Solar Powered Motorcycle
A solar vehicle is one of the most eco-friendly innovations in the world. With fossil fuels and oil being considered as non-renewable resources, sourcing energy from a non-depleting source can really drive sustainability.
These sun-powered vehicles run on solar energy but can be supplemented by a battery to allow it to run even on the absence of sunlight. The technologies, used to produce these solar wonders, are combining aerospace, bicycle, alternative, and automotive sciences.
It’s good news that car enthusiasts are not the only ones who will get to enjoy this technology. Motorcycle riders also get to enjoy this solar gift through solar motorcycle units. However, do these vehicles actually exist? If so, how much do they cost?
Where can they be bought and how efficient can they be? Will the investment for moving into this transportation alternative provide reasonable savings? This article will answer these questions to guide you in case you’d like to switch to this eco-loving alternative.
What are Solar Powered Motorcycles?
What is a solar powered motorcycle and does it exist? Like a solar car, a motorcycle of this type also combines electric and solar energy to supply power to the vehicle. Therefore, the most plausible solar motorcycles will also be electric. The way it works for solar vehicles is that they have a built-in solar array that has photovoltaic cells.
These cells convert sunlight to the energy needed to power up the battery of the vehicle. The powering up happens when photons hit the photovoltaic cells and excite the electrons to allow them to flow through and produce an electric current.
To answer the question as to whether it exists, it definitely does. Some solar motorcycle brands are already sold in some countries. For example, the Sweden-made Cake Kalk is sold exclusively in Sweden for $14,000. It can run for 15 kilowatts per Newton meter at a top speed of 80 kilometers per hour.
There are also battery-powered solar bikes. Solar-electric bikes capture the sun’s photons thanks to the solar panels in their wheels. Through induction, the panels send power to the battery, charging it fully within 4-6 hours on a sunny day. An example of such a bicycle is the Dutch Solar Cycle, which is said to be effective in cutting down more carbon emissions.
Fastest Solar Motorcycle
At this point, we already know that a motorcycle working on solar energy does exist. However, how fast can it go? Most motorcycle riders crave for speed. Will a solar-powered version reduce acceleration and distance? You’ll be surprised because the fastest electric-solar motorcycle is considered the fastest in the world in 2013 with its highest speed at 218 miles per hour!
This ecofriendly and overly fast vehicle is called the Lightning Superbike 218 made by a company called Lightning. This awesome vehicle can cover an average distance of 100 miles. It has a 200 horsepower and 10,500 rpm. This wonder can be charged in 30 minutes on a DC fast charger and in 120 minutes on a level 2 charger. Indeed, speed doesn’t have to burn too much fossil fuels. The fastest solar powered motorcycle just proved that.
Can You Charge Motorcycle with a Solar Panel?
You just bought an electric motorcycle, and you are not planning to buy a solar-powered one anytime soon. Can you still use the sun’s power to charge your vehicle’s battery? You definitely can. You don’t need to have a solar cycle to take advantage of the sun’s benefits.
Solar chargers have different capacities. Small ones are around 1.5 kilowatts, and with such capacity, they have to be positioned perfectly to work at their best. There are also larger ones with 4-6 watts of capacity. They have better quality than the small ones, but weather resistance can still be an issue if powering up vehicles like a motorcycle working on solar energy.
The ideal power for motorcycle charging is about 10-12 watts. These, however, require a charge controller to prevent your vehicle’s battery from overcharging.
Several brands of solar chargers already exist for your vehicle. For example, POWOXI’s 3.3-watt solar charger can power up your ride with its 15 by 8.5-inches solar panel made of amorphous silicon solar cells. Since they’re waterproof, you also don’t have to worry about damaging them so easily.
They’re also portable with only 2.2 pounds and less than an inch thick. With prices ranging from $29-$35, you’ve got a solar alternative to give power to your vehicle’s battery. Since it’s relatively low-powered, it doesn’t require a controller.
If you prefer more stability and better charging capability, OptiMate’s 10 or 20-watt solar charger can be more suited for you. At a little more than $100, you can use it for charging not just your electric motorcycle or bikes but also your car or mini-truck. It’s got an incorporated controller, so you can leave it on without fear of toasting your vehicle’s battery.
Solar technology is growing more and more, and it is a good thing for the planet and its inhabitants. With this advanced, yet environmental-loving alternative, individuals can save on fuel, time, and energy. People can also breathe cleaner air and improve their overall health.
With the new developments in this field, riders who aim for speed and power will not be disappointed as these sun-powered vehicles can achieve both while reducing one’s carbon footprint. With more and more companies coming up with better ideas on how these transportation modes can be improved to cover longer ranges, the future is indeed exciting.
If you have an electric bike and would like to get better speed, you can definitely get your own electric motorcycle from Lightning (among other brands). If you have a solar charger at home, you won’t even have to worry about keeping your battery at an optimum level.
Regardless of whether you opt for a solar powered motorcycle, car, or bicycle, you are making the right choice for yourself and the future generation by helping improve the environment through solar-driven alternatives.