Step into the future: solar energy for Dakar rally trucks


During automobile racing across the deserts and other places where there is no possibility to get electricity, Dakar rally trucks usually waste quite some time simply waiting for a regular accumulator devices to get charged in order to begin using electricity for repairing purposes. In addition to that, the charging process, which lasts about an hour, is rather loud and unpleasant to hear due to noise induced by generators, their weight and size.

Well-known racer Antanas Juknevičius decided to try to overcome these problems by using renewable energy and contacted SoliTek which helped to implement his idea – solar modules were mounted on the top of the truck.

SoliTek used its “Bifacial” technology frameless glass-glass modules which can produce 25% more output than usual ones due to the panel being able to absorb the light reflecting from the roof’s surface. White and glossy top of the truck was perfect for bifacial modules to work more effectively – solar modules produce electricity even during the cloudy days. 

Main advantages of solar modules and electricity storage system instead of regular accumulators are that being mounted on the top of the roof they absorb light and convert it into the electricity during the time of driving, therefore lithium-ion accumulators are already charged by the time to repair the truck and use the tools which need electricity has come. Also using solar modules help to achieve one more goal – avoid loud and unpleasant noise.

The results are overwhelming: In comparison to last year, when electrical energy produced by solar modules and stored in lithium-ion accumulator was enough for lighting and charging Dakar rally tools, this year it is estimated that there should be enough for everything including-oxygen compressors, welding devices, and angle grinder.

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