The Next-Gen Electric Cars Recharge Through Solar Energy
BTVTruongP - Dec 28, 2018, 11:18 am IST
A Dutch-based company is planning to introduce electric cars recharging through solar energy. This article will inform you of India’s EV scenario.
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The tendency toward electric vehicles brings “how to tackle the range limitations of the vehicles?” into the question that obsesses automakers. So far, it takes a long time to charge the EVs s’ batteries; hence, discovering the substitutes for “plug and charge” is of paramount importance.
Recently, several alternatives have been invented, namely the metal-air battery based on graphene substituting for the traditional Lithium-ion batteries. The idea involves filling vehicles’ fuel tanks with water and the drivers are ready for travels. Lately, Lightyear, a Dutch-based manufacturer utilizes solar energy which is totally free as well as renewable energy to charge the vehicles’ batteries. The Dutch startup is preparing for the introduction of the first model of an electric-powered car which recharges through a group of solar cells that is embedded on the vehicle’s roof. The solar energy, yet, is not the sole source to refill electrical power. The car likewise is able to be charged up by its conservative charging plug, which provides the travelers other options of recharging their car at their home or a charging station.
“The Dutch startup is preparing for the introduction of the first model of an electric-powered car which recharges through solar cells embedded on the vehicle’s roof”
Nonetheless, thanks to the solar cells, the drivers no longer wholly depend on charging stations. Lex Hoefsloot, the company’s CEO commenced developing the concept since he studied at the Eindhoven University of Technology. In 2013, Hoefsloot is the victor in the World Solar Challenge. In 2015, his team’s project developing a car that is capable of traveling about 1000 miles each charge cycle.
Following graduating from the university, Hoefsloot immediately began to commercialize the concept. He has mobilized funding for his startup, employed and collaborated with experts in the industry including former Tesla employees.
“Technically, the car is not powered directly from the energy derived from the sun’s rays since there exists a conventional lithium-ion battery that powers the car”
Technically, the car is not powered directly from the energy derived from the sun’s rays since there exists a conventional lithium-ion battery that powers the car. The solar cells, however, allow the driver to recharge the battery while traveling, which means the vehicle has a prospectively inexhaustible source of energy. As a result, stopping the drive to refuel for the future car is not necessary.
Besides, the manufacturer has ensured an ultra-efficient prototype for the vehicle since it directly has an effect on the range. An efficient vehicle allowed the vehicle to consume less energy, resulting in a superior range. It is likewise claimed that the company has endeavored to alter the design along with the material employed to produce a much lighter car in comparison with its counterparts.
The car is equipped with an in-wheel motor which replaces for a transmission, cameras substituting for side-view mirrors, better aerodynamics, streamlined undercarriage. The height of the vehicle, besides, is adjustable thanks for a system of air suspension which minimizes the drag. On the grounds of this alteration, the car’s single charge reportedly permits a ride of 500 miles (equivalent to more than 800 kilometers). What an impressive number!
“The CEO claims that we saw that the technology we used–the solar cells and the battery cells and the motors–were getting much better from year to year,”
The concept, indeed, has solved two complicated issues. Initially, the solar energy powered to enable the vehicle to become the ideal at present as the car is constantly charged without remaining plugged in. Moreover, a number of regions and states have attempted to adopt the EV cultures, the matter of whether producing the EV or constructing the EV infrastructure first is probably solved. The vehicle is perceived as a significant Kickstarter to regions where the government, policymakers as well as citizens desire to change the major transport means to electric vehicles.
It is anticipated that following further enhancements, the car eventually is able to merely run on energy from the sun. The manufacturer has likewise placed a calculator counting up the power supply for commuters on its website. According to the company, solar power is able to provide 96 percent of up to 10,000 miles (equivalent to 16,000 kilometers) derive annually in sunny regions.
The CEO claims that: “We saw that the technology we used–the solar cells and the battery cells and the motors–were getting much better from year to year,” says Hoefsloot. “In the first car that we built for the Solar Challenge we had solar cells that were 22% efficient, and two years after that they were 24% efficient. That meant a 10% increase in energy yield. That keeps happening every two years. So that means at some point it is really kind of trivial to use solar power as a way of charging.”
“The products’ original expected price was Rs 95 Lakh ($135,000); thereafter, due to the increased production, the expected price reduced to Rs 18 Lakh ($26,000)”
In 2019, Lightyear is aiming at testing its models on actual road conditions. Following the completion of the trial phase, the manufacturer intends to launch the first vehicles in 2020. The products’ original expected price was Rs 95 Lakh ($135,000); thereafter, due to the increased production, the expected price reduced to Rs 18 Lakh ($26,000).
The company, however, does not focus merely on the profit, its strategy is creating the trend that is caught by the worldwide public. The CEO’s ambition is creating what is called: “the second wave of electric cars”. Previously, in 2010, the Tesla Model S struck the auto industry and hailed the milestone in the development of electric vehicles. If the progression continues, it is anticipated that the customers will soon have a chance to possess an entirely new generation of electric-powered cars which further lessen the personal transport’s carbon footprint by wholly consuming clean energy.
It is expected that the idea is implemented in India, a country with the abundantly available solar energy. If Lightyear cars are employed in the state or a domestic manufacturer conducts the concept on a commercial scale, the scenario of an India’s EV future which has been desired since long can come true.