In terms of output and innovation, China are massive, if not the major players in the world renewables game.
Up to now, though, they might be said to have lagged behind others in the development of low-carbon vehicles – even though for the last few years they’ve been making noises about catching up and ultimately outdoing the rest in that department too.
But with all the solar panels coming out of the nation – it’s no surprise that the idea of a solar-powered car has piqued interest.
Innovation is not just about producing the shiniest, most cutting-edge technology – it could also be, for example, about making something that smashes affordability barriers.
That certainly rings true in the case of Zhu Zhenlin’s design. The Xiangshan County Technical School student has put together a solar-powered car for just £2! Hey, it’s not the prettiest (though this article does point out its Snoopy seat covers) and only does 25mph, but at that price, what exactly are you demanding?
The 22-panel, 12 battery car can also be charged from the mains, that as the Daily Mail’s article points out, would be pretty handy if you have aspirations of driving it around any UK town.
For all the gawking at the slightly clunky nature of Zhu’s design and tongue-in-cheek comparisons to the likes of the Nuna6 solar racer designed by Dutch engineers, bits of DIY creativity like this are really heartening – a role for real people, not just giant companies, in getting to grips with low-carbon energy.
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