world’s first off-road solar car ‘stella terra’ succeeds in cruising from morocco to the sahara

world’s first off-road solar car ‘stella terra’ succeeds in cruising from morocco to the sahara

world’s first off-road solar car’s 1,000-kilometer test drive

 

22 students from Eindhoven University of Technology make up the group Solar Team Eindhoven, who created Stella Terra, the world’s first off-road solar car. In a recent 1,000-kilometer test drive, the team succeeded in driving their solar-powered car from Northern Morocco to the Sahara, traveling through dry riverbeds, forest areas, along steep mountain trails, and through the loose desert sand. It may be safe to say that the green-colored car design, which mimics nature’s palette, was able to weather through rugged and sandy terrains well.

 

Stella Terra managed to run the entire course as it generated energy using the absorbed solar power from the photovoltaic panels on the roof, which covered nearly the entire upper surface of the solar car, including the hood. As the Solar Team Eindhoven states, the solar car, which is road-legal, has a top speed of 145 kilometers per hour, weighs only 1,200 kilograms, and has a range of 710 kilometers on a sunny day. Off-road, the range averages about 550 kilometers, depending on the surface.

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
images by Solar Team Eindhoven | photos by Bart van Overbeeke and Rien Boonstoppel

 

 

Solar team eindhoven’s stella terra can take long drives

 

Solar Team Eindhoven first introduced Stella Terra in March 2023 as a concept vehicle, and then in September 2023 as a real-life model, calling it the world’s first off-road solar car. Before achieving their goal of crossing the Sahara from Northern Morocco, the design team faced the challenge of building a self-sustaining off-road vehicle powered by solar panels. ‘Stella Terra must withstand the harsh conditions of off-roading while remaining efficient and light enough to be powered by the sun. That is why we had to design almost everything for Stella Terra ourselves, from the suspension to the inverters for the solar panels,’ says Wisse Bos, team manager of Solar Team Eindhoven.

 

After a series of extensive tests in the Netherlands, Solar Team Eindhoven took Stella Terra for a long journey during which the solar car covered nearly a thousand kilometers through various landscapes, finishing the journey in the Sahara, all powered by the sun. ‘It was an incredible trip with a positive ending. Stella Terra’s efficiency was hard to predict. That’s why we weren’t sure if we would make it on solar power. During the ride, Stella Terra turned out to use 30 percent less energy than expected. We were able to drive the entire trip on the sun’s energy and did not depend on charging stations,’ explains Wisse Bos.

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
the team successfully drove their solar-powered car from Northern Morocco to the Sahara

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
it seems that the solar car’s rear can be expanded for more space inside

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
nearly the entire upper surface of Stella Terra is covered with solar panels

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
Stella Terra managed to run the entire course from the photovoltaic panels on the roof

world-first-off-road-solar-car-stella-terra-students-eindhoven-university-designboom-ban2

Solar Team Eindhoven’s Stella Terra

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
the world’s first off-road solar car cruising rocky paths

worlds first off-road solar car stella terra
Solar Team Eindhoven celebrating the success of their solar car

world-first-off-road-solar-car-stella-terra-students-eindhoven-university-designboom-ban

Stella Car is dubbed the world’s first off-road solar car

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