ON EVOLVING A SOLAR SCOOTER
It has been my dream to evolve a vehicle which runs on Solar Energy. After considering several variations, the concept I have now selected is, a double seater, three wheeler Scooter, which can run exclusively on Solar Power. Solar Cells on top of the roof, will charge its battery. If and when the Battery runs down completely ( range 40 – 50 km per charge ), provision will be there to charge the batteries through domestic mains, or outlets in the Petrol bunks.
I feel that the market is ripe for such a design, moreover there are a lot of innovations in the related field which yield well to this Concept. Nearly 95% of components needed are +already in the market, while just about 5% of items have to be imporoved. Scooter with a roof ( which will incorporate PV module ) would be a welcome feature in any country. Now,the will, expertise and opportunities are just waiting for financial impetus.
Like any other design displayed in the Solar Cooker Review from solar1 to solar16 ( http://solcooker.tripod.com ) , my design of SOLAR SCOOTER, named as VIDYUTHANS ( Electric Swan) can be developed by any one anywhere in the world. But if it is commercialized, then I would like to have a small amount as Royalty, only to intensify and support my other activities pertaining to popularization of Solar Cooker and Environmental protection.
This announcement, regarding the Solar Scooter, has been made on this day the 1st of May 2005.
A bit of history will not be out of place. I got interested in electric Scooter some 6 years ago. By then scientists had already made a Electric Scooter. Electric and Hybrid Cars were also on the scene. The Hub Motors were probably in the Laboratories, but Permanent Magnet Motors were being manufactured even in India. However the price of the PM motor was rather forbidding. If But then, I had to differ assembly for reasons beyond my control.
The dormant idea got rekindled when I received a mail from Mr Dekzty and LeScull of USA urging the enthusiasts to build a Solar Scooter.
I explored further, and learnt about Hub Motors, Gel, NiMH,Lithium Ion and other types of Batteries, Controls, chargers and the like.
A Scooter or even a bike for that matter is generally operated in a limited range. These days no one wishes to travel miles on end on a Bike or car unless of course there is an emergency. My calculations indicated that with this arrangement a scooter battery could get charged to run at least for 30-35 kms per day, which I feel is more than sufficient range for general commuter.
Sri Anil Ananthakrishna, another stalwart and expert on electric Scooters had introduced Electric Bikes some years ago. But they did not get accepted in the market. But he continued to work on electric Scooters and today he has reintroduced Electric Scooters in India as well as several other countries. He appreciated my design of Solar Scooters.
Many Companies, in USA are working towards reducing the cost of Solar Cells. One company is experimenting with Nano Technology while other is concentrating on use of plastics. both the companies claim that the cost of Solar Cells will be drastically reduced. But when the low cost PV panels hit market, they are sure to revelutionize vehicle markets.
The Solar Scooter and other Solar Vehicles are going to rule the roads of the World, and am happy that I have visualized a viable design of Scooter of the future. Now I have started working on Solar Cars.
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