Student of Mechanical Engineering from University of Engineering & Technology, Pakistan has successfully built a solar powered vehicle – named Solaron.
This eco-friendly vehicle incorporates a battery that is charged by solar panels thereby producing energy without any exhaust. Battery drives a DC motor that is used to power the vehicle.
Vehicle is based on reverse trike configuration i.e. two front wheels and one rear wheel which is powered by motor whereas steering is done with the help of front wheels. (See video below for demonstration)
Farrukh Khan, the guy who made this vehicle, says that most of the parts used in this vehicle are from old bicycle, including tires and shock absorbers whereas framework is custom built, made from aluminum to make it weight effective.
130 pound (approximately 60Kg) vehicle is 7 ft. long and 3.5 ft. wide with a height of 4.5ft. Equipped with 40 watt photovoltaic canopy, that charges onboard 12v/80Ah dry cell battery and provides a shade for rider as well.
Vehicle has a top speed of 30 km per hour on smooth road. Note that this is a prototype which can further be enhanced to work on larger scale.
As per designer, the total cost of the project is approximately 47,000 rupees including all the components, such as solar panel, battery and motor. (Details available at designer’s page)
It merits mentioning here that current head of Mechanical Engineering Department, Prof. Dr. Hameed Ullah Mughal is actively working on the implementation of solar energy in Pakistan and under his supervision, students have also developed other means of energy production using sun rays, one such project is Solar Concentrator.