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There are multiple threads dating back years on solar panels, SOTS, solar power chargers, etc. I am just wondering if there have been any recent developments, mods or aftermarket add-ons that would allow the Volt to soak up some of that sun power. It seems like everyone who checks out my car wants to know why the roof is black, and where is the solar?
 

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There are multiple threads dating back years on solar panels, SOTS, solar power chargers, etc. I am just wondering if there have been any recent developments, mods or aftermarket add-ons that would allow the Volt to soak up some of that sun power. It seems like everyone who checks out my car wants to know why the roof is black, and where is the solar?
Black similar to the concept car and the black roof is a new popular style. WOT or someone showed several cars (not all from GM I don't think) with similar black roofs.

Solar on a car at this stage of it's technology would be for PR only. Not a good way to spend money it does not seem (for GM or the customer purchasing).

On the leaf it is a trickle charger for the 12v battery. Like I said PR.

http://www.nissanusa.com/leaf-electric-car/faq/view/14#/leaf-electric-car/faq/view/14
Q: Has anyone considered solar panels on the vehicle for recharging the battery?
A: The Nissan LEAF will have an available small solar panel on the rear spoiler to help charge the 12V accessory battery.
 

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Here is a comment I just made in a later thread on this subject:

At the present time, most PV research is aimed at lowering the cost, never mind the efficiency; but there is a minority effort to maximize efficiency at any cost. The paradigm here is something like the Mars Exploration Rovers, which are completely powered by multi-junction PV cells twice as far away from the Sun. We're obviously talking about a MY considerably later than 2013 before this kind of cell appears on an electric car. Even at this, an EREV40 would probably not fully recharge after a day in the sun. The real deal will be large stationary arrays, made using the cheaper cells, that you can plug into. Plugging in at a workplace, with arrays covering it's large roof area, would amount to the same thing (and at peak demand, this would negate the additional power load). Now, how do we make this happen?
 

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The solar roofed Prius is literally only capable of powering a small ventilation fan.
 

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Simple calculations would show the number of solar panels needed to charge the drive battery would require a trailer to carry it :)
 

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I don't know, the new 30% efficient flex able solar panels should provide a minimum of 300 watts on the volt and only cost about a $1.50 a watt

You don't need the solar to "drive" the car, only to charge it while it sits and provide aux power for usefull things, well like ventilation.

300ish watts will give you about 15 miles a day range in the right part of the country if you aren't driving nascar like
 

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Watts times hours to get your 15 mile number, so adding in inverter losses,wiring losses, how to connect to the main battery that doesn't piss the system off then ventilation is about the best you can do. Which as others have posted is what on car panels are used for. I have used modular stand alone solar charging stations they are very well designed and cool looking.
 

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I don't know, the new 30% efficient flex able solar panels should provide a minimum of 300 watts on the volt and only cost about a $1.50 a watt

You don't need the solar to "drive" the car, only to charge it while it sits and provide aux power for usefull things, well like ventilation.

300ish watts will give you about 15 miles a day range in the right part of the country if you aren't driving nascar like
Nope. 300 watts of panel will lose about 30% even in Arizona due to the angle that the roof isn't. So you're already at 200 watts effective output. Charger and voltage conversions will lose another 25-30%, so let's be generous and say 150 watts effective. Now, we're going to deal with the fact that you're only going to have the sun high enough in the sky to be useful for 6-8 hours a day, since you've got no pitch angle to play with, and you're down to maybe 1.2 kWh if you're lucky. Power in Arizona cost on average $0.11 per kWh, so those panels could be worth up to $0.15 per day of power. Account for a few cloudy days, a few days in a parking ramp under cover, and you're looking at a break-even time of just about 10 years. Assuming of course, that installation and supporting stuff like the solar controller and the wiring are free or included in your $450 estimate. Otherwise it's probably going to cost more like $1200 ($50 for wiring, $150 for the controller to get appropriate DC out of, $500 for installation from someone that's already figured out how to do it) and it'll pay for itself right after the kid you conceive tonight graduates from college.
 

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Nope. 300 watts of panel will lose about 30% even in Arizona due to the angle that the roof isn't. So you're already at 200 watts effective output. Charger and voltage conversions will lose another 25-30%, so let's be generous and say 150 watts effective.
The main selling point of the new more efficient flexible panels is that they loose much less output when installed incorrectly (wrong angle, partial shading) or during cloudy days. How much more efficient, I have no idea, but they are mainly sold for vehicle applications and are actually rare in the market because of this,
they can be used as "improved roofing" because they are peel and stick on also very light weight but that use is actually rare due to their cost and the light weight and durability makes them desirable for moving applications.

(framed panels on clearance are under $0.60 a watt, can't beat that for houses)

Next although I question the losses you give, lets go with them, is it 10 years in Arizona?
Probably not, because the panel is hopefully offsetting gasoline use in the volt, and if things ever snap back to reality where fuel is around $3 a gallon or more you will find that payback is much less even given your constraints.
 
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