CARBON NON-CRIMP FABRIC FOR THE “ECLIPSE 9” SOLAR VEHICLE
Since 1992, scientists and students at the École de technologie supérieure (ETS) in Montreal, Canada, have been working on the research and development of solar vehicles. To date, this has resulted in nine vehicle prototypes powered exclusively by solar energy and named “Eclipse”. Eclipse 9 was completed in spring 2016. SAERTEX USA has been partnering in the project for several years, supporting the “Club Scientifique”, as the ETS project group is called, by providing carbon fiber non-crimp fabric for free.
To maximize the range of the prototype, a total of 400 million silicon-coated solar cells of the latest technology were installed. A significant amount of time and expertise was also invested in improved battery storage capacities. At the same time, the weight of the Eclipse 9 was to be further reduced compared to the Eclipse 8 in order to achieve greater energy efficiency. TECHNICAL BENEFITS
- Weight reduction
- Energy savings
- Good drapability
REINFORCING THIS IDEA
Thousands of hours of research and development time have flowed into the “Eclipse 9” project. The objective was to make the prototype more aerodynamic and lighter. In the construction of the body and the external skin, many bidiagonal carbon fiber non-crimp fabrics made by SAERTEX were used. These ultra-lightweight non-crimp fabrics permit both excellent mechanical characteristics and significant weight savings compared to the predecessor model, Eclipse 8.
THE SUCCESS STORY
By using SAERTEX carbon fiber non-crimp fabrics, it was possible to significantly reduce the weight of the Eclipse 9 compared to the previous model. The bidiagonal carbon fiber non-crimp fabrics proved an ideal basis for the required lightweight components, partly because of their high drapability. As a result, the “Club Scientifique” was able to achieve even better results in terms of aerodynamics.
“On behalf of the entire team, thank you for your support.” Mathieu Lecours (Directeur général et co-capitaine de la voiture solaire Éclipse de l’ÉTS).
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