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Stella Terra: The First Off-Road Solar-Powered Car

Students from the Netherlands are credited with this creation.

By:  |  November 29, 2023  |    560 Words
GettyImages-1258463873 solar-powered car

(Photo by Federico Gambarini/picture alliance via Getty Images)

It is 2023, and technology is taking the world by storm. It is truly amazing what technology and the human mind can accomplish. The latest breakthrough is a street-legal solar-powered car built by a team of students from the Netherlands. The group of young adults named the car Stella Terra, and they are excited to see what their invention might bring to the world of automobiles.

Stella Terra – The Tough Solar-Powered Car

So far, the closest inventors have gotten to a non-gas-powered vehicle are electric vehicles that require frequent charging. Not only is Stella Terra capable of driving up to 440 miles on a sunny day, but it also gets all its energy from the sun, which means no more charging stations or a need to plug in. The solar panels are on the top of the vehicle and are 97% efficient. Typically, solar panels can be very wasteful of energy as most utilize only about 20% of the sunlight they absorb.

The solar-powered car can reach speeds of up to 90 miles per hour and weighs only about 2,600 pounds (which is about 1/3 lighter than a traditional car). Its lightweight body and modified suspension allow the vehicle to be driven in rough, off-road terrain without getting stuck.

To test their invention, the team took the car on a 620-mile adventure across Morocco. The vehicle experienced different terrains along its route and successfully made its way through them. From dry, rough riverbeds to forests, the Stella did not waver. And it did it all through the power provided by sunlight.

“The car was actually very comfortable in the off-road conditions as it is very light and does not get stuck,” said Bob van Ginkel, one of the students leading the project.

The Team

Solar Team Eindhoven, the group responsible for this incredible project, took a year away from college courses to work solely on their dream of designing and building this fantastic solar-powered car.

As per their website, the team’s mission is as follows:

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(Photo by Federico Gambarini/picture alliance via Getty Images)

“In a single hour, the amount of energy from the sun that strikes the Earth is more than the entire world consumes in a year. Our greatest energy source, the sun, is able to provide us ultimate freedom in a sustainable manner. We believe the solution for a sustainable future lies within the vehicles themselves. By means of solar panels on your vehicle, you are independent of the charging infrastructure. It allows you to go beyond the paved road and experience ultimate freedom. By showing the unlimited possibilities using the power of the sun, we inspire both society and the current market to accelerate the transition to a sustainable future.”

Solar Team Eindhoven is not concerned about others stealing their ideas. In fact, they are thrilled to share their invention in hopes that solar-powered vehicles will become the cars of the future.

The team of 22 aspiring and brilliant students aged 20 to 25 focuses on creating a more sustainable future. They collectively feel that using the power of the sun is the most efficient and effective way to reach their goals. They have the freedom, know-how, and drive to create something that the world has never seen before and can prolong the sustainability of our Earth and its valuable resources. Good luck and well done, Solar Team Eindhoven!

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