The cost of fuel with no signs of plummeting any sooner and its adverse effects on health and environment has gradually turned many into alternative and greener sources of energy for their cars. And isnât it such a relief that more and more cars that are built today are taking the high road of being environmentally conscious by going green. One reason for this world-wide conversion to green technology are events like the Shell Eco Marathon which focuses on building such green and energy efficient cars by young people.
Letâs have a look at five of these eco-friendly student built cars that may be the germ of future automotive technology:
1. SolarWorld No.1
This solar car which secured a fourth place at the World Solar Challenge in Australia was developed by a young team of 50 students and professors from the University of Applied Sciences Bochum for over a period of two years. It performs at an avg. speed of around 73km/h and a top speed of 120 km/h. Powered by an electric motor which can deliver 94 percent efficiency in drawing energy from 6m2 solar cells embedded in the body, this one’s a shining example of a feasible and practical energy alternative.
2. Delasalle school student build electric car
This cool translucent looking electric car was developed by a team of brilliant students from DeLaSalle School in Kansas City with some help from the Bridgestone America engineers. This vehicle promises zero emission. The highlight of this wonder vehicle is the electric propulsion system developed by the student team which is now being petitioned by them in the Guinness world records to consider their EV as a potential new world record.
3. The sunswift ivy solar powered car
The University of South Wales students designed this super cool solar powered machine which has managed to find a spot at the Guinness World Records being the world’s fastest solar-powered vehicle with a top speed of 88.738 kph. This one’s a three-wheeled vehicle with a cool monocoque carbon fiber body and features an 1800W electric motor powered by a solar array producing 1200W.
4. Forge IV
Although hydrogen fuel cells have not become prominent in the realm of alternative green energy but they are slowly gaining momentum with the impending energy crisis. The students of the Delft University of Technology have developed world’s first student-built hydrogen powered racing car.
The car runs with a top speed of 120kph and can accelerate just as fast as a Porsche. Although the ground for commercial viability of hydrogen fuel cells is still to be tested the biggest hurdle being the unavailability of hydrogen refueling centers.
5. Aston university hydro pod
This one is a very unique combination of eco-friendly technologies, mainly because the suspension parts are made of bamboo which gives strength and lightness to the vehicle and it uses hydrogen as fuel.
Weighing only 150 kg with the chassis of the car made of plywood and the wheels from a 125-cc motorcycle, this one reeks of ingenious engineering. A hydrogen fuel cell powers an electric motor that together fuels the vehicle.