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Hi Mike,

Remember you laid out those solar-cells under the back window of the Insight to imagine what a PV-boosted hybrid might look like?

Someone's gone and done it for real!

http://www.greenhybrid.com/discuss/gen-1-prius-gets-a-solar-boost.3191.html

8)

This is the website of the guy that's trying it:

http://www.lapprenewables.com/hybrid project.html

He claims a 10% reduction in gas usage from only 270 watts of cells and a 12V battery storage system. I reckon 1,000 watts should be possible on a car that size with Sunpower A300 cells.

Interesting point is being able to trickle charge 2 Amps from the 12V buffer into the main traction battery without bothering the computer!
 

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That is hillarious! He lives less than an hour from me. I met him once at a remewable enegy fair. I'll have to go and check this out. Crazy Canadians, eh?

Not too many folk are going to want a roof rack looking like that. :wink:
 

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Interesting, but I have to wonder about a couple of things. First, why the heck he posted a picture of it parked under a shade tree :)

Second is the whole idea of carrying around those (expensive!) solar cells. Adds weight & drag, they're exposed to damage or being ripped off, and the car's seldom going to be in an optimum orientation. Seems like a better use would be to keep the panel at home, mounted on a concentrating collector, and use it to charge the car or replace some household consumption.
 
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clett said:
Interesting point is being able to trickle charge 2 Amps from the 12V buffer into the main traction battery without bothering the computer!
Yeah, I would be good to know if you could do the same/similar to the Insight battery. I would think the car would be ok during operation... but if anything like solar panels, etc. changed the amount battery charge during downtime... the computer would get confused by the two different readings and do a Recal.

At least that's how I've interpretted previous information about Recal's.
 

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It looks like he is using a 12 volt battery and up converting it to run the electric drive directly without going through the hybrid batteries. :D
 
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