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ATMs to power Australian homes?

Here’s an amazing fact; the 30,000 ATM’s around Australia use as much energy each year as around 5,300 average Australian homes!

ATMs are a classic example of low hanging fruit; and opportunity to simply reduce our reliance on energy which we take for granted. The average ATM uses around 140W of power which is not too bad given the size of the device and the convenience of 24hr access to cash.

However, there is definitely room for improvement and the potential savings for banks and society are substantial; around 18GWH each year, if the energy consumption was halved.

This was highlighted in a recent announcement by just one of a number of companies now offering high efficiency ATM’s which use around 70W or half the typical energy consumption. One company offers a unit that can utilise mains power and also, has the ability to run if the mains power goes down (through natural disasters, blackouts or in areas of low power reliability) by using solar power and integrated batteries.

These devices are seeing huge demand in developing countries where energy supplies can be unreliable and with a quick calculation, in most sunny parts of the world, this would only require around 300W of solar – a single panel in many cases.

Imagine if every bank in Australia added enough solar to power all the ATMs – this would free up enough power for 5,300 homes and take just a little bit more stress off our electricity networks. Given the profits they are typically making, it would seem like a great example of just one way to use energy more wisely or better still, eliminate it all together using solar energy.

Top image via Wikipedia.

© Solar Choice Pty Ltd 2014

Nigel Morris

Nigel is one of the foremost solar energy analysts in Australia, having worked in the industry for over two decades.
Nigel Morris