Business and Management

Harnessing Solar Energy In A Vehicle

We have all seen the solar panels affixed to the roof of a house or office building. While the initial investment can be huge, solar power offers a clean alternative that will eventually begin to pay for itself over time. This solar to fuel technology is a widely used construction so the next logical step would be transportation.

Although still in the early stages of development, solar aid is emerging as a viable technology. True full solar-powered vehicles are also being exhibited in a number of endurance races. One of the biggest hurdles in bringing solar energy to the production vehicle is the limitations imposed by the technology.

In most vehicle applications, an array of solar panels placed on the roof or exterior surfaces. As light hits, the panel will be stored in some types of batteries, such as lithium-ion batteries.

Panel tend stationary, which means that not all regions will receive exposure to sunlight. That can make it very difficult for electricity costs. There just is not enough surface area on the vehicle to install enough solar cells to drive a vehicle full time. The cost of installing a solar power system is currently prohibited widespread use.

Until the technology could be made more affordable and material costs down, it does not make financial sense to take advantage of the solar array. Because of the cost of solar components, fuel will cost double the number of electric cars plugged into a standard grid. At present, solar energy is mainly used for electric racing vehicles that participated in an endurance test.