There are now a wide array of devices and structures powered by solar power. Solar powered cars have also risen in prominence as people became more aware of the several benefits of the renewable resource. You can save thousands of dollars in gas each month by choosing a solar powered vehicle. However, you have to know the different available features and inclusions first. Here are some more details on how you can get the best type.
The Solar Vehicle
A solar vehicle is defined as an electric vehicle that is powered mainly by solar energy. The energy is acquired from solar panels on the surface or the top of the vehicle. PV or photovoltaic cells change the energy of the sun straight into electrical energy. Solar cars are not used as day-to-day transportation devices currently, as these are still used in engineering trials and demonstration practices, usually sponsored by private or government agenices.
Solar cars mix the technology of bicycle, aerospace, automotive and alternative energy industries. The design of the solar vehicle is limited by the energy amount placed into the car. Majority of solar cars were made with the objective of solar car races. A few exceptions include solar-powered cars and utility vehicles. Solar cars are usually fitted with the gauges similar to conventional cars. The driver has to watch the gauges closely to see potential problems and keep the car running very smoothly.
Solar cars rely on PV cells to change sunlight into electricity. 51% of sunlight in reality enters the atmosphere of the earth. Unlike solar thermal energy which transforms solar energy to heat for industrial or household reasons, PV cells can directly change sunlight into electricity.
The Solar Array
The solar array is made of hundreds of photovoltaic solar cells that transform sunlight into electricity. To build an array, the PV cells have to be packed together to form modules that are positioned together to create an array. The bigger arrays can create more than 2 kilowatts or 2.6 hp of power.
The solar array can be installed in various ways. Horizontal arrays can be installed in the form of a free canopy. Vertical arrays can be in the form of integrated sails or free standing to get the wind energy. Adjustable solar arrays can be tilted around the travel axis to boost power when the sun is low and to the side. Integrated arrays cover the whole surface of the car with solar cells. Remote array is done by mounting the solar array at a stationary region aside from the vehicle. The trailer array is done by retrofitting present vehicles with little stability.
The first commercial electro-solar hybrid car, called the Venturi Astrolab was introduced in 2006. Some companies in May 2007 also worked to change a Toyota Prius to utilize solar cells to create up to 240 watts of electrical power under the sun. Golf carts are shown to have very practical uses if powered by solar energy. The Solartaxi was also recently introduced and this solar powered car traveled around the globe, or 50000 km in just 18 months.