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What happened to solar powered cars?

User Thread
 42yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Black Gold is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
What happened to solar powered cars?
With the introduction of hybrid vehicles onto the market, when will some hybrid producing car company decide to use solar panels on the outer to charge up them batteries? We may not be able to get all power needs from surface solar cells, but we could capture a significant amount... Enough to get us out of trouble in many cases, I'd imagine...

Also, as a side thought... Would a model-car racing system work for main roads? (as in the use of a current-carrying wire in the middle of roads and contact points under the chassis) If there were back-up batteries or petrol engine, lane changing, driveways, and country roads would not present a big problem...

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"There is no negative one..."
 68yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that cturtle is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
We may not be able to get all power needs from surface solar cells, but we could capture a significant amount... We may not be able to get all power needs from surface solar cells, but we could capture a significant amount...
Hmm. . . A Street Car Called Desire? Shades of San Francisco?
I think the problem is the inertial mass of vehicles is commonly so large that required electrical energy (motors) need large amps to effectively operate (move) the vehicle therefore requiring an enormous surface area of solar panels. Hybrids functional depend on tradition power systems to overcome the initial inertia then electrical to maintain the initial inertial motion.
[A mass at rest tends to stay in the rest state unless acted upon to change that state & that which is in motion tends to stay in motion unless acted upon to change that motion] As with sliding friction, a heavy box is harder (requires more energy) to set in motion but once you start the box to move, it is easier to keep it (in motion) sliding across the floor.

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"Terrorist or tyrant, few may come to the Truth that both are poor choice."
 42yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Black Gold is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
hey cturtle... One thing I've learned from physics comes in applications of capacitors... Basically, electric trains use capacitors to start from rest, as the capacitor is able to release far more power than the direct line... Once the train is moving though, it is able to maintain speed from the direct line... I don't see a reason why cars could not use the same technology...
The capacitor acts in a similar way to a rechargeable battery, storing and releasing energy. But capacitors can do this better (either higher amps or higher voltage, I can't remember...)
The panels on the hybrid car would not be enough to power of course, but can cut a certain amount of emissions either from less fuel, or less charging from mains...
By the way, has anyone seen the movie "Who Killed the Electric Car?"?... It's worth a look if you're interested in this stuff...

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"There is no negative one..."
 68yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that cturtle is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I agree that we are already seeing more electric bikes, carts & cars as these vehicles are light weight & are not designed to transport heavier items.
Granted, you could also point out electric locomotives as fulfilling those aspects as well, so why not trucks & buses?
But I think that the real crux is to find more efficient use of our energy sources (resources)?

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"Terrorist or tyrant, few may come to the Truth that both are poor choice."
 28yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that Arcanum is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Maybe they think it's UGLY and nobody would want to buy an UGLY car that helps the environment. Instead of wasting time doing something good for the environment, they'd rather spend time designing yet another aesthetically appealing car.

It's just like the amount of scientists doing nuclear research VS the team looking for a cure for cancer/AIDS.

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"Some men are wise. Others are otherwise."
 68yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that cturtle is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
It's just like the amount of scientists doing nuclear research VS the team looking for a cure for cancer/AIDS.
Or perhaps 'It's just like the amount of scientists doing nuclear research VS the teams looking for a cure for environmental nature, like alternate energy resources.' Looking at threads like http://www.captaincynic.com/thread/80125/magnetic-freeway-retrofit.htma >
quote:
Scientists claim to be able to power a light bulb at a distance of 3ft with about 95% efficiency, which is quite impressive, but compared to the efficiency of a wired system is a colossal waste of power. It's highly unlikely (if not impossible) that wireless power sources will ever match wired sources for efficiency, especially at any distance


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"Terrorist or tyrant, few may come to the Truth that both are poor choice."
[  Edited by cturtle at   ]
 68yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that cturtle is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Efficient is a major factor or key to alternate energy especially with respect to transportation. General public won't buy into alternate power sources unless they can provide the abilities of gas powered vehicles. During the last energy crunch, some vehicles were refitted to burn natural gas . . . one problem was they didn't produce the tire burning acceleration that we are accustom too. Yet for all it's negative aspects, engines could be retro-fitted which would have been a boon to (small businesses) auto repair shops.

Closer to home is a local, who took an smaller version truck with a blown engine, installed the motor off an electric golf cart & used part of the truck bed as storage for the batteries necessary to provide a wider range of travel. He also ran a couple of generators (alternators) off the drive shaft to recharge on the go. A good idea? Yes, one that could be readily done (by individual owners as well as your local mechanic) but not something that most are willing to do or sufficient to meet the their needs (desires).

Another aspect is the auto industry, one manufacturer produces a high end car that derives efficiency by altering the number of cylinders that are being used according to power requirements. A good idea but only on high priced new vehicles & of course having the rights for manufacture or use this feature in their cars Another aspect is the auto industry, one manufacturer produces a high end car that derives efficiency by altering the number of cylinders that are being used according to power requirements yet another produces a hybrid (hydrogen-powered) car.
What I see is that until the auto industry can find a (reliable / energy efficient) engine (motor) optimistically using existing parts that can be used by all (industry standard configuration) with (minimal down time) to reconfigure production facilities, we are going to remain in limbo.

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"Terrorist or tyrant, few may come to the Truth that both are poor choice."
 25yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that James008 is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
there is a simple reason, solar panels only convert about 17% of the light incoming into energy and you need a lot to produce very little power. but there is some new developments but as we all know scientist and designers takes years to pt a proven idea into production. and solar panels is expensive. the solutions can be to concentrate more light on less solar cells, but you would still need a big area to provide enough power. the small amount of energy that is provided is so small that companies don't even consider it, they will rather say make your roof full of solar panels and by a electric car!!! but we can trough all that away because there is people who claimed to have made stuff to produce more energy then it usses. that might sound impossible but it can be proven by science in the form of Zero Point Energy you just have to capture it and you will have more energy then you can imagine but it is kept from us by big oil companies because they like to make a lot of money and if these things get out they will not be able to make money. and we all know that if you take the food away from someone they will kill to get it back if they are hungry enough and the hunger for money is so great that they will kill to have it.

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"Life is interesting but the universe rules."
What happened to solar powered cars?
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