Behold the NV8 (Nanyang Technological University Venture 8)! This is a 3D-printed solar-powered car capable of hitting ~60 km/h (37 mph).
The solar car — which was made by two teams of 16 students each at the university in Singapore — is composed of a carbon fiber single shell chassis + 150 printed parts which are attached in various ways to the chassis. Altogether the vehicle weighs only 120 kilograms (256 lbs), and measures 3.2 x 1.3 x 1.3 m (10.5 x 4.3 x 4.3 ft).
According to those involved, the car is built strongly enough to support the weight of its cargo with no issues — supposedly owing, at least in part, to “an array of honeycomb shapes on the car’s inside surface” meant to stiffen the structure. The vehicle also makes use of a “unique joint design to hold the various parts together.”
The silicon solar cells used to power the vehicle were actually “hand-built” by students as well — and shaped to conform to the vehicle’s overall design, and wired up in series and in parallel to form a module.
Speaking about the solar cells, a media representative at NTU, Lester Kok stated: “For their small area, they will provide from about 50 to 100 watts (peak) of power depending on sunshine levels. This will partially power the car.”
“Using the latest engineering techniques learnt from their studies in NTU, the students have developed innovations such as silicon solar cells that can be contoured to follow the car’s shape. This allows for maximum harvesting of the solar energy and a tilting mechanism in NV9 that can ‘lean’ in the direction of the turn to avoid losing speed,” stated one of the project’s mentors, Associate Professor Ng Heong Wah
The NV8 is set to race in the Urban Concept category at this year’s Shell Eco-marathon Asia — taking place in Manila from February 26 through March 1.
h/t Green Optimistic
Images by NTU