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Solar Cell(s) - Extend Battery Life

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision Discussion' started by millertime510, Apr 24, 2014.

  1. millertime510

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    Hi All,

    I have an idea; you thoughts?

    Extend the Battery Life of the P2V with Small Solar Cell(s) across the frame/body of the P2V. Maybe we will be able to get additional flight time (5-10mins or more) from attaching small solar cells? Any thoughts....

    Millertime510
     
  2. 007trains

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    I'll let someone else do the maths but as far as i know with the current solar technology the weight of the solar cell requires more power to lift than it produces so you'll only reduce flight time
     
  3. pault

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    No way you would get 5-10 minutes, you would be lucky to get 5-10 seconds !
    (or as 007 points out maybe the weight would outweigh any extra amps)

    Nice idea though and maybe in a decade or two the technology may be there. Recently someone has built a solar powered full scale aircraft and the wingspan needed to provide enough space for the cells was humongous.
     
  4. Cr8tive_leo

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    Not for a Quad, too much power drain. The technology exists. For fixed wing, it isn't a problem.
     
  5. BobUnplugged

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    There's not enough surface area to make a solar panel work. And modifying the surface area would surely mess up the lift of the props.
     
  6. Deathcode

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    I'm not proficient with electricity or solar energy concepts but I did have the same thought.
    I found this: http://www.adafruit.com/products/1485
    and I thought that if somehow a photovoltaic cell like that can be molded into the upper shell of the phantom (just an example) maybe the produced output is more than the added weight and it can help the phantom extend its flight time by a couple of minutes at least.
    I'm sure there are people that can do the math here and is proficient with solar technology..
     
  7. CityZen

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    Let's see: Phantom battery is 11.1V and 5200 mah. It runs for, what, 20 mins? If it ran for 1 hour, it'd be using 5.2 amps. It's using 3 times that, so let's say 15 amps. 15 amps times 11.1V = 166 watts.
    That solar panel provides 6V at 1W. If you had 2 of them, that'd be 12V at 1W. Compare 1W to 166W. I think you can draw your own conclusions.
     
  8. Deathcode

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    Ok thank you for the explanation. I was merely suggesting this as an option.
    I didn't think you could extend the flight time for long periods of time, but if the flight time could be increased by 4-5 minutes it would be worth it IMO.
    maybe there are other solutions out there that are more efficient than this.
     
  9. J.James

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    Well i have a pretty efficient solar panel that in peek sun it would put out 120 watts at the right voltage. Only thing is its about 2 x 3 feet and weighs about 20 lbs. Tho it does work great to charge the battery off grid. using on of the cigaret lighter chargers
     
  10. Deathcode

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    Ok, so, maybe you guys know more but this one in particular: http://www.ebay.com/itm/20W-20watt-12V- ... 23448f20cc
    Specs: 12 volts (perfect for Phantom)
    20W
    Measures: 520x270x2.5

    Phantom uses a 5200mah battery at 11.1 volts
    that yields 57.72W

    So 20 W would be a third of that. Ok, I know the size is considerable, but I'm sure there are even more efficient cells out there...
     
  11. oldcajun

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    No solar cell will meet the Phantom lift weight capability and provide useful improvement in flight time. The 20 watt unit is too heavy and too large. The smallest is a 10 watt unit weighing 6/10th of a kilogram and only produces 0.53 amp under ideal condition. It is 18"x7.4"x1"thick, too large to fit on a Phantom. Forget about using solar power on a Phantom - you can't violate the laws of physics. I have designed and installed several 12 volt solar systems.
     
  12. Deathcode

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    You need to be more optimistic!!! Anything's possible!!!

    http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/1861 ... ency-by-30

    Maybe not NOW, but soon!
     
  13. J.James

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    Them semi flexible cells are about as efficient as a solar cell comes. and also they are about the lightest ones out there right now. I have a 30 watt one of them and even tho its really light for a 30 watt panel its still about 1,800 grams. and only puts out 1.83 amps and size wise my 30 watt one is about 24 x 15 inches. So even if the weight was not a factor just its size would still cause so much wind drag that it would not give you any additional power being you would need to use even more power to fly it.