TWIKE with solar energy

How large is a solar system that generates energy for 15,000 km of annual mileage with the TWIKE 5? This is the question of those interested in TWIKE who want to generate their mobility not only through active sports, but also with clean traction current.n Geneva. Save the date!

The short answer is: just 6 sqm.

Somewhat longer: Due to the relatively low consumption of the TWIKE 5 of about 8 kWh/100 km, an annual range of 15,000 km only requires an energy of about 1,200 kWh. This can already be generated today with a photovoltaic system of about 6 sqm (1 kWp) with good and shadow-free alignment in the same period.

Does it not make sense to integrate a corresponding photovoltaic surface into the vehicle skin?

Here the short answer is not sufficient. It would be yes.

Yes, because a certain surface of the vehicle is well aligned in the daily average. And especially with low daily driving performance, this surface can help to reduce the amount of energy drawn from a socket. During this period, however, the vehicle should be exposed to the sun as unshaded as possible. Many years of experience have shown that on such sunny days the shady car park is the better choice to keep the interior cool and also to protect the battery from unnecessary heat input. The cooling power to be applied afterwards otherwise quickly destroys the energy yield. If there is no cool shade, the integrated solar surface can help to cool the interior or even charge the battery in cool weather conditions. However, since the integration of the solar surface currently only reduces but does not avoid the external energy supply in the best case (sunny day, unshaded parking lot, cool weather), it is advisable to first focus on the external energy source (photovoltaics, wind power, hydropower). The use of solar carports, which can be optimally aligned to the sun and provide shade for the parked vehicle, seems ideal to us. They help to separate clean rainwater from road water and feed the solar yield into the grid when not in use by the vehicle parked underneath.

Due to the omission of solar surfaces on the vehicle, the TWIKE 5 can be designed cheaper but also lighter and thus contribute to a reduced energy consumption. Victim parts (replacement parts in the event of accidents) can be made cheaper without solar panels and thus contribute to keeping insurance premiums low. However, these are only current framework conditions. In future, it will continue to be necessary to weigh up the pros and cons of solar surfaces on the vehicle. Therefore we already provide cutouts for the retrofitting of a photovoltaic in the vehicle surface ;-) 

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