Solar panels

GPH

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Since there has been suggestions about solar panels on the tonneau cover and maybe other places, how about a front window sunscreen that could be deployed from inside truck (roll up or down like the tonneau cover) that is also covered in solar panels. Saw that Elon Musk was thinking of more places to achieve solar panels so wondered if this would make sense.
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Cody the cat

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Since there has been suggestions about solar panels on the tonneau cover and maybe other places, how about a front window sunscreen that could be deployed from inside truck (roll up or down like the tonneau cover) that is also covered in solar panels. Saw that Elon Musk was thinking of more places to achieve solar panels so wondered if this would make sense.
Great idea and would work in the same way the accordion cardboard windshield sunshades keeping the car cooler and preventing dashboard cracks.
You’re idea of the roller shade is perfect for the flat, uniform windshield. This also would be a huge plus in the camping mode providing privacy.
Great idea man!!!
 

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Do some reading on clear solar panels. they exist but are still to early in development to be used. I think that is the way forward with EVs. all windows are solar panels and they are perfectly clear.

But as that is a ways off i think the front roll down window cover is a fantastic idea
 

Devix

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My opinion is that solar doesn’t work for EVs.
1m2 of solar can provide 200W. In the best case, in 10 hours of sun, you will have 2kW. Assuming that you can use 2m2 on a vehicle, it’s 4kW. For the Cybertruck it means roughly 16km...
maybe good for camping, but not for moving. It depends on the cost.
 

ajdelange

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They do work. It's just that what they do isn't very impressive. The recently revealed Fisker offers a solar array on the roof. They estimate that it will garner 1000 miles worth of energy in a year if you live in the California desert (where the sun shines every day), Something the size of a windscreen might pick up enough to cover several hours of phantom drain but don't count on it to charge you up enough to get you back home if you run out of juice.
 

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Something the size of a windscreen might pick up enough to cover several hours of phantom drain
Pretty much what I have been thinking. maybe in the 2 years to the time that the truck will be released there will be some major advancements in solar tech
 

ajdelange

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We might expect small improvement in that time span but nothing dramatic. Modern cells run in the 20 - 25% efficiency range and the single junction limit is about 34%. To get above that requires multiple layers and costs zoom. We don't expect the solar constant to change by much in 2 years (and hope fervently that it won't).
 

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My opinion is that solar doesn’t work for EVs.
1m2 of solar can provide 200W. In the best case, in 10 hours of sun, you will have 2kW. Assuming that you can use 2m2 on a vehicle, it’s 4kW. For the Cybertruck it means roughly 16km...
maybe good for camping, but not for moving. It depends on the cost.
I hope it can work, I built my own VW Bus EV conversion a couple years ago. I am just adding 2 270 watt panels to my roof. I am planning to run them through some boost transformers and direct charging my traction batteries at 120 volts. I figure I will get 5-6 free miles a day but I drive mostly on weekends so 30 miles per Saturday. My panels tilt so if I work pretty hard on a long summer day I could get 11 miles of free power. This is really a hobby for me....not economics. But with new cell tech including paints and windows, I don't see why future EVs could not get 20 miles per day and stay cool to boot.
 

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If Tesla would do a Tesla factory OPTION, switching glass roof for durable high performance solar panel in hole where glass roof was, integrated & flush-mounted with exoskeleton so no extra drag.

The space might be large enough to get 850W to 950W and hour.

If Tesla can figure out how to do solar on the tonneau cover that might be another 850W

The total would be level-1 charging rate. On sunny summer day charge 100kwh pack up to 30 miles a day.

This would be another gaming changer. Real self-charging.
More than battery range of new Jeep X4e PHEV ( 25 mi ).
Stomp all over the fake self-charging Toyota PHEV.
 

HaulingAss

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If Tesla would do a Tesla factory OPTION, switching glass roof for durable high performance solar panel in hole where glass roof was, integrated & flush-mounted with exoskeleton so no extra drag.

The space might be large enough to get 850W to 950W and hour.

If Tesla can figure out how to do solar on the tonneau cover that might be another 850W

The total would be level-1 charging rate. On sunny summer day charge 100kwh pack up to 30 miles a day.

This would be another gaming changer. Real self-charging.
More than battery range of new Jeep X4e PHEV ( 25 mi ).
Stomp all over the fake self-charging Toyota PHEV.
Solar cells produce less than their rated power and this is even more true when the cells are in a hot environment. Having a hot cabin under the cells is not good for production. The best way to use solar cells to charge EV's is to construct solar carports to keep the cars in the shade while generating electricity with the "roof". This allows enough cell area to produce substantial charging current.
 

HaulingAss

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...Is no good for the battery pack under the cabin, either.

-Crissa
Of course that depends upon the climate. Batteries like to be warm when charging or discharging (but not hot and certainly not cold). Here in the Pacific Northwest with our typically mild climate the batteries are too cool more often than they are too hot. That means the cabin could use a bit more solar gain for optimum battery performance.

That said, I don't think the cabin temperature transfers to the battery very effectively. There is an air gap that would not exist between integrated rooftop solar and the cabin. Also, hot air inside the cabin rises.
 
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