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Solar panels for vehicle roofs

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
With all the vehicles on the road this day and age. Why not have a 3 foot x 3 foot solar panel located on top of the roof somewhere? Cars could be larger than a pickup's. Even the top of semis and trailers could use this. Now this of course can't keep up with the alternator to charge your battery, but it would provide a slow trickle charge to your battery. In cold places this would do wonders. Picture in your head all those parking lot full of cars each day. Miles of vehicles driving in traffic down in California. We potentially waste so many opportunities to use solar panels.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
I'd agree it could be useful, but are the panels very resilient? I don't think they are cheap, and can only imagine how many would get broke/chipped/cracked driving down roads.

On the solar panel topic, our Christmas gift at work was one of those portable battery things that you charge and it has a USB port to charge a phone or whatever device you have that charges via USB. Has a solar plate on it so it can charge to a degree that way. Could never keep up with the draw from a device that was on though.
 

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
Actually a solar panel with a covering over the top (plexi-glass or a poly plastic with a diamond pattern to actually pull more light in) would be very protective. It's on the top so it's mostly immune to rock chips etc. Hail maybe but the poly plastic should stop that. So durability wise this is no problem. It's just flush inside the top on the metal on top of the car with a rubber seal. It's only embedded done in the metal a little ways. Only thing below would be dampeners for flex and some wiring (quick connect for easy of removal) and depending on the setup a converter or inverter box. Real simple system. Looks from the front/rear/sides of the vehicle you can't even tell it's there.
 

ryanator

Mathematical
Members
Not solar but, cough..Tom Ogle..coughconspiracy... http://fuel-efficient-vehicles.org/energy-news/?page_id=787

Oh, more proof here (actual patent on file from 1979): https://www.google.com/patents/US4177779?dq=4,177,779&hl=en&sa=X&ei=HPSxUsnDFoeThgfj8IHIAQ&ved=0CDcQ6AEwAA

Oil companies made the world stay backwards, since 100 years ago, we had made alternative or major gas saving tech, but certain people wouldn't have it. That is not a conspiracy itself, but the way certain people died or were shut out from ever evolving their technology.
 

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
I agree with you @ryanator . I know that's why we don't see this type of technology out there. Now think about the advantage to electric vehicles like the Prius or the Tesla. I don't expect it to fully power them, but power is power no matter how small it is producing.
 

ryanator

Mathematical
Members
Also the fact if the developers would have been able to fully flourish their product back then, by now we would already have high fuel efficient vehicles.
 

jmanz

I bought you the sims
Members
I'd agree it could be useful, but are the panels very resilient? I don't think they are cheap, and can only imagine how many would get broke/chipped/cracked driving down roads.
On the solar panel topic, our Christmas gift at work was one of those portable battery things that you charge and it has a USB port to charge a phone or whatever device you have that charges via USB. Has a solar plate on it so it can charge to a degree that way. Could never keep up with the draw from a device that was on though.
We got those also at work. Have not tried it yet.
 
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