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TMCNet:  Students make single-seater, solar-powered vehicle [DNA : Daily News & Analysis (India)]

[March 29, 2014]

Students make single-seater, solar-powered vehicle [DNA : Daily News & Analysis (India)]

(DNA : Daily News & Analysis (India) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Thane: A group of 20-year-old students from Thane and Kalyan, along with their classmates at Don Bosco Institute of Technology, Kurla, have come up with a solar power-based single-seater vehicle. It has a speed of around 40 km/h and on a single charge it covers a distance of about 50km. Proud of their project, the college held a grand inauguration on March 19.


Residents of Thane, Shruti Loknathan, Vishnu Narayanan and Thomas Chacko, along with Joanna Joy from Kalyan and their classmates, and team leaders, Thomas Tom, Alan D'souza and Lijo Joykutty, have made this vehicle with the help of Tefkab Engineers. Based on the initial letter of their name, they have named the project 'Trike'.

"Catia, a software which was essential for designing the vehicle, was well known to Thomas Tom, our team leader. We all put our heads together for around seven months and came up with the final design of the vehicle. Tefkab Engineers helped us with its fabrication and finally we launched it in our college to a grand inauguration," said Shruthi Loknathan, one of the team members.

These students are in their third year, mechanical engineering and managed to make Trike in a modest budget. "As I had done a course to learn the software Catia, we saved a lot of money while designing itself. Also, we wanted to make an energy-efficient vehicle, which would be useful for daily commute. Hence, we came up with this single-seater vehicle, with two front wheels and one rear wheel to which the motor is attached," said Thomas Tom, a member of the team.

The 500W motor can be charged either from solar energy or by connecting to an external power supply and can carry a load up to 300kg. The highlight of this vehicle is that it charges itself automatically from the sun's energy during the day and thus avoiding the need of constant refuelling.

"To maintain its speed, its essential for the vehicle to charge itself adequately. We have designed the seat in such a manner that one can sit comfortably on it. It is also handicap-friendly and extremely safe and convenient for people of all age groups," said Vishnu Narayanan, one of the team members.

Another team member, Joanna Joy said, "Even if you run out of battery, there is an option of pedalling back home as it is lightweight. Hence, it is a feasible vehicle to save money on fuels. It has a 24V solar panel, with a speed of 40 km/h and the battery takes around six hours to charge completely. Around 1.5 to 2 hours is its running time with a mileage of approximately 50km." Credit:Ankita G Menon (c) 2014 @ 2014 DILIGENT MEDIA CORPORATION LTD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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