered license plate with a digital screen.

The Electronic Vehicle License Plate (EVLP) would be accessible by the Department of Motor Vehicles and the state’s Law Enforcement Division, both of which would be able to alter a plate’s display to alert other drivers to an owner’s insurance status or a vehicle’s involvement in a crime.

Annual financial losses from automobile collisions of uninsured motorists are estimated to exceed $150bn, according to the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators.

“The ability to immediately and visibly revoke a license plate will require owners to comply with insurance and registration laws resulting in decreased financial losses for insurance companies, lower premiums for owners and an increased and equitable revenue collection for government jurisdictions,” Compliance Innovations said in a statement on its website.

Additionally, giving law enforcement access to EVLPs could “help provide a means to more quickly identify vehicles that are stolen, associated with serious violations or used in the commission of a crime.”

The electronic plates would use what Compliance Innovations calls “e-paper,” a material thicker than metal tags that charges on kinetic energy and solar power. The plates are said to be able to maintain their image for up to 10 years. Compliance Innovations is reportedly working to make the EVLPs more affordable, ideally under $100.

For more on forward-thinking automobile-related innovations, see Stylus’ report on this year’s Move Award winners. Move is an award backed by several major auto brands –including BMW, Mercedes and Ford – that honours cutting-edge transportation concepts. Stylus also highlights the latest developments in sustainable energy sources (like solar power) in our report on Clean Energy.

Compliance Innovations