Solar Powered Land Speed Record Vehicle Design 901531
A solar powered land speed record car design is presented. The design involves optimization of layout, construction and component selection. The optimization study focuses primarily on three interdependenent optimizations: body shape, solar array, and driver position. Other issues considered include optimization of motor, drivetrain, electronics, and weight as well as the layout of all the car's components.
By examining theoretical models of solar radiation, actual test data, the various components of solar radiation such as direct, diffuse and reflected light, as well as the properties of the solar cell, a relationship between array topology and power output is found and relevant problems cited. This information is combined with aerodynamic theory and test data to determine the optimal body shape and solar panel topology while taking into account safety and driver position. A similar investigation is carried out for the electrical system in order to determine the appropriate operating voltage of the solar cells and motor.