The Italian team Onda Solare unveiled on Monday, June 11th its new prototype: Emilia 4, the first Italian solar powered four seater.
In the beautiful venue of the Ferrari Museum in Maranello, the group of engineers and technicians of Onda Solare presented its new vehicle, 100% Made in Italy. The project is born from the collaboration between the University of Bologna and many Italian companies working in the energetic and automotive sectors.
Developed and built in Emilia Romagna, Emilia 4 is 4.6 meter long, 1.8 meter wide and 1.2 meter high, it is equipped with a 5 square meter photovoltaic roof, made of 362 silicon cells, with a nominal power of 1200W. The cells lamination has been carried out by the Turin based company Solbian, whose collaboration with Onda Solare is well established, Solbian participated in fact in the making of the previous prototype, Emilia 3.
On this occasion, in addition to using the increasingly powerful cells supplied by SunPower™, Solbian has transferred in the automotive field the latest developments already introduced for solar boats, in particular the company has chosen a combination of materials that can reduce the maximum weight of the photovoltaic system, while keeping the characteristics of resistance necessary in this type of competition intact.
Batteries included, the empty vehicle weights 230 kg and it can load 4 people and 2 luggages, namely 360 kg.
The car has an autonomy of 600 km without sun light at an average speed of 50-60km/h.
The first real test will start on July 14th, with the American Solar Challenge, the Italian team will be the only European team among the 32 entrants, challenging the most important universities in the USA, as MIT, Berkeley and Georgia Tech just to name a few.
The route will cover portions of the Oregon Trail, a 3500 km trail from Nebraska to Oregon, which in 1800's was travelled by wagons to reach the Pacific Ocean by land: a long and difficult route that will allow the team to fully test its new solar car.