Solar-powered tractor to run over the green farms of 2010
The farmers of 2010 will have one more reason to bow down to sun and utilize solar energy to the fullest. Though Sun’s abundant energy is uber essential for farmers to grow healthy crop feeds, in the near future, this solar energy will also be used to power a tractor. The Austrian maker, Open Energy, is in the process of launching a solar-powered tractor soon. Fitted with a 26sq m solar panel, these farming vehicles will assist the vegetable and fruit producers for weeding, drilling and also ploughing. The panels are deigned to constantly adjust their position to harness the most of the sun during the whole day. This helps augment the efficiency by 40% and reduce the dependence on direct sunlight.
Development engineer Peter Prohaska states, “There is nearly always more power being stored than is being used, so the tractor will be able to run constantly for up to a day and a half on slower-paced jobs like watering or weeding. Heavier, more demanding applications will require more battery capacity.” Though the normal speed of the solar tractor is 0.5kph, it can speed up to 5-6kph for short spells.
Estimated at £31,600-£39,500 ($48,555-$60,600), the first prototype is expected to hit Austria in 2009, while it will commercially be available from 2010.