Many of the leading car manufacturers are now looking towards solar and releasing models with solar cells on the roofs that allow charging on the go. Unfortunately, these do not come cheap, and are still out of reach for many of us, who secretly wish there was a way to swap the roof of our ‘Average Jo’s car’ with a solar panel. Well, this is apparently now almost possible.
So, here is the tutorial. OK, more like, here is the tutorial that you need to follow in a few years from now, due to currently not-yet-available items on the list, but no worries. It is easy to remember, and as soon as the key technology hits the market, you can start using it right away. You just need to buy the spray called sprayLD, and apply it onto your car roof (or any other flexible surface, in fact).
SprayLD has a potential to become a truly revolutionary technology. It is developed by a post doctoral student from University of Tronto, Illan Kramer, and it uses colloidal quantum dots (CQDs), which make up a very thin film for coating of surfaces turning them into solar power generators.
Of course, the spray does not stand alone, it comes with a small machine that can make the application process a lot easier. And before you start thinking that this whole procedure will turn out to be a lot more expensive than an already equipped with a solar roof vehicle, I will stop you there. The machine is super simple, and made of very cheap components. The nozzle is recycled from old steel mills, while the brushes are the standard ones available in any art store. Here is a demo video.
The last thing left to mention here is the power generation capacity. Depending on the area of the surface you decide to coat with the new spray, the produced energy will vary, but an average car roof sprayed with the coating can generate sufficient power to for three 100-watt bulbs, or twenty four compact fluorescent bulbs.
The technology is currently still under development, but it is highly likely that it is brought to a commercial scale production very soon. But while you wait for it, you might want to take a look here to see what you need to consider when you opt for a solar car, or build a solar car for your kids following this tutorial.
Image (c) University of Toronto