Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Solar Powered Jacket

A Solar powered jacket
  [vote for,

Have you ever been bicycling and wished you had just a bit more power?

Idea: The pedals could be hooked up to a generator, and then a pluggable battery would be installed in the middle of the cycle. It could be used to actually power the device quietly. Recharging the battery could be handled on the bicycle by pedalling, a solar-cell containing jacket, and by just plugging it in to main. Done cycling? Lock the jacket into the bicycle and leave them out in the sun to recharge.

Problems: This bicycle might be faster than a regular bicycle, and would technically be a moped - a motor vehicle kids could not use without a license.


grinch, Jun 07 2005


       The amount of power delivered by the jacket is going to be miniscule compared to what your legs are delivering. (Else you'd see plants and trees running down the highway.)
DrCurry, Jun 07 2005

       Curry, I think that you can recharge a bike battery with a square meter of solar power over time. Just leave it out in the sun. It's unlikely that you wouldn't have to pedal, but you could power electric radio/lights/ whatever. And when the battery is charged, it works like an electric bike.
grinch, Jul 13 2005

       //Cost of a 200W (peak capacity) panel: about $2,000. Cost of driving a car instead for 10 miles a week (bike-able distance trips only): $182 per year.//
Seeing an idiot on a bike with a solar panel on his head: Priceless
Minimal, Jul 14 2005

       Nice calculations, fqhwgads, but this isn't complete. A fully charged battery could deliver whatever power was in it. Although your calculations are valid for an empty battery, the effect of having a full battery is only limmitted by the power that can be stored in the batter. That in turn is limmitted by the weight and size of the battery.   

       A 3.5 lb battery from here: http://salestores1.com/ hicabunlaba1.html Stores ~ 140 watt hours. Thus, a fully charged battery can deliver an EXTRA 140 watts (another kick-up) for a whole hour in addition to the solar power boost. You would get a 15 mph run time without peddling for a whole hour, and could cruise at 20 mph with moderate pedalling.
grinch, Aug 03 2005

       //Else you'd see plants and trees running down the highway//   

       Is that why something along the lines of 'Day of the Triffids' will never happen?
froglet, Aug 03 2005


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