SOLAR CARS TO BECOME A REALITY IN THE NEAR FUTURE
The cost of fossil fuels is set to rise while prices of electric vehicles and solar batteries continue to fall. A number of industry experts are already predicting the rise of solar energy in industrial and consumer markets. Solar cars are in development from a variety of companies and may have their share of the road in the not too distant future.
The projected developments are not just in the sphere of residential energy. With the advancements in operating efficiency, coupled with dropping manufacturing costs, solar-powered automobiles look realistic in the near future.
FIRST EVER SOLAR CAR
Stella is the first car that uses solar power. It was introduced in the United States in 2014. While it is a move in the right direction as far as solar powered vehicles are concerned, it does not fully reflect the aesthetics of traditional sedans. However, the car has demonstrated that solar vehicles can compete with conventional vehicles.
The car can go up to 500 miles on a single charging (full). It was developed especially for family use. This last factor is quite a significant one because it shows that a racing market technology has finally penetrated through to the bigger commuter market.
Although the car does not look that great at this point, it does indicate that researchers and manufacturers are starting to meld specialty technology and performance for the consumer market
TOYOTA’S SOLAR INTEGRATION
Toyota is another company that has made significant investments in solar technology in the last few years. They are yet to manufacture a solar powered vehicle. Still, their motor sales office in Ontario had the biggest solar array (single panel) at the time.
As for automotive development, their 2010 Prius offered a cooling-system that ran on solar power. The motor and the ventilation system of the vehicle function separately, allowing this feature to be successful. The smart feature automatically gets activated once the interior temperature goes above 68 Fahrenheit.
This gives an idea of the ways in which solar power can be aesthetically integrated into the consumer vehicle market. Unlike the design of Stella, the panels in Prius have been incorporated fully into the traditional styling of the vehicle.
SOLAR SOLUTIONS FOR ELECTRIC VEHICLE OWNERS
With increasing awareness of the climate crisis, clean technology is growing to replace conventional fossil fuels. EVs are well known for producing lesser greenhouse gases than old-fashioned hybrids. The demand for cleaner transportation is clearly there – it is just a question of how soon the technology is going to catch up.
There are a lot of companies, such as Home Energy Systems, that are working to bring existing solar technologies and electric cars closer. They offer installation of electric car charging stations which can be wired for energy from existing rooftop solar arrays, thereby allowing the users to charge electric cars with clean, renewable energy. Its really not too far of a stretch to consider cars fueled by solar energy could be considered solar cars, so in a way solar cars are available now, depending on how you charge your vehicle. Still, we look forward to well designed, powerful solar cars that cut out the middle-man of the solar charing station.
As the installation and maintenance cost of residential solar systems become more and more affordable, this is a great option for people who do not want to draw power from the grid for charging their vehicles. Although it will not be viable for long distances, it is perfect for single-charge, short distance journeys like driving around town or going to and from work.
With the need for better sustainable automobile alternatives, manufacturers are waking up to the need for mass producing solar powered sedans. Whether the industry will produce a fully solar powered car in the coming years remains to be seen. But the central fact is undeniable – the future is bright for sustainable transportation.
For more information on solar car charging stations call Home Energy Systems at (619) 350-0032 Today!