The world seems to be waking up to the threat of climate change and corporations are sparing no effort to relieve the planet of CO2 emissions.
Hyundai and Kia are among these companies. They are working to equip their ‘selected’ cars with solar panels to be featured on their roofs or hoods.
These solar-panel roofs will help charge the batteries of electric vehicles, hybrids, and can also be handy for regular internal combustion vehicles.
For the first-generation solar roofs, you will have to bear with the cars featuring conventional roofs.
However, in the second-generation, you would not have to worry about the solar panels blocking your view of the sky above, as the cars (inclusive of combustion-only vehicles) will be sporting a semi-transparent roof.
There is also going to be a third wave in the pilot phase where the solar panel will provide power from the roof and the hood simultaneously.
Eco-Friendly But Impractical
There is a catch that the solar panels covering a car’s roof cannot provide enough power in short periods of time. It may not be an issue in long drives and weather conditions though.
The first-gen solar-panel roof will be able to charge 30 to 60 percent of a hybrid car’s battery per day, given the weather and the overall environment is favorable. Also, it can reduce the charging times and you might not be able to use petrol only on days when you cannot plug in.
Nevertheless, the first-gen solar technology will make an entry ‘after 2019’. The technology, if successful, can be a harbinger of a new trend in the auto-manufacturing industry, given that it is eco-friendly and cost-effective.
With these ifs and buts, the first-gen solar panel cars will determine wide-scale implementation of this technology.