Q&A: How much solar paneling is required to produce electrical energy to move a 250 pound body in a 250 pound cart?

Question by ted: How much solar paneling is required to produce electrical energy to move a 250 pound body in a 250 pound cart?
What is the amount of solar energy required to drive a 250 pound cart with a 250 pound person 10 miles? How many square feet of recharged paneling would be required?

Best answer:

Answer by billrussell42
Missing some information. Like:
how fast? higher speed means more power
What is the surface, the slope, the friction? they all can increase the power required.

A fractional HP motor would be more than enough if slow speed, smooth surface, flat ground is ok. 1/4 HP is 190 watts, which is a 19 square ft., actually quite large for a auto.

With some speed, hilly terrain, etc, you are up to 50 Hp, 40kW or 4000 square ft, an impossible number.

Your best bet is to see how much area you have and work within that limitation. Some arrays are more efficient than others, some motors and gear ratios are better than others.

what is “recharged paneling” ?

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One Response to “Q&A: How much solar paneling is required to produce electrical energy to move a 250 pound body in a 250 pound cart?”

  1. If you are willing to go slowly enough, all you need from the solar panel is enough to overcome static friction to get the cart started.

    I do know that a cyclist cruising along at a moderate speed (say, 10 miles an hour) is expending about 1/10 horsepower. That’s 80 watts. So on flat ground, a 100-watt panel push them over the 10 miles in an hour. Such a panel, if square, would be 2 to 2.5 feet on a side, if made with typical contemporary materials. If the terrain is more than gently rolling hills, more power would be needed.

    Perhaps you could scale that answer to your situation.

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