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Thread: solar rc car


  1. #1

    Lightbulb solar rc car

    Hey guys,

    I'm an engineer student from belgium and we have an assignment to create a solarpanel powerd car.
    We have to test the car by accumulating as much kinetic energie as possible in 10 meters flat (in 20 seconds max).


    So
    - is it better to use a AUTOMATIC gear transmission system(and where can i find such a thing that is small enough) or just 1 fixed gearset?
    - is it better to have a heavy car and go a bit slower, then having a light weighted car and go a bit faster?
    -what is the best in this situation, front wheel driving of rear wheel driving.
    -is it possible to store some energie the first 10 seconds and then release it in the 10 last second while the motor gives an extra boost? is their a system for this? anny ideas?
    -...
    any response, idea or comment is welcome.

    a few details:
    the dimensions of the solar panel are 18 cm broad and 36 cm high.
    the dimensions of the car are 35cm X 60cm X undefined
    the motor use (don't have thedetails and calculation results jet) wil run at 1600 rpm
    the car has to drive in a straight line between two walls that are places 35cm from each other
    we have to make or buy everything, pick wheels, build the base, gears,...

    kind regards,

    L.

  2. #2
    Redback's Avatar
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    You're the would be engineer, go figure it out!! But here are a few thoughts:

    1. The project is about collecting (and using) energy.
    2. You collect energy from your solar panel. So the longer you run (up to the 20 seconds) the more energy you will collect
    3. Next challenge is to efficiently convert electrical energy into mechanical (kinetic) energy.
    4. Motor speed will be dependant on the voltage you feed it
    5. Storage comes at a price so unless youhave tons of spare energy best to avoid
    6. Faster your vehicle goes the more air resistance (and energy loss)
    7. Unless traction is an issue front or rear wheel drive should not be a factor
    8. Gears, clutches etc use energy so direct drive is preferable
    9. Dont forget rotational kinetic energy in your wheels

    I suspect that there are going to be a lot of trade offs required to get the best outcome, this is probably the basis of the exercise

    Good luck

    Terry
    Last edited by Redback; 02-25-2014 at 06:51 PM.

  3. #3
    Rob2160's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by W4rM0nger View Post
    Hey guys,

    I'm an engineer student from belgium and we have an assignment to create a solarpanel powerd car.
    We have to test the car by accumulating as much kinetic energie as possible in 10 meters flat (in 20 seconds max).


    So
    - is it better to use a AUTOMATIC gear transmission system(and where can i find such a thing that is small enough) or just 1 fixed gearset?
    - is it better to have a heavy car and go a bit slower, then having a light weighted car and go a bit faster?
    -what is the best in this situation, front wheel driving of rear wheel driving.
    -is it possible to store some energie the first 10 seconds and then release it in the 10 last second while the motor gives an extra boost? is their a system for this? anny ideas?
    -...
    any response, idea or comment is welcome.

    a few details:
    the dimensions of the solar panel are 18 cm broad and 36 cm high.
    the dimensions of the car are 35cm X 60cm X undefined
    the motor use (don't have thedetails and calculation results jet) wil run at 1600 rpm
    the car has to drive in a straight line between two walls that are places 35cm from each other
    we have to make or buy everything, pick wheels, build the base, gears,...

    kind regards,

    L.
    What is your formula for Kinetic energy? That will answer your second question.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Double the weight or double the speed? which will give you best KE?

    KE increases as the square of speed, so light and fast is better.

    Rear drive always gives you better traction when accelerating as weight shifts to the wheels, not away from them.

    Is it a single solar panel? Volts? Watts? this will determine your range of motors to use, also what time of day will you run the test? angle of the sun, best angle to mount the solar panels. Lots of variables.
    Last edited by Rob2160; 02-26-2014 at 10:33 AM.
    My biggest fear is when I die my wife will sell my planes for what I told her they cost.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by W4rM0nger View Post
    Hey guys,

    I'm an engineer student from belgium and we have an assignment to create a solarpanel manufactured by solar panels manufacturer powerd car.
    We have to test the car by accumulating as much kinetic energie as possible in 10 meters flat (in 20 seconds max).


    So
    - is it better to use a AUTOMATIC gear transmission system(and where can i find such a thing that is small enough) or just 1 fixed gearset?
    - is it better to have a heavy car and go a bit slower, then having a light weighted car and go a bit faster?
    -what is the best in this situation, front wheel driving of rear wheel driving.
    -is it possible to store some energie the first 10 seconds and then release it in the 10 last second while the motor gives an extra boost? is their a system for this? anny ideas?
    -...
    any response, idea or comment is welcome.

    a few details:
    the dimensions of the solar panel are 18 cm broad and 36 cm high.
    the dimensions of the car are 35cm X 60cm X undefined
    the motor use (don't have thedetails and calculation results jet) wil run at 1600 rpm
    the car has to drive in a straight line between two walls that are places 35cm from each other
    we have to make or buy everything, pick wheels, build the base, gears,...

    kind regards,


    L.
    Hello friend were you able to complete the project? Can you share some more details? It sounds very impressive to me..
    Last edited by PrestonSteves; 09-25-2014 at 02:04 AM.


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