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Solar Rvelation!

#1
Not too long ago I watched a video via Youtube, where a user flew his R/C aircraft with FPV to 5k meters. In seeing this my father asked the question could using small solar panels help augment battery drain you system power? With the help of some electrical wizardry could you at least in theory tie in lengths of Solar cells on a Versa Wing to increase Flight times. Now I vaguely remember in science class as a young pup that the amount of power a cell can generate is almost concurrent with the size of it Surface area. With this in mind could the top of the Versa's Wing be made of a solar cell? I offer this challenge and question. Not only for the Versa Wing, but also for smaller FPV such as Quads and Tricopters. I look forward to any and all input on this idea. And as always Thank You FT for all you do bringing this hobby to all.
 
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#2
my guess, and its only a guess, would be that the surface area required to generate significant amounts of power is much bigger than what you can fit on a versa wing. sure it would allow you to fly a little longer, but my guess would be the difference in flight time wouldnt be noticable, as you're now carrying the extra weight of the solar cells.

but you can look into this if you like. work out how much power a solar pannel can generate in optimal conditions and go from there.
 
#4
Thanks Guys, Since posting this I've been reading up on solar cells and the correlation between Form and Function. Would seem that the only real benefit of it would be to tie the cells into the Control Board itself to supplement the power feed into the board. I am planning on executing some small scale tests on Power Output - Size of the Cell, and see what kind of numbers one gets to deal with.
 

DH.98

New member
#5
I think a solar powered versa wing could work, but you would have to build a lighter version (maybe out of depron) with a small motor, so that you would have a plane with good gliding characteristics and a small motor to keep it in the air. (if you have any questions about solar cells, I might be able to help you as I'm already building solar powered rc boats and cars)
 
#6
I agree with eagle4, there isn't enough wing to make the benefits of solar panels be worth the weight. At the very least I would say it could supplement a flight pack and allow you to use your main battery solely for the motor. Still, the added weight would be a problem. This would be interesting on a larger glider.