solar-powered-cars-9The idea of solar powered car appeared by manufactures and universities where the main factor was to reduce the vehicles emissions to zero, increasing the interest and the development on photovoltaic cells industry. In 1979 the first one to be building this kind of vehicle was Alan Freeman from England. It was a simple model, practical and economical at the same time.
The main question remains: how an electric car works.
Powered by solar energy, a solar car is actually an electrical vehicle. The photovoltaic cells places in the form of solar panels convert sunlight into electrical energy. This kind of process generates heat which is converted into electrical energy and then stored in on a board battery. This battery has the same role as a gas tank on internal combustion car.
On a sunny day the Sunray solar Top will replenish 45 liters of gas in winter time when the days are shorter and about 69 liters of gas in the summer time when the days are longer. The Solar Tops are designed to last for 20 years and require little maintenance.
The efficiency of PV cells is approximately estimated about 10 to 15 percent. That’s why in these car industry, engineers had made a hybrid solar model which can use another fuel source, rising this way the efficiency rate.
In 1997 the Toyota Motor Corporation, was one of the first companies to star manufacturing the full hybrid electric mid-size cars. Their ’97 model: Toyota Prius NHW10 had a big success on the market sold in over 40 countries. Until now, Toyota Corporation has released three more models: NHW11, NHW20 and ZVW30.
In 2008 the Fisher Automotive released their first plug-in hybrid luxury sport car: the Fisher Karma. This car has an innovative petrol engine electric motor combination and is capable to reach 97 km per hour in only 5.8 seconds.
In 2010 appeared another type of solar-powered electric vehicle, called the Blue Car designed by Pininfarina the Italian car designer and manufactured by Bolloré the French battery manufacturer.
There are also types of solar-powered cars for golfing, or entertainment activities designed by the Cruise Company, such as: the Solar Powered Sunray SX2, Kudo TX2, Kudo X6, Solar Powered Sunray SX4 and SX6.
These types of cars will be an amazing advancement in the future car technology, allowing free traveling and nearly unlimited accessibility. Until then there are plenty of questions to be solved and plenty of work to be done.